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Sir Arthur Lewis Institute of Social and Economic Studies

Research Degrees


About the Programme

The Institute offers degree programmes in the areas of  Social Policy; Economic Development Policy and Governance and Public Policy.                                                                                          

Objectives of the MPhil programme
  • To show satisfactory knowledge of the background of the subject;
  • To write clearly and in a logical and ordered fashion;
  • To use appropriate research methods and techniques competently;
  • To display an ability to analyze critically and evaluate independently the relevant literature and related material;
  • To make an advance in knowledge of the subject.

Objectives of the PhD programme
  • To achieve the same objectives as specified above in the MPhil degree programme;
  • To make a significant original contribution to knowledge;
  • To produce a thesis which is worthy of publication.

Students in the MPhil and PhD degree programs are required to complete:
(i) three (3) courses; (3 credits each) and;
(ii) a dissertation (MPhil) or thesis (PhD).
The length of the dissertation for the MPhil degree candidates should not normally exceed 50,000 words excluding footnotes and appendices. The length of the thesis for the PhD degree should not normally exceed 80,000 words excluding footnotes and appendices.

What Will I Study?

Our postgraduate degree programme is designed to teach the following:
  • The philosophy of science and the research process;
  • Alternative research designs;
  • Time and information management principles;
  • The management of information to support the research process;
  • The use of computer programs written for the selected methods
  • Provide practice in writing; presentation and study skills
  • Expose students to the literature relevant to their thesis or dissertation.

Facilities and Resources

Enhance your learning experience by fully utilising our:


The research themes of SALISES Cave Hill research staff :

Dr. Don Marshall (Director and Senior Fellow) - Globalisation and Development; Offshore Financial Centres; Scientific Finance as a discourse; Industrial Policy Issues; Democracy and Governance in the Eastern and wider Caribbean.

Dr. Corin Bailey (Senior Fellow) -  Qualitative Research Methodology and problems associated with Poverty and Inequality with a specific interest in Crime.

Dr. Jonathan Lashley (Senior Fellow) - Enterprise Development; Entreneurship and related issues (Microfinancial Services, Business Development Support, Innovation, Training and Technical Assistance).

Dr. Latoya Lazarus (Temporary Fellow) - Sociological Theory/Modern Social Theory; Post-Colonial Nationalisms; Citizenship Studies; Cultures and Identities; Gender and Sexuality Studies; Legal, Moral and Social Regulations; Ethno-racial Relationships; Qualitative Methodology
Feminist Qualitative Methodology.

Career Opportunities

If you want to start or advance a career in:
  • Academic or policy-related research
  • Policy development and planning
  • Government
  • International development
  • Tertiary level teaching
  • Private sector research
...a postgraduate degree from the Sir Arthur Lewis Institute is for you!

Why Study in Barbados

Advance your career by pursuing your degree at the Sir Arthur Lewis Institute at the Cave Hill Campus. 

Barbados has a rich cultural heritage; modern telecommunications and amenities; major international and local transport networks and is a stable and orderly society.

Additional Information

For more details, please see our Graduate Degree Handbook

At a Glance

  • Degree Level: Postgraduate
  • Qualification: MPhil/PhD
  • Duration: MPhil: Full-time-(2-5 years). Part-time-(3-7 years). PhD: Enrolled as MPhil candidate with the option to upgrade after one year. Full-time-(3-6 years). Part-time-(4-8 years)



Dr. Clarence Henry
Programme Officer, Regional Integration
OECS Commission
(Graduating class of 2019)

I chose The UWI Cave Hill Campus, due in part to the geographical closeness and the funding opportunity afforded to me through the UWI Graduate Scholarship.  I formerly lectured economics at the Sir Arthur Lewis Community College in Saint Lucia.

