PhD in Dance, Film and Theatre
- Postgraduate Research Director
- Laura Cull
- Programme length
PhD Dance -
Full-time: 33-48 months
, Part-time: 45-96 months
PhD Film - Full-time: 33-48 months
PhD Theatre - Full-time: 33-48 months
- Programme start date
- October, January, April, July
The University of Surrey graduate programme has a distinctive history of international and UK graduate completions across a wide range of topics. Our postgraduate alumni are leaders in their distinctive research areas and have innovatively formed the methods and contents of higher education curricula, performances and publications worldwide.
This programme prepares individual graduates for success at each stage of their own PhD project development. The structure is designed to provide intensive graduate preparation for a future career and is suitable for either part- or full-time candidates. Completion of the programme entails submission of a thesis, the submission of practice if undertaking a practice-based PhD, and an oral viva with external examiners.
Entry is on the basis of a good honours degree and usually an MA in a relevant arts subject. Non-graduates are accepted if qualifications and experience are relevant to a postgraduate degree. Candidates submitting proposals that include practice-based research will be required to evidence appropriate experience and expertise in the respective area of practice.
English language requirements
IELTS minimum overall: 7.0
We offer intensive English language pre-sessional courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here.
Fees and Funding
|Study mode||UK/EU fees||Overseas fees|
Subject to availability, students can apply for a full Faculty scholarship or for a fees-only School Teaching Assistantship. At interview, we are happy to discuss other funding sources with you.
Dance, Film and Theatre at Surrey
The School of Arts provides opportunities for Doctoral research across a broad range of interconnected subject areas, including Dance, Digital Arts, Film, Music, Theatre and Sound Recording. We cater for practice-based and scholarly study, within a research environment distinguished by methodological innovation and intellectual pluralism. We support specialist study into specific disciplines of contemporary arts practice and rigorous critical and historical investigation, while interdisciplinary approaches are fundamental to our endeavours with new technologies, philosophical enquiry and creative research. The School is highly collegial. Research students enjoy extensive opportunities for collaboration and shared enquiry, and have ready access to staff with a wide range of expertise. Our work achieves wide international circulation, both through established scholarly channels and broadcast media.
Academic members of staff within the School of Arts are well known internationally for their exceptionally strong research profile and success with large-scale competitive grants and graduate completions. Current areas of staff research are outlined below, but supervision of other subjects may be accommodated:
- Twentieth-century concert music, especially Poulenc, Szymanowski, Bartok, Stravinsky, Mahler, Elgar, Britten, Tippett, Roger Smalley
- Popular and folk musics, particularly rock, jazz and other African-American musics, electronic dance music
- Contemporary and electroacoustic composition and performance
- Aesthetics and Analysis – dance, film, music
- Critical musicology
- Dance and music on screen
- Performance studies and techniques
- Intermediality and improvisation
- Laban movement analysis, African dance, dance ethnography
- Choreographic and somatic practices
- Film theory and criticism, European cinema
- Documentary film and animation
- Performing the archive, choreographic studies
- Shakespearean drama
- Phenomenological approaches to performance
Two research weeks held each year (May and November) include keynote seminars, intensive study groups on current themes in Arts research, and provide research skills training. They also enable careful monitoring and preparation of research outputs, including conference presentations and preparation of publications. In addition, smaller groupings of researchers meet fortnightly during term for debate and discussion; our environment is sustained by open discussion and the regular airing of work-in-progress (by both staff and research students). Students make annual formal presentations of their work, while we have a regular programme of research seminars given by academics and practitioners from Surrey and elsewhere. Further research training is provided by the Postgraduate Skills Development Programme and the University Library is well equipped for doctoral students’ research needs.
Support for practice-based research is provided by more than 15 studios, rehearsal rooms, a black box studio and 200-seat theatre, digital media labs, and high-quality recording facilities. Students also have access to a postgraduate research room with computer facilities or, in the case of Sound Recording, a shared office environment with leading researchers.