You’ll be allocated two supervisors, with additional staff members available if necessary. Our supervisors are experienced in most areas of English literature, with a strong focus on Renaissance literature, Shakespeare, Romantic and Victorian studies; modernism; women's writing; science and the creative imagination; classical reception; film and theatre; and popular culture.
You’ll conduct your research in a collaborative environment with strong links to research networks in our University and the wider community. We host and take part in many research oriented events for staff and postgraduate students, including our regular Faculty and departmental research seminars, international conferences and the bi-annual Skinner Young lecture on Shakespeare and Renaissance literature. Our seminars will give you the chance to present papers in a supportive setting, and you’ll have the chance to attend graduate research seminars at the University of Cambridge’s Faculty of English.
These events, along with our online environment, will help you connect with other research students from a range of disciplines.
You could also benefit from financial support – we allocate a substantial sum every year towards postgraduate travel and conference expenses, as well as some bursaries.
All your subject-specific studies will be enhanced and supported by our University-wide training sessions, where you’ll gain important research expertise in areas like ethics, presentations, intellectual property and digital scholarship.
You can apply until:
Always verify the dates on the programme website.
We’ll provide you with many opportunities for career development and training, in areas like writing up a paper for publication; placing an academic article; giving a conference paper; the doctoral writing style; updates on research methods and literature searches; internet training; editing skills for doctoral research; subsequent monograph publication; and dealing with festivals, agents, and publishers. You might also be able to take on teaching responsibilities in the department, or organise research events like seminars and conferences.
In conjunction with the University’s research support, you can request specific support for writing-up, conference papers, general research methods and other research skills if you need it.
Our permanent supervisory staff are recognised experts in their field, and have produced a number of influential books, journal articles and edited collections. Our research expertise includes:
Dr Jeannette Baxter, BA, MA, PhD: twentieth-century literature; contemporary fiction; post-1945 novel; Surrealism and the avant-garde; Holocaust writing.
Professor Sarah Brown, BA, MA, PhD: adaptations of classical texts and myths; Renaissance literature, especially Shakespeare; science fiction.
Dr John Gardner, BA, MA, PhD: poetry and politics in the eighteenth century or nineteenth century; the novel in the eighteenth/nineteenth century; the relationship between text and illustration; engineering and culture.
Professor Eugene Giddens, BA, PhD: Shakespeare and Renaissance drama; early print culture; children's literature.
Dr Elizabeth Ludlow, BA, MA, PhD: nineteenth-century literature and culture; literature and theology; Victorian print cultures and periodical publication; Victorian illustration.
Professor Farah Mendlesohn, BA, MA, PhD: science fiction; fantasy; children's literature; historical fiction: English literature, literary history and creative writing.
Dr Tory Young, BA, MA, PhD: modernism; contemporary fiction, especially the influence of modernism on contemporary fiction since 2000; narratology; queer and feminist theories of narrative.
Staff from our Creative Writing programme may also be available for supervision, where appropriate.
You only need to take one of these language tests:
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
StudyPortals Tip: The UK government has confirmed new English-language testing requirements for visa and immigration purposes. Learn more
The TOEFL – or Test OF English as a Foreign Language – offers a paper-based test (PBT). The final, overall PBT score ranges between 310 and 677, and is based on an average taken from the three test components (listening, structure, and reading). The writing part of this test is scored separately on a scale of 0-6. Read more about TOEFL (PBT).
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).
MPhil: Candidates must hold a BA or equivalent in a related subject area.
PhD: Candidates should normally hold an MA or equivalent in a related subject area.
If English is not your first language, you will need a minimum IELTS score of 6.5 or equivalent.
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.
£4,500UK & EU students, 2016/17 (per year, part time)
£2,650International students, 2016/2017 (MPhil/Phd, per year, full time)
£11,200PhD by Published Work, 2016/17 (Initial registration)
£1,000PhD by Published Work, 2016/17 (Full registration)
£3,200Writing up, 2016/17 (UK & EU students)
£1,300Writing up, 2016/17 (International students)
£1,300UK, EU & International 2016/17 Bench fee ranges from 1000 to 7000
There are a number of ways in which you can obtain external funding for doctoral research, from the full-time awards granted by the AHRC (Arts & Humanities Research Council) to smaller grants available from a range of grant-awarding bodies. Our programme periodically offers fully funded and fees-only fellowships and, from time to time, Departmental bursaries are awarded to candidates showing exceptional potential. In addition to these, our programme has a Postgraduate Fund to which students can apply for help with travelling expenses, conference fees, and other research needs. We will give advice on external and internal funding to any interested prospective applicants for research degrees.
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.
Testimonial Registration Module
Together with the ISIC Association and British Council IELTS, StudyPortals offers you the chance to receive up to £10000 to expand your horizon and study abroad. We want to ultimately encourage you to study abroad in order to experience and explore new countries, cultures and languages.