Health - PhD

  • Level: Postgraduate Research
  • Starting: February 2020
  • Study mode: Full Time, Part Time, Distance Learning
  • Location: City South

The Doctor of Philosophy or PhD is recognised worldwide and is often an essential requirement for those wishing to follow an academic or research career in health or social care.

  • A PhD programme includes allocation to a bespoke supervisory team to advise and guide each student through all aspects of their study. In addition, each student has access to a wide range of learning opportunities within the Graduate School and the University as a whole.
  • Our research degrees are not taught courses. Each student's research degree programme is personalised to match their interests to the research priorities, staff expertise and research facilities available.
  • You will have access to dedicated research facilities and will be encouraged to publish in collaboration with your supervisors and to take part in research conferences.

How is this course taught?

Our research degrees are not taught courses. Each student's research degree programme is personalised to match their interests to the research priorities, staff expertise and research facilities available.

Enquiries 

Please contact HELS Doctoral Research College team:

 

This course is open to International students

Teaching Excellence Excellence Framework

Birmingham City University has been awarded silver status for its quality of teaching in the Government’s Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF).

What is a PhD?

PhD degrees are research programmes. They allow you to learn as you work through the issues associated with solving a particular problem. Each research degree student is supported by a team of supervisors appointed for the particular study. In all years of study, students will be required to present their work in meetings of fellow students and staff conducting parallel research.

Current interests

Four participatory networks to address current and future health and social care challenges, they include:

Quality of Care

Creating a network within the university to harness the expertise of colleagues to contribute to solving complex health and social care problems.

Science for Health

Applied science, that translates to health practice. Impactful research that is meaningful to health professionals/treatment and prevention.

Family Health

Understanding needs of families and role of family in illness prevention and health promotion.

Promoting health and wellbeing

Using the best available evidence to enhance care for people with common and long-term conditions.

Who will teach me?

Our experienced academics, many of whom are engaged in internationally recognised research, will provide you with supervision as you pursue the award of a PhD degree.

Graduate Research and Teaching Assistant (GRTA) Opportunities

GRTA opportunities at Birmingham City University provide you with an opportunity to study for a PhD whilst gaining experience as an assistant lecturer on a funded four year programme. We will update this page with new GRTA opportunities for February 2020 soon. 

  • UK students
  • EU and International students

Award: PhD

Starting: Feb 2020

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees
  • Full Time
  • 3-4 years
  • £4,327 per year
  • Part Time
  • 4-7 years
  • TBC
  • Distance Learning
  • 4-7 years
  • TBC

Award: PhD

Starting: Feb 2020

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees
  • Full Time
  • 3-4 years
  • £12,300 per year

If you’re unable to use our online application form for any reason, please email Research.Admissions@bcu.ac.uk.The University reserves the right to increase fees in line with inflation based on the Retail Prices Index or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament up to a maximum of five per cent.

Please complete your Research Proposal and upload this as part of your application. 

Entry Requirements

Applications for research degrees are assessed on the following criteria:

  • that the proposed research seems likely to satisfy the academic requirements of a research degree;
  • that the proposed research is feasible in practical terms;
  • that you seem likely to be able to cope with the academic demands of a research degree;
  • that the Faculty is able to provide the appropriate supervisory expertise and resources.

Once assessed, you will be either invited to a formal enrolment interview or asked to revise your application and resubmit it.

Additional costs

We offer a wide range of professionally accredited and vocational courses that require the purchase of, among other things, uniforms, equipment, subscriptions, professional body memberships and DBS checks, and may require you to pay to attend conferences or participate in placements.

The link below provides our estimate of the possible costs associated with key activities on specific courses. Please bear in mind that these are only estimates of costs based on past student experience and feedback. The actual costs to you could vary considerably (either greater or lower than these estimates) depending on your choices as you progress through the course. We set out where we can, based on experience, where these indicative costs are for activities that are optional or compulsory.

All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.

