MPhil/PhD in Economic Geography   

Programme code: RPECGY

Department: Geography & Environment

For students entering in or after the academic year 2017/18.

In addition to progressing with their research, students are expected to take the courses listed below. Students may take courses other than those listed but must discuss this with their supervisor.

Guidelines for interpreting programme regulations

Year 1
Training courses
Compulsory (not examined)
GY502 Staff/Research Students Seminars

Compulsory (examined)

Relevant subject-specific training courses to the value of one unit:

1. Either GY457 Applied Urban and Regional Economics, or GY407 Globalisation, Regional Development and Policy, or GY408 Local Economic Development and Policy  (not available 2017/18).

Note: Students who have graduated from either the MSc in Local Economic Development or the MSc in Real Estate Economics and Finance cannot repeat courses taken as part of their master’s programme. In order to fulfil their obligation to sit for one full unit of subject-specific training, students who have already taken all three of GY457/GY407/GY408 can choose additional options to the value of one unit from the following list:

GY404 Topics in Local Economic Development (H)
GY447 The Economics of Regional and Urban Planning (H)
EC411 Microeconomics (requires students to take introductory course EC400)

Other relevant subject-specific training courses can be chosen subject to supervisor and course manager approval.

2. One relevant advanced research methods course to the value of one unit:

GY428 Applied Quantitative Methods (H)
GY460 Techniques of Spatial Economic Analysis (H)
MY500 Fundamentals of Social Science Research Design
MY521 Qualitative Research Methods (H)
MY526 Doing Ethnography (H)
MY527 Non-Traditional Data: New Dimensions in Qualitative Research (H)
MY556 Survey Methodology (H) 
MY557 Causal Inference for Observational and Experimental Studies (H)
MY559 Special Topics in Quantitative Analysis: Quantitative Text Analysis (H)

Transferable skills courses
Compulsory (not examined)
GY500 Research Project Seminar
MY592 Workshop in Information Literacy: finding, managing and organising published research and data

Year 2
Training courses
Compulsory (not examined)
GY502 Staff/Research Students Seminars

Transferable skills courses
Compulsory (not examined)
GY500 Research Project Seminar

Year 3
Training courses
Compulsory (not examined)
GY502 Staff/Research Students Seminars

Transferable skills courses
Compulsory (not examined)
GY500 Research Project Seminar

Year 4
Training courses
Optional (not examined)
GY502 Staff/Research Students Seminars

Transferable skills courses
Optional (not examined)
GY500 Research Project Seminar


Progression and upgrade requirements:

Once on the MPhil/PhD programme you will go through a First Year Progress Review, taking place in the Summer Term of your first year.

For the First Year Progress Review, students must submit a written progress report containing an extensive and updated research proposal (typically including an introduction to the topic and motivation for the research; aims and objectives/research questions; contribution to knowledge; summary of methods to be used; and outline of the work to be done) and either a comprehensive literature review or a substantive draft of a chapter/paper as evidence of progress made during the year.

Normally, there will be a progress review meeting between the student and the supervisor(s) to discuss the written material presented. The work has to reach an acceptable standard to enable the student to progress. There is provision for a second Supplementary Review in cases where there are doubts as to whether progress has been sufficient to allow the student to enter the second year. Progression to the second year (third year of the 1+3 programme) is also dependent on students having passed all required examinations and obtained at least one merit, and having presented their work satisfactorily in the doctoral presentation workshops.

All research students are initially registered for an MPhil and have to be upgraded to PhD status. The upgrade from MPhil to PhD usually occurs during the second year of full-time registration. The exact timing depends on the student's progress. Students are required to submit a formal written upgrade report consisting of an extensive revised research proposal, two substantive draft papers/chapters, of which one can be a literature review, and a detailed plan for completion. Students are asked to discuss their research paper/thesis outline during an Upgrade Meeting in front of an Upgrading Committee normally formed by the supervisor(s) and a third member of staff with relevant expertise. The material is evaluated by the Upgrading Committee, who will recommend transferral to PhD registration if the work is judged to be of sufficient quality and quantity. The upgrade is also dependent on students having completed all required training courses and having made a satisfactory research presentation in their doctoral presentation workshop.

In addition to these formal arrangements, each year during the Summer Term and throughout the course of their studies, all PhD students and their supervisors have to complete a yearly Progress Report Form, detailing progress made, problems arising and plan/timeline for completion. The forms are sent to the the Director of Post-Graduate Studies for approval before students are able to re-register for the following session. If perceived lack of progress is identified, it can trigger a more formal annual review of progress in which the student is asked to produce specific written documents to be evaluated by a review panel.

Note for prospective students:
For changes to graduate course and programme information for the next academic session, please see the graduate summary page for prospective students. Changes to course and programme information for future academic sessions can be found on the graduate summary page for future students.