Making an application to conduct doctoral research

The process of applying to undertake doctoral research at NCAD requires a full proposal outlining the nature of the project and an interview. For details of how to apply, please see here

Applicants need to demonstrate the originality and significance of the work that they propose to undertake. This involves

  • scoping a clearly defined research question or field;
  • establishing the methods by which the research will be conducted;
  • identifying suitable sources of evidence (such as archives, interviews, data);
  • mapping the existing scholarship in the field to establish how your proposal is likely to make 'an original contribution to knowledge.' 

We recognise that projects evolve and develop over time. Nevertheless, we expect that applicants will be able to map the areas listed above in their application. 

All NCAD research students are supported by two supervisors with expertise in the area being studied. 

Applicants are welcome to contact the college prior to making a formal application to discuss the suitability of their ideas. If there is a member of the faculty who might be a suitable supervisor, you are welcome to contact them directly (for profiles please see here). Alternatively, please send an email directly to

Research students at NCAD have benefitted from the support from national and international bodies including the Irish Research Council

Doctoral students can commence their studies at the beginning of the first semester (September) or the second semester (January) each year.