Find additional costs for your course

Accommodation and living costs

The cost of accommodation and other living costs are not included within your course fees. More information on the cost of accommodation can be found in our accommodation pages.

The additional costs listed here are to be used for indicative purposes only and are based on the additional costs for the 2018/19 academic year. The additional costs for 2019/20 will be published as soon as possible.

Funding 

PhD studentships are PhD funding opportunities supported by organisations, where your research will be actively used in overcoming real-world problems. Check here for current PhD Studentships

Open Opportunities 

Research phds blog

Thinking about a PhD?

Our PhD section is the place to go for application tips, FAQs, funded opportunities, helpful blogs and more!

Find out more

Year One

Studying for a PhD will mean undertaking a programme of research that makes a contribution to knowledge. The course normally takes three years full-time/five years part-time study.

Course Structure

Supervision and guidance from the supervisory team to help the student refine the initial research proposal, research training, completion of the Post-graduate Certificate in Research Practice, participation in research seminars, journal review groups and in-house conference events, pilot studies and completion of research governance procedures.

Year Two

Course Structure

Supervision and guidance in field work, data collection, data analysis, refining arguments and beginning to draft the structure of the thesis, further research training, presentation of aspects of the research at research seminar and conference events, development of potential papers for publication, participation in teaching activities as appropriate.

Year Three

Course Structure

Supervision and guidance in completing the thesis of 80,000 words, clarifying the contribution to knowledge, preparation for examination, further research training presentation of aspects of the research at research seminar and conference events, development of potential papers for publication, participation in teaching activities as appropriate.

A day in the life of a PhD student

If you're considering doing a PhD there's probably a lot of questions going through your mind: how am I going to pay for it? Should I quit my job? Will I cope with the workload? But most importantly, what is it really like? Karen Patel, a full time PhD student, shares her experiences of juggling life, a part time job and her studies. Read more in Karen's blog.

The PhD Journey

The nature of a research degree is such that it is not possible to state an exact timescale for the programme. A part-time PhD (for entrants with a relevant Master's qualification) could be expected to take 4-5 years.

In the case of full-time study, a PhD may require 30-36 months. Nevertheless, it should be noted that there is wide variation from these averages for individual students.

Modes of Study

Our PhD programmes are offered full-time or part-time. These modes of study ensure that we can create a PhD research plan around your lifestyle needs, even if you are in full-time employment or overseas.

Full-time PhD Research: three to four years

As a full-time PhD research student you will undertake much of your research on campus using the facilities at Birmingham City Business School.

You will usually spend at least 37 hours per week engaged in research.

You will be expected to complete your research and submit your work for examination within 36-43 months.

Part-time PhD Research: four to seven years

You would chose part-time PhD research if you opt to study whilst in employment or if full-time study is impractical.

You will be encouraged to use the campus facilities when you can and may often work from home.

You will be expected to complete your research and submit your work for examination within 48-72 months.

How is this course taught?

Our research degrees are not taught courses. Each student's research degree programme is personalised to match their interests to the research priorities, staff expertise and research facilities available.

Who will teach me?

Our experienced academics, many of whom are engaged in internationally recognised research, will provide you with supervision as you pursue the award of a PhD degree.

How the PhD is assessed

The criteria to be awarded a PhD is to make a ‘unique contribution to knowledge.’ Whether a student has achieved this is determined by a panel of experts, including internal and external academics. The panel will assess the student’s written thesis, and the student’s oral defence of that thesis in a viva voce.

Course Modules

You will begin the course by undertaking a Postgraduate Certificate in Research Practice consisting of two modules – Research Methods, and Research Skills.

The module in research methods covers issues such as the nature of PhD study, supervision, research proposal development and writing, literature review and information management.

The module in research skills will enable you to develop an appreciation of the range of tools and techniques that are available to help you carry out your research and situate your research within a broader methodological context.

This will involve consideration of the epistemologies and methodological frameworks that are appropriate to the types of phenomena that you are likely to study.

