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Doctoral & Post-Grad

MPhil/ PhD in Work Based Learning (003X910)

The Work and Learning Research centre in the Department of Education offers a PhD degree for those candidates who wish to engage in research in the practice-based fields of Work Based Learning as an area of study and academic inquiry.

These degrees are suitable for advanced practitioners who seek to develop professional knowledge at doctoral level in the academic field, usually with the aim to influence their organisations or communities of practice.

This fast-developing area of practice-based research engages with education and practice theories. Work-related issues can involve a broad conception of the term ‘work’ (paid or unpaid) that contribute to this area of inquiry through independent doctoral study. It is a field that it is transdisciplinary, as professional and work-based practice crosses boundaries of academic disciplines.

Likely areas of inquiry can include, but are not limited to: policy issues regarding work and higher education; issues around professional development; learning and development in communities of practices or organisations; processes of accreditation of learning; pedagogical theories and models underpinning work and learning, the relation between theory and specific contexts of practice; concepts and theories guiding professional practice in a specific field.

Typically, a PhD in work based learning or professional studies will take 4-7 years part-time culminating with a thesis of 40,000 - 80,000 words. All PhD students at Middlesex initially enrol on an MPhil and then transfer to a PhD degree.

PhD in Work-based Learning by Public Works (003X90W)

This part-time degree is specifically for professionals and experts in their fields who already have distinctive and relevant work(s) in the public sphere of the appropriate breadth and depth.

These work(s) could be reports, guides, policy documents, software, artistic works, journal articles, books etc. but they must demonstrate originality. The works will be submitted along with a context statement that reflects and informs the submission of the work(s).

The context statement of 10,000 – 30,000 words is written once the candidate has been registered and enrolled, under supervision with at least 2 supervisors to complete the submission. The degree is of an equivalent level to the PhD by thesis. Examples can be found in the Middlesex Research Repository

Public Works PhD

Doctor of Professional Studies

All the MProf/DProf awards have the professional equivalent to the PhD and the same rigorous assessment methods and criteria.

The Professional Studies Transdisciplinary M/DProfs open to experienced practitioners from all professional areas who bring a high level of curiosity and passion to their commitment to make a positive difference to their sector/field. It is designed to help the individual practitioner respond to the complex, high level challenges that show up in their context.

Candidates for this award undertake a critical reflection on personal and professional practice followed by a piece of doctoral level practice–focused research in the Candidate’s own context, organisation or community of practice. At the end of the programme a research thesis is submitted and presented at a viva. On successful completion of this final milestone, the award of a doctorate is made and the Candidate can be addressed as Doctor.

Master of Philosophy MPhil and Doctor of Philosophy PhD

The MProf/DProf can also be studies through the disciplines of Health and Education/ Science and Technology where specialisms include Health, Education, Environment, Risk, Disaster Risk and Response, Psychology, Criminology, Sociology, Social Work, Housing and Regeneration, International Relations, Social and Public Policy, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Sport and Biomedical Science.

MProf/DProf Health and Education/ Science and Technology

PhD study with the Work and Learning Research Centre

Candidates are advised by supervisors experienced in work and learning and directing a practice-oriented approach to doctoral study. A second and sometimes third supervisor is consulted for expert subject knowledge in the academic and/or professional sphere.

PhD candidates join a community of scholars and practitioners at the internationally recognised Work and Learning Research Centre who have been working at the forefront of their field. Candidates are encouraged to publish their work and develop their academic and professional careers.

Transdisciplinary: Our approach

Our transdisciplinary approach is able to address the complexities that arise for individuals and organisations when scoping and carrying out research into professional practice for a range of purposes. In this enduring and successful engagement, leaders, managers and employees from a wide range of sectors explore and navigate through the complex nature of their everyday work. Our conception of work encompasses all workers paid and unpaid and all valued contributions to practice. Such diverse domains of practices and disciplines, both within and outside organisations and professional communities enable candidates on our programmes to arrive at innovative and relevant change programmes or solutions to sticky problems. The transdisciplinary approach recognises that the professional is no longer discipline bound but negotiates across a range of disciplines and seeks solutions through using knowledge and skills drawn from diverse fields and domains.

The University’s Researcher Development Programme runs all year to provide research training either face to face or in the form of webinars accessed remotely. Additionally, the Research Centre provides research tutorials, seminars and meetings with research students, staff and guest speakers aimed at providing academic training in the methodology, epistemology and subject-matter of the field.

Our integrating University themes

For further enquiries about any of these degrees

Please email Professor Carol Costley or call 0208 4116 524 and leave a message.

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