Research course

History of Art

University of Glasgow · College of Arts
PhDMLitt by researchMPhil

Entry requirements

Our regular standard of admission is at least an Upper Second Class Honours degree (2:1), although candidates will usually also have completed or be undertaking a Masters qualification.

Research proposal

Candidates are required to provide an outline of the proposed research subject in about 1000 words. This need not be a final thesis proposal but should include:

  • a straightforward, descriptive, and informative title
  • the question that your research will address
  • an account of why this question is important and worth investigating
  • an assessment of how your own research will engage with recent study in the subject
  • a brief account of the methodology and approach you will take
  • a discussion of the primary sources that your research will draw upon, including printed books, manuscripts, archives, libraries, or museums
  • an indicative bibliography of secondary sources that you have already consulted and/or are planning to consult

Your application, including your references and research proposal, will be passed to members of staff whose expertise and research interests most closely match the area of your proposed study.

Months of entry


Course content

We have a vibrant student community in the History of Art with many research projects and external collaborations.

Areas available for research supervision include:

  • European art historical periods, particularly medieval, Renaissance, 17th, 18th and 19th centuries
  • Modernist studies, particularly Dada and Surrealism
  • Chinese art and culture
  • the development and application of art theory, particularly gender and post-1945
  • collecting practices, collections and museums technical art history: interdisciplinary research into artists’ materials, methods, and studio practices in the past and present, artists’ intent, authenticity and authentication
  • material culture studies, particularly decorative art and design history
  • dress textile history
  • textile conservation and textile conservation science.

Our research degrees offer unique opportunities for:

  • object-based learning using outstanding local collections and archives
  • training in research methods and skills
  • participation in many extra-curricular activities in the School of Culture and Creative Arts, detailed on our Student Life pages. Study is complemented by a lively programme of research seminars, to which postgraduates contributes, which includes lectures delivered by leading art and design historians, conservators and other visiting academics.

Information for international students

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training)

  • 7.0 with no sub-test under 7.0.
  • Tests must have been taken within 2 years 5 months of start date. Applicants must meet the overall and subtest requirements using a single test.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • PhD
    part time
    60 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    36 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
  • MLitt by research
    full time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    part time
    36 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
  • MPhil
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

The School of Culture and Creative Arts