The department accepts
graduate research students to study for the degrees of Master of
Philosophy (MPhil) and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Epidemiology and
Public Health including Dental Public Health. A list of possible projects and prospective supervisors
has been compiled. Alternatively, you may have a research proposal in
mind. The department will provide, or recommend, a suitable
Registration, in accordance with University of London
regulations, is in all cases initially for the MPhil degree, which is
normally completed in two years. Where progress is satisfactory
registration will be upgraded to PhD, and continue for at least one
further year. In all cases the degree is assessed by thesis and oral
Below are two video interviews of current research degree students within the Research Department of Epidemiology and Public Health:
Carolina Perez Ferrer
Carolina’s PhD project looks at
trends in socioeconomic inequalities in obesity from 1988 to 2006 in
adult Mexican women. She uses three waves of nationally representative
Sadie holds an MRC PhD studentship (2010-13) in the Health and Social
Surveys Research Group. Her PhD research (Finding the ‘missing units’:
identifying under-reporting of alcohol consumption in England) involves
secondary analysis of national health surveys, as well as a quantitative study
of drink pouring practices, and a qualitative study of routine drinking habits.
All research students are assigned two supervisors: a primary supervisor, who will be responsible for directing their research training, and a subsidiary supervisor, who is normally there to help assess progress, deal with any problems and provide for continuity of supervision in the event of the absence or departure of the principal supervisor. Where the area of research is cross-disciplinary, say in epidemiology and statistics, it may be appropriate to allocate two co-supervisors.
Research students are normally required to attend elements from appropriate MSc programmes during their first year. If existing training is considered insufficient at the point of application students will be requested to undertake an MSc prior to admission to the MPhil/PhD programme. In addition, the Graduate School provides a Skills Development Programme for all new research students.
Research Topics Available
The following listing provides an indication of the range of projects currently available. It is not intended to be prescriptive, nor absolute; only to give a flavour of the opportunities available. The particular path of the research may be dictated as much by student's interests and ideas as by the guidance of the supervisors.
Social determinants of health
Inequalities in health
Health and income
Health in Central and Eastern Europe
Health behaviours (diet, physical activity, alcohol and smoking)
Work, stress and health
Psychosocial cause of ill health
Ageing (including mental capacity)
Population health across the life course
Socio-economic and ethnic inequalities in infant and child health
Smoking, tobacco use, and cotinine levels in minority ethnic groups
Predictors of mortality, cancer, and/or hospital admission in Scottish and English Health Survey participants (obesity, or hypertension, or tobacco use or exposure and cotinine levels, inequalities focus possible.)
The department engenders an atmosphere in which all
research students are supported and encouraged. Every student is
provided with a desk and storage space within the department, together
with access to full computing facilities. A local area network, with a
computer manager in support, ensures access to relevant programmes that
may be required. The Graduate Tutors,
who are in charge of general arrangements and queries regarding
graduates, are also available to lend a sympathetic ear if problems
Students are encouraged to attend and participate in all
seminars hosted by the department. Students are also encouraged to
contribute to the Departmental and Staff-Student Consultative
Committees, on both of which they are represented.
Outside the department, UCL provides a full network of
support services, including the Health Centre, Counselling Service,
Careers Service, International Office, Advisors to Women Students and
the Dean of Students. Details of these are given in the UCL Graduate
The main sources of funding for UK/EU applicants are studentships from the:
British Health Foundation (BHF)
Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)
Medical Research Council (MRC)
Cancer Research UK (CRUK)
To find out about current studentships on offer within the Department, please visit our vacancies page here. You can also visit FindaPhD.com, where we regularly advertise our opportunities.
Further funding information can also be found here.
Overseas students are eligible to apply to a number of sources of funding, including The British Council, Commonwealth Scholarships and WHO Scholarships. In the majority of instances you must apply direct to the funding organisation and it is vital to make early enquiries (up to a year in advance).
There are three relevant research funding schemes:
Applications need to be submitted to the department (new date to be announced). Contact Dr Anne McMunn. Late applications will not be considered. Students applying for these schemes must also complete a UCL applications for admission form in advance of submitting the scholarship application.
Please note that there is only one combined application procedure and application form for all three of these schemes, and applicants should submit only ONE application. Applicants will then be considered for any of the three awards for which they are eligible.
In all cases, the minimum level of academic achievement would be a First or Upper Second-class Honours degree, or a first degree supported by a Masters.
The Graduate Tutors will need to assess whether there
is the appropriate expertise within the Department to supervise a PhD in your
area of interest, as well as the suitability of your academic background and
If you'd like to apply, please send through the below details to Andreas Opitz.
Your current CV and short proposal (no more than two pages), which includes the following:
Background to your research area of interest.
b. Potential hypotheses or research questions to be addressed by the research.
you wish to apply and study population.
d. How will
this be funded?
Statistical methods and packages with which you are familiar.