Gender studies (2015 entry)

Subject overview

  • Gender is a key theme for Sussex research and many of our faculty are leaders in this field. We research and teach on gender issues in a variety of schools and departments, which makes for fresh and innovative debates and diverse approaches to teaching and learning. We also have a strong policy, community and media presence via a number of high-profile research projects. The Centre for Gender Studies, which draws all this expertise together, is based in the School of Law, Politics and Sociology and led by co-Directors Alison Phipps, Mark Walters and Tamsin Hinton-Smith.
  • Research within Gender Studies is organised via four interlinked strands: gender and the law: gender, crime and violence; gender and the body; and gender theory and politics. Faculty and postgraduate students situated within these research groups are able to network with each other and develop exciting collaborative projects.
  • Sussex offers five distinctive MA courses in gender and sexualities: Gender Studies, Gender and Media, Sexual Dissidence in Literature and Culture, Gender and Development, and Gender, Violence and Conflict. There is also a gender pathway on the MSc in Social Research Methods which prepares students for PhD research. Teaching in Gender Studies is spread across the subject boundaries of Sociology, Media and Cultural Studies, Anthropology, Sociology, English, History, History of Art, Development Studies and International Relations.
  • Studying gender gives essential critical perspectives on contemporary social and cultural formations and issues, as well as being fascinating, rewarding, and opening up amazing opportunities. Our students gain fresh perspectives on familiar topics and are taught to think for themselves in an encouraging and supportive environment. Gender Studies graduates go into a variety of professions within fields such as the media, policy, non-governmental organisations, teaching, the civil service, the arts and trade unions.

Global perspective

55th in the world for international outlook

Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2013-2014

Academic quality

14th in the UK
43rd in Europe
111th in the world

Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2014-2015

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    students live on campus

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    students study at Sussex

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    in campus buildings and facilities

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    are home to Sussex graduates

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    1,214 professional services staff

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    over 30 sports clubs

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    Express Community Stadium

  • £24.7-million
    research income

  • < 9 minutes to Brighton
    < 30 minutes to Gatwick Airport
    < 60 minutes to central London
    < 90 minutes to Heathrow Airport

Academic activities

Gender studies research at Sussex is particularly active. There are many lively research fora including NGender, a weekly student-led open seminar. The Centre for Gender Studies, the Sussex Centre for Cultural Studies and the Centre for the Study of Sexual Dissidence offer faculty research events including international speakers and conferences focused on gender and sexuality to which students are warmly welcomed. 

Recent seminars have covered ‘Being Barbara Streisand’, feminist working-class autobiographies, gendered militarisms, queer mental health, the aftermath of violence, and the politics of beauty. 

Programmes

  • PhD in Gender Studies (Humanities)
  • PhD in Gender Studies (Social Sciences)
  • MPhil in Gender Studies (Humanities)

There are two doctoral pathways in gender studies: 

  • Gender Studies (Humanities) for those seeking to do research in areas that are primarily, but not exclusively, cultural 
  • Gender Studies (Social Sciences) for those seeking to do research in areas that are primarily sociological. 

With traditional entry, research projects are planned and designed in the first year of study. If you are planning to undertake empirical research, you conduct an initial literature review and design your methodology. At the end of the first year, you are usually required to submit a research outline (for 1+3 students – see below – this can be the MSc dissertation), which is reviewed by expert faculty. This can take the form of an extended research proposal or a chapter from the planned thesis, or a combination. The second year is usually when fieldwork is conducted, if any is required, and writing up of the final thesis begins in the third year. You are supported throughout by two expert supervisors, and can also access a variety of additional training and support. 

Research and teaching in gender studies crosses the subject boundaries of anthropology, art history, sociology, English, history, international relations, law, media, film, and cultural studies, and there is a wide range of potential research supervisors for PhD students in gender studies. 

Coursework 

There are two common modes of entry for research students. First is traditional entry to an MPhil or PhD. Second is the MSc plus PhD pathway, which is the 1+3 route supported by ESRC or AHRC studentships. All new research students will be required to participate in a programme of research training modules and to take other modules that may be recommended by their supervisor. (Exemption from research training modules can be granted to those who have already taken such modules at postgraduate level.) 

