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This is a full time 3 to 4 year research degree course. Students are required to submit a 100,000 word thesis in their 3rd or 4th year. Successful applicants will be registered as students with the Department of Experimental Psychology.

Course Description

The DPhil in Experimental Psychology course is based upon independent research carried out under the supervision and guidance of principal investigators and researchers within the students' chosen research group or lab within this department.  Supervision and guidance may also include co-supervision from other collaborating groups or labs, both within the department or from other departments/faculties with the University or from another institution.

Course Structure

First Year of Study

Successful applicants are initially registered as Probationary Research Students (PRS Status). During the first year, students are expected to attend various courses, lectures and seminars which will enable them to gain the most out of their time here at Oxford and assist them with the design and analysis of their own area of research:

  • Graduate Statistical Workshops
  • Skills Training Courses e.g. MatLab and fMRI methods
  • Analysis of Research Methods

The Medical Science Division also offers a large number of courses on transferable skills such as teaching and communicating scientific findings which all our students are encouraged to attend at least ten days per year as a part of their DPhil studies.

Students are expected to be fully intergrated within their own chosen group or lab and attend group or lab meetings as well as attending related seminars and conferences.

Second Year of Study

As a part of the department's Induction Programme, students will produce a poster and give a brief presentation based on their own research in the first term of their 2nd year on the course.

Third and Final Years of Study

Students submit a 100,000 word thesis and attend an oral examination (the final viva).

Assessment of the Course

Assessment of students' progress on the course is monitored in three stages as well as via termly progression reports:

  • Transfer of Status

In the 4th term, students submit a Transfer Report based on their research to date and attend a transfer viva.

  • Confirmation of Status

By the 9th term, students are required to give a presentation and attend an interview to assess the progress of their research.

  • Thesis Submission

By the 12th term, students will submit a 100,000 words thesis and attend an oral examination, known as a viva.

Students will need to have successfully completed all stages to be awarded a DPhil in Experimental Psychology from the University of Oxford.

Finding a potential  Supervisor

We strongly advise all applicants for the DPhil (PhD) in Experimental Psychology courses to contact a potential supervisor in the first instance.

This provides applicants with an opportunity to discuss the area of research they wish to conduct as a part of their DPhil (PhD) studies and whether the potential supervisor is able to supervise their proposed project.

Applicants who do not approach a potential supervisor in the first instance and/or whose proposed Research Project falls outside the area of expertise of our Research Themes are unlikely to be successful with their application.

Course code