A PhD in English is mainly made up of independent study, with supervision meetings spread throughout the year.
There are no taught credits attached to a PhD, although it is compulsory for full-time students to attend the Arts Faculty Researcher Skills training programme.
Some PhD students also choose to audit masters modules taught by their supervisors where appropriate, though this is not compulsory, nor does it involve any formal assessment.
Part-time students are expected to attend at least two face-to-face meetings in the School of English each year. Most supervision meetings can be held online (e.g. via Teams). Students are asked to attend the initial induction sessions during welcome week in-person if possible, and have their first supervision meeting face-to-face with their supervisory team.
Part-time students are required to take part in all required research training, which in many cases is available online, attend postgraduate seminars where possible, and one postgraduate researcher (PGR) symposium over the period of their registration. Wherever possible the final viva examination will be face-to-face. Students who cannot meet this requirement would need to request to transfer to remote study.
You will complete a written thesis of up to 100,000 words, with expert support and advice from your academic supervisor(s). You will also take a verbal examination called a viva voce, where you explain your project in depth to an examination panel.
A creative writing thesis will mainly consist of your own original creative work. This could be a novel, a manuscript of poems, a collection of short stories, a play, or another form of creative output. Your thesis will also include a critical analysis of your creative work, which you will situate within a theorised or analytical context.
A PhD thesis should not normally exceed 100,000 words in length. It is expected that the creative element would usually comprise 50,000-70,000 words. The critical analysis component will normally be 15,000-30,000 words in length.
What is the thesis pending period?
All periods of registration are followed by a period of writing-up, called the thesis-pending period, when tuition fees are not paid and students are writing up their thesis.
Find out more in the university's Quality Manual
All PhD students take part in progression review assessments to ensure that their project is progressing satisfactorily. A progression review consists usually consists of written reports from both the student and the supervisory team.
All students have an independent assessment interview for their Stage 1 and Stage 2 reviews (end of years 1 and 2 for full-time students, years 2 and 4 for part-time students).