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Which Research Degree?

MPhil and PhD

Aimed at students who anticipate a career in which research plays a major role and who want to focus on an independent piece of research. The British MPhil and PhD research degrees involve the presentation of a thesis on a research topic, which will be in a field appropriate to the student's or their sponsor's needs.

Under the supervisor's guidance, students develop the intellectual and technical skills required for research and gain insight into the nature of research, which will provide the foundation for an excellent future research career.

Please note that registration for MPhil and PhD programmes takes place at three points in the academic year only, on the first day of each term. The entry points are normally in September, January and April. Check School term dates.


Intended for leaders and future leaders in public health who want a flexible career which combines high level leadership, management and research skills. It is aimed at public health professionals who see research as only part of their careers. Entry criteria for the DrPH are the same as for the PhD, except that relevant experience in public health management and/or leadership is required.

The standard, rigour and volume of the work are doctoral level, but appropriate to the career development of senior public health professionals.

Differences between UK and USA Research Degrees

In the USA, students undertake taught courses first, and then do a thesis. In the UK, the main emphasis is on the thesis, and the process of undertaking the research. Students may take some taught courses, but these are not necessarily an integral part of doing an MPhil/PhD, though they are a compulsory element of the DrPH.

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