The PhD is offered, according to subject-area, in Archaeology or in Conservation Studies. A PhD should normally be completed within three years from the start of enrolment. Thus research projects should, at the outset, be designed to be capable of completion (including submission of the thesis) within that time, and the timetable for the conduct of research should reflect this: although the Regulations make provision for an additional year for the submission of the thesis, students should not embark on the PhD programme expecting to avail themselves of this.
Candidates are enrolled for the degree PhD, but this enrolment is subject to progression at the end of each academic year. If the Graduate School Board decides not to allow progression, it may recommend instead that the student should be allowed to submit a thesis for the award of an MPhil degree or a dissertation for the award of an MA or MSc degree by research (where those degrees are available), subject to the normal regulations and requirements for those degrees.
Candidates must pursue a total of nine terms of full-time study (or eighteen terms part-time), under the direction of a designated supervisor and Thesis Advisory Panel. The University of York has adopted learning outcomes for doctoral programmes based on the Joint Research Councils' Skills Training requirement. Candidates funded by the Research Councils are required to participate in a personal development programme and to undertake a minimum of 30 days generic training throughout their period of full registration. These training opportunities are also available to students not so funded, and they are strongly recommended to pursue them.
Candidates shall submit a thesis of no more than 90,000 words, or their equivalent in tables and illustrations, but excluding prefatory and bibliographic material, appendices and catalogues. The thesis is expected to be a piece of work which a capable, well-qualified and diligent student, who is properly supported and supervised, can complete within three years. It should be a significant and original, but not necessarily complete, contribution to knowledge, and demonstrate a clear understanding of the relationship of the chosen topic to its general field of learning. The thesis is expected to meet the standards of presentation, illustration, and documentation which apply in the profession.
The thesis should be submitted by the end of the period of full registration and certainly not later than one year after the end that period. In exceptional circumstances and on the recommendation of a student's supervisor and of the departmental Graduate School Board, the Board for Graduate Schools may allow an extension of up to two further years for full-time students, and up to three years for part-time students. Students who extend their registration beyond three years full-time or six years part-time will be placed on the 'long-term register', for which a continuation fee is payable.