Entry requirements

The general University entrance requirement for registration for a research degree is normally a First or Upper Second Class Honours degree and additionally, for a PhD, a Master’s degree or equivalent. All international students must show evidence that they meet the English requirement for their course of study: IELTS 6.5 (with no less than 6.0 in any section). This applies even if English is the native language of your home country. An appropriate level of English language competence is also expected as listed below. Applicants may also be required to attend compulsory in-sessional English language support. The Senate reserves the right to assess the eligibility of applicants on an individual basis. DBS will be required by those students who conduct their research in school or other settings with children and young people. In addition, a declaration has to be made by the students in line with the Childcare Act for those researching with children under the age of 8. Entry criteria are subject to review and change each academic year.

Months of entry

January, December, November, October, August, July, June, May, April, March, February

Course content

Research students are welcomed to Brunel as valued members of our thriving, research-intensive community. A research degree provides the opportunity to investigate a topic in depth, and contribute new knowledge to your discipline.

A PhD involves demonstrating through original research or other advanced scholarship the creation and interpretation of new knowledge, a systematic acquisition and understanding of a substantial body of knowledge at the forefront of an academic discipline or professional practice, the ability to conceptualise, design and implement a project for the general of new knowledge, applications or understanding at the forefront of the discipline.
The EdD programme is designed to equip students with skills in educational research and scholarship that enables each student to produce an original piece of practice-based educational research of doctoral standard. This means that every graduate from the programme, by the time they have graduated, will have produced a thesis, elements of which, at least, will be of publishable standard in good quality peer reviewed journals. Furthermore, the work will have real value for addressing a practical educational problem. This approach means that graduates will emerge from the programme with advanced research skills that complement their existing professional expertise.
Each student will be a member of a cohort comprising a maximum of 10 students who will be recruited at the same point and will follow the entire course at the same pace. This cohort model is intended to facilitate a sense of group identity and create opportunities for peer assisted active/cooperative learning and collaborative study. There will be six weekend study schools (Friday afternoon to Saturday afternoon) in the first and second years of the programme (two per term) with the number reducing to three per year for years 3, 4 and 5. The reduction in number reflects the shift in emphasis towards an increasingly individualised approach to student learning through a growing emphasis on individual/personalised supervision as students focus on their respective theses from Year 3. During the first two years, weekend study schools will be divided between taught group sessions (96 hours) and individual mentoring/supervision (24 hours). Annual Summer* schools for each year will be organised over four days and incorporate half day and evening activities.
* Note: In the event a cohort begins in January each reference to Summer school will be replaced by reference to Winter school

The main aims of this programme are to enable students to:

  • develop research skills and knowledge relevant to the study of educational practice;
  • reflect critically on their own professional practice;
  • read, interpret, evaluate, conduct and disseminate research that is relevant to and has the potential to impact on their professional development and workplace practice;
  • undertake doctoral level research and meet the requirements of rigour and originality.

Information for international students

English Language Requirements: IELTS: 6.5 (min 6 in all areas); Pearson: 58 (51 in all subscores); BrunELT: 65% (min 60% in all areas).

Qualification and course duration


full time
36 months

Course contact details

College of Business, Arts and Social Sciences
+44 (0) 1895 267051