Research course

History and Politics

University of Chichester · History and Politics

Entry requirements

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Months of entry


Course content

Brief outline of the programme

The research degree programme aims to provide students with an outstanding learning experience in a supportive community of learning. The department is known nationally and internationally for excellence in research and teaching and all of its staff are engaged in conducting their own research. Information on staff research interests and achievements can be found on the Departmental web pages.
The Chichester historians and political scientists offer a dynamic research environment through publications, organising and participating in national and international conferences (Germany, Portugal, Norway, France, Canada and the US). Recent conferences at Chichester include those held in collaboration with the Sussex Archaeological Society, the Multi-Directional Memory Conference, the D-Day Anniversary Conference, and the 30th Annual Conference for the Society for the Study of French History. Other scholarly activity has included TV and radio appearances, interviews and specialist consultancy. The team publish widely in international research periodicals (e.g. Journal of Imperial and Commonwealth History, Journal of Cultural and Social History, Yale French Studies, Journal of American Studies); and contribute to series published by all of the leading university presses, as well as many other long established academic publishing houses. Research students have been similarly active presenting papers at national conferences (British Library, Universities of Oxford, Brighton, Kingston, SOAS) and international conferences (Conference of European Association for American Studies, Holland) and publishing in a range of journals, including, the Bulletin of the Institute of Historical Studies. Aims of the Programme The aims of the programme are: a) the creation and interpretation of new knowledge through original research or other advanced scholarship, of a quality to satisfy peer review, extend the forefront of the discipline and merit publication; b) a systematic acquisition and understanding of a substantial body of knowledge which is at the forefront of the academic discipline; c) the general ability to conceptualise, design and implement a project for the generation of new knowledge, applications or understanding at the forefront of the discipline, and to adjust the project design in the light of unforeseen problems; d) a detailed understanding of applicable techniques for research and advanced academic enquiry appropriate to the discipline. Programme Outcomes Knowledge and Understanding Having successfully completed this programme you:  have demonstrated a systematic understanding of a field of study and mastery of the skills and methods of research associated with that field;  have demonstrated the ability to conceive, design, implement and adapt a substantial process of research with scholarly integrity;  have made a contribution through original research that extends the frontier of knowledge by developing a substantial body of work, some of which merits national or international refereed publication;  are capable of critical analysis, evaluation and synthesis of new and complex ideas;  can communicate with your peers, the larger scholarly community and with society in general about your areas of expertise;  can be expected to be able to promote, within academic and professional contexts, technological, social or cultural advancement in a knowledge-based society. Learning and Teaching Methods The PhD programme is delivered through a supervised research project. Each student will have a supervisory team of at least two appropriately qualified academic staff, one of whom will be the Director of Studies. A description of the responsibilities of the supervisory team can be found in the Code of Practice. Assessment methods The award of MPhil or PhD is assessed through submission of a written thesis or equivalent for practice based disciplines and an oral examination with a panel of examiners (viva voce). The viva is compulsory for PhD and optional for MPhil. Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills The majority of subject specific intellectual and research skills are gained through the process of doing research within the context of supervisory meetings and support. On occasion it may be helpful for a student to undertake specific research skills training such as that taught as part of Masters programmes or as part of the postgraduate research training programme coordinated by the Research Office. Professional Development and Transferable Skills Those completing their doctoral programme will have the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of personal responsibility and largely autonomous initiative in complex and unpredictable situations, in professional or equivalent environments. Research students have access to the University’s Staff Development Programme as well as a range of other formal and informal training activities coordinated at the department, area or University level. Programme Structure Admissions MPhil/PhD students can register either at the start of October or the start of February. Admission requirements are described in the Code of Practice (in particular see clauses 11 to 25). Candidature Maximum candidature is 48 months in Full Time registration, 84 months in Part Time Registration. Progression Requirements The programme follows the University’s Higher Degree Regulations as set out on the University website. During the programme there are a number of academic milestones that the student will need to complete. These include:  Confirmation of research project (2000 word proposal and completed Form 1) after three months (full time) and six months (part-time)  Satisfactory Annual Progress reports  Upgrade from MPhil to PhD programmes (only for PhD programmes). Support for student learning There are facilities and services to support your learning. Some of these are accessible to students across the University and some of these will be geared towards students in your particular Faculty or discipline. The University provides: • library resources, including e-books, on-line journals and databases, together with assistance from Library staff to enable you to make the best use of these resources • high-speed access to online electronic learning resources from dedicated PC Workstations onsite and from your own devices; laptops, smartphones and tablet PCs via the Eduroam wireless network. A wide range of application software is available from the PCs in each LRC. • computer accounts that connect you to a number of learning technologies including the Moodle virtual learning environment (which facilitates online learning and access to specific learning resources) • standard ICT tools such as Email, secure filestore and calendars. • access to key information through the University’s intranet. • IT support through a comprehensive website, telephone and online support and a dedicated helpdesk at the SIZ at each of the LRCs. • Enabling Services offering assessment, guidance and facilities (including specialist IT support) if you have a disability, dyslexia, mental health issue or specific learning difficulties • Student Support Services to assist you with a range of general enquiries including financial matters, accommodation, exams, graduation, student visas, ID cards ( ) • Careers support, advising on job search, applications, interviews, paid work, volunteering and internship opportunities and getting the most out of your extra-curricular activities alongside your degree programme when writing your CV • a range of personal support services : mentoring, counselling, residence support service, chaplaincy, health service • assistance in the development of English language and study skills for non-native speakers. • a Research Office which coordinates a programme of professional development and skills training ( • An appropriate research environment, as set out in the Code of Practice The Students’ Union provides: • an academic student representation system, consisting of elected Student Voices in every department, Academic Representatives for both campus’, and the SU President and Vice President. UCSU provides training and support for those who represent students’ views to the University. • extracurricular activities and volunteering opportunities • free and confidential advice including support if you need to make an academic appeal or apply for mitigation • opportunity to thank and reward staff through the SU Teaching Awards Associated with your programme you will be able to access: The University’s Learning Resources Centre (LRC) on the Bishop Otter campus houses a substantial, regionally significant collection of books and journals in the field of History and Contemporary History/Politics. Notable resource strengths lie in: (i) Gender history - students are able to draw upon an extensive range of sources not only in History but also in English, Sociology and Cultural Studies: journal holdings include Women’s History Review, Gender and History, Journal of Women’s History and Journal of the History of Sexuality. (ii) History theory and methods– a distinctive feature of the university’s research provision with stocks having been built up over 25 years. Includes leading journals in the field such as History and Theory, Rethinking History, Critical Practice, New Left Review, Literature and History and Radical Philosophy. (iii) Ecclesiastical and modern religious history: the University LRC has one of the best ecclesiastical history collections in the region because of its inclusion of the holdings of the former Chichester Theological College (CTC) which include some important nineteenth-century volumes. This is a collection which is regularly updated by substantial annual external funding. (iv) Cultural history: the LRC holds a substantial collection of publications that sit on the borderlines between History, English literature and Cultural Studies. The collection reflects the liberal arts heritage of the University. Students also have access to extensive online resources, inter-library loans, computers and office space. Chichester is also home to several important archival institutions which the department works closely with, notably: WSRO (West Sussex Record Office); Chichester Cathedral Library; the library and collection of Pallant House Gallery; the library and collection of the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum (WDOAM).
Fees information Current information about the fees for postgraduate research degree programmes are available on the University’s website Further information For general queries about research degree programmes please contact the research office using For queries specific to the Department of History and Politics please contact Professor Hugo Frey

Qualification and course duration


full time
36 months
part time
60 months

Course contact details

Dr Antony Walsh