How to apply

Student in the Liberty Building

You can apply for a postgraduate research degree at any point during the year, however we recommend applying before mid-June if you wish to commence your studies in October. We encourage you to contact our Admissions Team before beginning your application to gain further information.

With your application you will need to provide a fully developed research proposal. For full information about what to include in your research proposal, please download our research proposal guidelines.

Supporting documents

Alongside the draft outline of your proposed research, you will also need to provide the following supporting documents to apply:

  • Two references
  • A copy of all your degree certificates or equivalent (Bachelor, Masters and higher)
  • A copy of your full transcript for all your degrees
  • A copy of your IELTS/TOEFL results (if applicable). Download our language requirements information sheet to see the full range of English Language qualifications we accept
  • A copy of your full CV
  • A copy of the photograph page in your passport
  • A copy of any TIER IV visa if you have studied previously in the UK with a requirement for a visa
  • A copy of any scholarship or funding agreement.

For further information on the supporting documents you need to supply please download our supporting documents information sheet.


You will need to contact your two referees yourself, asking them to provide information in regards to:

  • Your character
  • Your academic record. If your referees are from your university this information should include your overall degree grade and performance in individual subjects
  • Their assessment of your suitability for the relevant postgraduate degree scheme.

Guidance on references

  • References must not be written by fellow students, family members or friends
  • If you have graduated more than five years ago we will accept one work-based reference
  • If you have graduated more than ten years ago we will accept two work-based references
  • Work references should be written by someone more senior to yourself in the organisation where you work
  • References but should be sent by the referee for the attention of Karin Houkes to, without the applicant being copied into the email
  • The references should be written on official headed paper and added as an attachment to the email. If there is a problem accessing official headed paper references may be written in the body of the email
  • Referees should send the reference from their work email addresses and not personal addresses.

How we review your application

Our admissions team will review your proposed research and make a decision based on:

  • The potential fit between your topic and our expertise
  • Supervisors’ interest in being involved
  • Referees’ reports
  • Degree results
  • School's resources
  • An interview.

If you have any queries on applying please contact postgraduate research admissions:


Tel: +44 (0)113 343 5009