UCL 4 year PhD scheme in the School of Life & Medical Sciences

The four-year programme is broad ranging and gives students the opportunity to undertake a PhD project within several different areas of Life and Medical Sciences. The focus is on the biological bases of normal function and pathology of various organs and systems, studied in a variety of model organisms and preparations. This PhD programme offers the opportunity to obtain research experience in several laboratories before deciding on a final PhD topic. It also provides a unique chance of bridging across topics, laboratories and departments by establishing student-driven collaborative and interdisciplinary projects. Currently the scheme is funded via the MRC doctoral training account.

It consists of an

  • 8 week introductory period including some taught elements and visits to each participating Department
  • Three 10-12 week rotations in laboratories of the student’s choice
  • Selection of a PhD project to pursue, which would run along the lines of a normal three year studentship

From October 2014 applications are being accepted for positions commencing in October 2015. Applying for a 4-year studentship does not preclude you from applying for a 3-year studentship at UCL at the same time. The links below provide more detail on the specific scientific research activities of the participating departments at UCL and in general most principal investigators are happy to offer projects to potential students. If there are very specific areas candidates are interested in they should approach the relevant prospective supervisors.

Participating Departments

Faculty of Brain Sciences

Faculty of Medical Sciences

Faculty of Life Sciences

Faculty of Population Health Sciences

Institutes & Cross Faculty Activities


It is very important that you read this section carefully to ensure that you meet all the criteria.

Applicants should hold, or expect to receive, a first class or a good upper second class Honours degree.

Both the UCL and the MRC criteria currently specify the following:

  • UK status applicants* are eligible for both the cost of tuition fees (amount to be confirmed in November 2011) and a stipend (approx £15,740 pa) over the course of the PhD programme
  • EU status applicants are eligible for FEES ONLY and NOT a stipend over the course of the PhD programme. Exceptionally, the STIPEND IS PAYABLE if they have been resident in the UK (either working or in full-time education) during the 3 years prior to application.
  • Overseas applicants ARE NOT ELIGIBLE for this programme UNLESS they fulfil the UK status requirements as given below.

*UK status requires the applicant to have full UK citizenship or to have been ordinarily resident in the UK (i.e. not in full-time education) for the previous 3 years. If the applicant has family or spouse with UK status the stipend would be payable but UCL fees would be charged at the overseas rate and would not be fully covered by the grant.

Application Process

Students interested in applying for 4-year studentships commencing in October 2015 in Life and Medical Sciences should follow the application procedure below:

Please supply as e-mail attachments:

  • A completed application form (Microsoft Word format)
  • Your CV (NB this must include the name of the university at which you studied and the degree title and pass level you achieved or expect to achieve)
  • 2 References (using the reference form - Microsoft Word format) (References may be emailed or a hard copy sent by post to the address below.)

Closing Date: 26th January 2015

Enquiries and applications to:

Tina Bashford
PhD Administrator, NPP

Rm G52 Medical Sciences Building

Tel: 020 7679 2013  (internal 32013)
Fax: 020 7679 7298

Email: t.bashford@ucl.ac.uk

For general information about the MRC contact:

Medical Research Council
20 Park Crescent
London W1B 1AL
Tel: +44 (0)20 7636 5422
Fax: +44 (0)20 7436 6179

Web: www.mrc.ac.uk