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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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All postgraduate researchers (PGRs) are registered in the University’s Graduate School and housed in the faculty or department that is most appropriate for the project on which they are working. PGRs working on communications, cultural and media studies projects are normally housed in the Department of English and Creative Arts.

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:

  • Television Studies Research Group
  • Culture, Power and Inclusion Research Group
  • Practice Research Group
  • Centre for Human Animal Studies (CfHAS)
  • EMERG – Emergent Media & Entertainment Research Group
  • EHU Nineteen: Centre for Nineteenth-Century Studies.

The department hosts a range of events including the annual Critical Studies in Television Conference, ICR Conference, a biannual Human Animal Studies Conference and research seminar series that run each semester. GTAs are encouraged to join one of the above research groupings and there are opportunities throughout the year to be 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. See the University’s research repository for further information on the research outputs of each member of staff.

In the first instance please direct all enquiries about proposed projects on topics related to communications, cultural and media studies to both and Professor Brett Mills, Graduate School Research Degree Contact for Communications, Cultural and Media Studies (

Research themes

Television Studies Research Group

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

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
  • Dangerous dogs/ breed specific legislation

Practice Research Group

  • Physical practice-based research including performance and theatre
  • Screen and virtual practice-based research including animation, film, and motion design
  • Complementary or other creative practice-based research activity

Culture, Power and Inclusion Research Group

  • Politics of popular culture
  • Media, migration and diaspora
  • Film, history and memory
  • Arts, health and wellbeing
  • Arts activism and advocacy
  • Postcolonial, civic and political theatres
  • Climate crisis and the arts
  • Environmental theatre and sustainability
  • Creative writing and aesthetics
  • Theatre, literature and psychological perspectives

EMERG (Emergent Media & Entertainment Research Group)

  • Biotech art
  • Generative art and artificial intelligence
  • Human-computer interaction in music
  • Immersive performance and media
  • Interactive installation art, storytelling, video and performance
  • Ludomusicology
  • Social media
  • Transmedia storytelling
  • Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), and Extended Reality (XR)
  • Wearable art

EHU Nineteen

  • 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.