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Programme Structure

What to expect for a PhD/MPhil

The details of a PhD/MPhil may vary but a general plan is as follows:


A summary of what you have discovered which will stand alone.


A description of the problem you are studying and, in general terms, what you planned to do to take the research one step further. A summary of the structure of the thesis - an introduction to what is in the following chapters.

Literature search

A description, in detail, of what has been done before and so what the state of knowledge was before you started to contribute your research.


What you did: which techniques you used, how many samples you analysed, accuracy and precision of the analyses.


What you found: a description of your data. Given in words, graphs, tables and plates.


An interpretation of your data.The significance and limitations of your results.A comparison of your results with those of other scientists.How your ideas/models match, contradict or improve on other models.A description of how your research fits with conventional ideas, specifically and more broadly within your subject area.


Your achievements - how you extended knowledge - the major results you produced and their implications - possibilities for further research.