Who is this programme for?

The programme provides a well-defined and supported route to a PhD for professionals working in higher education institutions around the world.

Participants can study entirely at a distance from Lancaster and whilst in full or part-time employment in a higher education environment. This programme is exclusively designed for higher education professionals of whatever sort, for example: academics; managers; administrators; educational developers; student learning specialists.

This 4 year part-time PhD programme is designed for both the needs of universities and national higher education systems and HE professionals around the world insofar as it:

  • Qualifies university staff to PhD level;
  • Develops them as skilled researchers;
  • Supports them in publishing in high status journals;
  • Identifies desirable practices in learning, teaching, administration and management, in addition to research, and helps staff achieve them;
  • Equips staff to be effective and valuable change agents in their universities;
  • Is oriented to improving academic practices across universities and university systems.


Participating in the programme will enable participants to enhance practices of different sorts within their higher education institutions. The programme builds a mutually supportive spirit among participants who all have overlapping professional and academic interests. This means that participants benefit from studying within a cohort of students who act as critical friends and an informal support network during the programme, and a continued network throughout their careers.