The DPhil entails researching and writing a thesis of between 75,000 and 100,000 words. 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.
The part-time DPhil programme follows the same broad structure as the full-time programme, with submission of the completed thesis within eight years. Part-time DPhil students spend their first two years as a probationary research student, before transferring to DPhil status following the ‘qualifying test’. The second two years are spent working towards the ‘Confirmation of Status’ viva, which involves submitting a proportion of their final thesis.
Doing a DPhil in 6-8 years while working and/or with caring responsibilities is difficult. Students with a part time job should be able to accomplish this with the support of their supervisor and the department. We do not expect students with full-time jobs to do this. To maximise the value of their time in Oxford and to build effective working relationships with other students and academics, part-time students are expected to be present at the University for 30 days during term time each year over the first six years of their programme.
Part-time students are encouraged to participate in the life of the Centre as fully as possible, by attending departmental seminars, joining discussion groups and research streams, and taking part in the intellectual and social life of the Centre. Regular criminology seminar series and research methods training is usually held on Thursdays during term time and the DPhil programme and DPhil discussions groups typically take place on Fridays during term. This allows part time DPhil students to plan their time in Oxford. However, if they need to take other additional methods courses, they may have to be present in Oxford in other days during the terms that those courses run.
Full time 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 Dr Katrin Mueller-Johnson, Director of Graduate Studies (Research).