Research Degrees by Academic School

Aston University focuses on high quality, exploitable research that has the potential to impact the world around us. Each School of Study has several research groups:

Research degrees involve the in-depth study of a particular aspect of your specialist subject. It typically lasts three years full-time or six years part-time, though this can vary. Aston also offers an MPhil which can be completed in two years.

Whilst many PhD students go on to pursue a career in higher education; a research degree also opens up many opportunities in industry and the public sector.

MPhil - Master of Philosophy

MPhil degrees normally take two years to complete and look at critically investigating and evaluating an approved topic which represents a contribution to knowledge and shows a critical appreciation of existing knowledge in the field, whilst demonstrating an understanding of research methods appropriate to the chosen field. Students are required to present and defend a substantial thesis to the satisfaction of the examiners.

PhD - Doctor of Philosophy

PhD degrees usually take three years to complete. The key difference is that PhD degrees must also involve a substantial original contribution to knowledge and show a critical appreciation of existing knowledge in the field.

MD – Doctor of Medicine

The School of Life & Health Sciences now offers a Doctor of Medicine (MD) degree which will normally take two years to complete, if full-time or four years, if part-time. 

Students should normally hold: an MBBS or BDS (Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery or Bachelor of Dental Surgery) degree, be registered with the General Medical Council or the General Dental Council and have at least three years of clinical or scientific postgraduate experience.

Doctor of Optometry (DOptom) / Doctor of Ophthalmic Science (DOphSc)

The School of Life & Health Sciences offers professional doctorates in optometry that enable eye care professionals to enhance their knowledge, and critical awareness of current issues, and to be at the forefront of their academic discipline through taught and research elements.

Executive DBA - Doctorate in Business Administration

Aston Business School offers a Doctorate in Business Administration (DBA), a structured programme of study allowing you to undertake a substantial original investigation into a real business and management issue.