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Cardiff School of Social Sciences

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Funded PhD Programme (European/UK Students Only)

About the Programme

Cardiff University School of Social Sciences invites applications for PhD study with the possibility of being awarded a fully-funded ESRC DTP Studentship, available to start in October 2020, which are available in the areas of:

  • Criminology
  • Digital Economy & Society
  • Education
  • Science & Technology Studies
  • Social Policy
  • Social Work & Social Care
  • Sociology

Applications are invited from exceptional candidates with a first class or strong upper second class honours degree, or appropriate Masters' degree. We welcome applications for both full and part-time study, and studentships are available as either '1+3' (i.e. one full year of research training Masters followed by three years full-time Doctoral study, or the part-time equivalent), or '+3' (i.e. three years of full-time doctoral study or its part-time equivalent), depending on the needs of the applicant. Further details on types of awards. The closing deadline for application is Monday 3 February 2020 at 12 noon.

Short-listed applicants will be invited to interview (24.02.2020 - 02.03.2020). 

Applicants should consider approaching a potential supervisor before submitting their application. Information on the research interests of our staff can be found on the webpages. The pathway are:

  • Criminology Dr Adam Edwards
  • Digital Economy & Society Professor Matt Williams
  • Education Dr Dean Stroud
  • Science & Technology Studies Dr Des Fitzgerald
  • Social Policy Dr Marco Pomati
  • Social Work & Social Care Dr Tom Slater
  • Sociology Professor William Housley

Studentship awards commence in October 2020 and will cover your tuition fees, a maintenance grant (currently £15,009 p.a. for 2019/20 for full-time students, updated each year); and access to an additional Research Training Support Grant (RTSG), though an element of this latter fund may be 'pooled' and require separate applications from 2020 onwards. Other opportunities may include overseas fieldwork allowance, internships, overseas institutional visits and other grants.

A completed application form should be submitted by 12 noon on 3 February 2020. In the funding section, please select “I will be applying for a scholarship/grant” and “ESRC Wales Doctoral Training Partnership”. Incomplete applications or applications received after the deadline will not be accepted.

1. Covering letter Set out your reasons and motivation for applying to study at Cardiff University and the pathway; your understanding and expectations of doctoral study; your academic interests generally, and particularly of those relating to your proposed research. The letter should be no more than two pages. 

2. Academic / Professional Qualifications Where appropriate, this should also include proof of English Language Competency (7.0 IELTS minimum).

3. References Two academic references. Candidates must approach referees themselves and include references with their application.

4. Curriculum Vitae It should be no longer than two pages.

5. Research Proposal. The proposal should be up to a maximum of 1000 words, not including bibliographic references. We suggest that you use the following headings in your proposal:

  1. Title, aims and purpose of the research;
  2. Brief overview of the academic literature relevant to your field;
  3. Proposed design/methods;
  4. Academic contributions of your research;
  5. Indicative bibliographic references.


This program is available in English only. To request information in Welsh, please contact the Postgraduate Recruitment Team (

Funding Notes

ESRC studentships are highly competitive. Candidates should have an excellent academic background in the social sciences, holding a 1st or strong upper 2nd class degree. Applications from those also holding a relevant research training Masters degree (or an equivalent background in research training) will be considered for a +3 award. Full awards (fees plus maintenance stipend) are open to UK Nationals and EU students who can satisfy UK residency requirements.


How good is research at Cardiff University in Sociology?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 29.48

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Click here to see the results for all UK universities

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