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University of Exeter: Geography (Human and Physical)

Institution University of Exeter
Department Geography
Study type Research


Human Geography In human geography our research is established around the following five groups:

  • Cultural and Historical Geographies

  • Space, Politics and Society

  • Life Geographies

  • Environment and Sustainability

  • Energy Policy

Physical Geography In physical geography our research is focused around the following two groups who work on past, present and future environmental change: - Cryosphere, Coastal and River Dynamics (CCoRD)

  • Landscape and Ecosystem Dynamics

Successfully completing an MPhil or PhD entails undertaking an in-depth study of a particular topic and making an original contribution to knowledge in the field. Our MPhil/PhD students are actively involved in work at the cutting edge of research across the School’s research activities.

We welcome applications for MPhil/PhD study in human and physical geographies, and are particularly interested in projects that complement and extend existing strengths within and across our research groups.

Geography undertakes a clear upgrading process at the end of the first year of postgraduate research study. We will provide hands-on support throughout the duration of PhD study, working with you to ensure you achieve your potential and graduate within the stipulated timeframe.

The normal study mode is full-time, however home/EU students may be able to study part-time.

Assessment The MPhil is assessed through a dissertation of up to 60,000 words. Assessment of a PhD is normally by a written thesis of up to 100,000 words and viva (oral) examination.

Split site study for international students Visa regulations normally prevent international students from following the part-time option, although it may be possible to undertake your research at a distance via split site study. This involves spending the majority of your time in your home country, although you will normally be expected to attend the University for limited periods and you will need to prove you have access to appropriate academic facilities locally such as libraries, labs, computers and desk space.

Split site students are normally employed by, or registered with, a local institution, but receive support and supervision from staff at the University of Exeter. Some international students have also been resident in Exeter but returned to their home country to collect data.

Our MSc has been developed to allow you to undertake a research project in an area that interests you and successful students have the option to transfer to an MPhil or PhD on completion.

We welcome applications for study in human and physical geographies, and are particularly interested in projects that complement and extend existing strengths within and across our research groups. View staff profiles for more details of the research interests of individual members of academic staff.

The programme gives you the flexibility to shape your own research in an area of particular interest to you. Like other research degrees you will be required to work independently, but with the support and guidance of an appropriate supervisor.

As a postgraduate research student you will also be able to take advantage of the University's Researcher Development Programme.

Support and supervision We are committed to providing you with an effective and appropriate level of support. Our research studies culture promotes an inclusive and supportive environment and accessible supervisors.

Assessment You will be assessed by a written thesis or scientific paper of up to 40,000 words in length.

To learn more about modules, assessment methods, facilities and our staff research expertise please visit our course page.

Doctor of Philosophy - PhD

MSc (Res)

Master of Philosophy - MPhil

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