Study a PhD or EdD

Study a PhD or EdD

Why research at Aberdeen?

  • We’re Flexible
    Our research degrees are offered on a full or part time basis and delivered on campus or via distance or blended learning, so you can find a route that works best for you.

  • We’re International
    We have a thriving community of about 50 research students from all over the world; you could join our community of students from the Bahrain, Cyprus, Ethiopia, France, Ghana, Greece, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Libya, Malawi, Malaysia, Malta, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Thailand and USA.

  • We’re Experts
    Our international body of staff encompasses a wide range of subject specialisms in which supervision can be offered.  Our academics are involved in research and contribute to academic and professional bodies.  Find out more by visiting our People page.

What can I study?

We offer a PhDs in Education, Mindfulness and Counselling.

You can also study for a Professional Doctorate of Education (EdD). This is a distinctive two-part programme that offers you the opportunity to develop your capacity as a reflexive researcher before moving on to complete your own original doctoral thesis.

The programme is ideal for anyone working in any part of the education sector (school, university, museum) as well as anyone working in education-related services or disciplines such as health and social care.

Find out more 


What is the focus of an EdD?

An EdD has a practice-based focus. An EdD thesis makes a significant contribution to knowledge in the student’s selected area, but, unlike a PhD thesis, it also makes a contribution in relation to practice or understandings of practice.

As a result, candidates are expected to be working in a relevant practice context. This is not a requirement for a PhD.

How is an EdD structured?

There is a structured approach in which the taught component scaffolds students in designing their EdD research project. A PhD involves more independent doctoral research.

What are the modes of study for an EdD?

The EdD is part-time only. The PhD can be full time or part time, and on campus or online.

What should my personal statement include?

The personal statement should explain why the applicant wishes to undertake the EdD in relation to their personal and professional/career development. This can involve an explanation/outline of their professional trajectory to date, and something about where they see themselves in the future. The underlying focus should be 'why an EdD and why now?'.

A proposal related to a specific topic is not necessary at this stage, but an indication of the sorts of research topics, issues and questions they envisage engaging with in the research stage of the degree, is helpful. Writing this will hopefully prove a useful exercise in terms of thinking through what the candidate is hoping to bring to, and get from, the degree.

How do I get started?

Find out more PhD study.

Find our more about EdD.

All the advice you need to get started, including how to apply and finance advice, can be found at the Postgraduate Research site.

For more information you can contact us on