Hispanic, Portuguese and Latin American Studies

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Run by Faculty of Arts
Awards available PhD, MPhil
Programme length MPhil: one year full-time;
two years part-time
PhD: four years full-time (minimum period of study three years);
eight years part-time
Location of programme Clifton campus
Part-time study available Yes
Start date January 2022 September 2022 January 2023 The MPhil and PhD can be studied via distance learning.

Programme overview

MPhil: a standalone, one-year (full-time) research degree. Students will undertake their own research project, concluding in the submission of a 25,000 word dissertation. Students may have the option to audit units from our taught master's courses if they are relevant to their research.

PhD: a research project undertaken across four years (full-time, minimum period of study three years), culminating in an 80,000 word thesis. As well as having the option to audit taught units, there may be the potential for PhD students to teach units themselves from their second year of study onwards.

Research in the department ranges widely across the Hispanic and Lusophone worlds, from the early-modern period to the present, and geographically across the Americas, Africa and Europe.

A great deal of our research centres on the nature of connections:

  • connections between places
  • connections between times
  • connections between disciplines.

Global culture and history are fundamental to our work. We research how Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countries shaped the world, across Europe, America, Africa and Asia. We ask how they fit into the wider globe. We explore new ways to express those relationships, including through digital humanities.

We welcome applications from students wishing to pursue tailor-made research to master's (MPhil) or doctoral (PhD) level. All postgraduates participate in a vigorous programme of research events and make key contributions to the research activities of the department, the School of Modern Languages and the faculty.

Fees for 2022/23

We charge an annual tuition fee. Fees for 2022/23 are as follows:

UK: full-time
UK: part-time
Overseas: full-time

Following the recent changes to fee assessment regulation, Channel Islands and Isle of Man students will no longer be charged a separate tuition fee. From the 2021/22 academic year they will be charged the same fees as Home students.

Fees are subject to an annual review. For programmes that last longer than one year, please budget for up to a five per cent increase in fees each year. Find out more about tuition fees.

Alumni discount

University of Bristol students and graduates can benefit from a 25% reduction in tuition fees for postgraduate study. Check your eligibility for an alumni discount.

Funding for 2022/23

The University of Bristol is part of the South, West and Wales Doctoral Training Partnership (SWW DTP), which will be offering studentships for September 2022. For information on other funding opportunities, please see the Faculty of Arts funding pages.

Further information on funding for prospective UK, EU and international postgraduate students.

Entry requirements

MPhil: An upper second-class degree (or international equivalent). Please note, acceptance will also depend on evidence of your readiness to pursue a research degree.

PhD: A master's qualification, or be working towards a master's qualification, or international equivalent. Applicants without a master's qualification may be considered on an exceptional basis, provided they hold a first-class undergraduate degree (or international equivalent). Applicants with a non-traditional background may be considered provided they can demonstrate substantial equivalent and relevant experience that has prepared them to undertake their proposed course of study.

See international equivalent qualifications on the International Office website.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you need to meet this profile level:
Profile C
Further information about English language requirements and profile levels.

Admissions statement

Read the programme admissions statement for important information on entry requirements, the application process and supporting documents required.

Admissions statement

Research groups

Bristol is one of the great Atlantic ports, linked historically to the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking worlds. We work on the nature of connections in large national, international and regional collaborations, such as the 19th-century International Hispanists Network; LUDENS (sport and football); the New Woman project; and the UK Latin American Historians Network. We have ongoing research collaborations with universities across Europe and Latin America, such as the Universidad Pontificia Catolica in Chile and the University of Las Palmas. The Ramon Llull Institute supports our work in Catalan Studies.

We welcome applicants with cross-disciplinary projects. A high number of our postgraduates are supervised across multiple disciplines (eg anthropology, education, history, history of art, music, translation studies).

From memory to sport, visual arts to history, linguistics to literature, our work matters to multiple academic fields. Collectively, we value and explore the composite nature of our subject. Our students collaborate with their postgraduate colleagues across multiple disciplines, for example in the graduate-led Literary and Visual Cultures group, and through Migration Mobilities Bristol. Among our current cross-disciplinary projects are:

  • Atlantic Studies
  • Digital Cultures
  • Environmental Humanities
  • Landscapes and Soundscapes
  • Sport
  • Transnationalism
  • Linguistics

Our wide-ranging work reaches beyond academia. We encourage graduate students to have a wider impact beyond their written research. Each year we hold a Cultural Week (Semana Cultural) involving organisations such as Choque Cultural in Brazil.  Our researchers have worked with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Parliamentary Committee on Guinea-Bissau, rural communities in Peru and the Prince’s Teaching Institute.


The majority of graduates from this programme develop careers as academics in higher education, while maintaining the capacity to undertake new and innovative research in the field of Hispanic, Portuguese and Latin American studies.

Staff profiles

Dr Matthew Brown, (Professor), Digital humanities; historical links between Britain and Latin America; historical studies of Latin America, 18th to 20th centuries; sport history; sterilization and rural communities (Peru).

Dr Joanna Crow, (Senior Lecturer), Chile-Peru connections; digital humanities; indigenous cultures, agency, and networks in Chile; Latin American studies; modern Latin American literature.

Dr James Hawkey, (Lecturer), Hispanic sociolinguistics; language policy and language contact; multilingual speech communities.

Dr Francisco J. (Paco) Romero Salvado, (Reader), modern Spanish history; praetorian politics; revolution; social conflict; Spain as a laboratory of European conflict; the Spanish Civil War.

Dr Edward King, (Lecturer), Brazilian literary and visual culture (including the graphic novel); interconnections between culture and technology; power dynamics connected to technological change; science fiction.

Dr Sally-Ann Kitts, (Senior Lecturer), 18th-century Spanish studies; digital humanities; Spanish theatre from the Golden Age to the Second Republic; the idea of the modern self: British-Spanish connections in the Enlightenment.

Dr Jose Lingna Nafafe, (Lecturer), 17th and 18th century Portuguese and Brazilian history; Lusophone Atlantic African diaspora; migrant culture and integration; race, religion and ethnicity postcolonial theory and the Lusophone Atlantic; slavery and wage-labour.

Dr Caragh Wells, (Senior Lecturer), contemporary Spanish literature; feminism and gender studies; literary theory; the concept of oneness; women writers and urban fiction.

Apply now

Find out how to apply

Application deadline

January 2022 start: 1 December 2021
September 2022 start: 1 August 2022
January 2023 start: 1 December 2022

Open days and visits

Watch on-demand recordings from November's virtual open week.

Get in touch

Faculty of Arts Postgraduate Research Admissions Phone: +44 (0) 117 428 2296 Email: artf-pgadmissions@bristol.ac.uk

Faculty of Arts
University of Bristol
7 Woodland Road
School website: School of Modern Languages
Department website: Department of Hispanic, Portuguese and Latin American Studies

International students

Find out more about becoming a student at Bristol, applying for a visa and the support we offer to international students.

Bristol Doctoral College

The Bristol Doctoral College facilitates and supports doctoral training and researcher development across the University.

REF 2021 results

The University of Bristol is ranked fifth for research in the UK (Times Higher Education), with 94% of our research assessed as world-leading or internationally excellent.

Full REF 2021 results for the University of Bristol.


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