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PhD Programme in Law: FAQs

The opportunity to undertake advanced legal research at one of the world's best law schools.

If your question is not answered below, please contact us.

FAQs for Visiting Research Students can be found further down this page.

1. When can I apply to the PhD?

Applications open in October for the following academic year.
 While we encourage you to apply early, we do not assess applications until the application deadline has passed in January.  

2. Is there a deadline for applying?

The deadline is 13 January 2023.

3. How do I apply?

You can apply online or by post. Please see our Graduate Studies page:

Graduate Studies

4. Research proposal guidance

You should state your research topic as accurately as possible. Your research proposal should address the following questions:

1. What is your general topic?

2. What questions do you want to answer?

3. What is the key literature and its limitations?

4. What are the main hypotheses of the work?

5. What methodology do you intend to use?

6. What are your case studies, if any, and what are your case selection criteria?

MPhil/PhD applications that are received without a research proposal that addresses these questions will not be considered. Your proposal should be approximately 1,500 words in length. You should ensure before applying that your area of research can be supervised in your chosen department. The research interests of staff members can be found at

You should also indicate if you have discussed your proposed research with any member of the LSE academic staff and the name of that person. Please make sure that each page of your research proposal bears your name in a header or footer.

  • Your research proposal must be your own work

  • Make sure that each page has your name in the header or footer

  • Make sure that you proof read your proposal before you upload it, and make sure that you upload the final corrected version

  • Stick to our recommended word limit - the selectors don't have time to read huge documents running to many pages.

5. How do I apply for funding from LSE?

There is no separate application process; applicants who have been offered a place in our doctoral programme will be automatically considered for funding. 

6. What are the admission requirements?

7. What is the application process and fees?

8. Can I apply if I do not have a law degree?

Students without a law background may apply to the PhD programme, but they need to demonstrate a high level of academic competence in areas closely related to their proposed research. Each application is considered on its own merits. 

9. Can I do the PhD part-time?

Yes. The programme can be taken over a 8 year period. However, part-time students must reside in the UK, attend weekly seminars and meet with their supervisors regularly. Applicants must also indicate in their personal statement that they wish to be considered for part time study.

10. Is there a residency requirement?

Yes. You must live in London or within easy reach.  This applies to full time and part time students.

11 Do I need to approach an academic member of staff to supervise before applying?

No.   If your application is successful, two academic members of staff will be appointed to supervise you.


Visiting Research Students

12. Is there a deadline for applying?

There is no deadline to apply for the Visiting Research Student Scheme but you are encouraged to apply as early as possible.

13. How do I apply for funding from LSE?

We do not offer funding to Visiting Research Students, you are expected to be fully funded.

14. Can I do the PhD part time?

It is not possible to apply for the Visiting Research Student scheme as a part-time student.

15. Is there a residency requirement?

Yes. You must live in London during the programme.

16. Am I entitled to supervision?

Yes. All Visiting Research Students are allocated a supervisor.