KBS_Icon_questionmark link-ico

Digital Humanities Research MPhil/PhD (with option of a joint PhD with University of Hong Kong or National University of Singapore)

Apply now

Overview

Our course gives students a unique opportunity to critically study the developments and implications of digital technologies on contemporary culture and society. Our programme looks at how digital developments are reshaping various socio-political and economic fields around the world. Conceptualising the development of the Internet, social media, apps, platforms, big data, and artificial intelligence, we explore the impacts of these technologies on areas including work, governance, surveillance, cultural communication, health, and finance, alongside cross-cutting questions of power and inequality in society. By researching digital technology and industries, graduates of this course will sharpen their analytical and communicative skills while gaining critical insights into the effects of the digital.

Departments of CMCI & Digital Humanities – jointly ranked in top 10 in UK (REF 2021). 100% of the departments’ research impact and research environment were rated as either ‘world leading’ (4*) or ‘internationally excellent’ (3*).

Key benefits

  • Develop an understanding of the role and the impact of digital technologies in contemporary culture and society around the world.
  • Gain an overview and awareness of emerging and established digital technologies by learning about highly topical and contemporary developments.
  • Acquire specific knowledge of digital technologies and their wider effects; as well as practical skills through our wide range of modules.
  • Gain the ability to review, synthesise and integrate information and data for research and reporting purposes.
  • There is the possibility of taking part in an internship programme. London's many cultural institutions and its wide creative industry offers further possibilities. In 2020/1 this may be subject to change due to COVID-19 restrictions. Please contact the department if you wish to discuss this further.

Key information

Duration Expected to be three years FT, four-six years PT. October to October, February to February or June to June.

Study mode Full-time, Part-time

Further details

Awarding institution King's College London

Faculty Faculty of Arts & Humanities

Department Department of Digital Humanities

Locations

 

Explore campuses


Applying for a PhD at King's

In the heart of London

Watch our video for tips and advice on applying for an Arts & Humanities PhD at King's.

Watch more videos


Course detail

Description

The Department of Digital Humanities offers a PhD programme for suitably qualified candidates who wish to explore the transformative effects of digital information, technologies, and methods on the humanities, arts, culture and society. This is a pioneering doctoral programme, based in one of the world’s most prestigious centres for the study of Digital Humanities. Research in the Department reflects a ‘big tent’ view of the digital humanities, and there are no a priori restrictions on the area of research, assuming that appropriate supervisors can be found, and no fixed expectations of particular technical skills. We welcome applications from potential students with any disciplinary background in the humanities or social sciences.

An overview of the areas of research carried out in the department may be found on the departmental website. Profiles and research projects of current MPhil and PhD students may be found in the King’s research portal.

Joint PhD programme
Exciting opportunities are available to undertake a joint PhD programme with the National University of Singapore (NUS). FAQs about joint PhDs can be found on the King’s Worldwide web pages.

Course study environment

All PhD candidates are allocated two supervisors, and are expected to meet with their primary supervisor on a regular basis, with progress reports submitted every six months. Students will normally be upgraded from MPhil to PhD status after 9-18 months, with a transfer to 'writing up' status usually occurring after three years of full-time study. Upon submission of the thesis, assessment is by means of an oral examination (viva).

Our postgraduate students are an integral part of the academic life of the Department. We are a growing department with many internationally recognised researchers and visiting academics. We have a wide range of both national and international projects, collaborations with other departments, as well as with other higher education institutions, cultural and memory organisations, and digital industries. Our students have access to good library facilities, and there is a research student room within the department.

The Department has an active PhD seminar series, which provides students with the opportunity to present their research and discuss its progress and its relationship to the broader discipline, and students are also invited to participate in the departmental seminar series. There is an annual PhD student conference, organised by the students themselves, as well as a range of seminars and other events both within King’s and at academic and cultural institutions around London.

London offers unparalleled diversity and richness for students in the humanities and cultural heritage, with the largest concentration of memory and cultural institutions in the UK, including the major document repositories at the National Archives, and the extensive digital and physical resources of the British Library. London also possesses extensive media and digital industries, with many opportunities for internships and employment.

