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How to Apply for a Research Degree

Informal enquiries about the research degrees and application forms to be addressed to: 

Miss Victoria Parkin
Administrative Assistant, Research and Graduate Studies

Telephone:+44 (0)29 208 70855Extension:70855

Ms Elizabeth Renton
Graduate Studies Administrator

Telephone:+44 (0) 29 2087 4972Extension:74972


Applications for doctoral study are invited in any area that falls within the School’s broad remit. Before applying, it is advisable for potential applications to use the School's website to familiarise themselves with the expertise of its staff.

Cardiff University provides detailed Guidance Notes to help students complete the Postgraduate Application Form. All applications forms must be accompanied with an outline description of any intended research topic (500 words). Please visit the University's 'Apply' section for details on how to submit an application. This "outline research proposal", the completed application form and 2 academic references form the basis for assessing the application. Where English is not the applicant's first language, we do require an IELTS score of 7.0.

An outline description of the proposed research

This should include:

  • A suggested title for the proposed study
  • A statement of the aims of the research
  • A list of the questions to be addressed by the research
  • A brief summary of research that has already been undertaken in this field
  • An outline of the proposed design, including information on the research sample and methods of data collection
  • An indicative bibliography
  • Implications for wider research, practical applications, policy implications.

This method of proposal is helpful to the panel of reviewers, and staff can ensure that the appropriate academics get to read and comment on it.

Overseas applicants may be asked to submit additional written materials (such as examples of previous academic work) in support of their application.

Once you have been offered a place, fulfilled any conditions and finalised your funding arrangements, you qualify for entry to the University.