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A PhD in Hispanic Studies enables you to undertake a substantial piece of supervised research in the subject that makes an original contribution to knowledge and is worthy of publication.
A PhD, also known as a doctorate, is a requirement for a career as an academic or researcher. In addition, it has become a qualification valued by many employers who recognise the skills and commitment a PhD requires. Employers also recognise that a PhD indicates excellent research capabilities, discipline and communication skills.
Over the duration of the PhD, you produce an original piece of research of up to 100,000 words, in English or Spanish. Current research students are working on topics such as Spanish film legislation, contemporary Spanish film cultures, and the voluntary sterilisation campaigns under Alberto Fujimori’s government in Peru. Previous research theses have included work the translation of culture-bound elements found in Catalan films.
The main areas of research in the areas of Peninsular Studies (Spain) and Latin American Studies in the Department are in popular culture and subcultures in Spain; Spanish cultural studies and film studies; state formation and political culture in the Andes from the end of the colonial period; military culture in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in South America; Mexico, Cuba and the Caribbean in the 20th and 21st centuries; and, the intersection of market forces and articulations of national identity, especially in the contexts of tourism and nation branding.
The Department of Modern Languages offers supervision from world-class academics with expertise in a wide range of disciplines, who are able to support and guide you through your research. Your progress is carefully monitored to ensure that you are on track to produce a thesis valued by the academic community. Throughout your programme, you are able to attend and contribute to research seminars, workshops, and research and transferable skills training courses.
You may be eligible for a fully-funded PhD scholarship to support your studies with us. The PhD in Hispanic Studies at Kent can be funded through the Consortium for the Humanities and the Arts South-East England (CHASE) collaborative doctoral partnerships. Please indicate in your application if you want to be considered, and explain your eligibility for the scheme. For the full list of scholarships available within the School, please see our postgraduate scholarship page.
A first or upper-second class BA honours degree or equivalent in a relevant subject, a distinction or merit in an MA programme or equivalent in a relevant subject (eg Hispanic Studies)
Research students need to demonstrate competence in Spanish (and Catalan if relevant).
All applicants are considered on an individual basis and additional qualifications, professional qualifications and relevant experience may also be taken into account when considering applications.
Please see our International Student website for entry requirements by country and other relevant information. Due to visa restrictions, students who require a student visa to study cannot study part-time unless undertaking a distance or blended-learning programme with no on-campus provision.
The University requires all non-native speakers of English to reach a minimum standard of proficiency in written and spoken English before beginning a postgraduate degree. Certain subjects require a higher level.
For detailed information see our English language requirements web pages.
Please note that if you are required to meet an English language condition, we offer a number of pre-sessional courses in English for Academic Purposes through Kent International Pathways.
Duration: 3 to 4 years full-time, 5 to 6 years part-time
The 2022/23 UK fees for this course are:
For details of when and how to pay fees and charges, please see our Student Finance Guide.
For students continuing on this programme fees will increase year on year by no more than RPI + 3% in each academic year of study except where regulated.* If you are uncertain about your fee status please contact email@example.com.
The University will assess your fee status as part of the application process. If you are uncertain about your fee status you may wish to seek advice from UKCISA before applying.
Find out more about general additional costs that you may pay when studying at Kent.
Search our scholarships finder for possible funding opportunities. You may find it helpful to look at both:
In the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, modern languages and linguistics was ranked 3rd for research quality, 3rd for research output and in the top 20 for research intensity, research impact and research power in the UK.
Our submission was the highest ranked nationally to include modern languages – a testament to our position as the UK’s European university. An impressive 100% of our research was judged to be of international quality and the School’s environment was judged to be conducive to supporting the development of world-leading research.
Hispanic Studies can be broadly characterised as concerned with modern Hispanic studies, with two peninsular (Dr Antonio Lázaro-Reboll and Professor Núria Triana-Toribio) and two Latin American (Dr William Rowlandson and Dr Natalia Sobrevilla Perea) specialists. The Department’s range of interests covers contemporary Spanish drama, film and poetry; modern and avant-garde Spanish visual culture; Catalan studies; peninsular cultural studies; Latin American literature, including poetry, history, politics (in particular the Republican Andes) and culture; and Cuban literature, film and visual art.
