Postgraduate research in the School of Social and Political Sciences is informed by the expertise of our team of academics, who have long-standing links to industry, government, research organisations and the voluntary sector.
Opportunities for research are available across a range of topics in social and political sciences. Current research projects include the politics of anti-social behaviour, quality physical education, transforming higher education, new social movements in the Middle East, support for people with HIV/AIDS, the 1984/5 miners’ strike, gender and violence, the Gambling Act 2005, and democracy and human rights in Africa.
You can benefit from a structured programme of training which aims to develop the research competencies and professional practice skills that can enhance both your postgraduate study and future career. There are opportunities for collaborative working across disciplines and you will be supported in applying for funding, attending conferences and publishing your work.
Research Areas, Projects & Topics
Examples of current research projects include:
-The Case of Mass Transportation in Lagos and London
-Machiavelli and New Labour
-Public Houses in Rural Communities
-The Politics of Anti-Social Behaviour
-Rural Community Engagement
-Quality Physical Education
-The Learning Motivation of Older People.
How You Study
Research supervision is available across the range of the department's subjects, with examples of current students' interests being Sino-Soviet relations in the 1940's, the politics of direct action, war crimes, refugees and asylum seekers, Syrian politics, international relations in the Maghreb, the social exclusion of older people and the policing of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans-gendered people.
The School aims to provide considerable support to enable you to become an independent researcher. Students are required to follow a structured pattern of activity during which their progress can be monitored and encouraged. Throughout their studies students are allocated two supervisors and the emphasis is on providing whatever training students require. Students are asked to contribute to the department's research seminar series, are able to apply for funding to attend conferences and are encouraged to publish their work, including in the department's Social Research Paper series and in journals.
Due to the nature of postgraduate research programmes, the vast majority of your time will be spent in independent study and research. You will have meetings with your academic supervisors, however the regularity of these will vary depending on your own individual requirements, subject area, staff availability and the stage of your programme.
How You Are Assessed
A PhD is usually awarded based on the quality of your thesis and your ability in an oral examination (viva voce) to present and successfully defend your chosen research topic to a group of academics. You are also expected to demonstrate how your research findings have contributed to knowledge or developed existing theory or understanding.
Career and Personal Development
This programme may help to develop the high-level research skills and knowledge required to establish careers in fields related to your research. Some graduates may pursue roles in research, government, the criminal justice system, local authorities and other public services, as well as academia.