Postgraduate Opportunities

The Department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies provides an excellent environment for postgraduate study. The Department's international reputation for conducting cutting-edge quality research and teaching makes Aberystwyth an ideal place to pursue both Masters and Doctoral degrees. Its large and vibrant postgraduate community is viewed as a key component of the Department's research and teaching excellence.

Why Study for a PhD?

Research work is highly rewarding and offers you an opportunity to make an original contribution to the subject. A PhD is favoured by many because it enables you to study in detail a particular aspect that has caught your intellectual imagination. The scope of a PhD allows an element of specialism that a Masters cannot provide. A PhD from a recognised institution such as Aberystwyth also provides you with advanced general skills training that is increasingly prized in a competitive labour market. Having a PhD is a key requirement for those considering an academic career.

Research Opportunities

The Department has a large and vibrant community of research students from all over the world, working towards doctoral qualifications. The range of topics and methodologies employed is exceptionally wide covering the whole range of theatre, performance, media, film and television studies. Supervision and research training for an MPhil or PhD degree is available in both English and Welsh, focusing on topics such as:

  • Aesthetics, politics and social engagement
  • Site-specific performance
  • Contemporary British and Irish theatre
  • Documentary and verbatim theatre
  • Historiography and archiving (performance, theatre, film, and media)
  • National and transnational theatre, performance, and film
  • Welsh and minority-language theatre, film, and media
  • Theatre and performance design
  • Media history
  • Media and communication policy
  • Landscape in film, theatre, and performance
  • Alternative, avant-garde and experimental theatre and film
  • Film and media censorship and regulatory policies
  • Television drama, genres, and aesthetics
  • Documentary film and television (history, theory, and practice)
  • Horror, fantasy and cult film and television
  • Film stardom, celebrity, and performance
  • British cinema

We support practice-based research in all areas of our work.The registration period of a full-time MPhil is one year, or two years if studied part-time. For a PhD the registration period is three years for a full-time course, and five years for a part-time course.

An important part of our doctoral provision is the wider research culture in which students are embedded. We offer an annual programme of research seminars, visiting speakers and performers, and an annual three day conference organised and attended by both staff and postgraduate students, in which we share research ideas and problems.  Our doctoral students also benefit from a dedicated study suite with PCs, internet access, offices, printing and telephone facilities.   

PhD students in the Department receive funding from a number of sources: AHRC, Aberystwyth University, independent charities, employers and overseas funding bodies. We offer support and guidance in making applications to such organisations, and augment the opportunities they provide through a number of TFTS studentships awarded to outstanding students who have otherwise been unable to secure funding. These are designed to cover three year’s fulltime fees and maintenance.

 We regard the following as our primary areas of research strength, within which we are keen to encourage doctoral applications:

  • Theatre and Performance Research
  • Welsh Theatre and Media Research

Funding Your PhD

Please use our PG Funding Calculator to see which awards you may be eligible to receive. 

How to Apply

We are delighted that you are thinking about coming to Aberystwyth to pursue graduate work in the Department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies (TFTS).  We are committed to offering high quality postgraduate training and education across our broad subject domains, and the admissions process is the first part of this.

If you have any queries, please feel free to contact us at any point during the application process.

Prior to formally applying, we would strongly advise you to send an initial enquiry about working with us as an  MPhil/PhD candidate in the department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies (TFTS). Please send your draft project outline or proposal and an indication of the funding for which you intend to apply to the Departmental Postgraduate Co-ordinator, Dr Jamie Medhurst (

Please follow the 'Guidance on writing a PhD proposal for TFTS'.

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