The Oxford Internet Institute invites applications for part-time study for the post-graduate DPhil degree in Information, Communication and the Social Sciences.

The part-time doctoral programme builds on over ten years of full-time doctoral training in Information, Communication and the Social Sciences at the OII. The part-time version of the degree has the same high standards and requirements as the full-time degree, but spread over a longer time (typically 6-7 years). The degree is particularly well suited for students who are unable to consider taking the full-time course for a variety of reasons including resource constraints, current employment commitments and caring responsibilities. Part-time study also provides an excellent opportunity for professionals in high tech industries to undertake rigorous long-term research that may be relevant to their working life.

Doctoral training at the OII provides students from a wide variety of academic backgrounds the ability to pursue original research using social science concepts, theories and methods to undertake rigorous empirical quantitative and qualitative research about the Internet.

Part-time study is well suited to exceptional candidates, who have a strong and coherent research proposal and an outstanding academic record. Students who plan to work throughout their studies must ensure that their employer understands the importance of full participation in the life of the department.

Time Commitment

Part-time students are expected to spend a minimum of thirty days physically at the University of Oxford each year, on a schedule agreed with their supervisor(s). Students should expect to attend lectures and doctoral seminars in the department one day per week during term time. In addition students should plan to use resources in Oxford such as libraries and participate in relevant research seminars and events. All our doctoral students, full and part time, are expected to actively participate in, and contribute to, the academic life of the department. The department also makes many events available via webcast, and all OII faculty are able to have meetings via Skype or similar tools, for those times when you cannot physically be in Oxford.

The structure of the part-time degree is identical to that taken by full-time students but will be completed in 6-7 years, rather than in 3-4 years. Students are required to attend three core courses in their first two years, and are encouraged, in consultation with their supervisor, to identify additional classes or workshops that would benefit their research project. Many doctoral students choose to audit additional methods classes, either at the OII or in other Oxford departments.


To apply for the part-time DPhil, please visit the Oxford University Admissions website. All DPhil applicants are advised to identify and contact potential supervisors before making an application.  Please note that it is important to apply to the mode of study (part-time or full-time) which you plan to undertake, as students will not normally be allowed to change modes prior to starting the degree, and admission to one mode of study does not guarantee admission to the other.

Please contact the OII’s Graduate Admissions Team at if you have any questions about the course and application process.

Visas / Non-UK Students

The University cannot offer Tier 4 entry visas to students on a part-time DPhil programme. All applicants must be legally resident in the UK or allowed to study here. Students entering the UK on a Dependant Visa, Ancestry Visa, or a Working Visa should be eligible to study on the course. Please visit the Oxford University Visa and Immigration website for further information.

This page was last modified on 28 March 2017