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Approaching graduate study can be daunting. Here is a selection of frequently asked questions which should help you plan your application and your study.


Should I get in contact with a potential supervisor before I submit my application?

PhD applicants are expected to name a prospective supervisor. MPhil applicants are encouraged to do so though it is not mandatory. However, it does speed up the application review when MPhil applicants name a prospective supervisor. Our staff pages indicate whether someone supervises graduate students or not. Please do not name a member of staff without such indication.


How many available places are there on each programme?

We aim  to admit 25 MPhil students and 25 PhD students each year.


Can I defer admission if I can't take up my place in the year that I apply?

No! If you wish to be considered for admission in a future academic year, you must make a fresh application and you must upload all supporting documentation again.


Do I need to provide GRE test results?

No! None, not one, ever!


Do you offer a conversion course?

No. You must have an academic background in sociology.


Do I have to apply through the Graduate Admission Office?

Yes. Informal applications directly to the Department are not possible.


Can I start the MPhil in Sociology in January or April?

No. The course begins in October and takes one year.


Can I start the Ph.D. in January or April?

Applicants are asked to apply for entry in October. It is possible to defer entry to January or April but this is not recommended because most research methods courses and our in-house PhD training start in October.


Can I submit non-academic references?

We expect that two academic references are provided.


My referees have not uploaded their reference in time. What can I do?

You must make sure that your referees can write and upload references in time. Ask you referees whether they are happy to provide a reference well in advance of making an application and discuss wehther they have time to provide a reference when you are planning to apply.


My self-service isn’t working, what do I do?

You need to get in contact with the Graduate Admissions. The Department is not able to help you with this.


I have not heard whether I get funding from the University?

Successful awardees are informed by University funding bodies. If you haven’t heard you haven’t been successful.


I have made my application after the funding deadlines. Can I still be considered for University funding?

No, if you do not apply by the deadlines relevant you cannot be considered for funding.


I have submitted my application but want to change my choice of college?

When you have submitted the application you cannot change your choice of college.