This is a thesis-only MPhil and the Department will not admit students to it unless it can be satisfied that they have the necessary research skills, together with a clear vision of their topic and a good grasp of the appropriate methodology to explore it. Further details are given on our website.
MPhil courses offered by the Department of Land Economy share common aims. These are:
i) to enable students of a high calibre to pursue their education at an advanced applied level drawing on the primary disciplines of economics, planning and environmental policy, with additional specialisms in finance and law;
ii) to provide students with opportunities both to build on and develop material which they may have studied at undergraduate level as well as to broaden their knowledge base;
iii) to equip students with the necessary skills to pursue careers at a high level in a range of areas, including business and finance, civil service, public service, property professions, environmental agencies and organisations, national/international agencies and further study;
iv) to provide opportunities for education in a multidisciplinary environment so as to advance the understanding of cognate disciplines and their applications;
v) to provide opportunities for learning with colleagues from different social, economic and legal systems;
vi) to provide students with appropriate skills and experience to enable them to use information and resources critically and to equip them with the means to undertake their own research;
vii) to provide an educational environment with a strong research ethos that brings together students from a wide variety of backgrounds and fosters an international approach to common problems.
On completion of the course, students will have acquired the following skills:
i) Intellectual skills: the ability to study steadily, assimilate issues and large amounts of literature swiftly, evaluate countervailing positions and to produce succinct arguments to tight deadlines and to engage with those with whom they disagree. Particular methodologies used include: data evaluation, case evaluation, legal analysis, textual analysis, the convergence o theory and empirical data and advanced critical evaluation.
ii) Practical skills: identification and use of bibliographic materials, via libraries and electronically; taking notes effectively, thorough IT skills.
iii) Transferable skills: the ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing; to work to deadlines and under pressure; to manage time; to set priorities; to formulate an argument; to work independently and with initiative; basic IT skills (email, data analysis and internet use); critical analysis; to present material in a seminar context; skills of analysis and interpretation; self-discipline, self-direction; and respect for other views. The ability to develop and present a major piece of written work.
iv) Research skills: the ability to locate, utilise and organise a wide range of materials independently, on paper and electronically. The ability to assess and evaluate such material, to develop and pursue a critique of existing material. The ability to develop, structure and sustain a line of argument. The establishment of relationships with researchers in related areas. The ethical use of research material.
v) Communication skills: the ability to marshal arguments and present them succinctly and lucidly. The ability to effectively criticise the views of others powerfully but fairly. The presentation of written material in a persuasive and coherent manner.
This is a research degree, students will be expected to attend Departmental Research Methods training sessions unless they can demonstrate that they have previous experience in this area.
Graduate student Supervisors provide formal feedback on progress via the Cambridge Graduate Student Reporting System (termly reports) and more informally through face to face meetings or by email.
A thesis of 30,000 words
- Approval of an application to continue to the PhD will depend on three criteria: - Availability of a supervisor - Approval by the Degree Committee of a research proposal - Successful completion of the MPhil programme.