Postgraduate research courses
Our PhD programme provides you with advanced research training and
supervision by leading global scholars. Our students have published in acclaimed
political science journals such as Electoral Studies, International
Organization, International Studies Quarterly, Journal of
Journal of Conflict Resolution, Journal of Education Policy and
Journal of Peace Research.
See our research divisions.
Former PhD students are currently working at universities such as Bremen
University, Jacobs University, Ludwig-Maximilians University Munich, University
of Amsterdam, University of Glasgow, Oxford University, University of
Nottingham, University of Leeds, University of Leicester , University of
Thessaloniki and Waseda University.
Our Department offers two routes to a research degree:
Both are three-year programmes. A PhP is normally for students without a
prior Masters degree and you normally take a number of taught modules in your
Support for PhD students
There are a number of scholarships, events, training and support
opportunities to help you in your studies, gain valuable skills during your
research and also to help you prepare for employment.
We have a number of
scholarships available to help fund your studies at Essex. You can
also search our
scholarship finder to see what's available.
seminars run by our Department and by other departments are
a great way to meet people and to share your research. We
encourage all research students to attend our departmental
seminars and to present their research in various contexts.
PhD development seminar
The PhD development seminar is specifically for first-year
PhD students and provides training and support for your research
capacity and professional development. The seminar focuses on
writing and presenting a research proposal for the thesis,
developing confidence in the presentation of academic papers,
learning how to write and submit journal articles, and
developing skills in time-management and the use of technology.
As part of the Essex ESRC Doctoral
Training Centre, we offer all doctoral students a training
programme that includes advanced subject-specific training and a
transferable skills programme:
All social science doctoral students will acquire core skills
in research design, data collection and management, and
Graduate teaching assistants
Our Department employs Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTAs) to
support the delivery of a wide range of undergraduate modules.
We also employ GTAs on a part-time basis to teach undergraduate
modules. There are also opportunities to work as a research
assistant to support an academic's research. These are a great
way to build up your skills and also help fund your studies
through paid employment.
PhD support networks
Our Department maintains a lively, friendly and informal
atmosphere for research, into which you'll be fully integrated.
There are plenty of opportunities to interact with members of
staff, not just your own supervisor, and of course with other
We know how important it is for research students to have
access to computers and quiet space to work, which is why we
developed the PhD Research Centre shared with the Department of
Economics. We also provide desk space for all PhD students,
either in a shared office or 'hot-desk' spaces. Additional
office space is provided if you have a teaching contract.
HEROES (Helping Each other with Research On Empirical
The HEROES group is run
by PhD students who use empirical methods in their research.
They meet every week and try to help each other by discussing
ideas and getting feedback from their more senior peers, and are
always welcoming new students to the group.
Eco-philosophy reading group
The reading group meets every Monday for one hour in the
common room and is a space for free-thinking and sharing
opinions on the topic of eco-philosophy in an informal
atmosphere. Discussions are mainly based on Warwick Fox's book
Toward a Transpersonal Ecology but the group has also
discussed work by other authors with alternative views.
Prize for best PhD paper
In recognition of the hard work and dedication our students put into
their studies, each year we offer a prize of £100 (normally book tokens) for
the best PhD publication. If you have published a paper during the academic
year, no matter what year of study you are in, you may be eligible to win
Got a question?
If you'd like to know more about our postgraduate research courses,
contact our Director of Recruitment,
Dr Rob Johns at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fees and scholarships
Find out details about our fees and scholarships. If you would like any further information or have any questions, please
do not hesitate to contact us.
How to apply
Find out more about how to apply for a course in our Department of Government. We can provide
help and advice, and guide you through the application process.
Book a place at a postgraduate event to find out about studying at a top 20 UK research university. Staff will be
available to answer your questions and you can speak to students about life at Essex.
Read our blog
Want to find out about student life at Essex and in our Department? Read our blog to hear our students talk
about their experiences, tips and views on the political issues of today.
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