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Who can apply for a Higher Doctorate?

An application for a Higher Doctorate can be made by:

  • A graduate of the University of Cambridge of not less than eight years standing from admission to his/her first degree (to qualify as a graduate, a candidate must have a degree - qualifications such as diplomas and certificates are not degrees).
  • A person who has been admitted:
    both to some office in the University or to a Headship or a Fellowship of a College, and is in the said office at the time of application; and to the degree of Master of Arts under Statute B, III, 6; or to a degree of the University by incorporation;
    and is of not less than eight years standing from admission to his or her first degree of some other university

What evidence is needed?

In order to qualify for a Higher Doctorate, you will need to:

  1. Provide proof of distinction by some original contribution to the advancement of science or learning.
  2. Meet the eligibility criteria for the degree.

    In order to check if you do, please see the appropriate regulations below. The relevant Chapter of the Ordinances is Chapter VII.

Please check the eligibility criteria very carefully. Please note that the term 'admission' to a degree means the date on which the degree was conferred on a candidate, not the date the candidate began the degree.

How do I submit my application?

1. Complete and sign both an application form and a declaration form - these can be emailed to the Student Registry, sent through the post, or delivered in person.

2. Submit your published works in support of your application by:

  • citing your publications by date using a full citation* - or
  • emailing pdf copies of the papers/books to the address below - or
  • sending two hard copies of any papers/books to the address below

Copies of any books will need to be submitted with your application, even if you are applying by citing your publications. Electronic copies of books are preferred but hard copies will need to be submitted if electronic copy is not available. Should a Referee ask for hard copies of papers you will need to undertake to supply these

* The Degree Committee for History require all works to be submitted as hard copies

Please note that additional works submitted after you have been notified that the application has been forwarded to the appropriate Degree Committee for consideration will not be accepted.

How do I contact the Student Registry?

Degree Congregations, Student Registry, The Student Services Centre, New Museums Site, Cambridge CB2 3PT


When will the Student Registry contact me?

The Student Registry will acknowledge receipt of your application, check your eligibility, forward your application to the relevant Degree Committee for consideration (provided you are eligible) and communicate their decision to you regarding whether there is, prima facie, a case for further examination of your work. If the works submitted do constitute prima facie a qualification for the degree, the work will be sent to Referees for examination. The Referees' reports are confidential. Please note that consideration of an application may take longer than a year. 

Review and appeal: Note

Candidates should note that there is no procedure in University regulations for appeal or review of decisions in respect of applications for Higher Doctorates; the decisions of the Postgraduate Committee and of the Degree Committees concerned are final.