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Postgraduate Study - PhD and Research Degrees

Accountancy

Degrees

Degree types explained

  • MPhil/PhD Accountancy
Duration

Degree duration details

Start date

September, January or April 

Location Streatham Campus
Study modes

Study mode details

Full time or part time

Overview

MPhil/PhD students work alongside researchers within the following research themes:

  • Capital markets
  • Case study research
  • Corporate finance
  • Corporate governance
  • CSR
  • ESG

The University of Exeter Business School

How to apply

Apply online

Ask a question

Contact

Web: Enquire online

Phone: +44 (0)1392 72 72 72

Contact

Web: Enquire online
Phone: 0300 555 6060 (UK)
+44 (0)1392 723044 (non-UK)

1st for Accounting and Finance graduate prospects

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021

10th in The Guardian University Guide 2021

Triple accredited Business School

Accredited by AMBA, EQUIS and AACSB

Research overview

As a PhD student in accounting, you will work with and learn from our inspirational and diverse faculty of leading researchers. Our faculty offer a wealth of knowledge on fundamental issues in accounting, including management control, capital markets accounting, accounting for sustainability, taxation and corporate governance and auditing.

» Find out about potential topics for PhD research that our faculty are offering

» Find out more about the department’s faculty

We train our PhD students to conduct world-class research by designing a bespoke programme of advanced graduate training that all our students undertake as they progress in their degree. Our PhD students also participate in the department’s research seminars and have opportunities to attend international conferences to present their research. We also provide regular opportunities for our students to develop their teaching skills and contribute to the department’s teaching.

We provide our students with the resources that they need to succeed. This includes funding to support their research and further development, access to core research facilitiesdatabases and funding to present their work at leading international conferences.

How to apply

Entry requirements

To be considered, PhD applicants need to meet the following entry requirements:

  • A good undergraduate degree (in the UK, at least an upper second class honours) in a relevant subject
  • A taught Masters degree in a relevant subject

If you are an international student, please visit our international equivalency pages to enable you to see if your existing academic qualifications meet our entry requirements.

English language requirements

International students need to show they have the required level of English language to study this course. The required test scores for this course fall under Profile B2: view the required test scores and equivalencies from your country.

Please note: In order to submit an application you must have had a prior dialogue with an academic at the University who is interested in supervising your research. Full details below:

Deadlines

We consider applications to our PhD programmes three times a year:

  • 31st January
  • 31st May
  • 30th September

Application Documents

To be considered for our PhD programme, you need to submit the following documents by either of the above deadlines (incomplete applications will not be considered):

  1. A research proposal that you have developed with a potential supervisor (no more than 2000 words)
  2. A letter from this potential supervisor stating that they are willing to supervise you
  3. A personal statement that explains why you wish to complete your PhD in our department and why you think you are well suited to this programme of study (no more than 600 words)
  4. Academic transcripts from your relevant studies to date (see entry requirements below)
  5. Two academic letters of reference from teaching staff at your previous institutions
  6. If necessary, evidence of English language ability (see entry requirements below)
  7. If you have them, results from a GMAT or GRE test that are not more than 5 years old.

Preparing your Proposal

You cannot apply until a member of faculty has stated that they are willing to supervise you and provided you with a letter to this effect. To achieve this, you will need to initiate contact with faculty who are working on topics that you are interested in and present them with a proposal of no more than 2000 words.

To find a potential supervisor, refer to the Supervision section, below.

We recommend that you start this process 3 months before the application deadline. There are three possible outcomes to this process: (1) potential supervisors state that they are willing to supervise you, (2) potential supervisors request further revisions on your proposal or (3) they are unable to provide supervision.

Interview

Applicants will be invited to interview with a panel who will assess their application. Applicants who cannot provide results from the GMAT or GRE will be asked to complete an online psychometric test.

Read more

Fees and funding

Tuition Fees per year 2024/25

For those studying for more than one year, our fees are expected to increase modestly in line with Consumer Price Inflation measured in December each year. More information can be found on our Student Finance webpages.

Tuition fees per year 2023/24

For those studying for more than one year, our fees are expected to increase modestly in line with Consumer Price Inflation measured in December each year. More information can be found on our Student Finance webpages.

