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Studying for a PhD
The Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at Lancaster is a leading centre for interdisciplinary arts, humanities and social science research, with a thriving graduate community and an extensive postgraduate research training programme. All departments have an international reputation for excellence in research and teaching.
PhD by Thesis
The traditional thesis-only model is on offer in all departments on a full- or part-time basis. Students complete a research project on a theme on their own choice and then submit a thesis of approximately 80,000 words for examination, which they will be required to defend orally.
PhD by Thesis and Coursework
The innovative thesis and coursework model is geared primarily towards those in employment. Students complete a range of taught modules in the early years of the programme and then work towards the submission of a thesis of approximately 50-70,000 words (varies between programmes). Students are required to pass the coursework element in order to progress to the thesis stage, but must successfully defend their thesis in order to obtain the qualification. Thesis and coursework-style PhD programmes are currently available in Educational Research and Applied Linguistics.
PhDs by Thesis and Coursework (delivered entirely on-line)
The Department of Educational Research now offers two part-time PhD programmes delivered entirely online:
They are part-time programmes undertaken online, over 4-5 years. Designed for professionals working in higher education institutions around the world (HERE) or experienced professionals working on social justice issues at the heart of their own professional practice and concerns (ESJ). Participants can study entirely from home, in full- or part-time employment in a higher education environment or be policy makers; managers; researchers working with social justice issues; youth workers; activists and advocacy workers; people with equity or social justice portfolios in a variety of institutions; education support personnel; consultants; researchers and workers in charities and NGOs; and civil servants.
Practice as Research PhD
Students wishing to complete PhD research in the creative arts may, in addition to a short written thesis, submit a substantial piece of practical work which provides new insights into creative practice knowledge in ways that are equal to but not possible within or duplicated by more traditional methods of academic research. Typically, this practical work might consist of a theatre production or some other unusual kind of performance event, studio work or musical composition, or might involve the submission of prose or poetry, a portfolio of plays, performance 'scores' or translations, or computer software. Practice as Research PhDs are available in the Lancaster Institute for Contemporary Arts - Art, Music, Theatre Studies - and in Creative Writing.
Supportive research environment
Postgraduate research students who join us will find an intellectually stimulating, interdisciplinary and international environment for their research activities. PhD students are positively encouraged to participate in the research life of the Faculty. Most departments have regular research seminars and reading groups, showcasing work from local academics and colleagues at other UK and international institutions. Such events provide PhD students with an excellent opportunity both to learn from more experienced colleagues and to make contact with other researchers in their field. The Faculty also provides funding to enable PhD students to present papers at conferences in the UK or abroad.
All full-time research students in years 1-4 of their studies are entitled to shared office space, with their own desk and storage space and access to computing, printing, photocopying and telephone facilities.
Research students also have access to the Faculty's Research Training Programme, which provides a wide range of short-courses and modules which provide students with the necessary research skills to complete their research projects successfully.
Many students will also be offered the opportunity to undertake some undergraduate teaching within their department. Training for such students is provided via the Centre for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching's Associate Teacher Programme. Such opportunities will be of particular value to those students wishing to pursue a career in academia.
For details of research expertise in individual departments, please visit the department websites.
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