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Law (PhD)

  Length Start dates (semester dates)

3 years full-time
6 years part-time

Apply for PhD


York Law School has a wide range of research expertise, spanning a diverse array of topics. We apply a variety of research methods, from doctrinal to philosophical, empirical, historical and critical. 

Your research

The PhD is an opportunity to pursue a significant independent research project, making an original contribution to your chosen field of legal knowledge. Your research will lead to a thesis of up to 100,000 words. You will be a part of the thriving research community, with access to training in research and transferable skills to support your career ambitions. The programme is available in all fields of expertise at York Law School, subject to supervisory availability.


Explore funding for postgraduate researchers at York Law School.


Your supervisors will provide expert advice, guidance and support.

Training and support

You will meet with your supervisors at least once every six weeks. This two-way relationship is something you both should benefit from, and will have a major influence on the progress of your research. Your supervisors will help to develop your intellectual interests by offering new perspectives on your chosen topic, suggesting appropriate academic contacts and events, and offering advice on publication.

As well as the main supervisors, a Thesis Advisory Panel (TAP) will be appointed to each student. The TAP meets with you and your supervisors twice a year, monitors progress and whether the supervisory relationship is working well, and offers advice where necessary. 

Careers and skills

Our dedicated careers team offer specific support, including a programme of professional researcher development and careers workshops, and 1:1 career support sessions. They will help you to build up your employability portfolio and to engage in activities that will build up your skills and experience within and outside of your research work.

Career opportunities

  • University lecturer
  • Legal policy
  • Lobbying
  • NGO-related work
  • Specialist practitioner

Course location

This course is run by York Law School.

York Law School is located on Campus East. Most of your training and supervision meetings will take place within the Law and Sociology Building, though your research may take you further afield.

Entry requirements

  • An undergraduate degree in Law (or in a discipline related to the research area in which you intend to work) with an average of at least 65% overall, and a minimum of 65% in your dissertation (if applicable), as well as;
  • A Masters degree in Law (or another discipline relevant to your research topic) with an average of at least 65% overall, and a minimum of 65% in the dissertation module (if applicable).

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must provide evidence of your ability.

Check your English language requirements


Apply for PhD

Take a look at the supporting documents you may need for your application.

Find out more about how to apply.

As part of the application process, you must include:

  • A transcript of your undergraduate and, where relevant, Masters degree results
  • A research proposal
  • A sample of your written academic work

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We offer a range of campus accommodation to suit you and your budget, from economy to deluxe.

Why York

Discover more about our researchers, facilities and why York is the perfect choice for your research degree.

Graduate Research School

Connect with researchers across all disciplines to get the most out of your research project.

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