Research course

Archaeology

Institution
Birkbeck, University of London · History, Classics and Archaeology
Qualifications
MPhil/PhD

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Entry requirements

Confirmed (or predicted) Merit or above at MA level in ancient history, archaeology, classical studies, classics, history or a related discipline, with a distinction in the dissertation. Students applying for the MPhil/PhD by distance learning will need a distinction at MA level (or equivalent) in the aforementioned disciplines.

Months of entry

January, April, October

Course content

History at Birkbeck was ranked sixth in the UK for the percentage of our research deemed world-leading or internationally excellent in the most recent Research Excellence Framework. 94% of our eligible staff submitted research and we achieved 100% for a research environment supporting world-leading and internationally excellent research. Our research areas include: Early and Later Prehistory, Classical Greek, Hellenistic and Roman Republican archaeology; Roman provincial archaeology; and late antique and early medieval archaeology, with a focus on the eastern Mediterranean and western Indian Ocean. Key specialisms include: archaeology of human evolution, archaeology of prehistoric architecture, archaeology of urban settlement, archaeology of cult and ritual, death and burial, port archaeology, social archaeology, archaeology and photography, attitudes to the past, post-colonialism and archaeology, and interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary studies in history and archaeology.

A research degree offers you the opportunity to acquire a highly advanced set of conceptual skills developed in the pursuit of new knowledge, which can be applied within or beyond an academic or scholarly context. Research training in any academic discipline helps to channel creativity into critical innovatory reasoning. The legitimate authority of original, independent research depends upon persuasive analytical arguments supported by critically evaluated evidence.

An MPhil/PhD is an advanced postgraduate research degree that requires original research and the submission of a substantial dissertation of 60,000 to 100,000 words. At Birkbeck, you are initially registered on an MPhil and you upgrade to a PhD after satisfactory progress in the first year or two. You need to find a suitable academic supervisor at Birkbeck, who can offer the requisite expertise to guide and support you through your research. Find out more about undertaking a research degree at Birkbeck.

This course is also available for distance learning, which makes it ideal if your work, family or personal commitments make coming into Birkbeck difficult, if you are living in another country, or if you live near an archive, museum or site that is central to your research. You can conduct all of your supervisions via other virtual meeting software. You will have to visit the main Birkbeck campus in Bloomsbury, central London at the end of your first year (full-time students) or your second year (part-time students), during MPhil/PhD Induction Week. You will also need to visit London for your upgrade from MPhil and to present a paper (these may be scheduled to coincide), and you will also usually need to be present in London for your PhD viva, at the end of your programme.

Highlights
  • Birkbeck’s research excellence was confirmed in the most recent Research Excellence Framework, which placed Birkbeck 30th in the UK for research, with 73% of our research rated world-leading or internationally excellent.
  • Our Department is located close to the British Museum, the British Library, and other relevant centres of research.
  • This programme is also available via distance learning, allowing you to study outside London.

Information for international students

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, the requirement for this programme is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 7.0, with not less than 6.5 in each of the sub-tests and at least 7.0 in writing.

If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses, foundation programmes and language support services to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

Fees and funding

PhD students resident in England can apply for government loans of over £26,000 to cover the cost of tuition fees, maintenance and other study-related costs.

Flexible finance: pay your fees in monthly instalments at no extra cost. Enrol early to spread your costs and reduce your monthly payments.

Fees discounts: If you are a member of a union that is recognised by the Trades Union Congress (TUC), you may apply for a 10% discount off your tuition fees.

Named in memory of Birkbeck’s former President, and one of the greatest historians of the twentieth century, the Eric Hobsbawm Postgraduate Scholarship fund offers financial assistance for research expenses (including travel, accommodation, conference fees and particular training needs) to doctoral students in the Department of History, Classics and Archaeology.

Read more about other funding opportunities for research students within the Department of History, Classics and Archaeology. Find out about other research funding opportunities at Birkbeck (including the School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy).

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MPhil/PhD
    full time
    12-48 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    part time
    84 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
  • Further details of qualification

    This course can also be studied via distance learning.

Course contact details

Name
Student Advice Service
Email
studentadvice@bbk.ac.uk
Phone
+44 (0)20 3907 0700