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Postgraduate Study

Course closed:

English Studies is no longer accepting new applications.

Apply using the Applicant Portal

The Apply Now button on the right will take you to the Applicant Portal. There, you can create and submit your application and supporting documents, and you can also request your references.

An application is only complete when:

  1. you have submitted your application and supporting documents via the Applicant Portal
  2. you have paid the application fee if applicable. For further information on application fees, and which courses require an application fee, see here.
  3. your referees have provided their references.

If you miss the deadlines specified in this section, you will not be able to submit your application.

Selection Process

Applications, once made, are passed directly to the Faculty's Postgraduate Admissions Committee which decides whether to accept or reject candidates.

Certain applicants applying for funding competitions with an early closing date (e.g. in October) will have their applications considered by this committee in November, and they will either receive a decision at that point or will have their file held over pending a final decision when the main field of applications is considered in January. 

Most applications are considered together as a single field after the normal (January) closing date, and applicants will receive a decision by mid-February. 

Further information on How To Apply


Things You'll Need

In order to apply for this course you'll need to think about getting a few things ready before you apply.

  • Two academic references  
  • Transcript  
  • CV/resume
  • Evidence of competence in English  
    If required - you can check using our tool
  • Project title (M)
  • Research summary (M)
  • Research Proposal (M)
    Please submit a 500-word research proposal. Information on how to write a research proposal and examples of previous, successful proposals can be found on the following webpage: http://www.english.cam.ac.uk/admissions/graduate/research_prop.htm
  • Sample of work (max. 5)
    Please submit a sample of work which can be one long piece or several shorter essays amounting to around 5,000–7,000 words.
  • Proposed Supervisor (Optional)
  • Research experience (O)

Gates Cambridge Scholarships

If you wish to be considered for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship you will also need to provide the following:

  • Gates Cambridge Reference  
  • Research Proposal (PhD applicants only)

See Gates Cambridge for more information.


How to Find a Supervisor

Please note that although prospective postgraduate students may wish to look at the list of Faculty members' research interests before they decide to apply, supervisors are not appointed until well after candidates have been accepted, specifically shortly before the start of Michaelmas Term. It is the responsibility of the admissions committee to consider research applications and to match appropriate supervisors to research projects. Lecturers cannot appoint themselves to supervise a particular project, although they can indicate to potential applicants in advance whether or not they would agree to supervise the project if they were to be asked to do so by the admissions committee.

For a list of Faculty members, see here.

Key Information


9 months full-time

Master of Philosophy

Faculty of English

Course - related enquiries

Application - related enquiries

Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Applications open
Sept. 4, 2023
Application deadline
Jan. 3, 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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