Research students can apply to become Graduate Teaching Assistants to assist members of staff in delivering modules to undergraduate students on the BA in Digital Culture. Full training is provided to enable students to make the best use of this opportunity for acquiring valuable teaching experience.

 

Postgraduate training

Research students are expected to spend a week per year on training in transferable and research skills, and will have access to a diverse range of training opportunities. Students can attend a variety of specialist MA modules offered within the Department, on topics such as text technologies, spatial humanities, or metadata. The King's Graduate School runs a Researcher Development Programme of personal, professional and career development activities for all research students, and there is a centrally provided programme of ICT and related skills training. Students are able to take part in a wide portfolio of training courses ranging from generic study and employability skills, language courses at the College's Modern Language Centre, through to specific conceptual and methodological courses offered by the ESRC-funded King’s Interdisciplinary Social Science DTC.

King’s is also a partner in the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) London Arts and Humanities Partnership (LAHP) collaborative doctoral training partnership (with University College London and the School of Advanced Study, University of London), which supports an extensive network of training courses and events for AHRC-funded students.

Our research students are also encouraged to submit papers to conferences, and there are Faculty funding schemes to which students can apply for financial support to allow them to travel and present their papers.

 

Head of group/division

Dr Mark Coté

Contact for information

Postgraduate Admissions, Admissions Office tel: +44 (0) 20 7848 1649 fax: +44 (0) 20 7848 7200

Contact email

Course website

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

Digital Humanities Research Entry Requirements
Minimum requirements  
  • An MA degree in the humanities or social sciences, with a mark of Distinction or high Merit.

  • In exceptional circumstances, applicants holding a first class honours degree may be admitted. Applicants must demonstrate mastery of the academic background deemed relevant to the research proposed.

International requirements   Visit our admissions webpages to view our International entry requirements.
English Language requirements Band C Visit our admissions webpages to view our English language entry requirements.

 

Application procedure

Prior to formal applications students should correspond with Dr Mark Coté by sending a first outline (approximately 1,500 words), which should include the following sub-headings: Research Question and Aims, Literature Review, Methodology, Provisional Chapter Outlines and Bibliography. Admission to our research programmes is dependent partly on the availability of requisite research expertise, so before applying please consult the department's web pages to indicate who could be a suitable research supervisor for your project.

Admission to the PhD programme is initially for the MPhil, but we expect students to transfer to the PhD after an appropriate period, by agreement with their supervisor, the departmental Research Committee and the College.

Personal statement and supporting information

Applicants are encouraged to approach potential supervisors prior to application. To identify a supervisor please see: https://kclpure.kcl.ac.uk/portal/en/

You will be asked to submit the following documents in order for your application to be considered:

Digital Humanities Research checklist
Research Proposal Yes The proposal should explain in some detail precisely the field of study that you want to contribute to and current research gaps, what you want to do and how you propose to do it. For advice on how to write a winning application, please visit the following page.
Previous Academic Study  Yes A copy (or copies) of your official academic transcript(s), showing the subjects studied and marks obtained. If you have already completed your degree, copies of your official degree certificate will also be required. Applicants with academic documents issued in a language other than English, will need to submit both the original and official translation of their documents.
References  Yes One academic reference is required. A professional reference will be accepted if you have completed your qualifications over five years ago.
Other Optional

Applicants may also wish to include a CV (Resume) or evidence of professional registration as part of their application

Travel Plan Yes (Joint programme only)

If applying for the joint programme, please include the names of your supervisors from both institutions and include a completed travel plan form.

Course intake

No set number.

Joint PhDs - Application advice

Applicants for the Joint PhD programme must contact the relevant departments at both universities before submitting an application in order to discuss the suitability of their topic for the joint programme and to locate potential supervisors. Applications should initially be submitted to the proposed home institution only, ie where the student will start and finish their programme. Students should note that acceptance onto the programme may take slightly longer than for single-institution PhDs because of the additional steps involved. Further details, including FAQs, can be found on the King’s Worldwide web pages.

Applicants who choose King’s as their home institution should apply through the online system, selecting the appropriate Joint PhD option from the drop-down list. In addition to the standard supporting documentation, applicants should submit a Travel Plan form indicating how they intend to divide their time between the two partner institutions. Students must spend a specified amount of time in each institution, details of which can be found in the ‘Notes’ section of the Travel plan form.