Our Postgraduate Funding webpage provides links to further information. If you are considering a PhD in the future, in addition to University of Exeter funding, we have been successful at securing postgraduate funding for PhD research through our Funded centres

Current available funding

Supervision

You can expect:

  • High-quality research supervision to develop and nurture your potential
  • A tailored supervision approach to help best suit your requirements
  • Accessible supervisors who are enthusiastic about working directly with postgraduate research students
  • Regular timetabled meetings with your supervisor
  • 'Open door' policy to all postgraduate students - instant access to world-leading researchers who will share their expertise and ideas with you
  • Regular meetings with your supervisory team, other members of your research group, and mentors

You will only be able to apply for a PhD when you have received a letter from potential supervisors stating that they are willing to supervise your PhD thesis. You therefore need to initiate contact with faculty who are working on topics that you are interested in and present them with a proposal of no more than 2000 words. To find a potential supervisor, please click on the link below.

› Find a supervisor

Training

The skills and expertise that you build now are fundamental to your continuing professional development (CPD), and will be part of your toolset throughout your working life, whether academic or elsewhere. We’re also very keen that you should consider taking part in the University's Postgraduate Researchers' Programme which offers training in a wide range of generic and transferable skills in key areas such as research management, personal effectiveness, communication skills, networking, team-working, and career management.

It’s great if you can enter the programme with research training and experience of research at Masters level, but we don’t expect you to be the finished article. You’ll get together straight away with your supervisor to identify your training needs, and you’ll both monitor and adapt them as your research develops and new challenges emerge.

In the first year of your PhD study the appropriate department(s) in the Business School will specify discipline and subject-specific training which may be methods training, research philosophy, or thematic modules to upgrade your knowledge of the subject. You may be asked simply to attend some modules; you may be required to pass others that are vital to your doctoral studies.

You’ll also need to attend staff-postgraduate seminars addressed by visiting speakers and School staff and you’ll present your research to fellow students and academic staff at our annual research conference or a similar event. This is a key opportunity to get feedback from staff and fellow students on your research, as well as giving you the chance to enhance your presentation skills. Successful presentation is a criterion of upgrade from MPhil to PhD status

We can source most training requirements within the University of Exeter, but where this is not feasible, for instance on specialist software, or cutting-edge methods or techniques vital to your studies, we work with partner organisations like research councils, professional associations and training companies to provide external training. 

You need to be able to communicate your research clearly and effectively to a variety of audiences, and we encourage doctoral students to present their work to external audiences at seminars, symposia and conferences. Each student is allocated a yearly allowance for professional development.

You should enter your doctoral programme in October at the start of the academic year if at all possible. This is when taught modules commence within the School, as does the University’s research training programme and the widest array of training courses. After the training-needs assessment with your supervisor you may be asked to attend one or more first semester modules commencing in October and, if the training is deemed essential to your programme, this may be a requirement for any offer of a place.

October is also the start of the academic year for all students, with a formal induction programme as well as a vibrant calendar of events, and you’ll definitely benefit socially if you start your studies with other new students.

The Business School provides research students with many opportunities to develop skills in teaching, and other academic and non-academic employment, and actively supports students who wish to take on ad-hoc or part time work during their studies.

The School has a Code of Practice for Employment of PGR students which complements the University's central Code of Good Practice for the Employment of Postgraduate Students. Students who wish to undertake work during their studies must ensure they read both the School Code and the University Code before commencing any duties.

Careers

The skills and expertise that you build now are fundamental to your continuing professional development (CPD), and will be part of your toolset throughout your working life.

We strongly recommend that our students take part in the University's Postgraduate Researchers' Programme, which offers training in skills such as:

  • research management
  • personal effectiveness
  • communication
  • networking
  • team-working
  • career management

The Business School provides research students with many opportunities to develop skills in teaching, as well as other forms of employment (both academic and non-academic). We actively support students who wish to take on ad-hoc or part time work during their studies.

The School has a Code of Practice for Employment, which complements the University's central Code of Good Practice for the Employment of Postgraduate Students. If you wish to undertake employment during your studies, you must ensure that you read both the School Code and the University Code before commencing any duties.