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Cardiff University offers ESRC PhD Studentship, comics scholars welcomed

The Centre for Language and Communication Research at Cardiff University will be offering an ESRC PhD studentship at Cardiff University, starting 1 October 2015. Although the list of areas covered doesn’t specifically mention comics and graphic novels, we’ve been informed they would certainly welcome applications in this area. Here’s the details…

ESRC PhD Studentship in Language and Communication at Cardiff University 2015/16

The Centre for Language and Communication Research (CLCR) is able to support applications for one Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) three-year PhD studentship to commence on 1 October 2015, covering tuition fees plus a generous stipend, on a competitive basis within the ESRC Doctoral Training Centre (DTC) Wales Consortium, led by Cardiff University.  Full awards (fees plus maintenance stipend) are open to UK Nationals and EU students who can satisfy UK residency requirements.

To be eligible for the full award, EU Nationals must have been in the UK for at least three years prior to the start of the course for which they are seeking funding, including for the purposes of full-time education. EU Nationals who do not meet the above residency requirement are eligible for a fees only award, provided that they have been ordinarily resident in the EU for at least 3 years prior to the start of their proposed programme of study.

The ESRC website has a very helpful section on frequently asked questions about the award scheme.

In order to be considered for a studentship, you firstly need to apply for a place on the PhD Language and Communication Research programme in the Centre for Language and Communication Research at Cardiff University via the University’s Direct Application Service.  As well as your application, you will need to supply the following supporting documents: 2 academic references, a detailed research proposal, personal statement, copies of your degree certificates and a transcript of the marks.  In the research proposal (around 1,000 words, 3-4 pages) please outline your rationale, proposed methodology, and research objectives, including a short bibliography.  In your personal statement, we would like you to tell us about why you are applying for a PhD – what your current situation is, whether you need a PhD for your own personal development, or for professional reasons, what your experience has been to date as a student/researcher/teacher in the area of English Language and Communication, and why you have chosen Cardiff as an appropriate research environment for your particular area of interest.

The areas covered by the ESRC that we are able to supervise are:

  • Linguistics Applied
  • Socio-cultural approaches to language and communication
  • Health Communication
  • Forensic Linguistics
  • Second language acquisition
  • Lexis
  • Discourse
  • Language as professional practice
  • Institutional discourse
  • Phonetics and Phonology
  • Systemic Functional Linguistics

Once you have an offer of a place on the PhD Language and Communication Research programme you will be eligible to apply for ESRC funding.  You will need to submit a separate ESRC application form which can be downloaded from

Or can be obtained from the School Postgraduate Office (email encap-pg@cardiff.ac.uk). Please submit your ESRC Studentship Application Form to encap-pg@cardiff.ac.uk.

• The deadline for funding is 5 p.m. Monday 9TH  March 2015.  For further details, please contact: Rhian Rattray, Postgraduate Manager for the School of English, Communication and Philosophy. Email: encap-pg@cardiff.ac.uk

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John Freeman

The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.

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