South Asian Studies, Ph.D.

  • Application Deadline
  • 36 months
  • Tuition
    Tuition (Year)
    Tuition (Year)
  • English (take IELTS)
University rank #41 ,
This PhD programme provides training in the advanced research skills necessary to complete independent research in the South Asian context. It provides students with the ability to successfully complete advanced, multidisciplinary study that makes a significant contribution to our knowledge of South-East Asia.


PhD research in South Asian Studies at Edinburgh is managed from within the Graduate School of Social & Political Science, which brings together Sociology, Politics, Social Anthropology, Social Policy and Social Work. For research in South Asian Studies, PhD and MSc supervisors can also be found in other subject areas, especially History, Religious Studies, Asian Studies and Geosciences.

Edinburgh South Asian Studies is one of the UKs leading centres of excellence and is the largest such Centre outside London. For social sciences, it offers a wider range of expertise than anywhere else in the UK and is a leader within Europe.

We are deeply committed to our students at all levels, and to investigating the social world cross-culturally as well as within Scotland and the UK generally. We have a large, vibrant, intellectually stimulating and international community of postgraduate students from the UK, Europe, the Nordic countries, North America, Asia and Africa. Our PhD researchers work on a broad range of theoretical, methodological and substantive topics.

Undertaken full-time over three years, or part-time over six years, the PhD in South Asian Studies is a research degree in which people explore in depth a piece of theoretical, and/or methodological, and/or substantive, research on a topic of their choice.


  • This programme has ESRC-recognition.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Full-time duration 36 months
  • Study intensity Full-time
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus
  • Project Type Open
  • Educational Form Academic

Programme Structure

  • PhD researchers in South Asian Studies are allocated a supervisor and a co-supervisor, who will advise on the entirety of the research process, from reading and assembling ideas, to fieldwork, to analysing empirical or theoretical materials, to writing up chapters, to completing the thesis, to the viva which rounds off the process.
  • There is a regular progress review, to discuss ideas, review progress and provide help and support where necessary. The supervisors and the Postgraduate Advisor are there to facilitate the existence of a supportive framework and to promote an active and sustaining research culture for our PhD students.

English Language Requirements

You only need to take one of these language tests:

  • Minimum required score: 7

    The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.

    Take IELTS test

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  • Minimum required score: 100

    The TOEFL – or Test Of English as a Foreign Language – offers an internet-based test (iBT). The final, overall iBT score ranges between 0 and 120, and includes a scaled average from the four components (reading, listening, speaking, and writing). Read more about TOEFL (iBT).

Academic Requirements

  • Degree certificate(s) – for all previous degrees. Please note that this can be provided after assessment in most cases.
  • Final/interim transcript(s) – for all previous and current degrees. Interim transcripts with current cumulative averages are acceptable for those still studying, though the final average is required if the degree has been completed.
  • Grading scale(s) – for each university transcript is submitted.
  • Research proposal – Proposals should be no more than two to three A4 pages for MScR and three to four A4 pages for PhD applications in 12pt Times New Roman font (this does not include references). See the University's Research Proposal information page for help with this.
  • Academic references – Referee email address must be institutional (i.e not a public email account). Uploaded references must be dated within one year of submission, on institutional letterhead, signed in pen (not a signature image) and in a non–editable format.

Student Visa

Students from United States of America need a visa in order to study in the United Kingdom.
Read more about visa information and requirements for this country.

Tuition Fee Per Year

  • GBP 13800 International
  • GBP 4121 EU/EEA

(PhD) (Part-time) - 6 Years

  • Home/EU:£2,061
  • Overseas:£6,900


StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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