DInfSci Doctor of Information Science

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Research opportunities

The Professional Doctorate in Information Science (DInfSci) is a doctoral degree programme which allows experienced information professionals to research issues which arise from the practice of Information Science. Through the critical review and systematic application of appropriate theories and research methods to professional work environments, this programme allows you to increase your knowledge about practice, develop new research findings and improve your professional competence.

This programme has been designed for experienced professionals working in senior roles within the information profession. It offers a flexible and supportive method of study that allows you to continue in work whilst you study, develop a research programme that informs and enhances your own area of work, and study with some of the top Information Science researchers in the word. The DInfSci can be completed from wherever you are in the world.


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View our current research opportunities

THE Awards 2019: UK University of the Year Winner

Research areas

Our specialist themes are Data Science and Machine Learning, Information Behaviour, Interactive Information Retrieval, and Information Engagement.

Data Science & Machine Learning

Putting machine learning into practice is a necessary step towards developing systems that tailor the delivery of content to end-users in order to optimise their experience. Our group specialises in helping companies build the infrastructure for developing and developing data driven solutions. We employ state of the art algorithms to help facilitate the classification of documents, ranking and recommendation of content, analysing and measuring user behaviour and performance in order to extract value and actionable insights from customer interaction data -- facilitating the move to data-driven decision making.

Information Behaviour

Information Behaviour studies the wide range of ways in which people interact with information, from finding, creating, using, sharing, disseminating, and avoiding information. We conduct studies of behaviour in varied contexts, including education, health, cultural heritage, and work with many groups of information users, with a particular focus on marginalised groups to understand what barriers may be faced by those seeking information and how those barriers can be overcome.

Interactive Information Retrieval

Finding the right information is the key to success in the digital age. The Interactive Information Retrieval group specialises in understanding how people search for information and developing interactive search tools that support their information seeking and retrieval work tasks.  The Interactive Information Retrieval group takes a holistic approach to studying users and their search behaviours, developing tools and interfaces that provide effective and efficient access to heterogeneous, unstructured multi-media collections of information.

Information Engagement

Information Engagement studies how and why people engage with information, and how to increase user engagement, particularly in the domains of digital health and social media. Information Engagement includes a broad range of online information interactions, such as browsing, searching, finding, describing, sharing, repurposing, and interacting with information. Our work in information engagement with cultural heritage has focussed on how to develop and evaluate new ways to understand and appreciate museum exhibits. This has led to novel interactive exhibits in museums and large evaluation studies of information engagement in national and local museums. 

Why Strathclyde

QS 2023 ranked Strathclyde as 4th in the UK and 22nd in the world for Information & Library Studies. We've been a leading school of information and library science in the UK for over 70 years. We're a member of the prestigious iSchools organisation, and the Strathclyde iSchool Research Group is one of the leading information science research groups in the UK.

We bridge theory and practice, and have worked collaboratively with a number of partners on funded research including:

  • National Health Service (NHS) Scotland
  • BAE Systems
  • National Museums Scotland
  • Barnardos
  • National Galleries Scotland
  • BiP Solutions Ltd
  • National Library of Scotland
  • European Space Agency
  • Capita
  • Microsoft

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Course content

The course duration is a minimum of three years full-time or four years of part-time study. You'll normally undertake the research at your place of work and it should be relevant to your current position. The DInfSci can be conducted entirely remotely, and therefore is suitable for international applicants. Applicants who are closer to Strathclyde can attend physical events, such as seminars, as well as engage in distance supervision and training.

The DInfSci starts with a tailored programme of research preparation consisting of three stages.

The DInfSci can be undertaken full-time or part-time. As the DInfSci requires a significant amount of personal effort, it's best to speak to us about your own situation before you apply. We can advise on typical workloads and how your DInfSci plans may work alongside your other commitments.

Stage one: Literature & scholarship

Individual supervisory meetings and supporting material on how to conduct a literature search including use of specialist bibliographic databases will provide you with the means to create a solid academic foundation for your research programme. This stage will allow you to create a robust review of the academic and practitioner literature and be able to confidently articulate the knowledge gaps in your area of study.

Stage two Directed study on areas of specialist knowledge

This stage will allow you to define the area of professional practice which you wish to research. This stage will contain a mixture of analysis, scoping projects, and stakeholder interactions to define your research project and associated research questions. You may also choose from classes within our instructional programmes to supply additional skills and specialist knowledge.

Stage three Research methods

This stage will provide you with the required research skills for your research programme. You'll take our MSc level Research Methods course to understand the processes involved in designing a research project, be able to differentiate major research paradigms and methods associated with them, identify suitable research methods and instruments, plan a research project, create ethically sound research programme, and how to document your research.


Having pass these three preparatory stages, you'll then undertake your individual research programme culminating in a thesis of around 60, 000 words.

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Fees & funding

All fees quoted are per academic year unless otherwise stated.

Entrants may be subject to a small fee during the writing up period.

Fees may be subject to updates to maintain accuracy. Tuition fees will be notified in your offer letter.

All fees are in £ sterling, unless otherwise stated, and may be subject to revision.

