How to Apply for Doctoral Study

Entry Requirements 
To apply for a PhD or MPhil at the GSA, applicants should normally have obtained a minimum of an undergraduate degree with First or Upper Second Class Honours and (where required) an English Language IELTS score of 6.5 overall with no less than 6.5 in each component (or equivalent).

Further Information and Queries
For further information, please contact the PhD Coordinator in the School to which you wish to apply:

GSA PhD Co-ordinators
School of Fine Art - Dr Laura Guy -
School of Simulation and Visualisation - Prof. Steve Love:
Innovation School - Prof. Lynn-Sayers McHattie:
School of Design - Dr Elizabeth Hodson -
Mackintosh School of Architecture - Dr Dave Loder:


Select the School you are applying to study in and the mode of study (full-time or part-time) from the list below to access the online application form. 

Mackintosh School of Architecture
PhD - Full-time
PhD - Part-time

School of Design
PhD - Full-time
PhD - Part-time

School of Fine Art
PhD - Full-time
PhD - Part-time

Innovation School
PhD - Full-time
PhD - Part-time

School of Simulation and Visualisation
PhD - Full-time
PhD - Part-time

Applicants should read the How to Apply for a Postgraduate Research Degree Guidelines before completing the required online application and proposal form document.

After you have read the detailed guidelines, you will need to submit the following documents (as part of your online application, see above) to apply for a PhD or MPhil degree at the GSA:

  • 1 x Completed Research Proposal Form

  • 2 x academic references (on institutional headed paper, signed and dated within 6 months of your application)

  • Transcripts of Previous Degrees

  • English Language Qualification (if applicable)

  • Portfolio of recent work (if your application is for a practice-led PhD)

  • A 1000 word writing sample – please see How to Apply Guidelines


Please note incomplete applications cannot be accepted.

We accept applications for MPhil and PhD programmes at any time, but applications received after 30th June will not be considered for entry in that academic year. We must receive the application in full by 30th June for entry in Sept of the same year.

A panel of academic staff from across The Glasgow School of Art meet every four to six weeks to review applications. We aim to inform applicants on the success of their application within six weeks of applying. If you have not received a response within eight weeks, please contact us at

For information on accessibility, including how to seek further support, please visit:  /information/accessibility/

Simplified, Microsoft Word versions of the postgraduate research degree application guidelines, proposal form and application form are also provided below for applicants who find them more accessible. These are intended to be more compatible with assistive technologies such as screen readers.
Simplified Word version of GSA PGR Application Guidelines (download from this link)
Simplified Word version of GSA PGR Proposal Form (download from this link).

The Scottish Graduate School for Arts and Humanities (SGSAH) Funding

The Glasgow School of Art is a founding member of the SGSAH Doctoral Training Partnership. GSA selects a small number of applicants each year for submission for possible SGSAH funding.

Follow this link for information on how to apply to SGSAH AHRC DTP for funding.

Postgraduate Doctoral Loans
Postgraduate Doctoral Loans are available to those starting a full-time or part-time postgraduate Doctoral course on or after 1 August 2018. This loan is to help with course and living costs while studying and has to be paid back.

Follow this link for information on how to apply.

Studio Provision
While shared working areas and hotdesk spaces are available to PhD students across GSA, dedicated studio space is NOT provided by default for PhD students. Applicants can make a case in their initial proposal for a project or studio space at specific points in their research, and these requests will be considered in negotiation with the relevant departments. Successful applicants must ensure that they read their letter of offer carefully and discuss any resource or studio requirements at interview prior to accepting a place on the PhD programme.

English Language Requirements
International students required to evidence their English language proficiency by sitting a Secure English Language Test (SELT) will be asked to complete an IELTS for UKVI (Academic) test taken at a UKVI approved test. Our current requirement for doctoral study is IELTS for UKVI (Academic) with 6.5 overall and no less than 6.5 in each component. A full list of UKVI approved test centres can be found here.

UKVI Requirements 
Full information about Tier 4 Student Visa requirements is available here.