Postgraduate study

Management PhD, MScR

Awards: PhD, MScR

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding opportunities

Programme website: Management

The Business School received full research training accreditation in the 2005 Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Recognition Exercise.

The School has significant research expertise in the following subject areas:

There is a long tradition of teaching and research in business and management at the University. Research degrees are offered in most disciplines within business and management, subject to the availability of suitable supervisors.

The following research degrees are available: MSc by Research (one year FT); PhD (minimum 3 years). The School has links with other Schools in the University, including Social and Political Studies, Mathematics and Law allowing students with cross-disciplinary interests to find expertise, support and supervision.

In recent years the School has funded several generous studentships, helping to ensure a continuing high calibre intake.

Members of the School are involved in a number of research centres, for the full list please see:

For more information on our School and staff research interests, see our subject groups:

Our students undertake training in research skills and design, research methodologies in business and management and, through supervised reading courses, develop their knowledge in specific areas of business and management research. Research training courses involve a combination of lectures, seminars and self-directed reading, and are mainly assessed by means of extended essays. Thesis research and writing is guided by two or more supervisors appointed from the academic staff of the University. Progress is formally evaluated annually.

The School has dedicated work spaces for research students, offering computer and phone access. Students also have access to the staffroom and syndicate rooms. Students are encouraged to use the online facilities of the HUB which provides extensive access to a wide range of business information, management research databases and online journals.

Entrance to both the PhD by Management programme and the MSc by Research is competitive. Academic credentials are important for a successful application, however, we also pay great attention to the fit of students to our academic programme, and particularly to the research interests of our academic faculty.

Minimum academic requirements

Entry to the PhD programme usually requires that applicants have the following minimum qualifications:

  • Normally a postgraduate masters degree from an accredited institution in the UK or overseas (we accept applications from those still currently studying for a masters, but any offer will be conditional on successful completion at the required standard).
  • Evidence of above-average academic achievement (more than 65% overall) and normally a postgraduate master's dissertation with distinction (UK equivalent). MBA or master's students without a dissertation are welcome to apply and should normally provide evidence of distinction level work (UK equivalent).
  • Your official transcript and grading scheme must be provided when you submit your application.

Entry to the MSc by Research programme usually requires that applicants have a UK first-class undergraduate degree or an equivalent overseas qualification. Applicants with a 2:1 undergraduate degree may be considered.

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 6.0 in each module)

  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 20 in each module)

  • PTE Academic: total 67 (at least 56 in each of the Communicative Skills sections)

  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 169 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:

Visit the programme website for more information on the additional programme costs.

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:

  • Postgraduate Research Support and Development Officer, Mrs Lindsey Singleton
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 5337
  • Contact: phd@business-school.ed.ac.uk
  • University of Edinburgh Business School
  • 29 Buccleuch Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9JS

Supervisors can accept students on a first-come, first-served basis and the programme may close early if it reaches capacity.

Your official transcript and grading scheme must be provided when you submit your application. Please ensure you follow our application guidelines otherwise your application is at risk of being placed on hold:

For your application to be processed, you must name your potential supervisor. You may name up to three in order of preference

We offer PhDs in Management, Accounting or Finance. All PhD applications are made under the PhD in Management programme and you may choose to remain on this or change to a PhD in Accounting or Finance at the end of your first year.

For PhD and MScR applications you should write a research proposal, which will be used to assess your suitability for the PhD programme. It should be 3,000 to 5,000 words in length (excluding bibliography and appendixes) and clearly explain the research hypothesis, objectives, and why the research is important.

To maximise your chances of submitting a successful application, it is recommended you read the guidelines on our website before applying:

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

Further information

  • Postgraduate Research Support and Development Officer, Mrs Lindsey Singleton
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 5337
  • Contact: phd@business-school.ed.ac.uk
  • University of Edinburgh Business School
  • 29 Buccleuch Place
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9JS