Students carry out a supervised programme of research at the leading edge of their chosen subject. From an initial proposal, students design and conduct a research programme under the direction of one or two members of our academic staff. The PhD research is written up as a substantial thesis and assessed in an extensive oral examination. You can choose to study any topic in which we have research expertise. Details of research staff expertise and interests are available on individual staff pages.
• An opportunity to undertake original, in-depth research under expert supervision, within a supportive and vibrant research student community.
• Access to advanced inter-disciplinary training in methodological skills, substantive subjects and additional research and presentation skills at the University of Bath and as part of the South West Doctoral Training Centre (with Universities of Bristol and Exeter).
• The opportunity to present your work and discuss it with other researchers working on similar topics and participate in departmental research centre activities.
• The opportunity to develop skills and a broader knowledge base by contributing to teaching.
The excellence of the research undertaken within the Department of Social & Policy Sciences has been recognised most recently by the award of the prestigious Queen's Anniversary Prize in 2011.
You can see what some of our current students are researching.
We are an internationally-recognised research-intensive Department with a strong focus on policy and practice, and a commitment to contribute to social wellbeing and social justice. We offer supervisory expertise in four disciplines:
• International Development
• Social Policy
• Social work
Our PhDs are not formally assigned a discipline and successful candidates can describe their PhD to reflect its main research area (e.g. PhD in Social Policy; PhD in International Development).
We have particular strengths in international and comparative research across the globe in all our disciplines. Our staff have published research on the UK, Europe, South and South-East Asia, East and West Africa, and Latin America, among others. Our staff, and research students, conduct research across disciplinary boundaries, and frequently work with colleagues from other disciplines in the department, as well as with colleagues in politics, psychology, economics.
The international and interdisciplinary focus of our research is reflected in the topics of our current research students and in the atmosphere of our lively and active research student community.
Certificates must be dated to within two years of the start of the programme of study.
• IELTS 7.0 (with no less than 6.5 in each of the four components)
• PTE Academic of 69 with no less than 62 in any component
If you wish to improve your English proficiency before commencing your studies, pre-sessional language training can be arranged through the Academic Skills Centre.
• Two references are required. At least one of these should be an academic reference.
The Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences Graduate School has further information about funding opportunities.
How to apply
You can must apply to study through the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences Graduate School.
Some or all of the PhD opportunities in this programme have funding attached. Applications for this programme are welcome from suitably qualified candidates worldwide. Funding may only be available to a limited set of nationalities and you should read the full programme details for further information.