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The Law School is active in a number of applied research projects and provides doctoral research opportunities and expertise in a wide range of law subject areas. Our research has been determined to be either at the level of 'International Excellence' or internationally recognised in over half of its output, in terms of its originality, significance and rigour.
Start Date
MRes | MPhil | PhD
Start Date
February and October

We are particularly interested in Law research opportunities in the following specific areas: 

  • Medical Law – Dr Sarah Christie
    • The legal regulation of assisted suicide
    • Autonomy and capacity in decision-making
  • Criminal Law – Dr Sarah Christie
    • Responsibility of action in criminal law
    • Corporate offending and the adequacy of sanctions
  • Property Law – Dr Craig Anderson
    • The legal regulation or property rights
    • The influence of Roman Law on Scots Law and other legal systems
    • The regulation of matrimonial property
  • Energy Law – Dr Leon Moller and Mr John Karlberg
    • The regulatory and policy context surrounding unconventional oil and gas projects
    • Transboundary extraction of oil and gas reserves
  • Criminal Law – Ms Laura Sharp
    • The extent of prosecutorial discretion - transparency, accountability and the scope for legal challenge
    • Victims and witnesses in Scotland - is effectiveness and due process being sacrificed to efficiency and crime control
    • Sentencing guidelines in Scotland in the light of the trend towards individualised sentencing
  • Managing concurrent jurisdiction in International Criminal Law - Dr Paul Arnell
  • The regulation of contractual disputes and the choice of applicable law – Dr David Hill
  • The impact of tribunal fees on access to tribunals in Scotland – Mrs Margaret Downie 

We are also interested in the following broad Law research opportunities: 

  • Legal Theory
  • Employment Law
  • Evidence, Dispute Resolution and Arbitration
  • International Human Rights Law
  • International Trade Law
  • Public International Law
  • Oil and Gas Law 
  • Environmental Law 
  • Law of the Sea 
  • Energy Law and Policy

Normal entry requirements are a first or upper second class honours degree from a University of the United Kingdom, or from an overseas University, or degree equivalent qualification, subject to the approval of Robert Gordon University. Applicants holding qualifications other than those above shall be considered on their merits and in relation to the nature and scope of the proposed research programme. 

Applicants holding qualifications other than those above shall be considered on their merits and in relation to the nature and scope of the proposed research programme. Applicants will normally register for an MSc/PhD or MRes/PhD with transfer to PhD dependent on satisfactory progress. However, applicants who already possess a Master’s degree which includes a significant research component could be registered directly for a PhD, subject to a satisfactory research proposal, and clear evidence of research expertise. 

English Language

Any applicant whose first language or language of previous University-level instruction is not English must normally demonstrate competence in English. This should be a score of IELTS 6.5 or equivalent.

We accept a variety of in-country and secure English language tests, find out more:

English Language requirements

Our Pre-Sessional English Programme (PSP) is available for students who have not yet reached the required English level and those who would like to improve their language competency.

Pre-Sessional English Programme at RGU

Please note, some courses may require a higher standard of English than stated in this page. Contact for further information.


UK/EU Students


  • £4,407 per academic year

Part-time MPhil/PhD

  • £2,645 per academic year

Part-time MRes/MSc by research

  • £2,205 per academic year

International Students


  • £14,420 per academic year

Part-time MPhil/PhD

  • £8,652 per academic year

Part-time MRes/MSc by research

  • £7,210 per academic year

UK/EU Students


  • £4,327 per academic year


  • £2,600 per academic year

International Students 


  • £14,070 per academic year


  • £8,442 per academic year

The following course-related costs are not included in the course fees:



Robert Gordon University is delighted to offer a 20% loyalty discount on course fees for all alumni who have graduated from RGU.



Postgraduate students will normally make their own arrangements for payment of fees. However, there are a limited number of SAAS funded places on certain postgraduate courses.
There are also sources of funding that are applicable to categories of student.



You may also qualify for a scholarship or financial award:



For new intakes course fees are reviewed and published annually for each mode of delivery. Tuition fees are fixed for the duration of a course at the rate confirmed in the offer letter. For further information see:

Student Finance


All applications should be made via the University's online application for research students.

Our Research degrees usually start in February and October each year. There is no official deadline for you to submit your application, though we recommend you submit it as early as possible in order to ensure we can help you join us at your preferred time.

Completed application forms should be accompanied by:
  • Two academic references
  • A transcript or mark sheet for all graduate qualifications
  • A draft research proposal, or at least a short summary to indicate the potential area of research (Refer to Section 8 of the Application Form)

For applicants whose first language or language of university education is not English, applications must include:

  • Certificate of English language competency score of IELTS 6.5 in each of the four test components (Listening, Reading, Writing, Speaking).
  • Students who can demonstrate successful completion of tertiary (university or college) studies in a country whose national language is English, may be exempted from this requirement.


For more information on your proposal and application:

Dr Sarah Christie Research Co-Ordinator

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