The PhD is a three-year (full-time) degree programme by research leading to a doctorate. Students are required to write an 80,000-word thesis which is subject to external examination and an oral exam (viva voce).

The English Department welcomes inquiries from students interested in research in any of the areas listed below. If you are looking for a potential supervisor, please explore individual staff profiles and access information on our publications:

  • Early Modern Literature
  • Enlightenment and Romantic Literature
  • Victorian Literature
  • Scottish Literature
  • American Literature
  • Irish Literature
  • Modernist Literature
  • Post-War and Contemporary Literature
  • Women's Writing
  • Language and Linguistics

The English Department also has strong links with other graduate programmes, particularly History, Philosophy, Modern Languages, and Cultural History, and with the University's research centres, which provide an infrastructure for interdisciplinary research. In appropriate cases, joint supervision will be offered.

All research students take an induction course in their first semester. In addition, they take a series of courses that train them in the specific skills required for research in their chosen field and for the effective presentation of their work. Throughout the year, the Department and the University organise seminars, symposia and conferences that provide opportunities for postgraduates to develop their professional skills through observation and participation.