Physiotherapy, Ph.D.

  • N/A
    Application Deadline
  • 36 months
  • Tuition
    Tuition (Year)
    Tuition (Year)
  • English (take IELTS)
University rank #301 ,
Physiotherapy - Your research degree gives you the chance to investigate your chosen topic in real depth and reach a profound understanding. In communicating that understanding, through a thesis or other means, you have a rare opportunity to generate knowledge. You develop new high-level skills, enhance your professional development and build new networks. A PhD can open doors to many careers.


Within our School of Health and Human Sciences, the length of time taken to complete your research degree is dependent upon the programme on which you are registered.
We offer a number of different research degrees meaning that your yearly timetable is agreed on an individual basis with your supervisor at the start of your programme of study.

Within our School of Health and Human Sciences, our professional doctorates can be studied flexibly between four and seven years. Decisions about the duration of the study period are based on your individual need and funded support.

Each programme comprises three elements of taught modules, work-based learning and original research through doctoral-level dissertation.

For your taught modules, you complete a research methods module to underpin your subsequent research work. You will be guided in selecting further module/s to meet identified deficits within your knowledge base but, in your first year, you complete Research Methods, an online learning module. You also attend occasional (approximately six) professional doctorate study days at our Colchester Campus, which provide face-to-face support for your research methods module, offer research workshops and provide portfolio development sessions. In your second year, you are required to attend weekly taught sessions. You undertake our module Theory and Method in Health Research and then you can choose between Statistical Analysis and Qualitative Research Methods, depending on your research focus.

For your work-based learning, you will create two portfolios of learning chronicling the development of expert practice. These portfolios are constructed from the specialist application of generic outcomes in areas such as risk and diagnostic reasoning. Your portfolios are submitted at the end of your first and second years.

For your original research through doctoral-level dissertation you undertake a dissertation of 40,000 words on a subject relevant to your area of practice.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Full-time duration 36 months
  • Study intensity Full-time
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus, Blended

Programme Structure

Within our multidisciplinary School of Health and Human Sciences, we offer research supervision in the following fields:

- analysis of large scale surveys;
- approaches to pain management;
- child and adolescent mental health;
- children with special educational needs;
- clinical decision making;
- clinical psychology;
- cognitive behavioural therapy;
- consumerism and consumption in health care;
- cross-cultural mental health;
- educational psychology;
- evaluation of psychological treatments;
- health-related social movements;
- health-related stigma;
- health services research;
- housing and health;
- how life events and conditions influence health;
- interpretative policy analysis of health care;
- mental health services;
- the third sector and health care provision;
- nursing theory and practice;
- physiotherapy education and practice;
- political economy of health care;
- post-trauma responses/stress disorder/growth;
- professional/clinical education and practice;
- public health management;
- public health practice and policy;
- qualitative methods;
- quantitative methodologies and analysis of large-scale datasets (panel and cohort studies) ;
- service evaluation and development;
- social aspects of HIV/AIDS;
- social epidemiology and health inequalities;
- social inequality and health;
- social issues around health and the intersection of theories of delinquency and health;
- social organisation of health care;
- sociology of happiness and wellbeing;
- sociology of health and illness;
- sociology of mental health;
- sociology of risk;
and - understanding and application of research in health settings.

English Language Requirements

You need the following IELTS score:

  • Minimum required score: 6.5

    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

Academic Requirements

Potential research students are welcome to make preliminary enquiries directly to a potential supervisor within our School of Health and Human Sciences or, more generally, through our Graduate Administrator. We encourage the consideration of a brief research proposal prior to the submission of a full application.

For a professional doctorate within our School of Health and Human Sciences, you must be currently registered with a regulatory body, where appropriate, and in current employment in management, practice or education, as appropriate. You must have a Masters qualification (or equivalent) and have been employed in a senior position within a health or social care oriented organisation.

If English is not your first language, then we will require you to have IELTS 6.5 or equivalent.

Tuition Fee Per Year

  • GBP 11950 International
  • GBP 4000 EU/EEA


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.