PhD programmes

A PhD is likely to be the most challenging type of academic work you have ever done – but it will also be the most rewarding.


Traditional PhD 

Course code: JNLR31 (full-time) | JNLR41 (part-time)
Duration: Usually 3 years full-time (max 4) | 6 years part-time (max 8)
Thesis length: 80 - 100,000 words, excluding footnotes, bibliography and appendices
Examination: Oral examination (viva voce)

PhD with a practical component

Course code: JNLR57 (full-time)
Duration: Usually 3 years full-time (max 4)
Thesis length: 40 - 50,000 words, excluding footnotes, bibliography and appendices
Practical component: It should exemplify and illustrate your argument and convey it and its significance to a non-University audience.
Examination: Oral examination (viva voce)

A PhD is a degree programme based on an independent piece of research and writing that presents an original contribution to existing knowledge. The key feature of the PhD is that it is yours: the topic, planning, motivation, and thinking come from you. In other words, what our research degrees offer is a truly exciting opportunity for you to push forward the boundaries of knowledge, and to become an authority in your chosen field.

You will be supported by at least two supervisors who facilitate your progress along the way. They will help you to shape your research, guide you in professional development, and support you in delivering your findings to a wider audience.

During the course of the PhD, you will pursue a course of research training. Training is not credit-based and (with a few exceptions) modules are not compulsory, giving you the flexibility to design a custom training programme specific to your own needs.

Our programmes of study are reviewed annually to make sure they're current and relevant. Changes may be made in response to discoveries made through our world-leading research, funding changes, professional accreditation requirements, student or employer feedback, curriculum review, staff availability and variations in student numbers.

While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information on these webpages, for the reasons detailed above, changes may need to be made to programmes of study and fees after you have applied for a place. Where these are substantial in nature, we'll inform you as soon as we can.

Find a PhD

Search for PhD opportunities at Sheffield and be part of our world-leading research.