PhD by Distance

The School of Law welcomes applications for PhD study by distance (without attendance at the University of Glasgow). Applicants must comply with the University Code of Practice for Doctoral Supervision and with any relevant guidance published by the College of Social Sciences. 

For whom is this programme appropriate?

We expect the majority of entrants on this route to be in professional employment which relates to the area of research, and to be in situations where it is not possible to leave that employment for the time required to follow a PhD programme by attendance. It is likely that candidates meeting this description would enter on the part-time route. 

In some cases applicants may be unable to be present at Glasgow University because of restrictions on the ability to travel imposed by legal or by personal circumstances. In these cases we may admit candidates to the programme at our discretion.

Undertaking a PhD by any route is a very substantial task, requiring dedication and determination. Candidates should think very carefully about their motivation and ability to follow this through over a number of years before applying to the programme. 

Entry to the programme

Entry to the PhD by Distance may take place in both October and January from October 2020. 


Admission to the PhD programme is governed by the same criteria and procedures whether you are intending to pursue research by attendance, or by Distance. The School of Law may admit appropriately qualified candidates where supervisory expertise and capacity is available. 


Supervision sessions will be held by appropriate methods for at distance learning. The preference will be for supervision via Skype, or other similar platforms which permit audio-visual interaction. Normally supervision sessions will be timetabled within UK (GMT or BST) working hours on weekdays, although this may be varied by agreement between supervisors and candidates. Email exchange will not be considered to be a substitute for a supervision meeting. Candidates must maintain a record of supervision meetings, and report meetings to the School of Law PG administrator. 

Compulsory training

Candidates of the PhD by distance will be required to take the online course Research Methods offered by the School of Law. 


Supervisors may discuss training needs with candidates, including language training, but are not expected to be aware of locally available provision. It is the responsibility of candidates to make sure that they have the skills necessary to undertake the research required of the PhD. 

Postgraduate Research Committee

We will endeavour to ensure that a student on the PhD without attendance route is on the Postgraduate Research Committee of the School of Law.