Annual revision of fees

Students on programmes of study of more than one year (or studying standalone modules) should be aware that tuition fees are revised annually and may increase in subsequent years of study. Annual increases will generally reflect UK inflation rates and increases to programme delivery costs.

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  • 2024/25: £4,786
  • 2023/24: £4,712
England, Wales & Northern Ireland
  • 2024/25: £4,786
  • 2023/24: £4,712
  • 2024/25: £22,400

Take a look at our funding your postgraduate research web page for funding information.

You can also view our scholarships search for further funding opportunities.

Postgraduate research opportunities

Search for all funded and non-funded postgraduate research opportunities.

Fee information

The fee includes:

  • registration
  • tuition
  • supervision
  • access to hot-desking facilities when you're based on campus
  • printing allowance
  • access to research funds for user studies and conference travel
  • use of Strathclyde campus student facilities
  • graduation ceremony costs

It excludes:

  • accommodation
  • hire of graduation robes
  • graduation photographs
Additional costs

International students may have associated visa and immigration costs. Please see student visa guidance for more information.

Please note: the fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Part time students will pay pro-rata fees.

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Our campus is based right in the very heart of Glasgow. We're in the city centre, next to the Merchant City, both of which are great locations for sightseeing, shopping and socialising alongside your studies.

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International students

We've a thriving international community with students coming here to study from over 140 countries across the world. Find out all you need to know about studying in Glasgow at Strathclyde and hear from students about their experiences.

Visit our international students' section

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NameAreas of expertise
Dr Leif Azzopardi
  • information intensive applications and agents
  • recommender systems
  • information retrieval systems
  • language modelling
  • deep learning
  • machine learning
Professor Gobinda Chowdhury
  • digital libraries
  • information services
Dr Martin Halvey
  • multimodal interaction
  • interactive search
  • machine learning
Dr Perla Innocenti
  • digital cultural heritage
  • intangible heritage traditions
  • digital preservation
  • museum studies
Dr Yashar Moshfeghi
  • content-based and collaborative filtering and recommender systems
  • user-centric information retrieval
  • adaptive information retrieval
  • specifically personalised retrieval
  • implicit feedback-based search systems
  • affective
  • sentiment information retrieval systems
Dr Dmitri Roussinov 
  • machine learning
  • information systems
  • information retrieval
  • natural language processing
  • search engines
  • security informatics
Professor Ian Ruthven
  • interactive searching
  • information seeking and information behaviour
  • interactive systems evaluation
  • qualitative research


Postgraduate research at the Strathclyde Doctoral School

The Strathclyde Doctoral School provides a vibrant and comprehensive student-centred research and training environment in order to grow and support current and future research talent.

The School encompasses our four faculties and is committed to enriching the student experience, intensifying research outputs and opportunities, and ensuring training is at the highest level. As a postgraduate researcher, you'll automatically become a member of the Strathclyde Doctoral School.

Find out more about the Doctoral School

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Support & development

Postgraduate Certificate in Researcher Professional Development (PgCert RPD)

As part of your PhD degree, you'll be enrolled on the Postgraduate Certificate in Researcher Professional Development (PgCert RPD). 

This certificate is designed to support you with your research and rewards you for things you'll do as a research student here.

It'll help you improve skills which are important to professional development and employability:

  • knowledge and intellectual abilities to conduct your research
  • personal qualities to succeed in your research and chosen career
  • standards, requirements and conduct of a professional researcher in your discipline
  • working with others and communicating the impact of your research to a wide range of audiences

All you have to do is plan these activities alongside your doctorate, documenting and reflecting your journey to success along the way.

Find out more about the PgCert RPD programme.


The University Careers Service can help you with everything from writing your CV to interview preparation.

Student support

From financial advice to our IT facilities, we have a wide range of support for all students here at Strathclyde. Get all the information you need at Strathlife.

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Entry requirements

You must hold a UK Honours degree, or overseas equivalent, at minimum 2:1 level or a Masters degree in a relevant discipline from a recognised academic institution. In addition, you would be expected to have a minimum of five years management experience within the information professions.

Application process

We strongly advise you to contact us before making an application so that we can discuss your application with you and whether DInfSci is right course of study for you. The DInfSci is an intensive degree requiring a large individual commitment but one which is highly rewarding for those to undertake it. If you're interested, please either contact individual supervisors who are in your area of interest or our Programme Lead, Professor Ian Ruthven (ian.ruthven@strath.ac.uk).

We would appreciate hearing from you what topics you may be interested in, a brief account of your career history, details on your proposed project, and why you're considering a DInfSci.

Start date: Oct 2023 - Sep 2024

Computer and Information Sciences

Start date: Oct 2023 - Sep 2024

Start date: Oct 2023 - Sep 2024

Computer and Information Sciences

Start date: Oct 2023 - Sep 2024

Start date: Oct 2024 - Sep 2025

Computer and Information Sciences

Start date: Oct 2024 - Sep 2025

Start date: Oct 2024 - Sep 2025

Computer and Information Sciences

Start date: Oct 2024 - Sep 2025

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Contact us

Professor Ian Ruthven

Telephone: +44 (0)141 548 3704

Email: ian.ruthven@strath.ac.uk