University of Cumbria

University of CumbriaUniversity of Cumbria, LancasterThe University of Cumbria operates from three main campuses and various other locations across Cumbria and Tower Hamlets, London.

The University was created in 2007 and has a strong background in practical disciplines such as those in Health, Education, applied sciences and the Arts.

A sense of place is very important to the University and this influences the research which is undertaken here in terms of the local, national and international perspectives adopted.

Our key areas of recognised research are as follows

  • Sport and physical activity, including gender issues and biomechanics
  • Rehabilitation
  • E-learning and Inter professional education
  • Learning disabilities – especially autism
  • Compositional processes in music (particularly, Davies, Macmillan, Rihm) especially spirituality, identity, inspiration, creativity
  • The Wisdom traditions
  • Fine Art
  • Sustainable business, ecotourism
  • Forestry, conservation and landscape
  • Wildlife Conservation
  • Educational Research, including:

o Teacher Education, development and reflective learning.

o Diversity and equality in education.

o Workplace learning identity of professional educators.

o Assessment in Higher Education; Assessment for Learning.

o Gifted education and mindset theory.


Research Lead: Professor Diane Cox

Diane is the Director of Research & Head of the Graduate School for the University. As Director of Research, Diane is responsible for the strategic development of research across the University; as Head of the Graduate School, Diane is responsible for the effective and efficient operation of the Graduate School, and the quality of the postgraduate student experience.

Diane has worked at the University of Cumbria (formerly St. Martin’s College) since 2000. She has previously held a number of academic posts; Senior Lecturer, Reader, Principal Lecturer and Research Coordinator. She gained a personal chair in 2011, and is a Professor of Occupational Therapy.

Diane currently has six PhD students who are Occupational Therapists. She has published numerous papers. Prior to working in Higher Education, Diane worked for 15 years in the NHS, and is a member of a number of national committees about research and Chronic Fatigue management, her specialist research area. She collaborates with other Universities, NHS and Social sector about research and practice. She is and has been a member of a number of National Consultancy and Reference groups.


University of CumbriaPh.D. Study

We offer two research degrees: Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) and Master of Philosophy (MPhil) through the University of Lancaster. Both of these higher degrees are awarded on the basis of a thesis, which embodies the results of the student’s research. Currently we have 70 research degree students registered at UoC: 59 Home/EU; 11 Overseas. Many of our students are undertaking PhD research part-time and support for such students whether domestic or international is comparable. The University of Cumbria operates a system of team supervision for research students. The team consists of a main supervisor and one, but usually two, other members whose research areas are relevant to the student’s thesis.


Potential students need a good honours degree of a recognised university or comparable institution, or qualifications regarded as the equivalent. Some experience of research, research training or reflective professional practice is normally expected. An MA, MSc or equivalent is desirable but not essential. Potential students can discuss application with the Graduate School Administrator and the Research Office prior to submitting a formal proposal for consideration. The Graduate School issues documentation on request to assist with the preparation of the proposal. Proficiency in English expression is a fundamental requirement for admission onto the research degree programme and normally an interview will be required.

Please note that research students are initially registered as probationary PhD candidates, with full PhD registration subject to confirmation following a formal Transfer Panel meeting which takes place between 12 and 18 months after commencement for full-time students, and 18 to 24 months for part-time. Alternatively, students can register for an MPhil, with the option of transferring to PhD, subject to requirements.

Contact Form: University of Cumbria

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