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Ear Institute MPhil/PhD

The Ear Institute contains arguably the greatest breadth of auditory scientists housed in a single institution in the world. This multi-disciplinary environment provides a unique chance to undertake research and receive world class training in state-of-the-art techniques. Interacting with different specialities is encouraged providing greater opportunities for career development.

Key Information

Modes and duration

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

Tuition Fees (2015/16)

UK/EU:
£4,635 (FT) £2,315 (PT)
Overseas:
£21,530 (FT) £10,765 (PT)

Application deadlines

Research degrees may start at any time of the year, but typically start in September. 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. In most cases you should identify and contact potential supervisors before making your application. For more information see our How to apply page.

Entry Requirements

A UK Master’s degree in a relevant discipline, or a minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor’s degree from a UK university, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

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:

Overview

The extensive specialities of the research investigators at the Ear Institute provide an opportunity to study just about every aspect of hearing from cell and molecular biology to clinical research and cognitive neuroscience. Collaborations between these areas also allow novel experimental approaches that cross traditional scientific boundaries.

Research areas

  • Molecular genetics of hearing and deafness: discovering the genetic causes of deafness and hearing loss; molecular mechanisms of hair cell loss; whole transcriptome and whole exome approaches.
  • Cell biology of hearing and balance loss: understanding the mechanism of sensory hair cell death; repair of the sensory epithelia; hair cell regeneration; stem cell-based approaches for screening and therapy.
  • Cellular physiology of hair cells: mechanisms of transduction; biophysics of afferent synapses; physiological characterisation of auditory neurons; electrophysiology
  • Clinical audiology: evaluating current approaches for hearing impairment, tinnitus, cochlear implants, balance disorders and new diagnostic tools
  • Cochlear homeostasis: epithelial barrier functions; roles of gap junctions; fluid and ion homeostasis
  • Cognitive neuroscience: brain mechanisms of sound localisation; coding complex sounds in auditory cortex; molecular physiological basis of synaptic and neural activity
  • Psychophysics and speech perception: spectral and temporal processing, pitch perception, binaural hearing, development of speech perception and music perception
  • Testing auditory function: otoacoustic emissions to identify susceptibility to hearing loss; development of sensitive audiological test procedures for diagnostic clinical use.

Funding

There may be funding opportunities through individual research grants from various sources.

More scholarships are listed on the scholarships website

Careers

Recent graduates have gone on to work in research institutions across the world, in higher education, in schools, the NHS (Moorfields Eye Hospital) and other disciplines.

Top career destinations for this degree

  • Cochlear Implant Specialis, King Fahd Hospital, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (2013)
  • Trainee Patent Attorney, Carpmaels & Ransford LLP Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys (2013)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, John Hopkins University (2012)
  • Lecturer, UCL Ear Institute (2011)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Western Ontario (2011)

Employability

Research students who study at the Ear Institute are exposed to a unique and truly multi-disciplinary environment in a world-class institution. As expected, academic employers across the world recognise the strength of the Institute and the employability of students is therefore greatly enhanced. The excellence of the training environment is also recognised by non-academic employers e.g. with recent students obtaining prestigious positions in government departments and in patenting law. In addition, the engagement with leading manufacturers and suppliers of audiological devices and pharmaceutical companies provides excellent employment opportunities for students.

Networking

The Ear Institute (EI) is highly engaged with external groups including charities, investors and companies. Students will gain from the EI’s commitment to enterprise activities by being exposed to such groups and supported in entrepreneurial and commercial endeavours.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The Ear Institute has multiple state-of-the-art laboratories specialising in cell and molecular biology, genetics, auditory function, imaging, auditory processing and cognitive neuroscience. Together with its location next to the largest ENT Hospital in the U.K. this provides a wonderful training environment for prospective research students, both clinical and non-clinical. However, what makes it exceptional is the interaction between these laboratories and scientists to create research that is both novel and distinct.

All research students benefit from this interaction to develop wider technical skills and knowledge base that enables their future career development whether academic, clinical or other.

Student / staff ratios › 60 staff › 55 taught students › 32 research students

Department: Ear Institute

Degree reviews

Alumni review

"Conducting research at UCL also provided an opportunity to meet other professionals and researchers in workshops and conferences held both within the institute and at international meetings. It also provided the opportunity to discuss new research ideas and findings with top researchers and start collaborative work."

Shaza Saleh

Subject: Ear Institute PhD
Staff review

"The environment at UCL for research in my field (neuroscience) is unparalleled. Across UCL, there is not only tremendous breadth in neuroscience (molecular, cellular, systems, cognitive, computational), but also amazing depth. UCL's neuroscience community is so large and so diverse that even after 10 years at UCL I am still discovering colleagues here whose work is somehow directly relevant to my own."

Dr Jennifer Linden

Subject: I supervise PhD and MSc students from the Ear Institute and also from the departments of Neuroscience, Physiology & Pharmacology; Cell and Developmental Biology; Speech, Hearing and Phonetic Sciences; and the Institute of Ophthalmology. I also teach topics related to hearing on MSc and BSc modules in many of these departments.

Application and next steps

Applications

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.

Who can apply?

Application deadlines

Research degrees may start at any time of the year, but typically start in September. 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. In most cases you should identify and contact potential supervisors before making your application. For more information see our How to apply page.

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

Contact Information

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