Research at Ulster in subjects related to performing arts, creative technologies, museum and heritage studies and associated cultural contexts is combined within this unit. PhD research can be pursued in the following individual subject areas: Cinematic Arts(film/moving image practice and associated theoretical/contextual studies), Creative Technologies, Drama, Museum and Heritage Studies and Music.
We are a research–intensive unit, with staff working in a wide range of areas within and across these disciplines. In REF2014, within this unit, nearly 60% of our research outputs and 100% of the impact of our work on policy and creative practice was rated 4* (world- leading) and 3* (internationally excellent). The impact of our research was judged to be 90% 4*, jointly ranked second in the UK, and one of only a handful of Units of Assessment to achieve this score across the whole sector.
The range of subjects within this grouping contributes to a vibrant research culture which encompasses both individual subject areas and interdisciplinary opportunities. In addition to our work within the individual subjects above, the following interdisciplinary themes also support collaborative research:
- Creative Arts and Health/Wellbeing
- Creative Arts, Emergent Technologies and the Digital
- Creative Arts and Engaging with the Past
- Creative Practice-as-Research
Doctoral researchers within this unit will have opportunities to develop their profiles both within their own subject areas and disciplines and within broader academic and professional spheres.
Staff are prominent in their disciplines nationally and internationally, taking leadership roles in subject associations, networks and organisations such as Cinesonika, SCUDD (Standing Committee of University Drama Departments), TaPRA (Theatre and Performance Research Association) and ISSTA (Irish Sound, Science and Technology Association). A number also serve on the Peer Review College for the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and as assessors for the Europe-wide Horizon 2020 programme.
In addition to our collaborations across disciplines, our unit benefits from its connections with a range of partnerships with key arts and cultural organisations across the UK and Ireland, including the BBC, RTÉ, National Museums Northern Ireland, the Contemporary Music Centre (IE), Sound and Music (UK), Nesta, the Abbey Theatre, the Playhouse Theatre, Cultúrlann uí Chanáin, Void Gallery, the Nerve Centre, FabLab NI, the Walled City Music Festival and City of Derry Jazz Festival. The majority of our researchers are based at Magee campus in Derry/Londonderry, the inaugural UK City of Culture (2013).
A significant proportion of our research students have been awarded scholarships from Northern Ireland's Department for the Economy (DfE) and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC).
As a full time student, the expectation is that you will work on your project on a daily basis, either on or off campus as agreed with your supervisor. You will be entitled to 40 days holiday per annum.
Part time students are expected to meet with their supervisors on a regular basis, most usually this would be monthly but this is dependent on the project area.