Recent thesis titles: Gender Studies (Humanities) 

Changing media, changing feminisms 

The older woman’s body as a source of horror 

The queer uncanny 

Recent thesis titles: Gender Studies (Social Sciences) 

Breaking the silence – lesbian clients speaking out about their experiences of counselling 

Honour killings in Turkey 

Lone mothers and social policy in Korea 

Entry requirements

MPhil in Gender Studies (Humanities)

UK entrance requirements

A first- or upper second-class undergraduate honours degree or equivalent. Applicants should submit an outline (two to three pages) of their research interests

Overseas entrance requirements

If your country is not listed below, please contact the University at E pg.enquiries@sussex.ac.uk

The following table is given as a general guide for our taught postgraduate degrees requiring a first- or upper-second class undergraduate honours degree. If you have any questions, contact the University at E pg.enquiries@sussex.ac.uk

CountryOverseas qualification
Australia Bachelor (Honours) degree with second-class upper division
Brazil Bacharel, Licenciado or professional title with a final mark of at least 8
Canada Bachelor degree with CGPA 3.3/4.0 (grade B+)
China Bachelor degree from a leading university with overall mark of 75%-85% depending on your university
Cyprus Bachelor degree or Ptychion with a final mark of at least 7.5
France Licence with mention bien or Maîtrise with final mark of at least 13
Germany Bachelor degree or Magister Artium with a final mark of 2.4 or better
Ghana Bachelor degree from a public university with second-class upper division
Greece Ptychion from an AEI with a final mark of at least 7
Hong Kong Bachelor (Honours) degree with second-class upper division
India Bachelor degree from a leading institution with overall mark of at least 60% or equivalent
Iran Bachelor degree (Licence or Karshenasi) with a final mark of at least 15
Italy Diploma di Laurea with an overall mark of at least 105
Japan Bachelor degree from a leading university with a minimum C/GPA of at least 3.0/4.0 or equivalent
Malaysia Bachelor degree with CGPA of at least 3.3/4.0 or B+
Mexico Licenciado with a final mark of at least 8
Nigeria Bachelor degree with second-class upper division or CGPA of at least 3.5/5.0
Pakistan Four-year bachelor degree, normally with a GPA of at least 3.3
Russia Magistr or Specialist Diploma with a minimum average mark of at least 4
South Africa Bachelor (Honours) degree or Bachelor degree in Technology with an overall mark of at least 70%
Saudi Arabia Bachelor degree with an overall mark of at least 70% or CGPA 3.5/5.0 or equivalent
South Korea Bachelor degree from a leading university with CGPA of at least 3.5/4.0 or equivalent
Spain Licenciado with a final mark of at least 2/4
Taiwan Bachelor degree with overall mark of 70%-85% depending on your university
Thailand Bachelor degree with CGPA of at least 3.0/4.0 or equivalent
Turkey Lisans Diplomasi with CGPA of at least 3.0/4.0 or equivalent depending on your university
United Arab Emirates Bachelor degree with CGPA of at least 3.0/4.0 or equivalent
USA Bachelor degree with CGPA 3.3-3.5/4.0 depending on your university
Vietnam Masters degree with CGPA of at least 3.5/4.0 or equivalent

If you have any questions about your qualifications after consulting our overseas qualifications, contact the University at E pg.enquiries@sussex.ac.uk

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each section.

For more information, refer to What qualifications do I need?

PhD in Gender Studies (Humanities)

UK entrance requirements

A Masters degree in a subject relevant to your research. Applicants should submit an outline research proposal (three to four pages) indicating their topic, a brief literature review, methodology, timeline and a short bibliography of relevant source

Overseas entrance requirements

If you are an international student and wish to find out if you have the necessary qualifications for this degree, please refer to Overseas qualifications.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each section.

For more information, refer to What qualifications do I need?

PhD in Gender Studies (Social Sciences)

UK entrance requirements

A Masters degree in a subject relevant to your research. Applicants should submit an outline research proposal (three to four pages) indicating their topic, a brief literature review, methodology, timeline and a short bibliography of relevant source

Overseas entrance requirements

If you are an international student and wish to find out if you have the necessary qualifications for this degree, please refer to Overseas qualifications.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each section.

For more information, refer to What qualifications do I need?

Visas and immigration

Find out more about Visas and immigration.

