How to apply
Cranfield School of Management operates a rigorous application and selection process. The aim is to ensure that your cohort is comprised of outstanding, like-minded doctoral researchers. Before you initiate the application process by submitting a research proposal, you should review the website to ensure that:
- your proposed topic fits within the School’s core research areas (see Management Themes, Research Centres and Doctoral Opportunities)
- a potential supervisor for your research topic is identified (see individual faculty members’ areas of expertise described in the Faculty Biographies)
- you meet the admission / English language requirements
There is a two-stage application process for the PhD programme.
Two stage process
Please note the deadlines for each of these stages and that there are different deadlines for submission of the formal online application form (stage 2) for candidates seeking partial/full funding, and those who will be self-funded either as full-time or part-time researchers.
Stage 1 application
To be considered for the programme you must, in the first instance, submit a research proposal online. Your proposal will be assessed by at least one member of the academic staff against specific criteria (see Research Proposal Submission). After a preliminary assessment, your proposal will be circulated to appropriate members of faculty for consideration. You will be notified at this stage should we be unable to provide supervision or your proposal is not of an appropriate quality.
It is essential that you submit your proposal early in the year (we suggest between October and January) to ensure you can meet the formal application deadline of 29th March (if you are a full-time applicant seeking a partial or full school bursary) or 31st May (for self-funded full-time and part-time applicants). It may take several weeks for your proposal to be considered.
Stage 2 application
When a member of faculty expresses interest in your proposal you can expect to receive feedback on it from him/her and be invited to develop your research topic further; ideally you will also meet your potential supervisor in person. We attach great importance to the researcher/supervisor relationship and this is an essential part of the recruitment process. A decision by your potential supervisor to shortlist you at this stage will require you to:
- complete the University’s online application form (please note this is available only to candidates whose proposals have received prior approval) and, provided you meet the admission/English language requirements,
- take three admission tests, and, provided these are satisfactory,
- have a formal interview.
Please note that approval of your proposal by a potential supervisor does not guarantee a place on the programme. Candidates are shortlisted for interview following completion of stage 2 of the application process, and the offer of a place is decided by the Director of the PhD Programme and interview panel.
Closing dates for submission of the University’s online application form:
- 29th March 2013 - FT PhD candidates seeking a bursary (partial or full funding)
- 31st May 2013 - self-funded full-time and part-time candidates (for whom funding is not available) only
The allocation of bursaries will be decided by a Committee which meets in mid-June 2013.