Computer Science MPhil/PhD

Research at UCL Computer Science has made a deep, lasting and sustained impact on today's society. The most recent 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) ranked the department first for computer science in the UK and 96% of our research is now rated as internationally excellent.

Key Information

Modes and duration

  • Full-time: 3 years
  • Part-time: 5 years

Programme start date

September 2016

Tuition Fees (2016/17)

£4,770 (FT) £2,385 (PT)
£22,180 (FT) £11,090 (PT)

Application dates

Research degrees normally start in September, however exceptions can be allowed for a later start where necessary. Deadlines and start dates are usually dictated by funding arrangements so check with the department or academic unit (contact listed in Next steps, right) to see if you need to consider these in your application preparation. All applicants are asked to identify and contact potential supervisors before making an application. For more information see our How to apply page.

Entry Requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class UK Bachelor’s degree in a relevant discipline, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Work experience may also be taken into account.

English Language Requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Standard

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:


UCL Computer Science has built a reputation as one of the major university centres for applied computer science research in Europe. Because we have some of the top UK research groups in many fields, you will be supervised by academics at the very forefront of computer science, in a wide range of areas.

Research areas

  • Bioinformatics: protein structure; genome analysis; transmembrane protein modelling; de novo protein design methods; exploiting grid technology; mathematical modelling of biological processes
  • Financial computing: software engineering; computational statistics and machine learning; mathematical modelling
  • Human centred systems: usability of security and multimedia systems; making sense of information; human error and cognitive resilience
  • Information security: cryptology; digital watermarking; cryptoanalysis; steganography
  • Intelligent systems: knowledge representation and reasoning; machine learning
  • Media futures: digital rights management; information retrieval; computational social science; recommender systems
  • Networks: internet architecture; protocols; mobile networked systems; applications and evolution; high-speed networking
  • Programming Principles, Verification and Logic’: logic and the semantics of programs; automated tools for verification and program analysis; produce mathematically rigorous concepts and techniques that aid in the construction and analysis of computer systems; applied logic outreach in AI, security, biology, economics
  • Software systems engineering: requirements engineering; software architecture; middleware technologies; distributed systems; software tools and environments; mobile computing
  • Virtual environments: presence, virtual characters; interaction; rendering; mixed reality
  • Vision and imaging science: face recognition; medical image analysis; statistical modelling of colour information; inverse problems and building mathematical models for augmented reality; diffusion tensor imaging


The department offers funding for overseas and UK/Eu students. Please see the computer sciencewebsite for more information.

Scholarships available for the department include:

  • CSC-UCL Joint Research Scholarship - Funding offered by UCL and the China Scholarship Council aims to expand the educational, cultural and technological cooperation between the UK and China

Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below. For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

CSC-UCL Joint Research Scholarship - NOW CLOSED FOR 2015/16 ENTRY

Fees, maintenance and travel (Duration of programme)
Overseas students
Based on academic merit

More scholarships are listed on the Scholarships and Funding website


UCL Computer Science graduates secure careers in a variety of organisations including global IT consultancies, City banks and specialist companies in manufacturing industries. The department takes pride in helping students in their career choices and offers placements and internships with numerous start-up technology companies, including those on Silicon Roundabout, world-leading companies such as Google, Skype and Facebook, and multi national finance companies including Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank and JP Morgan. Our graduates secure roles such as applications developers, information systems managers, IT consultants, multimedia programmers, software engineers and systems analysts in companies such as Microsoft, Cisco, Bloomberg, PwC and IBM.

Top career destinations for this degree

  • Technical Director, Pixar (2013)
  • Research Staff Member, IBM Research (2012)
  • Research Associate, UCL (2012)
  • IT Analyst, UBS (2012)


UCL Computer Science research students' employability is greatly enhanced by working alongside world-leading researchers in cutting-edge research areas such as virtual environments, networked systems, human-computer interaction and financial computing. UCL's approach is multi-disciplinary and UCL Computer Science shares ideas and resources from across all departments of Faculty of Engineering Sciences and beyond. Our alumni have a successful record of finding work, or have founded their own successful start-up companies, because they have an excellent understanding of the current questions which face industry and have the skills and the experience to market innovative solutions.


UCL Computer Science is located in the heart of London and subsequently has strong links with industry. Students regularly undertake internships at world-leading research organisations. We regularly welcome industry executives to observe students' project presentations, and we host networking events with technology entrepreneurs. Students also benefit from a location close to the City of London and Canary Wharf to work on projects with leading global financial companies. London is also home to numerous technology communities, for example the Graduate Developer Community, who meet regularly and provide mentors for students interested in finding developer roles when they graduate.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The department is pre-eminent among UK universities, being ranked first for computer science in the UK (REF 2014).

Code written at UCL is used across all 3G mobile networks for instant messaging and videoconferencing; medical image computing has led to faster prostate cancer diagnosis and has developed tools to help neurosurgeons avoid damaging essential communication pathways during brain surgery; and our human-centred approach to computer security has transformed the UK government's delivery of online security.

This MPhil/PhD in COmputer Science is a research degree programme that will not only challenge and stimulate you, but also has the potential to lead a varied and interesting career and introduce you to a valuable contacts in academia and the industry.

Student / staff ratios › 200 staff including 120 postdocs › 650 taught students › 175 research students

Department: Computer Science

Degree reviews

Staff review

"It is amazing to be in a position to regularly interact and collaborate with the brightest minds of the current generation and together help to shape the future, constructively and positively."

Prof Niloy Mitra

Master's, PhD
Reader in Geometric Modeling and Computer Graphics
Alumni review

"It was a great experience to study in one of the best universities in the world. During my studies I had the pleasure to meet and work with brilliant and friendly people. UCL COmputer Science is well respected within the industry, opening plenty of doors."

William Blackwell

Computer Science MPhil/PhD ()

Application and next steps


Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

Application deadlines

Research degrees normally start in September, however exceptions can be allowed for a later start where necessary. Deadlines and start dates are usually dictated by funding arrangements so check with the department or academic unit (contact listed in Next steps, right) to see if you need to consider these in your application preparation. All applicants are asked to identify and contact potential supervisors before making an application. For more information see our How to apply page.

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now


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