University of Nottingham Malaysia

Business and Management PhD


Fact file

Qualification: PhD
Fees: PhD (per year):Malaysian – RM35,700, Non-Malaysian – RM41,900
Mode: Full-time, 3-4 years, Part-time, 6-8 years
Intake: February and September
Campus: Malaysia

Course overview

The School welcomes applications from suitably qualified students to undertake research leading to a PhD, available on either a full-time or part-time basis.

When you are admitted to the University to study for a doctorate, you would normally be registered at PhD level. At the end of Year 1, subject to the satisfactory completion of the annual review, your PhD status will be confirmed. If your progress is unsatisfactory, you may be downgraded to MPhil status. Completion of all doctoral research training modules is a necessary pre-requisite for confirming PhD status.

PhD structure

An overview of the structure of a typical full-time doctoral timetable is as follows:

Year 1

  • Attend appropriate taught modules both within NUBS Malaysia and the Graduate School
  • Define the nature of the research problem, identify appropriate analytic frameworks, and expect to have completed a first draft of Literature Review chapters
  • Year 1 annual review (June) 

Year 2

  • Expect to complete empirical work. If data collection is likely to be a lengthy process, e.g. due to issues related to gaining access to companies or because the study is longitudinal in nature, then the empirical work may start quite early in the student’s second year, or even at the end of the first year
  • Year 2 annual review (June) 

Year 3

  • Commence formal writing-up
  • Expect to complete empirical work and produce draft write-up of results
  • Submit completed thesis
  • Year 3 annual review (June) 

Writing up

Although a fourth year writing-up period is available, the expectation is that you will submit your thesis within three years. It is important that your research is written up on a continual basis during the three years of registration. Continual writing-up means that you should expect to prepare chapters to be read and commented on by your supervisors on a regular basis. This should help to ensure that when the formal writing-up period begins, you have a first draft of a thesis ready for modification. 

Annual review

For your Year 1 annual review, you will submit a draft Literature Review chapter (8,000 words) and make a short presentation about your research to a review panel of assessors, which will include a clear summary of what you have achieved over the previous year, and a timeline for the completion of your PhD.

You will also undergo a similar annual review at the end of Year 2 and Year 3. As part of the Year 2 annual review, you will submit a revised literature chapter and a sample chapter, which is likely to be a methods or empirical chapter. You will also be required to present your work to a review panel of assessors.

Within your Year 3 annual review, you will submit a commentary that details how you have addressed the feedback received from the Year 2 annual review, and one or more empirical research chapters. You will also be required to present your work to a review panel of assessors.


You will be assigned two academic supervisors who will provide guidance on the formal specification of your topic, the structure and organisation of your thesis and the general direction of the research. Regular supervision will help to ensure that your research progresses in the appropriate way. As a full-time doctoral student, you will meet with your supervisors on at least 10 occasions during the year. If you are a part-time student, at least six meetings take place during the year.

Please refer to the research interests of our academic staff who supervise PhD research to determine if your research interests coincide with those of a potential supervisor. You may also refer to information on Research at NUBS Malaysia to determine if your research interests correspond with the wider research agenda within the School.


The proposal is an integral part of the application for a position on the PhD programme at NUBS Malaysia. It will allow potential supervisors to look at the applicant’s research and help them decide whether the proposal is feasible for completion and whether they (the potential supervisors) can offer supervision or not. The proposal will also be considered by the School’s Research Committee to determine if there is adequate support for such a topic to be carried out at NUBS Malaysia. The proposal is expected to be 1,000 to 2,000 words long.

If the applicant wishes to contact a member of academic staff from NUBS Malaysia to discuss potential supervision arrangements, it is advised that the applicant should either have a proposal ready, or is in the process of preparing a proposal to facilitate the discussion.

You may wish to refer to this guide on writing a research proposal.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

A masters degree in a relevant subject (normally with an average over 65% in the taught modules and normally 65% in the dissertation, or its equivalent). Professional, business or industrial qualifications are also valued for some research areas. Non-UK qualifications will be assessed against this standard.

Applicants must have graduated from an approved university. Other equivalent qualifications will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Entry requirements in the prospectus and website may not always apply and individual offers may vary.

English language requirements

IELTS: 7.0 (no less than 6.0 in each element)

TOEFL (iBT): 100 (minimum 20 in speaking and 19 in all other elements)

PTE (Academic): 76 (with no less than 65 in each element)

MUET: Band 5

IELTS, TOEFL and PTE (Academic) test results must be less than two years old and all IELTS must be the academic version of the test. MUET results are valid for five years from the date of the release of results.


PhD modules

To aid you in the transition to independent research and to help you acquire the necessary skills, you will complete a number of assessed taught modules during your first year of study. All full-time students normally complete these modules during their first year of study, while part-time students complete them within two years. An exception to this is the module The Context of Management Research, which is scheduled for the second year of PhD study. The School’s research training programme is outlined below.

Typical core modules

All streams

  • Developing Management Research
  • Research Design and Philosophy

General management stream

  • Introduction to Research Design and Data Analysis

Finance stream

  • Contemporary Topics in Finance
  • Topics in Advanced Econometrics

Economics stream

  • Advanced Microeconomics or Advanced Macroeconomic Theory (optional)
  • Topics in Advanced Econometrics


Find out about scholarships, financial assistance and specific research funding available to all malaysian and international students.


Nottingham University Business School Malaysia
The University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus
Jalan Broga,
43500 Semenyih
Selangor Darul Ehsan
t:   +6 (03) 8924 8000  
f:   +6 (03) 8924 8005 
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University of Nottingham Malaysia

Jalan Broga, 43500 Semenyih
Selangor Darul Ehsan

telephone: +6 03 8924 8000
fax: +6 03 8924 8005

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