If you join us as a postgraduate research student you may study full- or part-time with staff who are recognised leaders in their field, and you will be joining a strong and growing community of research students.
The University College offers a supportive study environment with the Postgraduate Study Centre providing a dedicated study area for research students, with computer workstations, a social area and a seminar room.
Research students at St Mary’s have access to the library and computing facilities in the Learning Resources Centre, including:
A research degree involves defining your own area of research enquiry, working closely with a team who will guide and support you. You should, however, be aware that a research degree is very much an independent piece of work and as such requires the ability to structure and manage your own time.
We offer the opportunity to study for an MPhil or PhD, working on your research project alongside highly experienced researchers.
Master of Philosophy (MPhil)
An MPhil is normally in the region of 40.000 words in length and is usually completed within two years full-time and four years part-time.
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
A PhD is normally in the region of 80,000, and no more than 100,000, and is usually completed within three years full-time or six years part-time.
In both cases you will be examined through your thesis and by viva voce examination. All students who have not already completed a relevant Masters degree, or other appropriate postgraduate research methods training, are required to complete a suitable research methodology course early in their registration as part of their programme of study. This will provide you with a firm grounding for your research project.
These programmes offered are awarded by the University of Surrey.
You should have a good first degree and/or Masters, and academic interest that closely coincides with the academic expertise of a member of staff. In the first instance you will need to discuss your application with a member of supervisory staff in your field, in order to ensure that we are able to support your research.
There are five academic Schools within St Mary's University College. Details of the areas of research that they cover can be found on the Schools' MPhil / PhD Opportunities pages:
All potential research students must discuss their proposal with the member of academic staff cited on the appropriate School page above. Following that discussion, if we can support you in your research, one of the following options will be offered with appropriate forms provided:
Pre-registration with St Mary's
This is a preparatory stage to develop your proposal for application to full registration.
Full registration with St Mary's and the University of Surrey
If the academic staff consider that your proposal is sufficiently developed they may advise application to full registration. Once approved by St Mary's and the University of Surrey, your research can begin.
More information about the application process can be found in the following documents:
Application process for research students (PDF File)
Research applicant checklist (PDF File)
Fees vary depending on mode of study, area of study and student status, i.e. whether you are full-time or part-time, which subject you are studying and whether you are a UK, EU or Overseas student. Annual fees for the MPhil / PhD programmes of study can be found on the fees pages for Home students and International students. The fees shown are for the whole year and can be paid in instalments.