University of Oxford
Politics DPhil
University of Oxford

Course modalities offered

Key Course Facts

Course Description

The DPhil in Politics is a three- to four-year course of full-time doctoral study, or six to eight years of part-time study, which is intended for students who would like to undertake detailed research in preparation for an academic career in political science or political theory. Note that the part-time option is not a distance-learning programme; part-time students are required to attend face-to-face teaching in Oxford on one or two separate days each week during term.

If you are admitted to this degree, you will conduct your own research under the guidance of a University supervisor.

You are required to have a good general knowledge, to master's level, of the field within which your research falls and of the methods appropriate to the study of this field.

You will spend the first year in the development of, and early work on, the thesis topic; in improving knowledge of research design, including statistical, qualitative and other methods appropriate to the advanced study of politics; in attendance at relevant lectures, seminars and classes; and in preparing your transfer from Probationer Research Student (PRS is the status at which you will normally be admitted – see Assessment) to DPhil status. Full-time students must be resident in Oxford in term time throughout the probationary period, while part-time students must attend classes and other obligations in Oxford on set days of the week. Students should not normally undertake fieldwork until after they have successfully transferred to full DPhil status.

You will discuss your research training needs with your supervisor and agree a suitable programme of research training (Training Need Analysis) to assist your research.

Finally, you will be expected to participate in the various workshops and research groups - most notably the Oxford Politics Research Colloquium, which involves research presentations by faculty, senior researchers, academic visitors and DPhil students.

As a part-time student you will be required to attend classes, seminars, supervision meetings and other obligations in Oxford for a minimum of thirty days each year.

There will be limited flexibility in the dates and pattern of attendance. Attendance will be required during term-time at least one day each week throughout the first two years of your study on days determined by your class and seminar attendance and by your supervisor. Attendance will be required outside of term-time on dates to be determined by mutual agreement with your supervisor. You will be required to attend fieldwork and training sessions on dates to be determined by mutual agreement with your supervisor.

Entry Requirements / Admissions

Requirements for international students / English requirements

IELTS academic test score (similar tests may be accepted as well)

    • 6.5
    • Graduate Degrees
    • 7.0
    • Undergraduate Degrees
    • (no subscore less than 6.0)
Get advice on which foundation courses are best for you to still study Politics, DPhil, if you do not meet the minimum requirements in terms of UCAS score, A levels, or English language requirements.


Average student cost of living in the UK

Rent £518
Water, gas electricity, internet (at home) £50
Supermarket shopping £81
Clothing £35
Eating out £33
Alcohol £27
Takeaways / food deliveries £30
Going out / entertainment (excl.alcohol, food) £24
Holidays and weekend trips £78
Transport within city £17
Self-care / sports £20
Stationary / books £13
Mobile phone / internet £13
Cable TV / streaming £7
Insurance £51
Other £95
Average student cost of living £1092

London costs approx 34% more than average, mainly due to rent being 67% higher than average of other cities. For students staying in student halls, costs of water, gas, electricity, wifi are generally included in the rental. Students in smaller cities where accommodation is in walking/biking distance transport costs tend to be significantly smaller.

University Rankings

Positions of University of Oxford in top UK and global rankings.

See all 39 university rankings of University of Oxford

About University of Oxford

The University of Oxford is a prestigious research university located in Oxford, England, and is the oldest English language university in the world. It is made up of 39 partly autonomous constituent colleges, six private halls, and a variety of academic departments which are split into four divisions: Humanities, Mathematical, Physical & Life Sciences, Medical Sciences, and Social Sciences.

List of 389 Bachelor and Master Courses from University of Oxford - Course Catalogue

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  • The Master of Public Policy at Oxford (MPP)
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Where is this programme taught

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