Application Process

Application process

Entrance requirements
Normally applicants should hold a primary degree in law of 1st or 2.1 class (or equivalent), and have completed or be in the process of completing a Master's degree in a relevant law-related discipline.  However, students with outstanding primary degrees who can demonstrate evidence of relevant research skills and potential will also be given consideration.  Students for whom English is not your native language must have an IELTS score of 7 or above (with a minimum of 5.5 in each component), or equivalent.

Application steps:

  • Identify potential supervisors
    In order to ensure that students are properly supervised, we can only accept applications in fields where there exists sufficient expertise in the Law School.  That said, the Law staff have a very wide range of legal specialisms.  You should consult the Staff pages to identify potential supervisors for your work, then contact he/she with a short synopsis (c200 words) of your proposed research area.  On the basis of this short outline, we will be able to tell you whether we have sufficient expertise in that field, and whether a fuller application is worthwhile.
  • Research Proposal
    Once your synopsis is approved, you should prepare a research proposal of maximum 1500 words (note AHRC funding applicants must submit a proposal of no more than 750 words plus CV), excluding biobliography, and state the word limit at the end.  The proposal should include: 
  1. a title for the research
  2. the research objective, research questions or key hypothesis
  3. where you think the topic fits in relation to existing literature or what theory/theories are likely to inform this research
  4. what contribution you think this research will make; why is this research important?
  5. what research methods are likely to be used
  6. what the proposed schedule is over the three year period
  7. an indication of the literature in this area
  • Formal application
    You should apply via the University's online portal at  From there, you will be asked to upload your research proposal, transcripts, English language certificate and name two academic referees
  • Applications for funding
    All students who are eligible for funding and who have submitted a full application by the funding deadline will be considered in the DEL and School of Law funding competitions.  There is no separate application form.
  • AHRC NORTHERN BRIDGE funding applicants only please note that a cv is also required at point of application.  Please upload the research proposal (this must be of 750 words maximum) and the cv as one document in the portal.

Current fees information
UK/EU    International