Provides supervision in many aspects of American Studies. Supervision is team-based and reflects the active research interests of the Centre, which broadly fit within the parameters of American literature, American history, American film and American politics.
Drawing together scholars from across the University – including Arts, European Culture and Languages, Digital Arts and Engineering, History, English and American Studies, Law, Sociology and beyond – the group furnishes a lively, member-led research culture that serves as a forum for Kent-based researchers and as a beacon for the international community.
Many of the most significant European writers and literary movements of the modern period have traversed national, linguistic, and disciplinary borders. Co-directed by members of Comparative Literature, French, and German, the Centre for Modern European Literature aims to promote collaborative interdisciplinary research that can do justice to these kinds of border crossing. Ranging across English, French, German, Italian and Spanish literature, the Centre focuses in particular on the European avant-garde, European modernism and postmodernism, literary theory, the international reception of European writers, and the relations between modern European literature and the other arts, including painting, photography, film, music and architecture. The Centre’s activities include a lecture and seminar series and the regular organisation of conferences. It also works with the editors of the postgraduate journal Skepsi.
Kent’s world-class academics provide research students with excellent supervision. The academic staff in this school and their research interests are shown below. You are strongly encouraged to contact the school to discuss your proposed research and potential supervision prior to making an application. Please note, it is possible for students to be supervised by a member of academic staff from any of Kent’s schools, providing their expertise matches your research interests. Use our ‘find a supervisor’ search to search by staff member or keyword.
Full details of staff research interests can be found on the School's website.
The Department of Modern Languages is committed to developing your employability through a wide range of School events. Our graduates develop skills highly prized by employers in industry and the public sector, including oral and written communication, intellectual skills, and intercultural awareness and understanding.
Recent Hispanic Studies graduates have gone on to work in areas such as media, publishing, public administration, charities and voluntary work, education and teaching in the UK and around the world.
The Templeman Library has excellent holdings in all our areas of research interest, with particular strengths in modern European (including Spanish) and Latin American literature, as well as Spanish film and cultural studies. The School provides high-quality facilities in IT, with state-of-the-art language laboratories, dedicated technical staff and designated areas for postgraduate study. Language-learning and translation facilities include eight all-purpose teaching rooms and two networked multimedia laboratories. The University of Kent’s location is the best in Britain for students who need to visit not only the British Library (London) but also the major libraries and research centres on the European mainland.
Every year, a considerable number of native speakers of foreign languages follow our courses and several European exchange students stay on to do graduate work. There are also foreign-language lectors either combining teaching with a Kent higher degree or completing a dissertation for their home universities. We can assist with the language-training needs of overseas postgraduates, particularly where English is concerned, and are also involved in Erasmus and Tempus networks.
All postgraduate students in SECL have the opportunity to undertake a Researcher Development Programme provided by the Graduate School. The School provides training workshops for postgraduate students with teaching responsibilities, which bring together students from all its subject areas. Research students gain further academic experience by giving research talks in the Centre for Modern European Literature or the Centre for the Interdisciplinary Study of Film and the Moving Image and attending national and international conferences.
We encourage all of our postgraduate students to get involved in conferences, whether by attending, contributing or organising. Postgraduate students in Hispanic Studies are actively involved in the conferences organised by the journal Skepsi (founded and run by SECL postgraduate students).
Staff publish regularly and widely in journals, conference proceedings and books. Among others, they have recently contributed to: The Americas; Journal of Romance Studies; Hispanic Research Journal; Journal of Spanish Cultural Studies; and Screen.
Kent's Graduate School co-ordinates the Researcher Development Programme for research students, which includes workshops focused on research, specialist and transferable skills. The programme is mapped to the national Researcher Development Framework and covers a diverse range of topics, including subject-specific research skills, research management, personal effectiveness, communication skills, networking and teamworking, and career management skills.