My experience in the MPhil/PhD Programme was a good journey. I was fortunate to have two good supervisors whose constant advice and input helped frame my research project.  My PhD thesis, unlike other studies in this area in the Caribbean context, took an economic perspective to the integration discussion and examined the relationship between growth, development and economic integration. I am a regionalist at heart and believe that both the OECS Economic Union and the CSME have a critical role to play in the long-term development of the Caribbean economies and societies.

Beyond all, I enjoyed my time at Cave Hill, especially when my studies provided me with the opportunity to join the academic community via the SALISES Academic Conferences. The academic environment is ideal for success if you do your part as a student.  
Today, due to this research experience, I am confident that I can fill a gap as it relates to the research deficit in the area of economic integration in the Caribbean and one day follow in the footsteps of giants in the field like Sir Arthur Lewis, Professor Norman Girvan and Havelock Brewster to name some.
My strongest advice to PhD students in particular and research students in general, be the student and allow your supervisor(s) to guide you through this journey.
“They know what they are about.”

Programme Details

SALI6051 Research Design and Management (3 credits)

  • The philosophy of science and the research process.
  • Alternative research designs.
  • Time and information management principles.
  • Selecting a research method.
  • Research ethics and professionalism.
  • Writing and presentation skills.
  • Using data sources.
  • Study skills and the management of research.
  • Student-Supervisor relationship.
  • Managing information to support the research process.
N.B.- Students will be required to submit a research paper related to material taught in the course.

SALI6052 Specialised Research Methods (3 credits)
This course will consist of selected qualitative and quantitative research methods which the candidate may have to use in his/her research. The student will be exposed to the use of the computer programs written for the selected methods. Students will be required to submit a research paper utilizing one or more of the research methods taught in the course.

SALI6050 Directed Readings in Thesis Topic (3 credits)
The purpose of this course is to expose students to the literature relevant to their thesis/dissertation. Students will be required to:

(i) conduct one seminar or make one class presentation and
(ii) submit a critical review of the literature relevant to the thesis topic during the semester.

Students will be deemed to have passed or failed this course based on the oral and written submissions.

MPhil degree

  • Part-time US$1,250 per year
  • Full-time US$2,100 per year
  • PhD degree
  • Part-time US$1,000 per year
  • Full-time US$2,000 per year

MPhil Degree:

Admission to the MPhil degree program normally requires a bachelor’s degree or equivalent with at least an Upper Second Class Honours degree and relevant work experience.
A candidate who does not satisfy this requirement may be admitted in the first instance as a qualifying student and must satisfy specified course requirements as determined by the Institute’s Entrance Committee and approved by the Board of Graduate Studies and Research (BGSR) before being finally admitted to the MPhil degree.
PhD Degree:
Admission to the PhD degree program normally requires the candidate to:
1. have completed an appropriate postgraduate qualification, or
2. be transferred from the MPhil degree program, and
3. have the relevant work experience.
Applicants to the MPhil and PhD degree programmes are also required to submit a short research proposal which will be considered by the Institute’s Entrance Committee.

We welcome and encourage thesis proposals that fit well with our research themes:

Navigating globalization
  • Microfinance and Entrepreneurship
  • Repositioning Caribbean International Finance Centres
  • Caribbean Development Theory and Policy - (Interrogating the State of the Art).
Social Renewal
  • Youth and Determinants of Problem Behaviour
  • Mitigating Rise Crime
  • Interventions in Law Reforms around Sexual and Reproductive Rights
  • Ways of Being in a Digital Age.
  • Coping with Climate Change and Micro-Insurance
  • Greening Caribbean Futures
  • Sustainable Livelihoods

1.  Submit a short research proposal (2-3 pages) outlining your area of interest.
2.  Fill out the application form:
        For UWI graduates -
        For non-UWI graduates -
3.  Submit both the proposal and application form to the School for Graduate Studies and Research at:

School for Graduate Studies and Research
The University of the West Indies
Lazaretto Park
Black Rock
St. Michael

The Institute's Entrance Committee will review all applications and make recommendations to the Director of the School for Graduate Studies and Research. The School will inform applicants of their applications.