Entry requirements

Research degrees

The minimum entry requirements for PhD study is 2.1 honours degree, or equivalent, in geography or a related subject however a lower undergraduate degree can be supplemented by a relevant Masters degree.

A first class honours degree (or equivalent) is usually required to be competitive for scholarship funding and a Masters degree is also a valuable asset.

MA/MSc by Research

The minimum entry requirement for a Masters by Research is a UK 2.1 honours degree or equivalent.

English language requirements

Students whose first language is not English are required to meet minimum standards in English, usually by achieving the scores listed below in an IELTS or TOEFL test. 

Please note that tests must be not be more than 2 years old by the start date of your studies with us. If you subsequently defer your offer of a place, please check that your English language certificate will still be less than 2 years old by your new start date.  If not, you will need to take another test and again meet the requirements listed below.

  • IELTS: 6.0 overall with at least 5.5 in all components.
  • TOEFL IBT (Internet-based TOEFL): 87 with a minimum score of 20 in listening and reading, 21 in writing and 22 in speaking.
  • a postgraduate degree from a majority English speaking country.The duration of the degree must be at least 12 months and awarded less than 2 years and 4 months from the proposed start date of the PhD
  • an undergraduate degree from a majority English speaking country . The duration of the degree must be at least 2 academic sessions and be awarded less than 2 years and 4 months from the proposed start date of the PhD.
  • Other English language qualifications are also accepted.

Please note that for postgraduate research study, we continue to be able to accept  IELTS from both Secure English Language Test (SELT) and non-SELT test centres. 

For entry to programmes below degree level (including the English language pre-sessional programmes), English language qualifications must be listed as UKVI approved SELTs and taken in approved test centres.

Pre-sessional English courses

If your IELTS/TOEFL test result falls slightly short of the requirements (eg if you have obtained 5.0 in one skill area other than writing, but meet the requirements in all other areas), it may be possible for you to meet the our English language requirements by successfully completing a pre-sessional course at the Language Centre.

Information on the length and cost of the pre-sessional English language course required can be found on the Language Centre's website and is based on your current IELTS/TOEFL score.