Weekly PhD Newsletter | SIGN UP NOW Weekly PhD Newsletter | SIGN UP NOW

Social History PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships in the UK

We have 13 Social History PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships in the UK



History & Archaeology



United Kingdom



All Institutions

PhD Type

PhD Type

All PhD Types



All Funding

We have 13 Social History PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships in the UK

PhD in Social History

A PhD in Social History allows students to explore the nuances and development of different societal groups throughout the human past. During the doctorate degree you’ll aim to understand the workings of different historical groups, writing up your findings in a unique dissertation.

What’s it like to do a PhD in Social History?

PhD students in Social History spend a large amount of time finding and engaging with primary sources relating to a select group of people. Given its closeness to economic history, sources can range from written documents to financial data. Some popular themes of Social History include:

  • Consumption
  • Economic development
  • Globalisation
  • Leisure
  • Material culture
  • Medicine
  • Slavery

Social History PhDs tend to be self-proposed projects. This means that you will decide your own research area and identify your own primary sources. However, some students apply for advertised projects where a research theme or primary source base will already be set. By the end of the degree you will have produced a 75,000 word thesis which is then assessed in an oral viva exam.

Depending on the location of your sources you may have to travel for research during your PhD. You will also have plenty of opportunity to engage in the wider academic community through conferences and publishing and develop your skills with training programmes and teaching experience.

Entry requirements

Most Social History PhD courses require applicants to have a Masters degree in History or a related subject, such as Economics, Political Science or Sociology. Some institutions may consider applicants without a postgraduate degree as long as they are able to demonstrate prior academic success and extensive professional research experience.

PhD in Social History funding options

The largest funding body of Social History PhDs is the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). Their fully-funded studentships cover tuition fees, a living stipend and any necessary research travel expenses. You must have a confirmed place at a university in order to apply for these studentships. Many institutions also have funding opportunities within their own departments, so make sure to check their websites.

If you apply for an advertised project then the funding specifications may be different to Research Council funding and will be outlined in the project details.

Due to the competitiveness of PhD funding, some students also opt to self-fund. This may be through part-time employment or the UK government doctoral loan. There are also many national bodies, charities and businesses willing to support research students with short-term grants.

PhD in Social History careers

A PhD in Social History provides graduates with a range of skills applicable to multiple career paths. Although teaching, research or academia may seem like the most obvious route of progression, Social History graduates may also find themselves working in journalism, public administration or regional planning.

read more
PhD saved successfully

School of Arts and Humanities French History Scholarship

Applications are invited to undertake a fully funded 3-year PhD programme at the University of Huddersfield under the supervision of Dr Lindsey Dodd on the subject of children in France during the Second World War. Read more

School of Arts and Humanities History of Mental Ill-health Scholarship

Applications are invited to undertake a 3-year PhD programme at the University of Huddersfield under the supervision of Dr Rob Ellis on the subject mental ill-health/learning disability (LD) in the twentieth century. Read more

The Medieval and Early Modern Material Culture Scholarship

Applications are invited to undertake a 3-year PhD programme at the University of Huddersfield under the supervision of Professor Sarah Bastow and Professor Katherine Lewis on the topic of Faith in Objects. Read more

PhD Studentship in History

The Department of History at the University of Liverpool is pleased to invite applications for one fully-funded (fees and maintenance) PhD studentship to start on 1 October 2023. Read more

Student life and the student experience: Exploring student histories within Polytechnics, c. 1969-1992

Applications are invited for a fees-only PhD bursary to commence in October 2023. This project provides an exciting opportunity to study the lives and experiences of students in an under-researched part of the Higher Education sector in the UK – the Polytechnics. Read more

Locating Cold War Imaginaries at York and Dover

This studentship will develop an innovative and interdisciplinary approach to the assemblage of materials held by English Heritage at 20 Group Control in York, and the Regional Seat of Government under Dover Castle. Read more

Strathmartine Scholarship in Early Modern Scottish History: The Nine Incorporated Trades of Dundee

The Nine Incorporated Trades of Dundee is a body with roots into the fifteenth century. The trades and the guilds will form the key ‘experience space’ that will enable visitors to the Eden Project to explore the relationship between working lives and the natural and built environment. Read more

History - Postgraduate Research Opportunities

History PhD/MA by Research (On-Campus or by Distance Learning). As a postgraduate researcher in the Department of History you will have the opportunity to work alongside academic staff whose research is at the forefront of current historical scholarship. Read more
  • 1

Filtering Results