Social History PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships in the UK

We have 7 Social History PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships in the UK



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We have 7 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.

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Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) PhD Studentship - Historical Research

A fantastic opportunity to study for a 3-year funded doctorate whilst gaining valuable teaching experience. All advertised projects for this research area can be found . Read more

Sir Geoffrey Jefferson (1886-1961) and the making of British neurosurgery (history of medicine).

This studentship, based in the Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine (CHSTM), will develop a comprehensive understanding of the history of neurology in Manchester across the twentieth century. Read more
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PhD Studentship in Irish Studies

The Institute of Irish Studies at the University of Liverpool is pleased to invite applications for a PhD studentship in the areas of Literature, History and Politics. Read more

Gender and Sexuality in Poland - Feminist and Queer Approaches

The aim of this PhD project is to explore gender and sexuality in Poland, drawing on feminist/queer perspectives. Grounded in critical epistemologies and interdisciplinary approaches (e.g. Read more

History - Postgraduate Research Opportunities

History PhD/MA by Research (On-Campus or by Distance Learning). Times Higher Education ranked the Department of History first in the country for its performance in the latest Research Excellence Framework exercise. Read more

PhD History

Research areas. History. Tudor History. History of Western Architecture. 20th Century British History. Military History. Country House Studies. Read more
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