Postgraduate study

Chinese PhD, MScR

Awards: PhD, MScR

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding opportunities

Programme website: Chinese

Scotland’s engagement with China is set to become even stronger, particularly in light of Scotland’s China Strategy. Given this, and the international standing of our Scottish Centre for Chinese Studies, researching this field from the Scottish capital makes perfect sense.

Our internationally respected academic staff, excellent facilities and academic, professional and cultural links with the Chinese community and Chinese organisations reinforce the world-leading nature of our research, and the prestige of our postgraduate opportunities.

Our research options centre on the interests of our Chinese members of staff, which include modern culture, both classical and modern literature, media and film, ancient philosophy and religion, and modern Chinese politics.

Find out more about compulsory and optional courses

We link to the latest information available. Please note that this may be for a previous academic year and should be considered indicative.

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MScRChinese1 YearFull-timeProgramme structure 2019/20

As a postgraduate student you will be part of the Scottish Centre for Chinese Studies, with strong links to researchers at other Scottish institutions that provide a wealth of networking and collaboration opportunities.

In addition, interdisciplinary seminars will widen your perspectives and introduce you to fellow students in related areas of research. You will enjoy comprehensive library resources and exceptional computer facilities, including Chinese word processing.

We encourage engagement with Chinese culture during your research. The Confucius Institute for Scotland – a national centre promoting ties between Scotland and China, based at the University of Edinburgh – offers flexible language programmes as well as courses on many aspects of contemporary China, lectures by distinguished visiting speakers, cultural events and space for leisure and social contacts with the Chinese community.

You are also able to take part in cultural and social events organised by the Edinburgh University Chinese Cultural Society and the Scotland China Association.

The University Library contains an open-access collection of books and journals in modern and classical Chinese intershelved with Western-language works on China. It has also recently invested extensively in electronic databases and other online resources on China. Postgraduate students can access the National Library of Scotland and Edinburgh Central Library.

The nearby Royal Scottish Museum has a fine collection of Chinese artefacts. The Chinese section holds a small reference library with a good collection of books and videos. Word-processing facilities including CJK are available in the Chinese section and in the 24-hour College microlab.

MScR: A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, in a related subject.

PhD: A UK 2:1 honours degree and a masters degree, or their international equivalents, in a related subject. We may also consider your application if you have equivalent qualifications or experience; please check with your potential supervisor before you apply.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.5 in each module)

  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 23 in each module)

  • PTE Academic: total 67 (at least 61 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)

  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 176 in each module)

  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, PTE Academic or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries.

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than three and a half years old at the beginning of your programme of study.*

(*Revised 8/11/2018 to provide more accurate information on English language qualifications expiry dates. Revised 22/03/2019 to provide more accurate/comprehensive information.)

Find out more about our language requirements:

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
PhDChinese3 YearsFull-timeTuition fees
PhDChinese6 YearsPart-timeTuition fees
MScRChinese1 YearFull-timeTuition fees
MScRChinese2 YearsPart-timeTuition fees

Featured funding

UK government postgraduate loans

If you live in the UK, you may be able to apply for a postgraduate loan from one of the UK’s governments. The type and amount of financial support you are eligible for will depend on your programme, the duration of your studies, and your residency status. (Programmes studied on a part-time intermittent basis are not eligible.)

Other funding opportunities

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • Graduate School
  • School of Literatures, Languages & Cultures
  • Room 1.13, 50 George Square
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9LH
Programme start dates Application deadlines
9 September 2019 31 July 2019
13 January 2020 30 November 2019

We strongly recommend you submit your completed application as early as possible, particularly if you are also applying for funding or will require a visa. We may consider late applications if we have places available.

You must submit two references with your application.

Before you apply, we strongly recommend that you discuss your research proposal by email with a prospective supervisor.

In addition to the supporting documents requested on the application form, Masters by Research applicants should include an outline of their proposed area of study; PhD applicants should include a full research proposal.

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

Further information

  • Graduate School
  • School of Literatures, Languages & Cultures
  • Room 1.13, 50 George Square
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9LH