Postgraduate research

Explore our postgraduate research opportunities including PhDs, Professional Doctorates, and Master's by Research.

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We bring together some of the best researchers in the world, developing ideas that positively impact and make a tangible difference to the physical, social and psychological well-being of people and their communities, the economy and the environment.

By taking one of our research degrees, you will have the opportunity to contribute original knowledge as an esteemed member of our research community.

Along the way, you’ll be supervised by experts in your field, and we’ll offer you skills training, mentoring and career support.

From the traditional PhD to our renowned Professional Doctorate Programme and Research Masters degrees, there’s a huge range of opportunities for you to explore.

Apply for a research degree

Learn how to apply for a research degree, such as a PhD, Master's by Research, or Professional Doctorate.
Apply for a research degree


PhDs generally take between three and five years to complete, with full-time and part-time options.

You can apply to one of our PhD opportunities or propose your PhD topic.

Browse PhD opportunities

Propose your PhD topic

Find out how these align with your interests and who to contact to discuss your proposal.

Browse our research areas 

Doctoral training programmes

Our doctoral training programmes are structured interdisciplinary programmes, including taught courses and professional development training. 

These offer many funded opportunities and provide you with the support and transferable skills needed to develop your career.

Doctoral training programmes

Professional Doctorate

Professional Doctorates are equivalent to a PhD but allow you to apply original research to practical problems in your professional field to advance your career to the next level of influence and leadership. 

Professional Doctorates are part-time and completed in four years and, unlike PhDs, contain a taught component. 

View our Professional Doctorates

Master's by Research

The Master's by Research is a type of research degree that allows you to pursue an independent research project while benefiting from expert supervision.

MFA/MDes by Research Art & Design

The MDes (Res) and MFA (Res) Masters degrees allow for independent study under the supervision of a research supervisor for one year, September to August, with many leading straight into PhD studies.

This programme is not a taught degree but is structured more like a PhD. It provides you with the appropriate research experience - and the refinement of research methods - to apply with a proposal and portfolio to a PhD.

MFA by Research Art & Design

MDes by Research Art & Design

MSc by Research

The MSc by Research is a one-year research degree (two years if part-time). Compared to a taught Masters (MSc), it will have a significant amount of time devoted to original research. 

We have the following MSc by Research options:

LLM by Research

MSc by Research Anatomy & Human Identification

MSc by Research Environmental Science

MSc by Research Geography

MSc by Research Leverhulme Research Centre for Forensic Science

MSc by Research Life Sciences

MSc by Research in Medicine

Doctoral Academy

The Doctoral Academy at the University of Dundee works in partnership with Schools, Professional Services, and Dundee University Students’ Association (DUSA) to provide equity of experience for postgraduate researchers across the University and ensure you thrive during your time with us.