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Arthur Lewis and Humanities Bridgeford Street Buildings
PhD Physical Geography
Specialist doctoral training in physical geography supervised by researchers with strong reputations for research quality.

PhD Physical Geography / Overview

Year of entry: 2019

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 description

PhD Physical Geography will allow you to benefit from the supervision of world-leading academics that have very strong reputations for research quality.

The University of Manchester is one of the best places in the world to study physical geography, and our department has a global reputation for its research and teaching.

In the UK's most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014), 94% of our outputs were considered internationally recognised, with an exceptionally high proportion (65%) judged to be internationally excellent or world-leading.

Your research will help to create solutions to global environmental problems, engaging with  themes  such as:

  • Biogeochemical cycling and pollutant dynamics;
  • Geoarchaeology;
  • Geochronology;
  • Geomorphology;
  • Glaciers and glacial processes;
  • Quaternary climates and environments;
  • Remote sensing, GIS and spatial modelling;
  • Upland environments;
  • Urban environments.

Our physical geography staff members hold editorial positions with leading research publications, including major journals such as Journal of the Geological Society, Geoarchaeology and Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers and also serve on various panels of the UK Natural Environmental Research Council (NERC).

In addition, there are two research groups specialising in physical geography: Environmental Processes, and Quaternary Environments and Geoarchaeology.

The work of the Environmental Processes research group includes the analysis of environmental processes at a range of spatial scales and geographical locations, but particularly in upland and urban environments. Fundamental and applied research is supported by the Research Councils and a range of government and non-government agencies, including DEFRA, DTI, UKCIP, Environment Agency, Natural England and Moors for the Future.

The Quaternary Environments and Geoarchaeology research group is particularly interested in the analysis of the response of geomorphological systems and ecosystems to global climate change. This includes the study of glaciers, rivers, lakes, deserts and high mountain terrains, as well as paleoecology, geochemistry and a range of geochronological applications. This research involves work throughout the world, including the Arctic, British Isles, Mediterranean, Himalayas, North America, and Africa. Research is funded by various bodies, including the Leverhulme Trust, NERC, the Royal Society and the Royal Geographical Society.

Recent PhD graduates have been appointed to positions at leading universities around the world, while others now work in government agencies and research institutes as well as conservation organisations. Many graduates have gone on to work in environmental consultancy in both the public and private sectors.  Our graduates also have a strong track record in the energy and mining sector, including renewable energy, oil, gas, aggregates and minerals.

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 and our resources, 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 2019, the tuition fees are as follows:

  • PhD (full-time)
    UK/EU students (per annum): £6,000
    International students (per annum): £18,500
  • PhD (part-time)
    UK/EU students (per annum): £3,000
    International students (per annum): £9,250

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

The UK government has confirmed that doctoral loans will be available for those studying PhDs and equivalent doctoral programmes including professional doctorates from 2018/19. The loan will be for a maximum of £25,000 over the duration of the course.

UK nationals who are ordinarily resident in England, aged 59 or under, who are not already receiving funding via a UK Research Council, are eligible.

Contact details

Academic department
School of Environment, Education and Development
Contact name
Christopher Kitchen
Telephone
+44(0)161 275 0807
Email
Website
http://www.seed.manchester.ac.uk/subjects/geography/postgraduateresearch/
Academic department overview
See: The School .

Programmes in related subject areas

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

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You can find regulations and policies relating to student life at The University of Manchester, including our Degree Regulations and Complaints Procedure, on our regulations website.