• Structured PhD programme outline - download

The Structured PhD in Politics is a four year, full-time programme designed to provide students with the training they need to become professional political scientists. It combines advanced training in the methods of political science research with specialised training in at least one disciplinary subfield and the completion of an original thesis.

The taught component of the programme is largely concentrated in the first year of study. Requirements include core modules in Research Methods, Comparative Politics and Contemporary Political Theory, as well as specialised modules tailored to your disciplinary interests and needs as a developing researcher. Students may exit the programme after the taught component with a Graduate Diploma in Politics or (after completing a dissertation) with a Masters in Politics.

Following the taught component, students will complete a substantial and original piece of research, under the supervision of one or more faculty members. The Department of Politics and Public Administration is particularly eager to welcome students who wish to conduct research in areas in which the Department has research strengths, such as:


Comparative Politics
International Relations
European Politics
Peace and Development Studies

Public Policy and Administration
Irish Politics
Political Theory


Entry Qualifications

Applicants should normally hold a first class or 2.1 primary degree in a social science discipline, or an interdisciplinary degree that incorporates a substantial social science component. These requirements may be waived where an applicant has a taught postgraduate degree in a social science discipline. In all cases, applicants must submit a satisfactory provisional research proposal, and must be proficient in the use of English for academic purposes.

Interested applicants should contact Dr Andrew Shorten: andrew.shorten@ul.ie tel: +353 61 234625).

Year 1 (Taught Component)