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PhD in Employment Research (2022 Entry)

About this research graduate course

Course overview

As a research-only department within the University of Warwick, the work of the Institute for Employment Research is diverse and interdisciplinary and provides wide-ranging opportunities for prospective doctoral candidates to engage in high quality social science doctoral-level research which is policy-relevant, as well as being academically rigorous.

The IER’s doctoral programme aims to train independent social science researchers who can develop and deploy theory effectively, assess the relative merits of different methodological approaches, choose appropriate empirical methods, manage well their time and other research resources effectively. Being located in a specialist research environment will provide a wider understanding of the research process (including dissemination, funding, relationships with sponsors, and different organisational models for research).

Our extensive research portfolio has meant that we have fostered and maintained links with national and international research centres; UK government departments and agencies; European Commission and other international bodies; local authorities and sectoral organisations, as well as extensive academic networks.

Supervision for IER doctoral students will be provided by academic researchers with significant experience of undertaking research across a range of topics in employment research. We supervise a wide range of students from a variety of different countries and backgrounds and welcome this diversity among our student body.

Former students have gone on to work in a variety of areas in different countries, including academia, government, the private sector or third sector organisations.

We also offer a joint PhD in Employment Research with our partner institution Monash University in Melbourne, Australia.

Teaching and learning

Supervision for IER doctoral students will be provided by academic researchers with significant experience of undertaking research across a range of topics in employment research.

During their first year of PhD study, students will normally be expected to undertake training in both quantitative and qualitative research methods.


General entry requirements

Minimum requirements

2:i undergraduate degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject and a good Master’s degree (or equivalent) in the social sciences. Previous studies should have included training in social science methodology.

Application should be supported by a good research proposal.


English language requirements

You can find out more about our English language requirements. This course requires the following:

  • Band B
  • IELTS overall score of 7.0, minimum component scores of two at 6.0/6.5 and the rest at 7.0 or above.

International qualifications

We welcome applications from students with other internationally recognised qualifications.

For more information, please visit the international entry requirements page.


Additional requirements

There are no additional entry requirements for this course.

Our research

Areas for PhD supervision and examples of current research interests of the IER's academic researchers include:

  • Job quality
  • Careers guidance and labour market transitions
  • Higher Education and the graduate labour market
  • Gender, ethnicity, age and the labour market
  • Employment relations and employer behaviour
  • Work, welfare and public policy
  • Apprenticeships, work-based learning and training
  • Intersectionality, equity, diversity and inclusion in the labour market
  • Future of work, digitalisation and automation
  • Labour market assessment and forecasting

Full details of our research interests are listed on the Institute for Employment Research web pages.

You can also read our general University research proposal guidance.

Find a supervisor

Supervision for IER doctoral students will be provided by academic researchers with significant experience of undertaking research across a range of topics in employment research.

Find your supervisor using the link below and discuss with them the area you'd like to research.

Explore Potential IER PhD Supervisors that are keen to supervise PhDs in a range of subjects. The research interests of staff are listed to provide an overview of the subjects and techniques they would be interested in supervising at a postgraduate level.

You can also see our general University guidance about finding a supervisor.

Tuition fees

Tuition fees are payable for each year of your course at the start of the academic year, or at the start of your course, if later. Academic fees cover the cost of tuition, examinations and registration and some student amenities.

Taught course fees  Research course fees


Fee Status Guidance

The University carries out an initial fee status assessment based on information provided in the application and according to the guidance published by UKCISA. Students are classified as either Home or Overseas Fee status and this can determine the tuition fee and eligibility of certain scholarships and financial support.

If you receive an offer, your fee status will be stated with the tuition fee information, however we are awaiting guidance from the UK government regarding fee status for EU, other EEA and Swiss nationals and their family members living in the UK for academic year 2021/22 onwards. We are not able to confirm the fee status for these students until the relevant eligibility criteria have been confirmed. Once we have received further information from the UK government, we will provide you with an update on your fee status and let you know if any additional information is required. If you believe your fee status has been incorrectly classified you can complete a fee status assessment questionnaire (follow the instructions in your offer) and provide the required documentation for this to be reassessed.

The UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) provides guidance to UK universities on fees status criteria, you can find the latest guidance on the impact of Brexit on fees and student support on the UKCISA website.


Additional course costs

As well as tuition fees and living expenses, some courses may require you to cover the cost of field trips or costs associated with travel abroad. Information about department specific costs should be considered in conjunction with the more general costs below, such as:

  • Core text books
  • Printer credits
  • Dissertation binding
  • Robe hire for your degree ceremony

Scholarships and bursaries

Funding routes available

Find out about the many different funding routes available for postgraduate study at Warwick.

Living costs

Find out more about the cost of living as a postgraduate student at the University of Warwick.

Department content block about careers

Warwick Institute for Employment Research

Established in 1981, the Warwick Institute for Employment Research (IER) is a leading international social science research centre. Its research is interdisciplinary and made relevant to policy makers and practitioners. It is renowned for consistently delivering high quality research. Research questions are tackled in projects funded by a range of public and private sector organisations and through publications in academic journals.

Find out more about us on our website.

Taught course applications

Here is our checklist on how to apply for taught postgraduate courses at Warwick.

Research course applications

Here is our checklist on how to apply for research postgraduate degrees at the University of Warwick.

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