Postgraduate study

Health in Social Science

Awards: PhD

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding available

Programme website: Health in Social Science

A PhD in Health in Social Science offers a focus on innovative and cross-disciplinary health and social care research.

Our staff embrace a range of academic disciplines, including sociology, geography, social anthropology, social policy and healthcare studies.

From these perspectives we examine the overlapping concerns of research, policy and practice in health and social care. Broad themes in our research portfolio include ageing, dementia, intellectual disabilities, disability, care, critical care, pain, emotion, and service improvement within health and social care. We welcome projects utilising a range of research designs and have special interests in qualitative and collaborative research and innovative methods. We are keen to encourage research around the interface between social and cultural aspects of health, and the policy and practice contexts of healthcare delivery.

Our PhD students are supported through regular meetings with two supervisors able to provide expertise in the relevant fields of interest.

All students have access to the considerable resources available across the College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences in research methods training, professional skills development, seminars and workshops.

You will be encouraged to take part in the varied activities of our postgraduate research student community, including presenting your work at internal and external conferences and publishing your findings.

A UK first-class or 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, in a relevant subject area. A research proposal is also required. Applicants must have a formal discussion regarding their research project with the proposed supervisors.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your spoken and written English:

For start dates up to 31 August 2016:

  • IELTS: total 6.5 (at least 6.0 in each module)
  • TOEFL-iBT: total 92 (at least 20 in each module)
  • PTE(A): total 61 (at least 56 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)
  • CAE and CPE: total 176 (at least 169 in each module)

For start dates from 1 September 2016 and beyond:

  • IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.5 in each module)
  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 23 in each module)
  • PTE(A): total 67 (at least 61 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)
  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 176 in each module)

If you completed a CAE or CPE before January 2015 please contact the Admissions Office for the accepted grades.

Find out more about our language requirements:

  • Postgraduate Administrator
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 3969
  • Email: health@ed.ac.uk
  • Postgraduate Research Admissions Secretary
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 5144
  • Email: health@ed.ac.uk
  • School of Health in Social Science
  • Medical School
  • Teviot Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AG

We encourage you to apply at least one month prior to entry so that we have enough time to process your application. If you are also applying for funding or will require a visa then we strongly recommend you apply as early as possible. We may consider late applications if we have places available, but you should contact the relevant Admissions Office for advice first.

You must submit two references with your application.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • Postgraduate Administrator
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 3969
  • Email: health@ed.ac.uk
  • Postgraduate Research Admissions Secretary
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 5144
  • Email: health@ed.ac.uk
  • School of Health in Social Science
  • Medical School
  • Teviot Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9AG