For more information about the admissions process at Sussex

For pre-application enquiries:

Student Recruitment Services
T +44 (0)1273 876787
E pg.enquiries@sussex.ac.uk

For post-application enquiries:

Postgraduate Admissions,
University of Sussex,
Sussex House, Falmer,
Brighton BN1 9RH, UK
T +44 (0)1273 877773
F +44 (0)1273 678545
E pg.applicants@sussex.ac.uk 

Fees and funding

Fees

MPhil in Gender Studies (Humanities)

Home UK/EU students: £4,0521
Channel Island and Isle of Man students: £4,0522
Overseas students: £14,4503

1 The fee shown is for the academic year 2015.
2 The fee shown is for the academic year 2015.
3 The fee shown is for the academic year 2015.

PhD in Gender Studies (Humanities)

Home UK/EU students: £4,0521
Channel Island and Isle of Man students: £4,0522
Overseas students: £14,4503

1 The fee shown is for the academic year 2015.
2 The fee shown is for the academic year 2015.
3 The fee shown is for the academic year 2015.

PhD in Gender Studies (Social Sciences)

Home UK/EU students: £4,0521
Channel Island and Isle of Man students: £4,0522
Overseas students: £14,4503

1 The fee shown is for the academic year 2015.
2 The fee shown is for the academic year 2015.
3 The fee shown is for the academic year 2015.

Visit Postgraduate fees 2015

Visit Living costs

Scholarships

The sources of financial support listed below are for the subject area you are viewing and may not apply to all degrees listed within it. Please check the description of the individual source of financial support to make sure it is relevant to your chosen degree.

Visit Postgraduate research scholarships 2015

Visit Career development and part-time work

We are in the process of updating funding sources for postgraduate study in the academic year 2015/16. For general information, visit Postgraduate research scholarships 2015.

For more information on scholarships go to the Scholarships web pages.

Faculty interests

Gender studies at Sussex has clusters of expertise but we welcome proposals that fall outside of these themes as our supervisory expertise is very broad. Research interests of our faculty are briefly described below.

 Visit Centre for Gender Studies

Gender activism, gender politics

Our scholars map women’s and LGBTQ movements both historically and in the contemporary context, in this country and abroad. A number of faculty also work on current ‘hot topic’ areas such as abortion, trans issues, sex work and sexual violence, and many engage in grassroots activism themselves. 

Prof Andrea Cornwall
Professor of Anthropology and International Development
A.Cornwall@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Brazil, democratisation, Empowerment, gender and development, Gender and Sexuality, Nigeria, participation, public engagement, Public health

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Prof Beate Jahn
Professor of International Relations
B.Jahn@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Liberal internationalism

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Dr Margaretta Jolly
Reader in Cultural Studies
M.Jolly@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: cultural studies, Everyday Life, history of feminism, letters and diaries, Life writing, Mass Observation, oral history, women's liberation

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Dr Alison Phipps
Reader in Sociology
A.E.Phipps@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Abortion, Breastfeeding, childbirth and infertility, Feminist theory, Gender and Sexuality, higher education, Laddism, Motherhood, Rape, Reproductive Justice, Sex industry, Sex work, Sexual harassment, sexual violence

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Prof Cynthia Weber
Professor of International Relations
C.Weber@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Ethics

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Gender and culture

Gender research at Sussex includes all aspects of culture and everyday life – art, literature, film, social and digital media, representation and narrative, high culture and popular culture, the institutional level and the micropolitics of the everyday, including the ordinary and the extraordinary. Gender infuses all aspects of human communication and this is reflected in our work. 

Prof Caroline Bassett
Professor Of Media And Communications
C.Bassett@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Critical Theory, cultural and media policies, Design of public spaces, Digital Humanities, digital media, media history and theory, New Media/Web-Based Studies, Sexual and gendered subjectivities, Socio-cultural impact of new media, sociology of expertise

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Dr Denise Decaires Narain
Senior Lecturer in English
D.Decaires-Narain@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Caribbean women's writing

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Prof Liz James
Professor of History of Art
E.James@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Byzantine art, Byzantine culture and society, colour, gender, mosaics, sensory perceptions

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Prof Kate Lacey
Professor of Media History & Theory
K.Lacey@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: 20th C German History, Broadcasting History, Gender Studies, History of sound, Listening, media history, media theory, Public sphere theory, Radio Studies, Role of the media in processes of democratisation, Sound studies

