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Postgraduate Study


One to one supervision

Students can usually expect to have around four one-hour supervisions per term with their Principal or other supervisors.  Students will also be appointed an advisor who they can arrange to meet on an informal basis if need be.

The University of Cambridge publishes an annual Code of Practice which sets out the University’s expectations regarding supervision.

Seminars & classes

There is a wealth of resources at Cambridge from which you can develop and consolidate the skills you need to produce a successful thesis and the methods and technology by which you realise this effectively.

The Faculty provides an integrated MPhil and PhD training course which PhD students are required to attend, where relevant, weekly research seminars and talks, peer monitoring within reading and discussion groups, and practical skills training (photography, building survey).

You will be encouraged to attend the fortnightly City Seminar series, the Martin Centre lunchtime seminar series, The Cambridge Architectural History Seminars, Ax:son Johnson Centre for the Study of Classical Architecture Seminars and the ARCSOC talks.


Attending other lectures is optional but students are strongly encouraged to take advantage of the wide range of activities in the Department of Architecture and other faculties relevant to their research.

Students will also have access to courses offered by the Language Centre, the Social Sciences Research Methods Programme, and the Personal and Professional Development.

Small group teaching

Students are encouraged to attend research skills seminars and workshops: two hours weekly.


Students will be provided with feedback via supervision and the supervisor's termly reports.


Thesis / Dissertation

Submission of a thesis, which should not exceed 80,000 words.  The thesis is examined by two examiners and includes an oral examination which is usually held at the Faculty or can be held remotely.

Footnotes, references and text within tables are to be counted within the word limit, but captions, appendices and bibliographies are excluded. Appendices (of no determined word length) may be permitted subject to the approval of the candidate's supervisor (in consultation with the Degree Committee). Appendices should be confined to such items as catalogues, original texts, translations of texts, transcriptions of interview, or tables. Permission to include such appendices must be requested well in advance of the submission of the final thesis.


You will be reviewed on a regular basis, as part of the PhD.

In the third term (or part-time equivalent), you will submit a First Year Report. Your reports will be assessed by two examiners; you will also undertake an oral examination. You will be required to pass to be registered and progress into the second year.

During your seventh term (or part-time equivalent), you will be required to give a presentation of your work at the annual PhD Conference. Your progress will be assessed and documented in a short report.

In your ninth term (or part-time equivalent), you will have an interview with your supervisor(s) and one other University Teaching Officer from within the Department or any other appropriate assessor approved by the supervisor to monitor your progress and ensure that you are on track to submit your thesis within three years.

You will submit a logbook of your research activity at the end of each year.

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Key Information

3-4 years full-time

4-7 years part-time

Study Mode : Research

Doctor of Philosophy

Department of Architecture

Course - related enquiries

Application - related enquiries

Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Michaelmas 2024

Applications open
Sept. 4, 2023
Application deadline
May 16, 2024
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2024

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Course Funding Deadline
Jan. 4, 2024
Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 11, 2023

These deadlines apply to applications for courses starting in Michaelmas 2024, Lent 2025 and Easter 2025.

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