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Study a Master of Research (MRes) degree at Bath

Our MRes degrees prepare you for doctoral (PhD) study or a range of careers requiring data analysis skills. Explore opportunities and funding at Bath.

How is an MRes different to other master's degrees?

A Master of Research (often called an MRes) is a master’s degree with a focus on research.

Whereas most master’s degrees - such as an MSc or MA - follow a series of structured units and end with a dissertation, MRes degrees are based on a research project. You’ll study taught units alongside this to develop your skills to carry out your project effectively.

The taught aspect of an MRes distinguishes it from other research-based degrees. Alternatives, like an MPhil, can be entirely project-based without additional teaching.

Often people choose to complete MRes degrees in preparation for doctoral study, as they're designed to provide the core research skills needed.

However, you can use the knowledge and expertise you’ll gain to progress to a range of non-academic careers with a research focus. This is particularly useful because many private and public sector organisations value people with the ability to provide actionable insights from qualitative and quantitative data.

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MRes degrees at Bath

We offer a range of discipline-specific and interdisciplinary MRes degrees. These focus on different subjects and can be a pathway to a PhD if you don’t have a suitable master’s degree. All are available as 1-year full-time or 2-years part-time study.

Fund your MRes

A number of our MRes degrees are eligible for Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) funding through the South West Doctoral Training Programme (SWDTP).

If you want to pursue this, you’ll need to study a relevant MRes as part of a 1+3 award. The ‘1’ in this refers to your one-year MRes degree, which would be followed by ‘3’ years of doctoral study for your PhD.

The duration of the four years will be funded, but you’ll need to complete the MRes before you can progress to the PhD.

The 1+3 option offers the opportunity to broaden your knowledge and understanding of a topic and/or field, refine your research questions, and develop and focus your research skills. This will help to prepare you for your PhD studies.

Find out more about SWDTP funding and the 1+3 route
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Skills to enhance your employability

Studying an MRes doesn’t mean you have to go on to do a PhD.

The mix of taught units and your research project will enhance your research skills and subject knowledge, which may make you more desirable to employers.

Across our MRes courses, we work to provide you with the tools and support to prepare you for employment and further study. This includes advanced quantitative and qualitative research skills, as well as bibliographic skills and how to use appropriate technology to undertake research tasks.

There is an increasing demand for high-level quantitative and qualitative research skills from a wide range of private and public sector recruiters. Many firms and government departments are now committed to data-driven decision-making, making use of the increased availability of big data.

An MRes degree can help you to demonstrate a hybrid skill set that combines quantitative, computing and analytical skills with an understanding of your chosen subject area.

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Study in a research-focused environment

Our academic departments are research active. Their work changes lives, informs policy and practice, improves people's health and wellbeing, and contributes to economic growth.

92% of University of Bath research submitted to the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021 was classified as 4* or 3*, meaning it is ‘world-leading’ and ‘internationally excellent’.

As an MRes student, you’ll benefit from studying in an environment that values up-to-date research. You’ll be taught by experts in their fields, whose research influences the content of units we deliver.

Find out more about our research
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