Employment Opportunities

The majority of students who enrol for a research degree complete their studies on a part-time basis while they are employed. The PhD award from Birmingham City University is a well established and valued professional qualification within the education sector. Typical careers include school management, working in further education or higher education or educational consultancy.

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC)

International students who have a serious interest in studying with us but who perhaps cannot meet the direct entry requirements, academic or English, or who have been out of education for some time, can enter Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC) and begin their degree studies.

BCUIC

BCUIC is part of the global Navitas Group, an internationally recognised education provider, and the partnership allows students to access the University’s facilities and services and move seamlessly through to achieving a Bachelor’s degree from Birmingham City University.

Learn more about BCUIC

The creation of our new suite of courses in Sport and Life Sciences is yet another exciting development at Birmingham City University. The 10,500sq metre building at City South Campus will enable us to offer a wide range of new health, nutrition, biomedical science and sports courses, as well as providing a new home for our education programmes.

Not only are we investing £41 million in a new building to house the laboratories and teaching spaces needed, but we also plan to open up these facilities to benefit all students and the wider community. This will complement our existing sports facilities, which already provide a base for students to compete in activities ranging from rugby to jiu jitsu.

The courses will reflect the latest developments in our teaching and our focus on practice-led learning with work placements and live industry case studies incorporated into the curriculum. All courses have been co-designed with employers and are endorsed or accredited by professional bodies where appropriate.

By expanding our provision to these new areas, we will be helping to tackle some of the biggest challenges facing society today, such as obesity and unhealthy lifestyles, by encouraging and supporting healthy eating and greater physical activity.

In addition, we will be producing graduates who can support elite performers in meeting the UK’s ambitions for sporting success at events such as the Olympics and other world sporting tournaments. We are constantly looking to enhance the range of courses we offer - please check all our courses for the latest additions to our portfolio.

Simulation Mannequins

We have several Simulation men (SIM men) and Simulation babies (SIM babies) which are leading edge, anatomically correct mannequins used for teaching specific techniques such as advanced adult and paediatric life support skills, acute and high dependency clinical skills, first aid and communication skills.

Simulation Mannequins

SPACE skills practice model

S.P.A.C.E.

SPACE is an innovative practice area all students can access to use equipment and resources to practise a wide range of skills in a safe, welcoming and supportive environment. It provides students with a creative learning environment to get the best educational experience before becoming a health care professional.

S.P.A.C.E.

Learning Facilities

We offer up-to-date, innovative facilities that simulate the real situations that medical staff may come across. These resources are essential in offering students a hands-on introduction to health and social care practice.

Learning Facilities

Nursing - Facilities - Virtual Tour

Virtual Tour

Explore our facilities in 360 panoramas, including welcome videos from key members of staff and Health and Wellbeing student profiles.

Virtual Tour

Doug Ellis Sports Centre

Our £8.5 million Doug Ellis Sports Centre boasts an 80-station fitness suite, an eight-court sports hall, and workout and spinning studios. The centre offers state-of-the-art fitness training equipment and plenty of room for team sports including five-a-side football and cricket. An all-weather pitch adds the finishing touches to the centre.

Visitors to the gym can choose a personalised fitness programme, instructed by qualified fitness trainers, and take advantage of a selection of classes, such as yoga, salsa or body combat.

Doug Ellis Sports Centre website

Dr Kate Thomson

Associate Professor

Dr Kate Thomson is Director of Postgraduate Research Degrees for Health and leads on all aspects of recruitment, oversight and student experience for PhD (Health). She is also a member of the Public Health & Therapies department. 

Kate completed her postgraduate study at the University of Birmingham with a PhD on learning disability services and welfare development in Russia. She has more than 15 years’ experience of teaching health policy, sociological aspects of health and research skills at undergraduate, postgraduate and post-qualifying levels. Her main interests lie in health and welfare systems, global health and sociological public health.