Doctoral School. Become world-class.


Doctoral School

Becoming a world-class researcher is challenging yet rewarding. It takes dedication, hard work and a lot of support.

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a current or prospective research degree candidate, our Doctoral School is here to provide that support.

It's an exciting time for research at the University of Salford. 

As part of our vibrant and diverse research community, you’ll be guided by our experienced academic supervisors and helped by a team of highly trained administrators, researcher developers and managers - all focused on enabling your success.

Because we understand that your research journey is as unique as you are, we tailor our training and development opportunities to your needs, helping you become the best researcher that you can be. We are always thinking across disciplines, working with industry and delivering research with real world impact.

We provide an imaginative and engaging range of social activities and a broad programme of research specific seminars, wellbeing workshops and conference style development days. This way, you’ll be exposed to innovative research ideas and made aware of opportunities; all while making friends, building your network, developing your resilience and rising to the challenge of becoming a successful researcher.

All of this means that by the time you graduate - whether you continue your career in academia or take up a role in industry - you can take that next step with confidence. 

Your training and development

Student studying at her desk in the library

We offer a wide range of training and support designed to meet your specific needs including:

  • A personalised training programme – Our Community Model for Postgraduate Achievement, Skills and Future Success (COMPASS) programme is designed to help you develop the skills needed for effective research. It will also provide you with extremely valuable transferrable skills that will enhance your employability for a career in academia or industry.
  • Salford Postgraduate Annual Research Conference (SPARC) – SPARC is our forum for developing research and offers a space for you to exchange ideas with other researchers. Held every year, this two-day conference attracts a large number of researchers from across a range of disciplines.
  • The Doctoral School Conference Fund - Postgraduate research students are eligible to apply for funding up to £1000 towards the cost of travel and accommodation if they attend international and UK conferences and are presenting a paper, poster or other form of presentation. 
Case Studies

Career routes and case studies

Take a look at some of the fascinating research being carried out by our doctoral candidates below, and discover how their findings have made real world impact.

High quality supervision

Research supervision is a demanding and complex role. 

To ensure that you receive the highest standards of supervisory support, we have invested significantly in the development of a sector-leading supervisor training programme. 

Our academic colleagues complete this programme before supervising a research student and refresh their knowledge and skills every three years.

We also have a Supervisor Network that supports and develops best practice and offers opportunities for supervisors to meet and discuss topics. We are also actively contributing to the new national supervisor accreditation scheme, which we are piloting with our supervisors as early adopters of The Research Supervision Recognition Programme


PhD Reimagined

Our 'PhD Reimagined' initiative aims to equip our research students with the skills they need to address global challenges and to work across sectors and disciplines, exploring creative and innovative approaches in their research.

As a university we have developed an Industry Collaboration Strategy, which means our research students can move fluidly between research and industrial contexts. This gives them the skills to undertake industry-relevant research and to translate those findings into tangible benefits.


The Student Journey

A full-time PhD takes three years to complete. However, at Salford there are several other possible options to choose from; for example, a part-time PhD which takes five years.

Below is an example of a typical timeline for a full-time PhD. For details of the timeline for all other study modes, have a look at our student journey guide.

Salford ladder to success

Full-time PhD timeline


  • Registration

Year 1 (12 documented supervision meetings)

  • Handbook
  • Research supervision record
  • Learning agreement (by month 3)
  • Ethical approval
  • Interim assessment (month 9-11)
  • Annual Progress Report (APR)
  • Annual Self Evaluation (SER) 

Year 2 (12 documented supervision meetings)

  • Registration
  • Review learning agreement
  • Internal evaluation (month 21-23)
  • Annual Progress Report (APR)
  • Annual Self Evaluation (SER) 

Year 3 (12 documented supervision meetings)

  • Registration
  • Review learning agreement
  • Write up Thesis
  • Notice of Intention to Submit
  • Annual Progress Report (APR)
  • Annual Self Evaluation (SER)
  • Submit Thesis

Viva Voce


Fees and funding

You will need to pay annual tuition fees, which vary depending on the programme you’re studying. We offer a range of discounts to our postgraduate research students including a 20% reduction if you’re a Salford graduate and choose to continue your studies with the University.

You can find out more about fees, including the discounts you may be eligible for, on our postgraduate research fees and funding page.

How to apply

Applications for postgraduate research degrees are centered around your research proposal. To help you with this, we've outlined important dates, the information we require, tips on constructing your proposals and the contact information for each school's Admissions team in the link below.

Contact us

To find out more about the Doctoral School, please contact the relevant subject area from the list below.

Science, Engineering and Environment
Phone: +44 (0)161 295 3482
Alternative Phone: +44 (0)161 295 6435
Health and Society
Phone: +44 (0)161 295 2280
Alternative Phone: +44 (0)161 295 4148
Arts, Media and Creative Technology
Phone: +44 (0)161 295 6435
Business School
Phone: +44 (0)161 295 2711

You can also contact individual central PGR support team members by using the following details: