The DPhil entails researching and writing a thesis of between 75,000 and 100,000 words over a period of three or at the most four years. The thesis must make a significant and substantial contribution to the field. Students are never admitted to the DPhil programme directly. They are transferred to DPhil status following a ‘qualifying test’ taken at the end of their first year as a probationer research student, or following the MPhil in Criminology and Criminal Justice. DPhil students work under the guidance of at least one supervisor who will be an acknowledged authority on their chosen topic. To see what subjects current DPhil students are working on, please see here.

Thinking about doing a part-time DPhil in Criminology? Find out more.


Economic and Social Research Council

The University of Oxford, along with the Open University and Brunel University, is part of the 'Grand Union Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP)', and will be awarding ESRC studentships at these three institutions to begin from October 2019.  These ESRC studentships are offered either on a fees only or full award basis, which is determined by whether a student satisfies the ESRC's residential eligibility requirements (please see the ESRC website for further guidance on this). The Studentships are either for an MSc followed by a DPhil (known as 1+3), and MPhil followed by a DPhil (known as 2+2), or for a DPhil only (known as +3).  ESRC Studentships are awarded on the basis of academic merit. If you are intending to apply for the DPhil, or a taught course progressing to the DPhil, and want to be considered for an ESRC Studentship you must send notice of your interest together with a one page summary of your proposed research. The results of the internal competition for ESRC Scholarships will be made public in the first week of April. Prospective candidates should carefully read the Grand Union DTP page, and the ESRC website for further information.

ESRC Migration Pathway Scholarships are applicable to Home or EU students interested in studying for a DPhil in a migration-related subject.  The closing date for applications for October 2019 is Friday 18 January 2019.


DPhil students in the Centre for Criminology have access to dedicated workspace in the Centre, as well as to the Bodleian Social Science Library and the Bodleian Law Library. They will also be able to participate fully in the intellectual life of the Centre through its programme of staff-student research workshops, reading groups and seminars


Informal enquiries about doctoral studies in the Centre for Criminology are welcome and should be directed to Professor Carolyn Hoyle  Director of Graduate Studies (Research) She can be contacted at: