A PhD is the highest academic degree that can be studied for in the UK. It is defined primarily as a new contribution to knowledge in a specific subject. The award of a PhD requires a student to discover, interpret and communicate new knowledge through original research and scholarship of publishable quality, and to present and defend research outcomes which extend the forefront of a discipline.
This means, in effect, that upon completion of a PhD, you are likely to know more about your research topic than anyone else in the world, including your supervisor.
A PhD at Leeds is, however, a lot more. It provides a training in research skills and techniques, critical thinking, the research environment, research management, personal effectiveness, communication skills, networking, teamworking, and career management. Through the combination of personal study, team-working, the support of supervisors, involvement in conferences and seminars, and the wide range of skills training offered, a research degree is far broader than a technical qualification.
This is why a PhD is such a strong and widely-acknowledged grounding for careers not only in research, science and higher education, but also in the wider world in both the public and private sectors.