Postgraduate research

PhD Psychology

Faculty bursaries

The University of Portsmouth is investing in a number of fully funded PhD bursaries that underpin our commitment to our research base and the impact our research makes. In the most recent Research Excellence Framework in 2014 over 60 per cent of research submitted by the University was rated as world leading and internationally excellent and we are keen to continue to foster this innovative research with our doctoral students.

The Department of Psychology is friendly, long established, and has leading researchers investigating a wide range of different topics. Our PhD students typically have at least 2 or 3 publications before they graduate.

For some of our facilities, see

We are currently offering bursaries linked to the following research areas.

  • Forensic Psychology
  • Situated Action and Communication
  • Comparative and Evolutionary Psychology
  • Quality of Life, Health & Wellbeing

Applicants should submit a short research proposal (3 to 5 pages), providing the background to the proposed research, and an outline of the studies. Although, there is no restriction to prescribed topics, the proposed research should relate to one of the above research areas. It is essential to contact potential supervisors for your research before submitting your application so that you can develop your research ideas with them. More information about individual departmental staff members may be found at:

In addition to applicants who wish to specify their own self-generated programme of research as outlined above, the following five projects are also available to applicants as part of the Faculty bursary scheme, and have been advertised separately on

Eyewitness identification in crimes with multiple perpetrators:

Improving the lives of people through improving the welfare of their working equids:

The effects of cognitive load on investigative interviewer performance:

The mechanisms of citizenship: Do emotionally expressive people have more friends?

Understanding the psychobiological mechanisms that influence binge drinking behaviour:

Successful applicants will be awarded a University Bursary Stipend of £14,296 p.a. (for 17/18). Students will also receive up to £1500 per year for research project costs, as well as office space and computing facilities. Full Home / EU fees will be paid by the University. Holders of University Bursaries are expected to contribute up to 6 hours a week to support their department, e.g. teaching, demonstrating or marking. For further information and advice about potential supervisors please contact Professor Alan Costall - Telephone: +44 (0) 23 9284 6316; email:


The Bursaries are offered for full-time, Home or EU candidates only. You will need to meet the following requirements to undertake a research degree at the University of Portsmouth:

A good honours degree or equivalent in a relevant subject or a Master’s degree in and appropriate subject. Exceptionally, equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications will be considered.

For those students without English as a first language or without a first degree from an English speaking University, an English Language Proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0 is required.

International students are welcome to apply if they have their own funding in place, but must meet the entry requirements listed above.


If you would like to apply for one of these Bursaries you will need to complete our online application form, a brief personal statement and a research proposal.

If you would like further guidance on applying for our bursaries or would like to ask any questions about the research topic please use the contact us box which can be found at the bottom of the research degree subject area pages.

The closing date for applications to the 2017 bursaries is: 5 February 2017. Interviews for short listed candidates are expected to take place between the 15th – 24th February 2017. All Bursaries will start on 4 October 2017.