MPhil/PhD in Sociology

Programme code: RPSO

Department: Sociology

In addition to progressing with their research, students are expected to take the listed training and transferable skills courses. Students may take courses in addition to those listed, and should discuss this with their supervisor.

Guidelines for interpreting programme regulations

Year 1
Training courses
Compulsory (examined)

SO500 Research Class for 1st year MPhil Students
Students may also be asked to attend and pass the assessment for up to one further course unit (or two half units) chosen with their supervisor on the basis of an assessment of their research training needs.

Optional (examined)
MY400 Fundamentals of Social Science Research Design (H)
MY521 Qualitative Research Methods (H)
MY551M or MY551L Introduction to Quantitative Analysis (H)
MY552M or MY552L Applied Regression Analysis (H)

Selection of additional courses, with agreement of supervisor, including:
Other courses from Sociology Masters programmes
Specialist research courses: SO511 Research Seminar in Political Sociology, SO521 Research Seminar on Cities and Space (not available 2017/18), SO491 Quantitative Social Research Methods (H) and SO492 Qualitative Social Research Methods (H)

Transferable skills courses
Optional (not examined)
MY591 Computing Packages for Qualitative Analysis
MY592 Workshop in Information Literacy: finding, managing and organising published research and data

Year 2
Training courses
Optional (not examined)
SO501 Data Analysis Workshop (this course is strongly recommended)

Year 3
Training courses
Optional (not examined)
SO505 Becoming a Professional Sociologist

Progression and upgrade requirements
In the Summer term of each year the progress of each student registered in the Department is discussed at the MPhil/PhD Board, which is a general meeting of all research student supervisors. This Board decides whether to recommend to the School that students be permitted to proceed to the next year of study. If progress is unsatisfactory, a course of action to assist students to reach performance standards deemed appropriate by supervisors may be required, or a recommendation may be made that the student not be allowed to re-register.

By the end of Year 2, students are expected to have completed their fieldwork, and to be ready to submit two draft chapters for upgrade. All full-time research students are expected to have made the transition from the MPhil to PhD (upgrading) within two years of first registration and to have submitted their PhD thesis within four years. Part-time students are expected to be upgraded to PhD by the end of their third year, and to submit their thesis within six years.

The decision to upgrade from MPhil to PhD is taken by a panel consisting of two academics from the Department or the School, with the supervisor(s) in attendance and available to be consulted by the panel. For upgrade, students submit three draft chapters of their thesis, plus thesis abstract and outline schedule for completion. This material is then assessed by viva voce and a written report is made by the panel.

Students should aim to have a complete first draft of their thesis in years three to four and allow three to six months for revision and submission.