A self-designed PhD will take a little more effort and thought to get started, but you should ultimately end up with a project theme that truly excites and interests you. After coming up with an initial idea for a project, you will need to identify an appropriate academic supervisor. A good starting point is to find the University department with the areas of strength that are most relevant to your research. You can also search Swansea’s directory of expertise to find an academic with research interests close to your own.
If you’re looking to start a self-funded project, you’ll have to ensure that you can cover the cost of tuition fees and your living expenses for the duration of your studies. Our Fees and Funding webpages contain lots of useful information and tips about funding your PhD study. PhD loans of up to £26,445 are now also available for eligible English, Welsh and EU students undertaking doctoral study.
First, please assess your degree qualifications/work experience held against the entry requirements listed on the appropriate research course page
If you are unsure if you meet the entry requirements for a programme, Admissions Office staff are happy to advise you, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Secondly, you’ll need to contact a potential supervisor(s) prior to submitting a formal application. Academics welcome informal approaches from prospective students- in your introductory email you should include a brief description of your research idea and details of your academic/employment background. The academic will be able to help you shape your research proposal into a coherent, workable project. Once you’ve made contact with an appropriate supervisor and they recommend you go ahead and formally apply, you can then submit a formal application for potential research study.
Please note that being asked to formally apply is not a guarantee of a future offer, as well as academic qualifications, Admissions decisions may be based on other factors, including (but not limited to): the standard of the research synopsis/proposal, performance at interview, intensity of competition for limited places, and relevant professional experience.