Triangle

Research overview

We provide you with the time and support to explore your questions in Theology and Religious Studies.

We have particular strengths in:

  • Theology, Philosophy, and History of Ideas
  • Science, Technology and Nature
  • Religion, Culture and the Arts
  • Islamic Studies
  • Jewish Studies
  • Biblical Studies

Staff and supervision

Our staff include theologians, historians, sociologists and philosophers so we can support your research with a range of different approaches and methodologies.

You will get expert supervision from our research-active and creative staff. If applicable to your research, you can get supervision across departments (for example, philosophy or history). You may also be able to strengthen your supervisory team from across our Midland4Cities partner universities.

Current research

You will be joining a diverse community whose current research projects include:

  • Constructive Theology
  • Continental Philosophy
  • Hebrew Bible and New Testaments
  • Hermeneutics
  • Historical Theology
  • Islam and Politics
  • Jewish Philosophy
  • Philosophy of Religion
  • Philosophical Theology
  • Reformation Theology
  • Religion and Environment
  • Religion and Media
  • Religion and Technology
  • Sociology of Religion
  • Theology and Literature
  • Theology and Natural Science

Your department

"We’re not interested in quantity of PhD students for the sake of numbers. We aim to offer an environment where people have to opportunity to pursue their research interests and produce a quality thesis." Professor Alison Milbank, Department Director of Postgraduate Research

Find out more about Alison's research and role

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2023 entry.

QualificationPhD
Degree

We usually expect applicants to have:

  • Bachelors degree: 2:1 or above
  • Masters-level degree (or international equivalent): Merit

If you do not meet these requirements please contact us to discuss before applying.

QualificationPhD
Degree

We usually expect applicants to have:

  • Bachelors degree: 2:1 or above
  • Masters-level degree (or international equivalent): Merit

If you do not meet these requirements please contact us to discuss before applying.

International and EU equivalents

We accept a wide range of qualifications from all over the world.

For information on entry requirements from your country, see our country pages.

IELTS7.0 (no less than 6.0 in any element)
English language requirements

As well as IELTS (listed above), we also accept other English language qualifications.

This includes TOEFL iBT, Pearson PTE, GCSE, IB and O level English.

Meeting our English language requirements

If you need support to meet the required level, you may be able to attend a presessional English course. Presessional courses teach you academic skills in addition to English language. Our Centre for English Language Education is accredited by the British Council for the teaching of English in the UK.

If you successfully complete your presessional course to the required level, you can then progress to your degree course. This means that you won't need to retake IELTS or equivalent.

For on-campus presessional English courses, you must take IELTS for UKVI to meet visa regulations. For online presessional courses, see our CELE webpages for guidance.

Visa restrictions

International students must have valid UK immigration permissions for any courses or study period where teaching takes place in the UK. Student route visas can be issued for eligible students studying full-time courses. The University of Nottingham does not sponsor a student visa for students studying part-time courses. The Standard Visitor visa route is not appropriate in all cases. Please contact the university’s Visa and Immigration team if you need advice about your visa options.

We recognise that applicants have a variety of experiences and follow different pathways to postgraduate study.

We treat all applicants with alternative qualifications on an individual basis. We may also consider relevant work experience.

If you are unsure whether your qualifications or work experience are relevant, contact us.

Applying

We encourage you to get in touch with your potential supervisor before submitting an application. They may be able to help you with your proposal and offer support in finding funding opportunities.

Most of our academics are experienced supervisors, several with former research students in academic posts.

Supervisors and research areas

Degree name

When applying you must select either 'Theology PhD' or 'Religious Studies PhD'. The support and supervision for both is the same but the choice may help local funding applications.

Our step-by-step guide contains everything you need to know about applying for postgraduate research.

How to apply

Fees

QualificationPhD
Home / UK£4,850
International£20,500

Additional information for international students

If you are a student from the EU, EEA or Switzerland, you may be asked to complete a fee status questionnaire and your answers will be assessed using guidance issued by the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA).

These fees are for full-time study. If you are studying part-time, you will be charged a proportion of this fee each year (subject to inflation).

Funding

M4C logo

Midlands4Cities Doctoral Training Programme

Midlands4Cities (M4C) PhD students benefit from a high quality package of:

  • funding
  • enhanced support and training
  • expert supervision
  • excellent networking opportunities

You must apply for a place at Nottingham before submitting your M4C application.

