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This research degree is appropriate if you are either an experienced, well-qualified practitioner looking to improve your academic and personal development or you are a suitably qualified graduate looking to extend your research skills and conduct a piece of educational research at doctoral level.

A higher degree by research involves training in research methods and carrying out supervised research – a systematic high level study of a problem or topic and presentation of results as a written thesis.

Normally you register for PhD subject to confirmation in the first instance and get confirmation after about one year of full-time study or its part-time equivalent. You must have a relevant UK masters degree with a substantial research training element to apply for direct PhD registration. It is also possible to study for an MPhil.

Supervision is available in various research areas including

  • education policy studies
  • TESOL (teaching English to speakers of other languages)
  • pedagogy and practice
  • pedagogy and new technologies
  • social inclusion
  • education and disability
  • autism
  • early years education
  • language and literacy in education
  • mathematics education
  • leadership and management in education
  • higher education

We invite applicants to discuss their areas of interest before formulating a research proposal.

This degree is hosted by the Faculty of Development and Society Graduate School. The Graduate School website provides a communication hub for students and staff engaged in research, information about our research work, and useful contact information. 

Course content

In addition to your subject-focused research activity you must complete research training modules unless you have previously studied these on an appropriate masters degree. Fees for these modules are covered in the full-time fee. Part-time students must pay for these additional modules. Please contact us for further details.

During your research leading to your thesis, you work under the guidance of your supervising team.


Production of a written thesis followed by an oral examination where you explain your work.


Your research degree equips you with the skills to develop a career as a researcher in education and related fields.

Visit the Education MPhil Research Degree page on the Sheffield Hallam University website for more details!




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