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Postgraduate Study

Course closed:

English 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 for Gates US funding are considered in October. Applications not shortlisted for the Gates US funding competition are considered for an offer and other funding competitions in the main January application round.

All applications other than those shortlisted for the Gates US funding are processed by the Faculty's Postgraduate Admissions Committee after the January deadline. If your application is shortlisted for funding, you will receive an offer of a place by early February.  The majority of funding is awarded by the end of April. If your application is not shortlisted for funding, you will receive the offer decision on your application ordinarily by the end of March. 

See What happens next for information on what happens after you have applied.

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 800-word research proposal
  • 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
  • PhD Proposed Supervisor (Mandatory)
  • 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 prospective postgraduate students should look at the list of faculty members' research interests before they decide to apply, in order to ensure that there is relevant supervisory expertise for their project. However, supervisors aren't appointed until after the candidate has been accepted and cannot appoint themselves to supervise a project in advance.

If you are being considered for a place, a potential supervisor will contact you for interview.

Please list in your application at least one, and up to three, proposed supervisors in the Faculty of English, ranked in order of their expertise match for your project (most relevant first).

Key Information


3-4 years full-time

4-7 years part-time

Doctor 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.

Applications open
Sept. 4, 2023
Application deadline
Jan. 18, 2024
Course Starts
Jan. 5, 2025

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

Applications open
Sept. 4, 2023
Application deadline
Jan. 16, 2024
Course Starts
April 17, 2025

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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