Research course

Professional Doctorate in Security Risk Management

University of Portsmouth · School of Criminology and Criminal Justice

Entry requirements

A master’s degree in an appropriate subject. Applicants must be professionally engaged in a security related area. All applicants will be invited to attend a face-to-face or telephone interview.

English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0.

Months of entry


Course content


The Professional Doctorate in Security Risk Management (D.SyRM) is a structured, four-year, part-time programme targeted towards security professionals in the UK and overseas. It comprises a taught element delivered through a small number of workshops in Portsmouth for the first two years and then two years of supervised research leading to a thesis.

The aim of the course is to provide a framework for security professionals to reflect on and contribute to practice in their area of work. Its emphasis is on developing researching professionals (which is distinct from the more traditional PhD route which aims to develop professional researchers).

Students on the programme welcome the opportunity to enhance their professional standing in their areas of expertise while developing important new knowledge in those areas. They are drawn from a variety of backgrounds including:

  • Corporate security
  • Commercial security
  • International security
  • Security training sector
  • Business continuity and crisis management
  • Policing
  • Military

Structure and teaching

A central feature of this programme is that you will be studying with the same cohort of people over the whole four years. The interaction that this provides will give you the opportunity to work, learn and develop together. This avoids the sense of isolation that some PhD students experience.

The taught element of the Professional Doctorate in Security Risk Management consists of 8 campus-based workshops in the first year (taught over 4 sessions) and 6 campus-based workshops (taught over 3 sessions) in the second year of the programme. Students are required to plan accordingly and attend all of the workshops in the taught phase of the programme.

For students who require a Visa to enter the UK then it must be noted that ID checks will take place at the start of the academic year on campus with the University UK Visa and Immigration Team as part of the normal student registration process.

A professional doctorate at the University of Portsmouth is achieved in two distinct stages with the second stage being divided into two parts.

Further information about our Research Areas and funded opportunities can be found at

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • DSyRM
    part time
    48-84 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

4-7 years part-time

Course contact details

Admissions Team
023 9284 5566