BaudelaireLucky
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I want to do a PhD in English Language/English Literature after I have finished my BA (and possibly masters) degree

  1. Will I most likely need a masters degree before I can do a PhD?
  2. Can I get funding to do a PhD in the same way that undergraduate study is funded?
  3. Do most people doing full-time PhDs live in their own rented accomodation or university accomodation? If I live on my own, will I have enough money from a part-time job to be able to support myself for the duration of my PhD?
  4. How intelligent do you have to be to do a PhD and get your thesis accepted?
  5. Can I work within the university whilst doing a PhD? If so, how common is it to do this?
  6. Is it worth it? I've always wanted to do it as I love learning and if I could, I'd be in education forever, but career-wise, is it going to give me an advantage?
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Carnationlilyrose
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#2
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(Original post by BaudelaireLucky)
I want to do a PhD in English Language/English Literature after I have finished my BA (and possibly masters) degree

  1. Will I most likely need a masters degree before I can do a PhD?
  2. Can I get funding to do a PhD in the same way that undergraduate study is funded?
  3. Do most people doing full-time PhDs live in their own rented accomodation or university accomodation? If I live on my own, will I have enough money from a part-time job to be able to support myself for the duration of my PhD?
  4. How intelligent do you have to be to do a PhD and get your thesis accepted?
  5. Can I work within the university whilst doing a PhD? If so, how common is it to do this?
  6. Is it worth it? I've always wanted to do it as I love learning and if I could, I'd be in education forever, but career-wise, is it going to give me an advantage?


  1. Yes
  2. No. No postgraduate study is funded like this. You fund yourself or get a career development loan from either Barclays or the Co-op.
  3. How can any of us know this?
  4. Very.
  5. Sometimes, but mostly STEM subjects.
  6. Unlikely to be cost effective in monetary terms, but that shouldn't be the reason you want to do it. Nobody is going to be especially thrilled by your English PhD outside academia.


Learn to run before you can walk. Looking ahead is fine, but there are so many steps between now and even the end of your undergraduate degree that it is no great help to you to formulate a plan now. Be prepared for no one to pay you to do an arts degree at postgraduate level. Without a substantial wodge of cash upfront, you can't embark on postgrad, and not many people emerge from their undergraduate degree in that position. Source: funding a very expensive art postgraduate son.
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Klix88
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(Original post by BaudelaireLucky)
[*]Will I most likely need a masters degree before I can do a PhD?
Yes, very probably (and these don't have funding). It can be possible to go straight from undergrad to PhD in STEM subjects, but in the Hunanities a Masters is usually required if you have no other experience in your PhD field.

[*]Can I get funding to do a PhD in the same way that undergraduate study is funded?
No. PhD funding is highly competitive and I would guess that only a minority of PhD applicants actually win it.

[*]Do most people doing full-time PhDs live in their own rented accomodation or university accomodation?
No idea, but most of the ones I know are flat broke and live as cheaply as possible. Even those with fully-funded PhDs don't find it easy.

If I live on my own, will I have enough money from a part-time job to be able to support myself for the duration of my PhD?
It's highly unlikely. You'd be hard-pushed to find a reliable part-time job which pays enough to cover rent on a studio flat/bedsit, in the number of hours you'd have free if you were a full-time PhD student.

Living costs don't change much between undergrad and PhD. If you can't afford it now, you probably won't be able to afford it in two or three years time.

[*]How intelligent do you have to be to do a PhD and get your thesis accepted?
Blimey. How are you measuring intelligence? Certainly the normal baseline for PhD entry is a First or 2:1, but most of the time you need to be "the right person for the job" on top if that.

[*]Can I work within the university whilst doing a PhD? If so, how common is it to do this?
My uni has odd jobs for PhD students, but there's nothing like permanent Teaching Assistant jobs. Sometimes you can get jobs working in the student shop or the Student Uinion bar.

[*]Is it worth it? I've always wanted to do it as I love learning and if I could, I'd be in education forever, but career-wise, is it going to give me an advantage?
It's impossible to say, unless you have a career in mind. I can't think of any for which an English-based PhD is required. A PhD usually prepares you for an academic career. However the UK already turns out far more people with PhDs than there are academic vacancies for them.
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jelly1000
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(Original post by BaudelaireLucky)
I want to do a PhD in English Language/English Literature after I have finished my BA (and possibly masters) degree

  1. Will I most likely need a masters degree before I can do a PhD?
  2. Can I get funding to do a PhD in the same way that undergraduate study is funded?
  3. Do most people doing full-time PhDs live in their own rented accomodation or university accomodation? If I live on my own, will I have enough money from a part-time job to be able to support myself for the duration of my PhD?
  4. How intelligent do you have to be to do a PhD and get your thesis accepted?
  5. Can I work within the university whilst doing a PhD? If so, how common is it to do this?
  6. Is it worth it? I've always wanted to do it as I love learning and if I could, I'd be in education forever, but career-wise, is it going to give me an advantage?
1) Yes unless you are have an undergraduate masters e.g. MChem, MMath, MPhys e.c.t
2) No- as others have said its very competitive, especially for humanities PhD funding as its not considered as essential.
3) Their own rented but this may still be a house share or a studio flat somewhere.PhD students don't usually get a place in halls nor do they want to live in them usually. Can't speak about the job bit but be warned that they are very time consuming and you might not have time for a part time job
4) Well you need to get a 2:1 or first to get onto a masters course and you need to be able to do reasonably well in that too
5) Yes many PhD students work as tutors but be warned that the pay isn't brilliant
6) Not outside academia no in the arts at least
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Misovlogos
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#5
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(Original post by carnationlilyrose)
[/LIST]

  1. Yes
  2. No. No postgraduate study is funded like this. You fund yourself or get a career development loan from either Barclays or the Co-op.
  3. How can any of us know this?
  4. Very.
  5. Sometimes, but mostly STEM subjects.
  6. Unlikely to be cost effective in monetary terms, but that shouldn't be the reason you want to do it. Nobody is going to be especially thrilled by your English PhD outside academia.


