Research

Applying for postgraduate research opportunities (externally or independently funded applications)

The information below relates to research degree admissions if you are self-funding your study, or if you have an external scholarship (e.g. from your home country or your employer).

Please note if you are seeking University funding support, you should see the guidance here:
Postgraduate research opportunities

Independently Funded Research

Many postgraduate research students are supported to undertake their study by sources outside the university or choose to fund their study independently.

Find out more

External (to the university) funding sources for research study include sponsorship by employers, governments outside the UK (for international students) or research funding charities. Examples of relevant bodies in the UK include Action Medical Research , The British Federation of Women Graduates , Cancer Research UK , Institution of Civil Engineers , The Institution of Engineering and Technology , The Institution of Mechanical Engineers and The Wellcome Trust . Additional information on other funding sources may be found on our funding opportunities page .

Where possible we would strongly encourage candidates to select a project from within our list of current research topics , as this will ensure that your work aligns closely with our research in the University and you will be joining an existing team. Alternatively, subject to alignment with our institutional research priorities, it may be possible for you to develop a bespoke research proposal to suit your particular interests or circumstances.

It may be possible to combine study and work to support your study, and for UK students, it may be possible to undertake your PhD on a part time basis, depending on the nature of the research topic (it is important to discuss this with the proposed project supervisor before applying to see if this is practicable). However it is important to understand that a PhD is a demanding activity even on a part-time basis and we will need to discuss with you the arrangements you have in place to ensure that you have sufficient time to undertake the research before enrolling on the programme. Please note, under current government visa legislation, international students studying under a Tier 4 visa are not permitted to enrol on part time programmes of study.


1. How to apply

View the list of available projects for self-funded study

You can apply online for a research degree

If you would like to study a topic that is not listed, you should explore the relevant research pages on our website to align your topic to the research interests of staff.
More information about research at Teesside University

2. Academic entry requirements

Normal minimum entry requirements are a UK upper second class honours degree (2.1) or higher, or an approved overseas equivalent in a related subject. An MSc level qualification is desirable but not essential.

3. English requirements for international students

International students will be required to provide evidence of their English language ability.

Find out more

The standard test is a valid UKVI-approved IELTS test, showing your English language level at 6.5 overall, with no individual score lower than 6.5.
Full list of UKVI approved tests and centres

You will not need to provide evidence of your language ability if you are a national of a majority English speaking country as defined by the UKVI.

If you have completed a Master's Degree from a UK Institution, or other majority English speaking country (see link above), we can normally accept this as proof of your English level if the date of the Master's degree will be less than two years old at the time we issue your CAS (Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies).

Other certificates (TOEFL, Pearson PTE (Academic), Trinity Integrated Skills and Cambridge English) can be used in conjunction with a Skype interview with our English Language Centre only if the certificate shows that your English level is at the equivalent of the entry requirement stated above.

For some international student applications, we are able to consider other English test scores in conjunction with supporting evidence and a Skype interview. Please note that certificates from private language schools will not be accepted.

If you do not meet the minimum entry requirement, you can take one of our pre-sessional courses, as long as your IELTS level is at least 4.0. You must have an UKVI-approved IELTS certificate for entry onto a pre-sessional English course (other certificates cannot be considered).

Contact us

Any queries regarding entry requirements should be directed to pgradmissions@tees.ac.uk .


4. Fees

Fees and discounts (Home/EU)
Postgraduate fees, 2016 - 2017

International fees, scholarships and deposit information for self-funded international students
International fees, 2016 - 2017

5. Types of research degrees

The requirements for research degrees are given below, although their interpretation may differ from discipline to discipline and should be discussed with the candidate’s supervisory team. The research degrees awarded by the University are:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) The degree of PhD is awarded to a candidate who, having critically investigated and evaluated an approved topic, resulting in an independent and original contribution to knowledge, and having demonstrated an understanding or research methods appropriate to the chosen field, has presented and defended a thesis in oral examination to the satisfaction of the examiners.

Master of Philosophy (MPhil) The degree of MPhil is awarded to a candidate who, having critically investigated and evaluated an approved topic and demonstrated an understanding of research methods appropriate to the chosen field, has presented and defended a thesis in oral examination to the satisfaction of the examiners.

We offer a PhD by completed work and an MPhil by completed work, to staff at Teesside University only.
Named professional doctorates, DClinPsy, DCounPsy, DBA, DHSC, DEd are also offered by the University. These degrees must be applied for through the School in which the degree is supported.

6. Finding a supervisor and choosing a topic

A list of available projects and associated Directors of Study is available here:
Research topics

If you would like to study a topic that is not listed, you should explore the relevant research pages on our website to align your topic to the research interests of staff.
More information about research at Teesside University

7. Information for International students

As part of your application to study in the UK, depending on your subject area, you may be asked to supply an ATAS Certificate. If it is needed, this will be sent to you as a condition of the offer, and all required information will be supplied in the offer. You should not apply for an ATAS certificate until you have received this information from us.

If you will be making an application for Tier 4 you should make an appointment with our Student Adviser to discuss this further:

Yolanda Lopez, Student Adviser
T: 01642 342730 | E: y.lopez@tees.ac.uk

8. When to apply

You can submit an application at any time of year. We have three start dates each year for new research programmes in early October, February and May.

Although we cannot give a set deadline per cohort, we advise students to apply as early as possible. International students’ admissions normally take longer than home students; international students should usually aim to complete their conditions at least six weeks before the start date.

9. Apply online

Please download and complete the three word templates below - proposal, research training and personal statement - before applying online. You need to upload these documents at the start of the online application process. It is very important that you ensure you fully complete these documents otherwise your application will be rejected.

Apply online

In addition, please upload any other supplementary documents you may have, for example English language test results, references, or funding confirmation letters. Applications are made for the academic year, not a specific start date; start dates are discussed at the conditional offer stage.

Please do not upload a document more than once throughout the application. To upload a document, click ‘upload, click ‘browse’, find your file and click ‘ok’ and then click ‘upload’ again.

10. Decision

We aim to make decisions on applications within 4 weeks. As every application takes a different amount of time to review, it would not be possible to give further timescales, however this process is generally quicker if you have already had discussions with your proposed supervisor.

When we receive your completed application, relevant staff will assess your research proposal. If we believe that your proposal is viable and we have the capacity for your supervision, you and your potential director of studies will develop your proposal and complete a training needs analysis. If you are accepted for a research degree you will be issued with an offer letter giving full details of your programme, including the start date of your study.

11. Admission enquiries

For matters relating to admissions contact:
PGR Admissions
T: 01642 384438 | E: pgradmissions@tees.ac.uk