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Communications, Cultural and Media Studies – Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) PhD Studentship

PGRs working on communications, cultural and media studies projects are normally housed in the Department of English and Creative Arts.

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In REF 2021, 66% of our overall research profile in communications, cultural and media studies was judged to be world-leading or internationally excellent. We undertake research in the areas of television and film studies, popular culture, media studies, communications, and animation. Research specialisms in the department cover a diverse range of subjects that include animals, environment and climate change, activism and political communication, politics of popular culture, identity, migration and diaspora, transnationalism and localism, genre studies, political economy, industry studies, arts and wellbeing, and creative practice.

The department is home to:

We also work closely with:

The department hosts a range of events including the annual Critical Studies in Television Conference, ICR Conference, a biannual Human Animal Studies Conference and we have research seminar series that run each semester. GTAs are encouraged to join one of the research groups or centres and there are opportunities throughout the year to get involved with our conferences and seminar series. Postgraduate researchers are supervised by experienced academics, and we have an excellent record of GTAs securing academic positions after completing their PhDs.

The University particularly welcomes applications for studentships in the project areas outlined below. All postgraduate researchers will be supported by a supervisory team with appropriate expertise. Also, see the University’s research repository for further information on the research outputs of each member of staff.

“As a PhD student, an important part of your journey is your relationship with your supervisors. It can make or mar you. It can inspire you or make you anxious for the rest of your journey.

I have been blessed with an amazing supervisory team who have been consistent in guiding, encouraging, supporting and directing me at every step of the way. They make my student experience enjoyable.

I am proud to say that they have given me wings to fly. I couldn’t have asked for a better team, and I am thankful to each of them for their kindness and support.”

Aniekan Ekpenyong – PhD Postgraduate Researcher


Please direct all enquiries about proposed projects on topics related to communications, cultural and media studies to Professor Brett Mills, Graduate School research degree contact for communications, cultural and media studies, by emailing [email protected] stating the specific research theme/s of interest from the research themes list.

Research themes

Television Studies Research Group

  • Contemporary television genres and textual analysis.
  • Transnationalism, regionalism and localism.
  • Comedy.
  • Masculinities.
  • Industry studies.
  • Climate change.
  • Serial drama.

International Centre on Racism

  • American cinema and representations of race.

Screen Studies

  • European cinema.
  • Transnational, regional cinemas.
  • Childhood films.
  • The Western.
  • Industry studies.
  • Science fiction disaster narratives.
  • Popular aesthetics.
  • Music video.
  • 3D CGI.

Centre for Human Animal studies

  • Animals in media, film and/or television.
  • Animal performance, animal stars, animal celebrity.
  • Multispecies storytelling.
  • Vegan culture/ representations of veganism.
  • Animal advocacy and activism.
  • Climate change, media, communication and culture.

Culture, Power and Inclusion Research Group

  • Politics of media and popular culture.
  • Media, migration and diaspora.
  • Arts, health and wellbeing.
  • Activism and political communication.
  • Social media and marginalised communities.
  • Adoption studies.
  • Transmedia adaptations.
  • Media and food cultures and policies.
  • Music, technology and festival culture.

EHU Nineteen

  • Romantic Studies including women’s writing, gothic fiction, and children’s literature.
  • Nineteenth Century Studies, including gender theory, popular culture, and reception studies.
  • Neo-Victorianism and other adaptations of the long nineteenth century from the period itself to the present day.
  • Nineteenth-century animal welfare, antivivisection, activism.
  • Animals, sentiment and/or anthropomorphism in nineteenth century culture.