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Prof Claire Langhamer
Head of Department
C.L.Langhamer@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: history of emotion, history of love, Modern British history, social and cultural history

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Prof Vicky Lebeau
Professor of English
V.A.Lebeau@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: cinema and childhood, image and text, NHS in literature and culture, psychoanalysis

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Dr Monika Metykova
Lecturer in Media Communications/Journalism Studies
M.Metykova@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: cultural and media policies, Journalism, Migration, political economy of media, Role of the media in processes of democratisation

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Prof Sue Thornham
Professor of Media & Film Studies
S.Thornham@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Cultural Theory, Feminist theory, Film History, Theory and Criticism, Gender Studies

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Ms Janice Winship
Reader in Media & Film Studies
J.Winship@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Film-based media

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Gender, society and state

Our faculty work on issues to do with the social relations of gender, with interests ranging from how gendered norms and values shape everyday life to the gendering of state institutions, policies and legislation. Our work focuses on social policy issues such as education, reproduction and violence, in national and international contexts. 

Dr Ben Fincham
Senior Lecturer
B.M.Fincham@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Cycling, death, employment, fun, Gender and Sexuality, Happiness, masculinity, mobilities, suicide, Work

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Dr Tamsin Hinton-Smith
Senior Lecturer In Higher Education
J.T.Hinton-Smith@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Feminist and qualitative research methods, Feminist theory, Gender Studies, higher education, Sociology of Education, Widening participation

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Dr Pamela Kea
Senior Lecturer In Anthropology
P.J.Kea@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Adornment practices, Anthropology of West Africa, Asylum and FGM, childhood and youth, Feminist theory, gender, Home-making practices, Intimacy and transnational kinship relations, Migration and Mobility, Morality and personhood, Place and Identity, race and ethnicity, The aesthetics of migration, The household moral economy, The politics of domesticity, Trust and Entrustment, Visual and Material Culture, well-being

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Dr Hannah Mason-Bish
Lecturer In Sociology And Criminology
H.Mason-Bish@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: disability, gender, hate crime, Social constructionism, victims

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Prof Filippo Osella
Head of Department
F.Osella@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: anthropology of gender and masculinity, anthropology of Islam and Hinduism, anthropology of migration, anthropology of South Asia, anthropology of trade and entrepreneurship, charity & philanthropy, Economic anthropology, India, Pakistan, Persian/Arab Gulf GCC countries, Sri Lanka

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Dr Lizzie Seal
Senior Lecturer in Sociology/Criminology
E.C.Seal@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Criminology, Cultural History, gender, Violence

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International/global feminisms

Our faculty conduct research in many countries, and we have a number of anthropologists who engage in ethnographic fieldwork all over the world. We benefit from the opportunity to interrogate our assumptions – and our feminisms – through crosscultural comparisons and a diversity of theories and politics. 

Prof Jane Cowan
Professor of Social Anthropology
J.Cowan@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: anthropology of gender and masculinity, Balkans, Dance Performance, Diplomacy & International Relations, Ethnography And Anthropology, Feminist theory, Gender and Sexuality, Greece, Human Rights, International Organization, Minority Rights, Social and political theory, Social anthropology

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Dr Anne-Meike Fechter
Senior Lecturer in Anthropology
A.Fechter@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Aid work, Anthropology of Development, Cambodia, gender, Indonesia, Migration and Mobility, southeast asia, Transnationalism

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Dr Elizabeth Harrison
Reader in Anthropology and International Development
E.A.Harrison@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Anthropology and ethnography, Anti-corruption, community, gender, International Development, Irrigation, Moralities, Natural Resource Management, Participation and engagement, Political anthropology, Sub-Saharan Africa, United Kingdom

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Prof Maya Unnithan
Professor Of Social And Medical Anthropology
M.Unnithan@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: caste and kinship, childbirth and infertility, gender and development, health and migration, human rights and reproductive health, maternal health inequalities, reproductive technologies, Social anthropology

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LGBT and queer studies

Sussex has the largest concentration of queer studies scholars in Europe. We are a key hub for research in gender and sexuality and queer theory. Our faculty work on many cutting-edge funded projects. Our proximity to Brighton provides many opportunities for you to explore LGBTQ culture in Brighton and in London. 

