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PhD opportunities

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A PhD research degree in the School of Earth and Environment

Research degrees

Whether you’re looking to begin an academic career or want to develop your skills and expertise for a career in industry, studying for a PhD will be a journey that will stimulate your passion for your subject and push you to reach your potential. 

We offer different types of degrees including full and part-time PhD degrees, split-site PhD, MPhil and a Masters by Research degree

The structure of a typical PhD, usually takes between 3 years full-time or 5 years part-time, during which you’ll be generating new knowledge and considering that new information in relation to existing information. You’ll need to be dedicated and passionate about your area of study. But it’ll be well worth it. Being a doctoral student is challenging, but incredibly rewarding. 

Postgraduate research in the School of Earth and Environment

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Search for projects, supervisors and funding

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Why do a research degree at Leeds?

Study in an active research environment: The School of Earth and Environment is globally renowned for the quality of its research, and the funding it attracts, meaning we’re able to invest in world-class facilities and academic staff who are actively engaged in cutting-edge research. The results of the 2021 Research Excellence Framework (REF2021) show that 93% of the University of Leeds’s Earth and Environment research submitted was rated as either ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’. 

A strong network of support: The Leeds Doctoral College connects our whole researcher community and put you in touch with the services, guidance and opportunities you need. Not only that, you’ll benefit from a strong support network to guide you through your research degree.  

Professional skills development: We think of the whole picture at Leeds. That’s why we offer a range of workshops and courses that'll enhance your skillset further and transfer into your professional career. 

Close industry links: Our partnerships and links to companies and academic institutions give you the opportunity to network at industry talks, seminars and conferences, building connections that'll benefit your next steps after you complete your PhD. 

Global community: You’ll join a friendly, supportive and diverse community of students and researchers who come from all over the world and have access to wellbeing and support services throughout your degree.

State-of-the-art facilities: Throughout your time at Leeds, you’ll have access to excellent teaching facilities that will equip you with hands-on experience and give you a solid understanding of how to use industry-recognised equipment. Take a virtual tour.

Applying for a research degree

Here's how to produce a document that outlines your proposed research topic and programme of research

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Whether you're applying to a project or proposing your own, follow this step-by-step guide to completing your application.

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Find out our research degree fees. If you are a former student of the University of Leeds you may be eligible for a 10% alumni tuition fee bursary.

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Find out our PhD and MA/MSc Masters by research entry requirements in the School of Earth and Environment.

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Doctoral Training Programmes

The School of Earth and Environment contributes to a number of structured PhD training programmes which focus on interdisciplinary research. Each year the White Rose ESRC Doctoral Training Centre and the Panorama NERC Doctoral Training Partnership offer a number of funded projects. The new Centre for Satellite Data in Environmental Science (SENSE) will enable 50 fully-funded PhD researchers to harness satellite data to tackle global environmental challenges. The new Extinction Studies DTP, funded by the Leverhulme Trust, will fund six to seven doctoral researchers per year to explore responses to the global extinction crisis.

My PhD experience

"Glaciers in this part of the world act as vital water resources to downstream communities, as does the South Asian monsoon, and so calculating how both of these may change is really important."

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"My research could help the wider scientific community to better understand the behaviour of the Antarctic ice sheet"

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"I chose Leeds more specifically as I knew through the MOAP that there was a hub here and therefore a strong research group in atmospheric science and meteorology..."

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