Learn to run before you can walk. Looking ahead is fine, but there are so many steps between now and even the end of your undergraduate degree that it is no great help to you to formulate a plan now. Be prepared for no one to pay you to do an arts degree at postgraduate level. Without a substantial wodge of cash upfront, you can't embark on postgrad, and not many people emerge from their undergraduate degree in that position. Source: funding a very expensive art postgraduate son.
That's not true by omission; there are public and charitable sources of funding, albeit scarce and thus extremely competitive.
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Carnationlilyrose
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(Original post by Misovlogos)
That's not true by omission; there are public and charitable sources of funding, albeit scarce and thus extremely competitive.
Yes, I am aware of that, but for all practical purposes for the OP, there is nothing available for an English PhD that anyone would be anything other than insane to count on.
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username474976
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(Original post by carnationlilyrose)
Yes, I am aware of that, but for all practical purposes for the OP, there is nothing available for an English PhD that anyone would be anything other than insane to count on.
AHRC? Department studentships?

The CDL is for a masters not PhDs.
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Misovlogos
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(Original post by carnationlilyrose)
Yes, I am aware of that, but for all practical purposes for the OP, there is nothing available for an English PhD that anyone would be anything other than insane to count on.
I take your point, but I don't think its low probability should exclude it from consideration in entirety, it should simply factor into such according to its probability (which is for the OP to decide). Moreover, exactly how remote a possibility funding is, depends fundamentally on the OP.

EDIT: also I'll redouble the above, career development loans - whose maximum sum is £10,000, alongside a stringent repayment schedule - are suited to masters, not PhDs, whose costs exceed that several times over.
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apotoftea
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(Original post by maskofsanity)
AHRC? Department studentships?
Which are highly competitive and no one in their right mind would bank on getting...
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Carnationlilyrose
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(Original post by maskofsanity)
AHRC? Department studentships?

The CDL is for a masters not PhDs.
I did indicate that OP would need to do an MA first. Obviously there are tiny pots of money from odd sources, but given the likelihood of being ineligible or turned down, it's foolish to suggest that funding is easily available.
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username474976
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(Original post by apotoftea)
Which are highly competitive and no one in their right mind would bank on getting...
(Original post by carnationlilyrose)
I did indicate that OP would need to do an MA first. Obviously there are tiny pots of money from odd sources, but given the likelihood of being ineligible or turned down, it's foolish to suggest that funding is easily available.
I didn't say anyone should "bank on getting" a studentship nor did I say it was easily available - but it's clearly the most obvious source of funding for a PhD. The AHRC and university funds are not "odd sources", they are the main sources which is why everyone is competing for them.
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username474976
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(Original post by carnationlilyrose)
Yes, I am aware of that, but for all practical purposes for the OP, there is nothing available for an English PhD that anyone would be anything other than insane to count on.
The OP didn't say she was counting on it - no one counts on anything competitive. If you want to do an English PhD then you apply to the AHRC and university departments for funding. Once (and if) this avenue has been exhausted (i.e. re-applying) and you are still adamant that you want to pursue academia then self-funding and applying for funding while on the doctorate is your only other option, and as it's so expensive it may very well not be an option.

So rather than dismiss the main sources of funding as "insane" due to their competition, you ought to focus on them entirely because that's all there is! Good luck.
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apotoftea
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(Original post by maskofsanity)
The OP didn't say she was counting on it - no one counts on anything competitive. If you want to do an English PhD then you apply to the AHRC and university departments for funding. Once (and if) this avenue has been exhausted (i.e. re-applying) and you are still adamant that you want to pursue academia then self-funding and applying for funding while on the doctorate is your only other option, and is it's so expensive it may very well not be an option.
You don't apply to the AHRC anymore!

So rather than dismiss the main sources of funding as "insane" due to their competition, you ought to focus on them entirely because that's all there is! Good luck.
It's not about dismissing applying for AHRC funding but those coming into postgrad study really have no idea just how competitive the studentships are to get. IMHO it's bad form to bang on about availability of AHRC funding, when quite frankly it's up **** creek without a paddle and most applicants will never see a penny of it.
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username474976
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(Original post by apotoftea)
You don't apply to the AHRC anymore!

It's not about dismissing applying for AHRC funding but those coming into postgrad study really have no idea just how competitive the studentships are to get. IMHO it's bad form to bang on about availability of AHRC funding, when quite frankly it's up **** creek without a paddle and most applicants will never see a penny of it.
Again, I haven't said AHRC/department funding is easily available. I simply mentioned it and called it the main (only) source of funding, in order to correct carnationlilyrose's post. Bad form is pretending it doesn't exist and that self-funding is the only option. That is seriously poor advice.

It's as simple as this - if you want to do a PhD, you apply to department and research council studentships. Yes, it's competitive, but it's the only option so you can either cry about the competition and do something else or you can try your best. My point was just that the OP will need to apply for AHRC/department funding - that's the end of it. There's no use talking about CDLs and the "insanity" of it all without even mentioning what the actual options are for PhD applicants!
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