Research course

Architecture MPhil/PhD

Royal College of Art · School of Architecture

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Entry requirements

The programme welcomes applications from candidates from across the world and of all ages, including those with academic and professional backgrounds. Applications are considered in terms of quality of proposal, quality of practice (where appropriate), readiness to undertake a research degree at this level and supervisory capacity. Applicants must normally have obtained a good relevant undergraduate degree or an equivalent qualification.

Applications for the September 2022 intake are open. Visit the RCA website for full entry requirements, key dates and application details.

Months of entry


Course content

The Architecture Mphil/PhD programme focuses on practice-led and interdisciplinary research with tangible public and social impact. Study at the World's number one ranked art and design university.*

All research strands encourage interdisciplinary research projects in collaboration with other Schools and external partners. Both MPhil and PhD programmes support traditional academic research, but also strongly emphasises practice-led and experimental research, preparing graduates for diverse career opportunities in academia, leading architectural and urban design practices, human rights organisations, NGOs, as well as social and environmental coalitions.

We welcome unique and innovative research proposals and offer the option of aligning with the thematic specialisms within the School of Architecture, including Architecture & Media, City Design, Social Movements, Display Cultures, Urbanism, Emergent Pedagogies, Interior Urbanism, Material Matters and Adaptive Re-use, Domesticity, Gendered Space, Cognition & the Sublime, Narrative Environments and Ornamentation.

The MPhil/PhD Architecture programme is pedagogically configured to help researchers impact at local, national and international levels, working at the intersection of conceptual and applied research. We also support and supervise partnerships between researchers and business – from consultants for leading brands, cultural organisations, design practices, manufacturers, public sector agencies, charities and community groups – with a view to helping to develop and implement design-driven sustainable strategies that result in tangible, real-world outcomes.

The RCA also offers an Architecture MRes, a one year, full-time taught degree that provides effective preparation for PhD study.

Online Open Evening

To find out more about this programme, watch the replay of our Research Open Evening from 13 October, 2021 (from 22:00).

*The RCA was named the world’s leading art and design university for the seventh consecutive year (2015-2021) in the QS World University subject rankings.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MPhil/PhD
    full time
    36+ months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Student Recruitment