Available for January start

Course details

Study options

Full-time: 2-4 years, Part-time: 3-8 years

Course level



MPhil or PhD

Start dates

January, March, September, June


Markeaton Street, Derby Campus

Course description

Challenge your thinking, develop original ideas and realise your potential by completing your research degree at Derby.

Employable Graduates – we’re ranked 15th highest amongst all UK universities and 12th for English institutions with 96% of graduates in work or further study within six months of completing their degree: HESA 2016.

Research is an important component of academic life. It plays a major role in supporting what we teach to our students and directly helps organisations to solve real-world problems.

Research at Derby is underpinned by our strong industry connections within the region and active international links with organisations such as CERN, Roche Pharmaceuticals and Rolls-Royce among others. As a result, we ensure that our research contributes directly to the development and wellbeing of the region as well as the body of knowledge in the scientific community at large.

Our Department of Electronics, Computing and Mathematics has a research-active, focused, dedicated and committed team of staff who are very keen to work with you as you pursue your own research interests.

One of the Department’s core aims is to provide research-related opportunities for widening participation in higher education. Through its collaborations and scholarly activities, it also seeks to make an impact and raise its reputation for excellent research regionally, nationally and internationally.

Choose your specialism

Available research areas for study include:

Electrical and Electronics project areas

Entertainment Engineering project areas

Computing project areas

How you will learn

MPhil or PhD

This route typically involves undertaking independent research under academic supervision that leads to the production of a written thesis, which for some subjects may also be accompanied by creative works. The MPhil is studied over 3 years (full-time) or 4 years (part-time); the PhD is studied over 4 years (full-time) or 8 years (part-time).

MPhil or PhD by Published Works

This route is designed to provide doctoral recognition for your previous research achievements. These would be contained in a body of largely already published or creative works accompanied by a critical appraisal, which contextualises your publications, and justifies the contribution these have made to your subject area. The MPhil or PhD by Published Works is studies over 2 years (full-time) or 3 years (part-time).

MPhil or PhD by Concurrent Publication

This route is only available for University of Derby staff. Under this route, you are expected to produce and publish research or creative work accompanied by a critical appraisal which contextualises your publications, and justifies the contribution these have made to your subject area. The MPhil by Concurrent Publication is studied over 3 years (part-time only); the PhD by Concurrent Publication is studied over 8 years (part-time only).

For each route, you will meet with your supervisors on a regular basis, to be agreed between yourself and your supervisory team following enrolment onto the research degree programme.

Entry requirements

Applicants for research degrees should normally hold an honours degree from a UK University, or qualifications or experience which are deemed by the University to be equivalent.

Language requirements

Applicants who do not hold a UK, EEA, or Swiss passport must also provide an IELTS certificate showing that you meet our entry requirements (overall score 6.5, minimum 5.5 in each area of learning).

Please note that you do not need to supply an IELTS certificate if you have completed a degree from a predominantly English-speaking country, as defined by the UKVI; or if you have citizenship of a predominantly English-speaking country, as defined by the UKVI.

Fees and funding

Doctoral loans

Find out more about doctoral loans and see if you could be eligible for a doctoral loan.


Scholarships and discounts may be available to international students on specific intakes.

How to apply

UK/EU students

UK/EU postgraduate research students can apply directly to the University.

Apply directly to the University

Guidance for EU students post-Brexit

International students

International postgraduate research students can apply directly to the University. If you wish to work during your studies, please check your eligibility to work during your studies before applying.

Apply directly to the University

Guidance for international applicants applying for a postgraduate degree


With the prestige of a PhD on your CV, you can progress in your present job or seek new career opportunities in a range of areas such as research and teaching in universities, industrial research centres or publicly funded bodies.  You can also enter management at a senior level within industrial companies.

Contact us

Research Student Office pgrstudentoffice@derby.ac.uk +44 (0)1332 591060

If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.

Contact us Contact us

Additional information about your studies

Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.