Join us for a PhD in Geography. Our research engages with applied issues and public policy concerns. It also covers more abstract cultural and theoretical issues.
Our research strengths in physical geography include:
- landscape evolution
- applied geomorphology and natural hazards
- Quaternary geochronology
- water science
We carry out research through active collaboration with colleagues in Newcastle University and beyond. Our research takes us to a wide variety of environments across the globe, including:
- the UK
Examples of recent research projects include:
- new homonid discovery in South Africa
- Lake Suigetsu ultra-high-resolution palaeoclimate project
- impacts of recent catastrophic floods in the North of England
- impact of meltwater floods during the 2010 Eyjafjallajökull volcanic eruption in Iceland
The Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) funds many of our research projects. We are also a member of the IAPETUS Doctoral Training Partnership.
Our Physical Geography PhD involves advanced study and research into a specific area. Subject to COVID-19 restrictions, you'll undertake fieldwork or lab-based research in topics such as:
- flood impacts on natural and human systems
- fluvial geomorphology and sedimentology
- glacial outburst floods
- glacial geomorphology
- volcano-ice interactions
- tectonic geomorphology
Our research in economic geographies is theoretically informed and politically engaged. It covers the production, forms, experiences and impacts of uneven geographies of:
Our location in the north east is a European periphery. Our researchers in this theme explore 'ordinary', diverse and/or marginalised economies and subjectivities. They also scrutinise orthodox socio-economic models and practices in the following contexts:
- western industrialised
Economic geographies contribute much of the work in the Centre for Urban and Regional Development Studies.
In power, space, politics our research focuses on the expression of political power across space and includes topics around:
- borders and boundaries
- critical geopolitics
- international development
- militarism and military geographies
- the politics of representation
- issues of resistance, justice and peace
We conduct research on a range of scales. From the international and national to the individual, with reference to a range of global contexts. Our work is methodologically innovative, drawing on:
- interactional research
- ethnographic research
- discourse analysis
- participatory research
- visual research
This enables us to produce grounded, empirically informed reflections on the multiple ways in which concepts of power, space and politics intersect.
In geographies of social change we explore and extend an applied, critical understanding of cities and urbanism. Ideas that run through our research include:
- families and households
- welfare and care
These lead us to connect with issues of:
Many of the research opportunities in geography are interdisciplinary and we are keen to encourage supervision across subject areas. For example there are opportunities for joint supervision with Latin American researchers in the School of Modern Languages.
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Please rest assured we make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the programmes, services and facilities described. However, it may be necessary to make changes due to significant disruption.
Given the changing nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, the commitments outlined are subject to guidelines that may be in place from time to time.
View our COVID-19 Study page, which gives information about your Newcastle University study experience for the academic year 2022-23.
See our terms and conditions and student complaints information
How you'll learn
Depending on your modules, you'll be assessed through a combination of:
We offer a wide range of projects for the thesis. These will be provided by our academics. You can also propose your own topic.
Our mission is to help you:
- stay healthy, positive and feeling well
- overcome any challenges you may face during your degree – academic or personal
- get the most out of your postgraduate research experience
- carry out admin and activities essential to progressing through your degree
- understand postgraduate research processes, standards and rules
We can offer you tailored wellbeing support, courses and activities.
You can also access a broad range of workshops covering:
- research and professional skills
- careers support
- health and safety
- public engagement
- academic development
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (HaSS) researcher development programme
Each faculty offers a researcher development programme for its postgraduate research students. We have designed your programme to help you:
- perform better as a researcher
- boost your career prospects
- broaden your impact
Through workshops and activities, it will build your transferable skills and increase your confidence.
- techniques for effective research
- methods for better collaborative working
- essential professional standards and requirements
Your programme is flexible. You can adapt it to meet your changing needs as you progress through your doctorate.
Doctoral training and partnerships
There are opportunities to undertake your PhD at Newcastle within a:
- Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT)
- Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP)
Being part of a CDT or DTP has many benefits:
- they combine research expertise and training of a number of leading universities, academic schools and academics.
- you’ll study alongside a cohort of other PhD students
- they’re often interdisciplinary
- your PhD will normally be funded
If there are currently opportunities available in your subject area you’ll find them when you search for funding in the fees and funding section on this course.
The following centres/partnerships below may have PhD opportunities available in your subject area in the future:
- EPSRC Aura Centre for Doctoral Training in Offshore Wind Energy and the Environment
- EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Geospatial Systems
- IAPETUS2 Doctoral Training Partnership
- ESRC Northern Ireland/North East (NINE) Doctoral Training Partnership
- Northern Bridge Consortium Doctoral Training Partnership
- ONE Planet Doctoral Training Partnership
Our Careers Service
Our award-winning Careers Service is one of the largest and best in the country, and we have strong links with employers. We provide an extensive range of opportunities to all students through our ncl+ initiative.
Quality and ranking
All professional accreditations are reviewed regularly by their professional body
From 1 January 2021 there is an update to the way professional qualifications are recognised by countries outside of the UK
Subject to COVID-19 restrictions, you'll have access to:
- dedicated postgraduate study facilities
- GIS and cartography software
- fieldwork vehicles
- a suite of laboratories for the analysis of water and sediments for projects in geomorphology, environmental change and hydrology
Fees and funding
Tuition fees for 2022 entry (per year)
For 2022-23 entry, we will be aligning our standard Home research fees with those set by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). The standard fee will be confirmed in Spring 2022 by UKRI.
If your studies last longer than one year, your tuition fee may increase in line with inflation.
Depending on your residency history, if you’re a student from the EU, other EEA or a Swiss national, with settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, you’ll normally pay the ‘Home’ tuition fee rate and may be eligible for Student Finance England support.
EU students without settled or pre-settled status will normally be charged fees at the ‘International’ rate and will not be eligible for Student Finance England support.
If you are unsure of your fee status, check out the latest guidance here.
We support our EU and international students by providing a generous range of Vice-Chancellor's automatic and merit-based scholarships. See our searchable postgraduate funding page for more information.
What you're paying for
Tuition fees include the costs of:
- tuition (or supervision)
- library access
Some of our degrees involve additional costs which are not covered by your tuition fees.
Find out more about:
- additional costs
- living costs
- tuition fees, including how to pay them and available discounts
If you're applying for funding, always check the funding application deadline. This deadline may be earlier than the application deadline for your course.
For some funding schemes, you need to have received an offer of a place on a course before you can apply for the funding.
Search for funding
Find funding available for your course
The entrance requirements below apply to 2022 entry.
Qualifications from outside the UK
English Language requirements
How to apply
Using the application portal
The applicant portal has instructions to guide you through your application. It will tell you what documents you need and how to upload them.
You can choose to start your application, save your details and come back to complete it later.
If you’re ready, you can select Apply Online and you’ll be taken directly to the applicant portal.
Alternatively you can find out more about applying on our applications and offers pages.
Open days and events
You'll have a number of opportunities to meet us throughout the year including:
- campus tours
- on-campus open days
- virtual open days
We regularly travel overseas to meet with students interested in studying at Newcastle University.
Get in touch
Questions about this course?
If you have specific questions about this course you can contact:
For more general enquiries you could also complete our online enquiry form.
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