Dr Michael Lawrence
Lecturer
Michael.Lawrence@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Adaptation, animals and media, children and film, indian cinema, Stars and performance

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Mr Andy Medhurst
Senior Lecturer in Media, Film & Cultural Studies
A.Medhurst@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Genre of comedy

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Dr Sharif Mowlabocus
Senior Lecturer Of Media Studies/DigitalMedia
S.J.Mowlabocus@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: 'race' and class, Digital Culture, Digital Humanities, E-Health, Gay & Lesbian Studies, Gender and Sexuality, M-Health, Pornography, Queer Theory

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Prof Sally Munt
Professor of Cultural/Gender Studies
S.R.Munt@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: 'race' and class, Alternative Spiritualities/New Religious Movements, cultural geography and space, cultural studies, Culture and Identity Rights, Everyday Life, Gender and Sexuality, history of emotion, Mental Health and Well-Being

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Dr Kate O'Riordan
Reader in Media
K.ORiordan@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: Biodigital Life, Bioinformatics, Digital Arts History, Theory and Practice, Digital Culture, Feminist and qualitative research methods, Genomics, Media & Communication Studies, Post-digital, Queer studies, Research Ethics, Science Studies

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Dr Vincent Quinn
Visiting Research Fellow
V.R.Quinn@sussex.ac.uk

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Dr Niall Richardson
Senior Lecturer
N.D.Richardson@sussex.ac.uk

Research interests: body image in film and media, Queer studies, representation of gender and sexuality in film and popular culture, Transgender politics and representation

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Careers and perspectives

Our courses aim to cater equally for those seeking to develop an existing research interest, those in a career in which issues of gender play an important role, and those who simply wish to explore a broad range of issues concerning gender. Our graduates have gone on to careers as researchers, administrators and communications officers for charities and NGOs.

To find out more, visit Careers and alumni

Research training

The University’s Doctoral School runs a wide range of training courses covering the needs of students throughout all phases of their studies.

Visit the Doctoral School website

Visit Stages of doctoral study

School and contacts

Contact us

PhD in Gender Studies (Social Sciences)

Dr Alison Phipps, Dr Tamsin Hinton-Smith, Co-Directors of the Centre for Gender Studies,
University of Sussex, Falmer,
Brighton BN1 9SP, UK 

T +44 (0)1273 877689
E a.e.phipps@sussex.ac.uk

T +44 (0)1273 877913
E j.t.hinton-smith@sussex.ac.uk

Visit the Centre for Gender Studies

MPhil, PhD in Gender Studies (Humanities) 

Sarah Maddox,
School of Media, Film and Music,
University of Sussex, Falmer,
Brighton, BN1 9RG, UK 
T +44 (0)1273 873525 
E s.maddox@sussex.ac.uk

Visit the School of Media, Film and Music

Discover Postgraduate Study information sessions

If you cannot make it to our Postgraduate Open Day, you are welcome to attend one of our Discover Postgraduate Study information sessions. These are held in autumn, spring and early summer and enable you to find out more about postgraduate study and the opportunities Sussex has to offer.

Book your place on one of our Discover Postgraduate Study information sessions

Other ways to visit Sussex

We run weekly guided campus tours year round.

Book your place on one of our guided campus tours

You are also welcome to visit the University independently without any pre-arrangement.

Our online campus tour can also give you an excellent introduction to the University.

Take our online campus tour

Overseas visits

Meet with Sussex staff in your country at exhibitions, visits to schools and universities, and at a wide range of other events. Forthcoming visits are planned all over the world:

Bahrain • Brazil • Brunei • Canada • China • Colombia • France • Germany • Ghana • Greece • Hong Kong • India • Indonesia • Iraq • Italy • Japan • Kenya • Kuwait • Malaysia • Mexico • Nigeria • Norway • Pakistan • Qatar • Saudi Arabia • Singapore • South Korea • Spain • Sri Lanka • Taiwan • Thailand • Turkey • UAE • USA • Vietnam.

In-country representatives

In the International Office, we manage a network of overseas representatives who have been trained to support international students with their application to study at the University. Services representatives provide can include pre-departure information, support in submitting your housing application and advice regarding applying for a UK Student Visa.

Find out more about our overseas visits and in-country representatives

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