Department of Philosophy

Philosophy research degrees (PhD)

Why a PhD at Nottingham?

There is a strong research culture in the Department of Philosophy at Nottingham.

The latest Research Excellence Framework (REF) panel graded 69% of our research activity as being ‘world leading’, or ‘internationally excellent’, with the remainder all of a quality that is ‘recognised internationally'.


Supervision and research expertise

The department offers supervision for PhD students in a wide range of areas.

There is a concentration of staff with research interests in metaphysics, mind and language, ethics and political philosophy, and philosophy of science. We also have active research in other areas including philosophy of art, feminism, epistemology, and logic. Supervision areas include:


  • Metaphysics
  • Philosophy of Mind
  • Philosophy of Language
  • Ethics (including Meta-ethics and Normative Ethics)
  • Political Philosophy (including Philosophy of Law)
  • Philosophy of Science (including Philosophy of Medicine)
  • Epistemology
  • Feminism
  • Philosophy of Art
  • Formal and Philosophical Logic
  • Topics in the History of Philosophy

Research areas

Staff profiles, including supervision expertise & publications

Research opportunities in the postgraduate online prospectus



Teaching and learning

The Department of Philosophy offers excellent opportunities for research student supervised and independent learning.

The formal aspects of research training include a weekly research seminar where members of the department and outside speakers read papers (speakers in recent years have included Mike Ridge, Mary Leng, Holly Lawford-Smith, Huw Price, Herman Cappelan, Maria Alvarez and Robbie Williams) and a postgraduate seminar organised and run by the students themselves.

Informal aspects of our vibrant research culture include our open door policy. Research students are very welcome to drop in and discuss their current work with any members of staff should they be available.

Alongside supervision and research training, Philosophy research students have many opportunities to present their work at seminars and conferences. Students are also encouraged to participate in reading groups such as those for ethics, and the philosophy of time.  

Additional research training is provided via the Graduate School, and AHRC-funded students can take advantage of training provided across the Midlands3Cities Doctoral Training Partnership

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Facilities and resources

Nottingham has excellent facilities for doctoral students both in terms of formal seminars, symposia and conferences, and personal study space.

Key spaces for Philosophy students include the Humanities Building, Graduate School and Social Sciences and Arts Graduate Centre.

Facilities and resources of particular interest to Philosophy students include the Digital Humanities Centre for computer-based research, and the Hallward Library with generous holdings of books and journals.



Funding for research students

The primary source of funding for our students is through the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC).

The University of Nottingham is the lead institution within the Midlands3Cities Doctoral Training Partnership (M3C DTP).

The partnership is a collaboration between the universities of Nottingham, Nottingham Trent, Leicester, De Montfort, Birmingham and Birmingham City, and is awarding 410 PhD studentships for study over a five year period commencing 2014.

The DTP provides UK/EU research candidates with cross-institutional mentoring, expert supervision including cross-institutional supervision where appropriate, subject-specific and generic training, and professional support in preparing for a career.

Applications for 2018 entry are now open. The deadline for applying is 15 January 2018. 

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Whilst M3C DTP AHRC funding is only available to UK/EU students, this is by no means the only source of funding, and additional opportunities are listed on the department's funding page as they become available.

The University’s International Office has a wide range of scholarship opportunities for students an EU fee status, including a fee reduction for alumni, and EU and Accession State Scholarships. 

You may also search the University’s funding database, designed to give you an indication of University scholarships for which you may be eligible to apply. The University Graduate School operates funding schemes of its own to help support current postgraduate research.

Department of Philosophy student fees and funding

View our research opportunities in the postgraduate online prospectus

Philosophy PhD


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Midlands3Cites DTP AHRC-funding for UK/EU doctoral students





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Admissions: Zachary Hoskins





Department of Philosophy

University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

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