PhD + MSc programmes

PhD Programme in Applied Transpersonal Psychology

World leading programmes in transpersonal psychology.


Become a PhD student through The Alef Trust

With our partner university, Liverpool John Moores University, Alef Trust offers a collaborative PhD in Applied Transpersonal Psychology. The collaborative basis of the PhD means that you will conduct your research under guidance from supervisors from both Alef Trust and LJMU. Given our expertise in the topic, the Alef Trust supervisor will lead in most academic aspects of the programme. Those accepted onto the programme will benefit from being registered with LJMU, giving you full access to LJMU’s Doctoral Academy.

Format: 100% online. No residential component.

This PhD award is issued by LJMU. The award certificate will be issued by LJMU on successful completion of the PhD. The certificate will state that the research programme was carried out in collaboration with Alef Trust.

Graduates of the PhD programme are entitled to attend either or both of the graduation ceremonies organised by LJMU and Alef Trust.

Applied Transpersonal Psychology

As the award title suggests, we are interested in the range of ways in which the principles and practices developed in transpersonal psychology and allied disciplines find expression in real-world applications. Such applications may include social change and sustainability, therapy and coaching, business and human resource management, research and education, and health and social care – to name but a few. Research aiming to address ‘theoretical / conceptual’ issues will also be fostered.


For the purposes of this programme, we interpret the term ‘transpersonal psychology’ broadly. We are open to any proposed research that relates to the transformative potential of humans, recognising that we are larger and more embedded in the world than many reductionist and functional psychological models suggest, that consciousness may transcend the individual brain, and that our highest aspirations may include experiences and states of being traditionally explored through spirituality and mysticism. We recognise that global issues are paramount and that changing our relationship to earth requires a shift in our understanding of consciousness amongst other changes. Our hope is that this doctoral programme can make a difference to the sense of responsibility that our cultures foster and to the ways in which we relate to other beings.

Study Length

Full time: To study full-time you must be able to commit at least 36 hours per week to your research. For full-time students the thesis can be submitted in a minimum of three years (maximum four years).

Part Time: Part-time students will be expected to devote a minimum of 12 hours per week to their research and can submit their doctoral thesis in a minimum of four years (maximum seven years).


Full-time students: The full-time fee will be 9,300 GBP per year; in the exceptional cases that extend beyond four years, subsequent years in which you are writing up the thesis and no longer conducting research will attract a continuation fee of 1,550 GBP; no other fee would be charged.

Part-time students: The part-time fee will be 6,900 GBP per year.

Fees are payable to Alef Trust. The financial arrangement with students is with Alef Trust and not directly with LJMU.

Students in England or Wales may be able to secure loans through their respective Student Finance organisations. A useful guide to securing loans can be found on the FindAPhD site here. Graduates of Alef Trust programmes validated by LJMU or Middlesex University are entitled to a 15% discount on the fee.

* Note that while part-time PhD students can complete their degree in 4 years, Liverpool John Moores University has set the duration for student loan payments across a 6-year period as most PhD students complete their degree in 5 to 7 years. If you are accepted onto the programme as a part-time student and you receive a loan from Student Finance England (SFE), you will need to budget accordingly such that the total amount of your loan will be divided across 6 years. If you complete your degree in less than 6 years, SFE will stop your loan payments at the time of degree completion, or if you go beyond 6 years you will not receive any further funding.

Entry Criteria

You will need:
  • A Masters degree with a research dissertation in a relevant subject

Additional information

  • The applications of those with alternative qualifications will be considered on merit
  • Appropriate research and previous experience will be taken into account
  • 58-64 (minimum 51 in each component for UKVI purposes)
  • IELTS 6.5 (minimum 5.5 in each component)

In addition to the specific entry requirements listed, we also welcome applications from those with non-standard qualifications who can demonstrate knowledge, experience, and skills developed in the workplace or other setting relevant to the programme of research.

If you do not hold the standard academic entry requirements, please use the application form to provide further details. Non-standard applications will be considered by the Admissions Team on a case-by-case basis.

Applications now being accepted for September 2024.

The application submission deadline for September 2024 is July 22nd, 2024.

Assistant Director, PhD Programmes

Bethany Butzer

Bethany Butzer, PhD

Bethany writes, teaches, and does research in the fields of positive psychology and transpersonal psychology, which emphasize the development of human strength and potential. She received her MA in clinical psychology and her PhD in social psychology from the University of Western Ontario, Canada.

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