Research Degrees in Politics and International Relations

(See also the general notice at the commencement of these regulations. The current edition of the relevant Student Handbook contains an elaborated version of these regulations.)

Candidates with Probationer Research Student status, unless or until they have entered upon another status, or have been otherwise dispensed from some or all of the following requirements by the relevant Graduate Studies Committee, are required to undertake the work set out below during the first year.

  • 1. A first-year student shall:

    • (i) satisfactorily complete a course of lectures, seminars, and classes, as determined in the relevant Student Handbook and supplemented by his or her supervisor;

    • (ii) satisfactorily complete a course of research methods training, as determined in the relevant Student Handbook and supplemented by his or her supervisor and/or by the relevant Director of Research Training.

  • 2. Applications for transfer from Probationer Research Student status to D.Phil. or M.Litt. status must be submitted in accordance with the requirements in the relevant Student Handbook. Applicants in their fourth and final term of Probationer Status must submit their completed application including all written work not later than 5 p.m. on the Friday of sixth week of that term, except in Trinity Term when the accompanying written work must be submitted no later than 5 p.m. on 15 September. Students unable to meet these deadlines may apply for up to two terms of deferral of transfer of status. In addition to satisfying the above requirements (i) and (ii), the transfer of status application must include two copies of an outline of the proposed research topic and two copies of the written work-all as specified in the relevant Student Handbook. The relevant Graduate Studies Committee will appoint two assessors. Upon receiving the report of the assessors, the GCS will then decide whether to approve the transfer. In the case of applications to transfer to DPhil status where the committee does not so approve, it may authorise an extension of one term in order to allow the candidate to resubmit.

  • 3. Applications for confirmation of D.Phil. status must be submitted in accordance with the requirements in the relevant Student handbook. Applicants in their ninth term must submit their completed application including all written work not later than 5 p.m. on the Friday of sixth week of that term, except in Trinity when the accompanying written work must be submitted no later than 5 p.m. on 15 September. Students unable to meet these deadlines may apply for up to three terms of deferral of confirmation of D.Phil. status. The confirmation of status application must include two copies of the written work - all as specified in the relevant Student Handbook. The relevant Graduate Studies Committee will appoint two assessors. Upon receiving the report of the assessors, the GSC will then decide whether to approve confirmation of D.Phil. status. In the case of applications to confirm D.Phil. status where the committee does not so approve, it may authorise an extension of one term in order to allow the candidate to resubmit.

  • 4. Students admitted directly to D.Phil. status having completed an Oxford M.Phil. and whose M.Phil. thesis was in the same broad field as the D.Phil. research proposal must confirm D.Phil. status within ten terms as a graduate student, inclusive of time spent on the M.Phil. Applications for confirmation of D.Phil. status must be submitted in accordance with the requirements of the relevant Student Handbook. Applicants in their tenth term must submit the completed application including all written work not later than 5 p.m. on the Friday of the sixth week of that term, except in Trinity Term when the accompanying written work must be submitted no later than 5 p.m. on 15 September. Students unable to meet these deadlines may apply for up to two terms of deferral of confirmation of D.Phil. status. The confirmation of status application must include two copies of the written work - all as specified in the relevant Student Handbook. The relevant Graduate Studies Committee will appoint two assessors. Upon receiving the report of the assessors, the GSC will then decide whether to approve  confirmation of D.Phil. status. In the case of applications to confirm D.Phil. status where the committee does not approve, it may authorise an extension of time in order to allow the candidate to resubmit.

  • 5. Though not in itself sufficient qualification for students wishing to advance to M.Litt. or D.Phil. status, the successful completion of the M.Sc. in Politics Research or the M.Sc. in Political Theory Research may serve in place of 1. (i) and (ii) above, and material submitted as part of the requirements for the M.Sc. may also be used in the transfer application. 

  • [For students starting from MT 2014: 6. Three paper route

    A D.Phil. thesis may be accepted for examination if it consists of a minimum of three academic papers of publishable quality, framed by an introduction, a survey of literature and a conclusion. Such a body of work shall be deemed acceptable provided it represents a coherent and focused body of research, addressing one overarching research question. Current overall word limits and conditions are detailed in the D.Phil. Student Handbook. Candidates wishing to proceed in this manner must be approved at the time of Transfer of status.

    If, after a petition is accepted, a candidate wishes to revert to a standard D.Phil. thesis format, the candidate must lodge a petition with his or her supervisor to be approved by the Director of Graduate Studies, showing good cause for the change.]