Apply to become an M4C student at the University of Nottingham

Department funding

Thanks to the generosity of former students and staff we sometimes have funding available to support postgraduate students within the department.

There are many ways to fund your research degree, from scholarships to government loans.

Check our guide to find out more about funding your postgraduate degree.

Postgraduate funding

Support

We have a strong, supportive and welcoming research culture.

Research seminars

  • Hear visiting scholars from the UK and overseas
  • Present research in progress in a friendly and constructive environment
  • Broaden your general knowledge of Theology and Religious Studies
  • Gain a better sense of how research develops as part of an interactive process

Find out more about our research seminars

Midlands4Cities students

If you are funded through the Midlands4Cities Doctoral Training Partnership you will complete a portfolio of research training, devised in consultation with your supervisors and Head of Postgraduate Studies.

Language learning

You can make full use of the Language Centre facilities for both research-specific learning and personal interest.

Researcher training and development

The Researcher Academy is the network for researchers, and staff who support them. We work together to promote a healthy research culture, to cultivate researcher excellence, and develop creative partnerships that enable researchers to flourish.

Postgraduate researchers at Nottingham have access to our online Members’ area, which includes a wealth of resources, access to training courses and award-winning postgraduate placements.

Graduate centres

Our graduate centres are dedicated community spaces on campus for postgraduates.

Each space has areas for:

  • studying
  • socialising
  • computer work
  • seminars
  • kitchen facilities

Student support

You will have access to a range of support services, including:

  • academic and disability support
  • childcare services
  • counselling service
  • faith support
  • financial support
  • mental health and wellbeing support
  • visa and immigration advice
  • welfare support

Students' Union

Our Students' Union represents all students. You can join the Postgraduate Students’ Network or contact the dedicated Postgraduate Officer.

There are also a range of support networks, including groups for:

  • international students
  • black and minority ethnic students
  • students who identify as women
  • students with disabilities
  • LGBT+ students

SU Advice provides free, independent and confidential advice on issues such as accommodation, financial and academic difficulties.

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Where you will learn

University Park Campus

University Park Campus covers 300 acres, with green spaces, wildlife, period buildings and modern facilities. It is one of the UK's most beautiful and sustainable campuses, winning a national Green Flag award every year since 2003.

Most schools and departments are based here. You will have access to libraries, shops, cafes, the Students’ Union, sports village and a health centre.

You can walk or cycle around campus. Free hopper buses connect you to our other campuses. Nottingham city centre is 15 minutes away by public bus or tram.

Careers

Whether you are considering a career in academia, industry or haven't yet decided, we’re here to support you every step of the way.

Expert staff will work with you to explore PhD career options and apply for vacancies, develop your interview skills and meet employers. You can book a one-to-one appointment, take an online course or attend a workshop.

International students who complete an eligible degree programme in the UK on a student visa can apply to stay and work in the UK after their course under the Graduate immigration route. Eligible courses at the University of Nottingham include bachelors, masters and research degrees, and PGCE courses.

Many of our PhD students are already settled in careers before starting the course - their research is for personal development, interest or to deepen their existing career.

The most common non-religious career paths for our postgraduate students include education/teaching, IT, and welfare and housing associations.

We have a successful record of our PhD students developing academic careers at many different institutions.

100% of postgraduates from the School of Theology and Religious Studies secured graduate level employment or further study within 15 months of graduation.

*HESA Graduate Outcomes 2019/20 data published in 2022. The Graduate Outcomes % is derived using The Guardian University Guide methodology. The average annual salary is based on data from graduates who completed a full-time postgraduate degree with home fee status and are working full-time within the UK.

Related courses

Research Excellence Framework

We are ranked 7th in the UK for research power (2021), according to analysis by Times Higher Education. The Research Excellence Framework (REF) is a national assessment of the quality of research in UK higher education institutions.

  • A top 10 department in the UK by grade point average
  • 100% of research outputs recognised internationally in terms of originality, significance and rigour
  • 90%* of our research is classed as 'world-leading' (4*) or 'internationally excellent' (3*)
  • 100%* of our research is recognised internationally
  • 51% of our research is assessed as 'world-leading' (4*) for its impact**

*According to analysis by Times Higher Education ** According to our own analysis.

This content was last updated on 04 November 2022. Every effort has been made to ensure that this information is accurate, but changes are likely to occur between the date of publishing and course start date. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply.