The School of Advanced Study, University of London, is the UK’s national research hub, and as such is a unique scholarly community in which to pursue Master's study, or doctoral research leading to a University of London PhD. 

A range of world-class humanities programmes

The School offers nearly thirty full- and part-time postgraduate programmes (MA, MRes, LLM, MPhil, and PhD) in a wide range of humanities subjects, including art history, classics, Commonwealth studies, English and American literature and culture, history and historical research, human rights, Latin American studies, law, and modern languages. In addition to these campus-based programmes, we offer distance learning PhDs in a range of subject areas and master’s degree programmes in drafting legislation, regulation, and policy and in refugee protection and forced migration studies. Our popular short courses and summer schools focus on specialist law subjects, literature, palaeography and book history, and oral history.

A world-class research environment

In addition to our own collections and libraries the School has all the benefits which accrue from being in the heart of Bloomsbury, with access to the rich resources the area offers. All our students benefit from the School’s warmly collaborative research environment, specialist libraries, and opportunities to participate in our extensive programme of events and research. See our upcoming events here - or download our events brochure here.

The School runs a regular research student series which is interdisciplinary in scope and inclusive in nature. All the School’s doctoral students are warmly invited. Such events not only stimulate debate and spark innovative thinking which crosses disciplinary boundaries, they also help encourage fruitful and enjoyable student contact, and mitigate the sense of isolation which can accompany some study. 

The School is committed to delivering excellence in the quality of both its research and teaching at all levels and maintaining its high standards. Read our access and participation statement [Word].

Research Training

Our discipline-specific, generic and online research training programme draws on the research and teaching expertise of our institutes and the University of London.

We offer well-established online and face-to-face discipline-specific research training as well as in specialist areas; and our workshop programme introduces the skills necessary for careers in academia and elsewhere.

These are complemented by courses in the software and information management tools students need to complete their research effectively. Training on research promotion through social media (Social Scholar seminars) is also available.

Most of our research training is available to postgraduate students and early-career researchers across the UK, much of it free. 

The School is, with King’s College London and UCL, part of the London Arts & Humanities Partnership (LAHP) –  the consortium under which the School is able to offer funding for doctoral studentships, but also provides access to a range of research training


Public and cultural engagement

The School also runs the annual Being Human festival -- a national forum for public engagement with humanities research.

The festival highlights the ways in which the humanities can inspire and enrich our everyday lives, and understand the challenges we face in a changing world. In 2017, the festival will run between 17-25 November for 9 days of big questions, big debates and engaging activities. All the School’s students are invited to participate, and many will take up the opportunity – thoroughly enjoying the process! -- to engage the public with their own research. 

See our other public engagement activities here.


Academic writing support

The School hosts a Royal Literary Fund Fellow, to assist our research and masters students to adjust to the demands of academic writing of various kinds. 

We welcome a new tutor, Lucy Moore, in September 2017. Lucy is based in Senate House room 203, every Wednesday and Thursday during term-time. Students are welcome to book hourly tutorials or consultations with her from 10am – 5pm on those days, using an online sign-up schedule.

The Royal Literary Fund Fellow offers our students the opportunity to access writing advice from a professional, published writer. She will offer confidential, one-to-one tutorials during which students can discuss any aspect of their academic writing.

The idea behind the scheme is that, although writers do not have expert knowledge of the subject matter students are studying, they know a lot about the process of writing and - simply by being available to students to respond to their questions and listen to their concerns - are able to help them find ways of improving their written work. 

Typical problems discussed in tutorials include struggling to start writing after a long period of research; being overwhelmed by one's materials; difficulties with editing down an overlong piece of work; difficulties structuring an argument; not knowing how to write an effective introduction or conclusion; difficulties with ‘flow’ - getting from one paragraph to another; planning and organisation - leaving things too late, uncertainty about how to plan a piece of written work, not leaving enough time for drafting; questions of grammar and punctuation - apostrophes, semi-colons and commas; questions of style - overuse of academic jargon, overcomplicated sentence structure, lack of clarity.

The range of questions which can be discussed is as broad as students want it to be: the RLF Fellow is there specifically to respond to students’ needs and there is no restriction on the kind of work that may be brought to a tutorial: it might be a thesis or a dissertation, or it might be a funding application, a letter or a presentation. What RLF Fellows do not do is proofread or correct students’ work. They have no expertise in dealing with dyslexia or EFL but can refer a student to appropriate help.

Training in Modern Languages for Research Students

The School’s research students have access, via King’s College London, to specialist training in a range of modern languages. Facility in a modern language other than English not only underpins high quality research, but enriches personal and social development. 

Researchers in all disciplines need skills in spoken as well as written languages in order to communicate their research more broadly, to take up and make the most of opportunities to study and work overseas, or collaborate with overseas partners. Contact Rosemary Lambeth for further details on how to apply for a classes. Please note that commitment to attend classes is required and you will need the agreement of your supervisor that the language will be useful to you.