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School of Law

PhD law application process

All applications must be made through the online system. Before beginning your application, please read the University's research degree application guidance notes as well as the information provided on this page.

To apply online, please click on the buttons on the right and choose full-time or part-time, depending which mode of study you want. These buttons are portals to the online application system - once you are in the application system, please follow the instructions.

Application deadlines

The deadline for application submissions for entry in September 2024 is midnight on Wednesday 5 June 2024.

However, if you need to secure funding for your PhD in the form of a Studentship, the deadline for your application will depend on the particular scheme you are applying for. All awards require the submission of the main PhD application and supporting documentation prior to the deadline. Find out more about fees and funding.

Here is a list of studentships available to offer-holders with the deadline to receive your application:

We strongly advise against deadline-surfing. Supervisor support is vital for crafting a competitive funding application. If you are not already in contact with a potential supervisor prior to making your PhD application, then you will need to factor in a period of at least one month for the admissions team to identify suitable supervisors.

You will also need to apply in advance of the June deadline if you need to apply for a visa. Where the grant of a visa depends on your receiving an unconditional offer, you must also make sure that you have also satisfied any English and Academic entry requirements.

The assessment process

Once your application is submitted, it will be read by an academic member of the Graduate Studies team, who will review the application, potentially in conjunction with other relevant academic members of staff. Individual academics cannot guarantee acceptance into the PhD programme, but you will be in a stronger position if you have already secured support for your application from a potential supervisor.

If you have been unable to identify a potential supervisor for yourself, the Director of Graduate Studies will try to assemble a supervisory team. If no suitable members of staff can be found, then your application will be rejected, even if you have developed a strong research proposal and you meet our academic and English language qualification requirements.

If your PhD proposal has attracted supervisor interest, then the final stage of the application process is an interview with potential supervisors. You should be available for an in-person or online interview if requested. Offers of study will only be made following a successful interview.

We receive a high volume of applications so we cannot offer individual feedback on unsuccessful applications.

Assessment criteria

Your proposal will be assessed on the following criteria:

  • Quality of proposal 
  • Preparedness of applicant 
  • Feasibility of project
  • Institutional fit
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