Italian PhD

An emphasis on the contemporary characterises research in the Italian subject group. Research is interdisciplinary and collaborative and focuses on areas in Italian Studies which are often underexplored. A recent appointment in Italian history has added weight to the transnational dimension of Italian Studies at Liverpool.

Why study with us?

Liverpool offers the opportunity to meet some of the best academic professionals who encourage students to perform to the best of their ability whilst developing academic and personal skills.

Giusi Coppola - Italian PhD student
  • 4th

    in sector overall for research classified as 'world leading (4*) or 'internationally excellent' (3*) in latest Research Excellence Framework (2021)

  • 19/62

    in the Guardian League Table for Modern Languages and Linguistics for 2018

  • 100%

    of research environment classified 'world leading' (4*) or 'internationally excellent' (3*) in the latest Research Excellence Framework (2021)


Expertise in Italian Studies at the University of Liverpool provides support and inspiration for research projects ranging from the social meaning of language practices and cognitive analysis of fiction and film through to Postcolonial Studies and Oral History. A variety of approaches allows us to accommodate, amongst others, both interdisciplinary and data-driven projects.

Supervision in Italian Studies includes sociolinguistics (e.g. the linguistic landscape, minority languages, migrant languages and neo-plurilingualism, language policy and ideology, social dialectology); the sociolinguistics of dubbing and subtitling; Italian film and audiovisual studies; Italian crime fiction; cinematic adaptations of contemporary fiction; Italian media; popular culture; social and cultural history. 

We particularly welcome research proposals that match those of our researchers, including linguistic landscapes, minority languages, language policy, crime fiction, cinema and media, cultural history and postcolonial studies.

Research themes

Our research themes are:

  • Linguistic Landscapes
  • Language Policy
  • Minority and regional languages 
  • Popular fiction (in particular Crime fiction) 
  • Cinema and media
  • Cultural mobility
  • Memory practices
  • Postcolonial Studies.


The University of Liverpool has excellent research facilities within the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences. For postgraduate researchers, these include designated shared office space and access to a vast repository of journals (including e-journal), through the Sydney Jones Library.
As a postgraduate researcher at the University of Liverpool, you will become part of the Liverpool Doctoral College. The LDC supports all postgraduate researchers across the University to thrive in their doctoral programme with our dedicated team of esteemed supervisors, professional services staff, and student peers, ensuring that our students succeed in their studies.

Research groups

⦁ Image, Sound and Performance and Conflict
⦁ Memory and Heritage
⦁ Place, Space and Belonging
⦁ Media Histories: From Manuscript to Digital

Study options and fees

PhD Duration UK students International Students
Full time 2-4 years £4,712
  • Faculty of Health and Life Sciences £27,800 (Band A)^
  • Faculty of Science and Engineering* £27,800 (Band A)^ or £21,850 (Band B)
  • Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences £21,850 (Band B)
Part time 4-6 years £2,356
  • Faculty of Health and Life Sciences £13,900 (Band A)^
  • Faculty of Science and Engineering* £13,900 (Band A)^ or £10,925 (Band B)
  • Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences £10,925 (Band B)

The fees stated in the table above exclude potential research support fees also known as ‘bench fees’. You will be notified of any fee which may apply in your offer letter.

* Please note that if you are undertaking a PhD within the Faculty of Science and Engineering the fee you pay, Band A or Band B, will reflect the nature of your research project. Some research projects incur a higher fee than others e.g. if you are required to undertake laboratory work. You will be informed of the fee for your programme in your offer letter.

^ Self-funded, full-time international students studying a PhD programme classified as Band A will receive a £2,000 reduction in their fees for the first year only.

Entry requirements

Applications are welcomed from both full-time and part-time students. For research degrees, we would normally expect applicants to have a BA or BSc degree of 2:1 standard (and also an MA) in a subject relevant to the proposed field of research.

English language requirements

IELTS Academic requirement - SELT and non-SELT Overall 6.5 no band below 6.0
TOEFL iBT requirement Minimum 88 overall with L 19 W 19 R 19 and S 20
C1 Advanced CAE requirement Overall 176 with no less than 169 in any paper
Trinity College London, Integrated Skills in English (ISE II)ISE II with an overall pass with merit in components
Cambridge IGCSE as a First LanguageGrade C
Cambridge IGCSE as a Second LanguageGrade B
Cambridge English Level 3 Certificate in ESOL International (Proficiency)Overall 176 with 169 in components
Cambridge English Level 3 Certificate in ESOL International (Advanced)Overall 176 with 169 in components
Cambridge English Level 2 Certificate in ESOL International (Advanced)Overall 176 with 169 in components

How to apply

Research degree applications can be made online.  You'll also need to ensure that you have funding to cover all fees.

Applications are open all year round.

More about applying for research degrees

Apply online

Before you apply, we recommend that you identify a supervisor and develop a research proposal

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