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Postgraduate Opportunities

A kitten lying on a long sheet of paper covered in mathematics

We welcome applications from anyone wishing to pursue full-time or part-time doctoral studies. There is an annual application process for full-time funded doctoral study, open to applicants of any nationality. Informal email contact is encouraged before any application is submitted. This allows us to assess whether we have the expertise available to supervise in your chosen field.

To study at doctoral level we offer 2 options: the EdD, a professional doctorate in Education, or a PhD in Mathematics Education.

The EdD is a structured course taught within the OU’s Centre for Research in Education and Educational Technology that takes 4 – 8 years to complete.  EdD students focus their research on an element of their working lives, for example an aspect of teaching mathematics. They prepare an outline of their proposed study when they apply.  Most of the students continue working in their professions at the same time.  As a mathematics specialist, you can be supervised by one of our Mathematics Education team. We advise you to contact us informally when you have prepared your outline of study.

The PhD is a programme of independent study within the school of Mathematics and Statistics. It can be undertaken part-time or full-time and should be completed within eight years.  Applicants are encouraged to apply either for one of several named projects in Mathematics Education, or to submit a proposal that is closely linked to their professional educational experience. One criteria for acceptance on the doctoral programme is whether we think we have expertise in the areas you would like to research.

To do a doctoral degree in Mathematics Education we expect our students to have completed an appropriate masters degree.  We would prefer this to be a specialist Mathematics Education masters or a masters in education research.  The Open University Masters in Education offers routes in learning and teaching (with some mathematics) , inclusive practice or leadership and management.

Of course, structures of degrees can be different overseas, and we do allow alternative qualifications. We still expect study at Masters level, with a sound grounding in qualitative methodology and some experience of researching mathematics classrooms. 

Follow these links for more information about each programme:

Ed D programme

PhD programme

For enquiries regarding doctoral studies in mathematics education please contact sue.forsythe@ open.ac.uk.