Degrees we offer

Our research degrees include PhD, Professional Doctorate and MPhil. We are experienced in supporting both full-time and part-time research students.


Types of degree available

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) (full and part time)

A Doctorate of Philosophy represents a prestigious opportunity to conduct unique research in an academic field.

Doctorate in Education (EdD) (part time only)

An innovative doctoral programme for exceptional education professionals to make an original contribution to contemporary practice.

Doctorate in Health and Social Care (DHSC) (part time only)

A rich programme of doctoral study tailored for health and social care professionals to add significant ground to the existing research.

Master of Philosophy (MPhil) (full and part time)

An MPhil is an advanced postgraduate research degree, ideal for students who are not able to commit to the period of study required for doctoral research.

Full-time study or part-time study?

Full-time study

PhDs and MPhils may be studied full-time, engaging with the stimulating research environment on our beautiful Milton Keynes campus.

Part-time study

DHSC and EdD degrees, MPhils and most PhDs, are available for part-time study, so you can balance your other commitments while making use of the OU’s rich support resources.

Other degrees

PhD by Published Works

Available to internal OU staff and staff based at our Affiliated Research Centres only. Talk to the Graduate School if you’re interested in this option.

Higher doctorates

The University also awards two higher doctorates, the Doctor of Letters (DLitt) and the Doctor of Science (DSc) on the basis of published work. These qualifications are only open to graduates of the University, a graduate holding a degree validated by The Open University who is not otherwise eligible for registration with a degree-awarding institution, members of University staff of at least three years standing (including Associate Lecturers) and others with established links to the University. Please contact the Graduate School for further information.


Your questions

For advice about applying for a research degree, or sponsoring a research student, email the Graduate School or call +44 (0)1908 653806.