It is recommended that students submit applications for the Joint PhD programme by the end of March to begin the following October.

Application closing date

We recommend that you submit your application as soon as possible as we may need to request further information from you to assess your application. This is also important if your application is successful and you are required to meet any offer condition, and/or you need a Student Visa to study here at King’s.

The final application deadlines are detailed below; on these dates, the programme will close at 23:59 (UK time) and we will open for the corresponding intake in 2023 soon after the same intake has passed in 2022.

· February 2022 entry – 12 November 2021 for Overseas fee status and 6 December 2021 for Home fee status

· June 2022 entry – 1 April 2022 for Overseas fee status and 11 April 2022 for Home fee status

· October 2022 entry – 29 July 2022 for Overseas fee status and 26 August 2022 for Home fee status

· February 2023 entry – 21 October 2022 for Overseas fee status and 22 November 2022 for Home fee status

· June 2023 entry – 3 April 2023 for Overseas fee status and 17 April 2023 for Home fee status

Please note that funding deadlines may be earlier than the application deadlines listed above.

Help and support

If you don't have a suitable qualification for direct entry to a UK university, or if English isn't your first language, our academic preparation courses can help you get ready for study in the UK.

International Foundation

Fees and funding

UK Tuition Fees 2021/22

Full time tuition fees:

£5,820 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities)

£5,820 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities with National University of Singapore) 

Part time tuition fees:

£2,910 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities)

£2,910 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities with National University of Singapore) 

International Tuition Fees 2021/22

Full time tuition fees:

£21,870 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities)

£21,870 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities with National University of Singapore)               

Part time tuition fees:

£10,935 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities)

£10,935 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities with National University of Singapore) 

UK Tuition Fees 2022/23

Full time tuition fees:

£5,820 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities)

£5,8200 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities with National University of Singapore)

Part time tuition fees:

£2,910 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities)

£2,910 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities with National University of Singapore)

International Tuition Fees 2022/23

Full time tuition fees: 

£22,230 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities)  

£22,230 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities with National University of Singapore)       

Part time tuition fees:

£11,115 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities)

£11,115 per year (MPhil/PhD, Digital Humanities with National University of Singapore) 

 

EU Students starting their programme in the academic year 2021/22 will pay international tuition fees. 

These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.

Financial help and support

Visit the fees and funding webpages to find out more about bursaries, scholarships, grants, tuition fees, living expenses, student loans and other financial help available at King's.

Career prospects

A research degree in the digital humanities will equip you to make substantial and original contributions to any field or activity in which digital technologies and methods are applied to the study, conservation or presentation of cultural artefacts, or in which there is a need to manage and analyse complex digital information. Because the degree privileges human knowledge and cultural production, rather than the tools that may be used to study these, it will also prepare you to offer powerfully creative resistance to digital technologies in their present form, and thus to help advance them in positive directions. The degree is thus highly relevant for subsequent work not only in higher education and cultural organisations and industries, but also in any organisation in the public or private sectors in which complex digital information plays a significant role.

Career destinations

A research degree in the digital humanities will equip you to make substantial and original contributions to any field or activity in which digital technologies and methods are applied to the study, conservation or presentation of cultural artefacts, or in which there is a need to manage and analyse complex digital information. Because the degree privileges human knowledge and cultural production, rather than the tools that may be used to study these, it will also prepare you to offer powerfully creative resistance to digital technologies in their present form, and thus to help advance them in positive directions. The degree is thus highly relevant for subsequent work not only in higher education and cultural organisations and industries, but also in any organisation in the public or private sectors in which complex digital information plays a significant role.

Testimonials

King's College London logo

Next steps

View our postgraduate guide

Learn more about postgraduate degree programmes at King's.

View guide

Sound like the course for you?

Apply now

Explore King’s

Accommodation Take a look at our comfortable, safe residences to suit your budget, located close to King's teaching campuses. 
Student life Art, food, music, shopping – you'll never find yourself with nothing to do in the world's most vibrant city.
Extra-curricular Discover the huge variety of extra-curricular opportunities at King’s, from MOOCs to language courses.
London living With four campuses by the River Thames and one in south London, King's is right in the heart of the capital.