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PhD Art History and Visual Studies
Gain advanced research skills focused on one of a broad range of art history specialisms.

PhD Art History and Visual Studies / Programme details

Year of entry: 2019

Programme description

Our PhD Art History and Visual Studies programme offers the opportunity to conduct in-depth research in an area of particular interest.

Postgraduate research within Art History at Manchester is largely driven by the interests of our members of staff. Our research strengths include:

  • medieval England and Italy;
  • Italian and Northern Renaissance;
  • Renaissance print culture;
  • history of architecture;
  • history of gardens;
  • art and science;
  • British art in the 18th and 19th centuries;
  • Romanticism and its reception;
  • the history and theory of the avant-garde;
  • art and sexuality;
  • modernism and post-colonialism;
  • art and psychoanalysis;
  • poststructuralism;
  • history and theory of photography;
  • experimental art-writing.

Find out more about our  research , our staff and what our current postgraduate research students are working on.

Special features

Find out more about the Graduate School

Graduate School

All of our postgraduate students become members of the Graduate School when you start at Manchester. It has dedicated facilities for students and offers opportunities to collaborate with other postgraduates.

Centre for the Study of Surrealism and its Legacies

The Arts and Humanities Research Board (AHRB) Research Centre for the Study of Surrealism and its Legacies is a collaboration between the University of Essex, The University of Manchester and the Tate.

The Centre promotes research excellence in studies of dada and surrealism, and their impact on modern thought and culture.

Coursework and assessment

The award of your PhD follows three years of successful supervised research. The maximum length of the PhD thesis is 80,000 words.


Alan Gilbert Learning Commons Fly Through

Manchester is home to one of the UK's five National Research Libraries - one of the best-resourced academic libraries in the UK and widely recognised as one of the world's greatest research libraries.

Find out more about libraries and study spaces for postgraduate research students at Manchester.

We also have one of the largest academic IT services in Europe - supporting world-class teaching and research. There are extensive computing facilities across campus, with access to standard office software as well as specialist programmes, all connected to the campus network and internet.

Every student is registered for email, file storage and internet access. If more demanding computer access is required, our specialist computing division can provide high-end and specialist computing services.

The Graduate School offers dedicated state of the art facilities to research students, including common rooms and workstations.

Find out more about our facilities for Art History students.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: