skip to content
 

PhD, MSc and MLitt degrees (research degrees) are not awarded in any particular subject, and the certificate makes no mention of the subject area. The MLitt, however, is generally reserved for the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, and the MSc for Sciences and Technology.

Research degrees are awarded subject to the successful examination of a dissertation in two stages: usually scrutiny by two examiners, and an oral examination.

Before recommending the award of the PhD Degree the examiners must satisfy themselves that the dissertation:

  • is clearly written
  • takes due account of previously published work on the subject
  • represents a significant contribution to learning, for example through the discovery of new knowledge, the connection of previously unrelated facts, the development of new theory, or the revision of older views; and
  • approved in the light of what it is reasonable to expect a student to complete within three years full-time (five years part-time) research.

The limitations implied by this advice are intended to apply to the scale and scope of the work presented in the dissertation but not to its quality.

Before recommending the award of the MLitt or MSc Degree the examiners must satisfy themselves that the dissertation:

  • is clearly written
  • takes due account of previously published work on the subject
  • represents a useful contribution to learning; and
  • approved in the light of what it is reasonable to expect a student to complete within two years full-time (three and a half years part-time) research.

What is a Dissertation?

A dissertation must be a connected account of research written by the candidate. The dissertation must not simply consist of a collection of unconnected or unrelated papers published or otherwise. However, it may include published or publishable work provided it is part of a connected argument and is uniform in presentation and format with the remainder of the dissertation. It may also include appendices which are relevant to the material contained in the dissertation but do not form part of the connected argument