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Apply for the PhD programme

University of Bradford School of Management PhD programme offers two intakes per year (September and February).

All completed applications will be reviewed by the relevant research division and the candidate will be informed of our decision within two months of the application (providing all supporting documentation is received).

Step 1: locate your research and ensure you meet the entry requirements

Before you apply, it is important to spend some time to go through the School of Management's research centres, research group webpages and staff research profiles to find out which research cluster/research centre your research is likely to fit into, and who might be an appropriate supervisor for your research.

Once you have completed this, you need to state clearly how your research fits particularly with research activities of one of our research clusters/centres and/or the work of a particular academic in your Statement of Purpose under the section 'why you have selected the University of Bradford School of Management'.

When you apply, your application will be forwarded to appropriate faculty members for review.

You need to ensure you meet both the academic qualification and English language requirements.

Please see our entry requirements.

Step 2: Prepare your supporting documents

  1. Copies of degree certificates and final grade transcripts for all your higher education degree qualifications and professional qualifications. If you are currently undertaking a degree, a copy of latest transcript should be provided.

  2. Two recently dated references: References should be provided on official notepaper with the referee’s signature, one of which should be an academic reference from your last place of study if you have graduated within the last five years

  3. English language certificates: Applicants whose first language is not English or haven’t studied at degree level in a majority English-Language speaking country in the last 5 years are required to provide evidence of English language qualifications, such as an IELTs or TOEFL certificate.

  4. A copy of your passport

  5. Research proposal: This is one of the most crucial parts of your application. Your research proposal will be used to assess the quality and originality of your research ideas, your critical thinking skills, grasp of relevant literature and the feasibility of the proposed research. It will also be used to identify suitable supervisors, so it is certainly worth devoting time and effort to it. 

    The research proposal outlines the proposed research. A typical proposal will be somewhere between 1500 words and 2500 words. While we do not insist on a definite format, we do recommend you to follow the structure outlined below. 

    Title: A good title should be a succinct summary of your proposed research that addresses the right audience 

    Introduction: This section should provide a brief description of the subject area in which the research is to be located in, state your central research questions clearly and explain the reasons for proposed research convincingly. 

    Literature review: This section requires a short review of existing studies (particularly those published in research periodicals). You need to explain how your research is being driven by the gaps in the existing literature and comment on how your research could be informed by the existing literature both theoretically and methodologically. A piece of good literature review should demonstrate how the proposed research is linked with previous studies, establish where its specific contributions could lie and show how the intended specific contributions could be materialised through drawing ideas and strengths from the existing research. 

    Research methodology: There are a variety of research methods, therefore it is essential that this section provides a clear description of your choice of research methodology (i.e. case study analysis, participant observation, econometrics analysis) and explain why the chosen one is most suited to your research. This section should also include details of methods of data collection and data analysis and comment on the feasibility of data collection. At the end of this section, a timetable (preferable Gantt chart) showing planned research activities should be provided. 

    Reference: Any studies cited in the proposal should be listed at the end of the document using the Harvard style of referencing.

    Useful references for developing research proposal:

    Saunders, M., Lewis, P. and Thornhill, A. (2000) Writing your research proposal, Pearson Education.

    Easterby-Smith, M., Thorpe, R. and Lowe, A. (2002) Management Research: An Introduction. Sage Publications.

    Riley, M., Wood, R.C., Clark, M.A., Wilkie, E. and Szivas, E. (2000) Researching and Writing Dissertations in Business and Management Thomson Learning.

    Cooper, D. R. and Schindler P. S. (2011) Business Research Methods. McGraw-Hill

  6. Curriculum Vitae.

  7. Statement of Purpose: This should ideally cover the following areas: 

    a. Why you are applying for the above programme of study

    b. Why you have chosen to study in the UK and why you have selected the University of Bradford School of Management. 

    c. What you would like to achieve after completing your studies

    Note: For overseas applicants, this document is seen by UK Visas and Immigration as evidence of your intent to study.

Step 3: Apply

Please complete and submit the online application form (opens in a new window) with all the supporting documents uploaded. 

We prefer you to submit your application form and supporting materials electronically. This will help us to process your application more rapidly.

Step 4: Retain your application ID

You will receive an email from our admission team advising you of your application ID number.

This ID number will be used in all future correspondence concerning your application.


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