Doctoral Research

Birmingham is a research-rich University with academic staff who are global experts in their field, including people whose work pushes forward the frontiers of their subject.

Research degrees

University of Birmingham offers a huge diversity of opportunities for research at postgraduate level, allowing you to pursue your own research alongside internationally-ranked academics.

Staff and staff profiles

Doctoral Researcher Diversity Network (DRDN)

The Doctoral Researcher Diversity Network (DRDN) is the first cross-University network for PhD students (DRs) studying aspects of diversity and is supported by its Alumni Impact Fund. Our definition of diversity is quite broad, covering issues such as ethnicity, race, religion, migration, gender, age and other related dimensions.

Find out more about the Doctoral Researcher Diversity Network (DRDN)

Research training

The School expects research students to undergo relevant assessed research training.  You need to discuss this with your supervisor(s) but generally you are required to take 60 credits of research training from the MA Social Research.

The research training modules we expect you to take are from the following four 20 credit modules:

  • Introduction to Social Research
  • Research Design
  • Social Research Methods I 
  • Social Research Methods II.

Normally we expect students to take the Introduction to Social Science Research module, Research Design and Social Research Methods I.

Students who are doing their research in the area of Finance (please double check this with your supervisor) are required to take a different combination of modules. 

Students who do their research in the Department of Economics need to pass and take research training modules specifically orientated towards Economics students. PhD Students in the Department of Economics are required to take a taught module in Advanced Research Methods in Economics and strongly recommended to take at least two out of three of the following modules, each of which comprises 20 credits:

  • Advanced Research Training in Microeconomics
  • Advanced Research Training in Macroeconomics 
  • Advanced Research Training in Econometrics.  

Three Minute Thesis

Below you can watch two Birmingham Business School PhD researchers delivering their presentations as part of the Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) research communication competition.

Mary Dawood: Three Minute Thesis Final (2013)

Marea Sing: Three Minute Thesis Final (2013)


Integrated Study (Business & Management)

While the traditional PhD requires you to engage entirely in research and research training, this programme enables you to gain added value from taught, subject-based modules. These allow you to broaden and deepen your subject knowledge at the same time as undertaking your own research.

Social Research MA

This programme aims to provide students with a solid foundation in a broad range of social science research methods as well as basic research skills, acquiring a general overview of the philosophy of social research.