PhD Education

Year of entry: 2022

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Overview

Degree awarded
PhD
Duration
3 years
Entry requirements
  • A First or Upper Second Class Bachelor's degree (or its international equivalent).
  • A relevant master's degree, with Merit and a minimum average grade of 60% in both the taught course units and your dissertation (or international equivalent of 60%).

Full entry requirements

How to apply
Apply online

Programme options

Full-time Part-time Full-time distance learning Part-time distance learning
PhD Y Y N N

Programme overview

  • We're ranked in the top ten universities in the UK for Education (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021). 
  • Learn with research-active experts in the fields of and education and work with highly diverse cohorts of students and staff.  
  • Contribute to improvements in the overall wellbeing of students, their families and communities throughout the world through research.

Open days

The University holds regular open days, where you will have the opportunity to tour the campus and find out more about our facilities and programmes.

On this day, you will find out more about the School of Environment, Education and Development (SEED) and meet academic and admissions staff who will be able to answer any questions you have.

For more information, see Open days.

Fees

For entry in the academic year beginning September 2022, the tuition fees are as follows:

  • PhD (full-time)
    UK students (per annum): £6,000
    International, including EU, students (per annum): £20,000
  • PhD (part-time)
    UK students (per annum): £3,000
    International, including EU, students (per annum): £10,000

Further information for EU students can be found on our dedicated EU page.

Your fees will cover the cost of your study at the University, as well as charges for registration, tuition, supervision, examinations and graduation (excluding graduation robe hire).

Payment of tuition fees will also entitle you to membership of The University of Manchester library, the Students' Union and the Athletic Union.

Scholarships/sponsorships

We receive money from a range of sources to help you fund your research and have a range of awards on offer, covering tuition fees and a generous stipend.

Application deadlines for internal funding opportunities are often at the beginning of February for programmes starting the following September.

If you're planning to apply for a scholarship or award that is not attached to a particular project, you'll normally need to hold an offer of a place from the University before applying.

Search for current funding opportunities by country and research programme using our  database search tool

Contact details

School/Faculty
School of Environment, Education and Development
Contact name
Christopher Kitchen
Telephone
+44(0)161 275 0807
Email
School/Faculty
See: The School .

Programmes in related subject areas

Use the links below to view lists of programmes in related subject areas.

Entry requirements

Academic entry qualification overview

  • A First or Upper Second Class Bachelor's degree (or its international equivalent).
  • A relevant master's degree, with Merit and a minimum average grade of 60% in both the taught course units and your dissertation (or international equivalent of 60%).

English language

Candidates whose first language is not English require one of the following certificates:

  • IELTS test minimum scores - 7 overall, 7 writing, 6 other sections;
  • TOEFL (internet based) test minimum scores - 100 overall, 25 writing, 22 other sections;
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) minimum scores - 66 overall, 66 writing, 59 other sections;
  • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) - overall score of 185 or above, with writing 185 and no other sub-section below 169, or Grade C if taken before 2015;
  • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) - overall score of 185 or above, with writing 185 and no other sub-section below 169, or Grade B if taken before 2015.

English language test validity

Some English Language test results are only valid for two years.

Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the programme.

Application and selection

How to apply

Advice to applicants

Your completed application should include:

  • two references, one of which should be familiar with your academic work, on headed paper from the institution, signed, dated and stamped; 
  • a degree certificate and transcript for your bachelor's and master's degrees; 
  • a research proposal; 
  • evidence of your English language proficiency; 
  • a detailed CV.

Admission to studying for a PhD or a Professional Doctorate is highly competitive, so please allow as much time as possible to prepare your application, browse our research pages and academics' profiles, and familiarise yourself with the application process and any important deadlines.

Your supervisor will be an important part of your PhD programme.

It is a close relationship created over several years, through which you develop your ideas, skills, thinking and research. Your supervisor's research interests should therefore closely align to yours. 

If you aren't applying for a specific project, you  will  need to find potential supervisors who will support your research.

Details on recent publications, ongoing projects and particular research interests are all available on our  academics' profiles .

Academics with capacity to take on new research students are happy to provide feedback on well-developed draft proposals that match their research interests, before you apply.

Your potential supervisor will give you advice and critical feedback to help you to make your proposal stronger and more competitive, which will be crucial if you are considering applying for funding.

If you are not sure who would be a suitable supervisor for your research, provide clear details of your research area or group within your application to make it easier for us to identify a potential supervisor.

Include any details in section six of your application from under 'Proposed programme of study'.

Although guarantees cannot be made, we  will  do our best to match your area of research to the most suitable supervisors within the field who have capacity to take on a new research student.

How your application is considered

In reaching a decision on applications, we review a number of criteria, including:
  • the availability of two appropriate supervisors;
  • the relevance and strength of your research proposal ;
  • your academic standing and relevant professional experience.

When you submit an application, you will receive notification that it has been received. Our admissions team will contact you to let you know if we require any further information.

We aim to process all applications within six weeks and will contact you with our decision as soon as possible.

Interview requirements

You may be required to attend an interview.

Interviews may be held in person at The University of Manchester, or via Skype. The proposed main supervisor will contact you to make these arrangements.

Programme details

Programme description

Research in education must and should make a difference.

A PhD in Education will allow you to conduct world-changing research that addresses key issues in social justice and enables evidence-informed educational change.

The Manchester Institute of Education (MIE) builds upon a long-standing reputation for excellence in educational research and teaching with a tradition stretching back to 1890, when education was first established as a focus for study within The University of Manchester.

