The School of Geography, Politics and Sociology

How to Apply

How to Apply

For postgraduate taught and research programmes, you will need to apply on the University Applicant Portal.

If you are unable to apply online, you can download a paper application form using the above link or you can request one from pgadmissions@ncl.ac.uk

You will need to include the correct code on your application.

  • For PhD in Geography as a Social Science, this is: 8200F (full-time), 8200P (part-time)
  • For PhD in Geography as a Science (i.e. Physical Geography), this is: 8201F (full-time), 8201P (part-time)
  • For MPhil in Physical Geography, this is: 7201F (full-time), 7201P (part-time)
  • For MA Human Geography Research, this is: 4025

Applying for more than one programme

You can apply for up to four postgraduate programmes. To apply for multiple programmes, apply for your first choice of programme and submit your application.

Return to the applicant portal and click 'create new application'. This will create a second application, containing the information from your first application, so you don't need to fill this in again.

Adjust all details as appropriate, remember to upload your supporting documents again, then submit your second application.

When to apply

There is no application deadline but we advise you to apply as early as possible. We will accept applications up to a year before your course start date.

Early application ensures you have enough time to make arrangements if you are successful. This is particularly important for international (non-EU) students who need more time to arrange study visas.

Successful applicants for the PhD programme can start their studies either at the start of Semester 1 (end of September) or Semester 2 (end of January) in the academic year.

If you are also applying for finance or bursaries, you will need to check individual deadlines. More information can be found on our Postgraduate Funding pages.

What to include with your application

The most important part of your application is your research proposal, if applying for an MPhil or PhD programme.  This should set out the aims and objectives, research questions, conceptual background and proposed methodology.  You will find it helpful to have a discussion with your prospective supervisor before you submit your application.  The list of supervisors, topics and their research interests for human geography and physical geography will assist you with this.  Please consult the Postgraduate Research Director for Geography if you need to discuss.

Our Admissions Team need to see all of your relevant qualifications and experience to assess your suitability for the programme. To help us process your application without delay, please include the following documents:

  • your final transcripts and degree certificate (if you have graduated)
  • your most recent transcripts covering all years of your programme (if you have not yet graduated)
  • an English language certificate such as IELTS, if English is not your first language
  • your full CV (visit our careers pages for advice on CVs)
  • your passport photo page
  • contact details on your application form for two referees

You can also provide letters of reference if you want to.

If your application is successful, you can provide final documents (final transcripts, degree award, English language certificate) afterwards.

All documents should be provided in English. If your transcripts and degree award are not written in English, please provide certified translations.

Application processing time

After you submit your application, a decision will be made as soon as possible and you will be notified by email. If your application is successful, you will be offered a place on the programme.

If you accept an unconditional offer, you will receive a confirmation of a place letter.

If you accept a conditional offer, we issue the letter once you have met the conditions of the offer. 

International students also receive a Certificate of Acceptance for Studies (CAS). This is the visa letter that is a crucial part of your visa application.

Track the progress of your application

If you apply online, you can track the progress of your application by logging back into the applicant portal or by contacting pgadmissions@ncl.ac.uk.