We are one of the largest graduate educational research communities in the UK, with a rich diversity of opportunity for our postgraduate research students.

The MIE approach to research is distinctive; through a focus on equity and practice, we make a significant contribution to the University's goal of social responsibility.

Our aim is to ensure that our educational and allied research is at the cutting-edge of theory and practice, and that it contributes to improvements in the overall wellbeing of students, their families and communities throughout the world.

Ongoing productive partnerships with policymakers and practitioners enable the interplay of ideas, evidence and strategy. Manchester Institute of Education research themes include:

As a PhD student, you will join a vibrant and dynamic group of people with diverse backgrounds, interests and world views, and gain the opportunity to work with leading experts who have a broad range of experience and knowledge in the respective fields.

There will also be many opportunities for you to become involved in ongoing research projects.

Special features

Education has been a discipline of study at Manchester since 1890. 

We are one of largest educational research communities in the UK, conducting field-leading research across a wide range of areas, including educational leadership and policy, mental health, teacher training, maths education, disadvantage and poverty, and educational equity. 

Our research improves the quality of education across the world, with 78% of our activity defined as `world-leading' or `internationally excellent' (Research Excellence Framework 2014). 

The School of Environment, Education and Development (SEED) is a unique interdisciplinary collaboration between the disciplines of Architecture, Education, Geography, International Development and Planning and Environmental Management.  

What unites us is a shared commitment to highlight and address the uneven relationships between societies, economies and the environment.  

We want to understand better the world in which we live, and to offer solutions to the problems within it. 

We acknowledge that a complex and interconnected world presents many challenges for analysts, but researchers in SEED are pioneering new evidence, measures, concepts and theories in order to address these challenges in practice. 

SEED's world-leading research is rooted in everyday life but international in relevance and scope, addressing social, economic and environmental concerns across the globe.  

Our PhD and professional doctorate research community, grouped around a range of dynamic centres and themes, is central to the SEED research agenda across all our disciplines.  

In order to further this agenda, we need fresh input and clear thinking from a fully engaged, curious, critical, socially aware PGR community.

Teaching and learning

We know the importance of transition and community; all our incoming PhD students are assigned a buddy, a senior student who offers advice and support to help connect you quickly into the community.

The Postgraduate Research Support Network is run by students for students and provides regular opportunities for debate.

Similarly, Research Matters is a lively seminar series for all staff and research students in MIE.

Our research students are vital to our research community and are welcomed as such.

When you become a postgraduate researcher in the School of Environment, Education and Development (SEED), you'll join a postgraduate community of more than 1,000 doctoral students from more than 100 different countries, all studying within the Faculty of Humanities.

You'll be assigned to specific research grouping that complements your research interests and have access to a variety of interdisciplinary research institutes.

Our working environments are often spacious and open plan, giving you plenty of opportunities to communicate with colleagues and staff within the School, and you will have your own desk space as well as access to our fantastic range of libraries on campus.

All our academic supervisors are research active and will support you to work on challenging research problems and develop rigorous, creative and original research.

You can expect to meet with your supervisor at least once a month to discuss progress on your project.

As a postgraduate researcher, you'll have access to a large and diverse community of internationally recognised academic experts offering an environment that will stimulate intellectual debate and development. We provide additional financial support for several activities related to your PhD, including:

  • presenting at international conferences; 
  • attending workshops that provide relevant professional opportunities; 
  • conducting fieldwork in the UK and overseas.

Facilities

MIE is in the University's Ellen Wilkinson building, which is centrally located on the University's Oxford Road campus, close to the Main Library, Alan Gilbert Learning Commons and the Students Union.

Disability support

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

For more information, email  dass@manchester.ac.uk

Careers

Career opportunities

As a postgraduate researcher, you will have access to a dedicated Researcher Development Team who will support your professional development throughout your PhD journey and beyond.

Our researcher development programme will enable you to become more aware of your developing researcher identity, equipping you with the skills you need during your PhD and prepare you to integrate into the researcher community.

At every stage of your career, you will receive relevant, effective and comprehensive professional development opportunities.

We offer training sessions to build your skills and confidence in writing and presenting, with specific sessions on viva preparation, thesis submission and preparing for your Review Panel. You'll also have access to a range of workshops, covering areas such as:

  • increasing research impact through blog posts; 
  • making the most of social media;  
  • publishing in journals; 
  • applying for fellowships; 
  • designing academic posters; 
  • improving time and self-management.

In addition, our Humanities training hub -  ProGRess@humanities  - gives you additional training opportunities within the University.

You can choose courses in public engagement, wellbeing, language training and teaching, alongside more specialist courses in tools and software such as Python, R and Nvivo.

methods@manchester , meanwhile, is an initiative that gives you the chance to learn from the very best in research methods expertise at Manchester and beyond.

Regular talks, workshops and other methods-related events are organised throughout the academic year, bringing in experts from across the University and externally.

Finally, taking a placement provides a great opportunity to engage in knowledge exchange and to develop professional networking opportunities for your future career development.

We have established Postgraduate Researcher Exchange programmes with a small number of institutions around the world, offering you the opportunity to visit another institution, access research resources and experience another academic culture as well as build professional networks.

Successful applicants will receive some funding towards travel expenses, accommodation, subsistence, education materials and/or other education-related costs for anything from two weeks to a three-month visit.

For more information, see Careers and employability .

Careers support

The University has its own dedicated  Careers Service  that you would have full access to as a student and for two years after you graduate.

At Manchester you will have access to a number of  opportunities to help boost your employability .