Centre for Doctoral Training in AI-enabled Healthcare



The mission of the CDT in AI-enabled Healthcare Systems is to train future leaders to solve the most pressing healthcare challenges with the most innovative artificial intelligence solutions.

Artificial Intelligence has the potential to transform health and healthcare systems globally, yet few individuals have the required skills and training. To address this challenge our Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) has been set up to train the brightest and best healthcare artificial intelligence scientists of the future to solve the most pressing healthcare challenges with the most innovative artificial intelligence solutions.

Our aim is to deliver global impact in:

  • Extracting more information from patient data to accelerate diagnosis
  • Creating adaptive and flexible systems that improve the operation of healthcare organisations
  • Delivering personalised and targeted treatments for patients

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The Centre offers a four year training programme consisting of a 1 year MRes (Master of Research) followed by a 3 year PhD, including a research project, a mixture of relevant taught courses delivered by world leading academics from across UCL departments, and a PhD project.

Throughout this period we provide world-class training and support, tailored to each student and coupled with a superb professional networking and entrepreneurship training.

What we offer
  1. Fully funded 4-year studentship, covering tuition fees, stipend and travel/research support;
  2. Extensive choice of projects, covering projects in primary and secondary care, in areas including diagnosis, treatment and operations;
  3. Be supervised by world-leading clinicians and AI researchers in areas related to your research;
  4. Have the opportunity to not only apply AI to healthcare, but to apply healthcare to AI, generating novel large-scale open datasets driving methodological innovation in AI;
  5. Work within a real-world setting, embedded within hospitals, allowing you to gain a practical understanding of the value and limitations of the datasets and the translational skills required to put systems into practice;
  6. Work closely with leading professionals from our NHS and industry partners;
  7. Tailored training in public engagement, entrepreneurship awareness, responsible innovation and leadership;
  8. Opportunities for internships or placements with our public/ industry sector partners;
  9. Study at UCL, which was ranked the top university in the UK for research strength in the most recent Research Excellence Framework (2014) and ranked 10th best university in the 2019 QS World University Rankings.
Addressing an unmet national training need

Many of the most successful AI companies now focus on the application of AI in health, but the successful application of AI technologies such as deep learning has three key unmet needs;

  • the identification of clinically relevant use cases,
  • the availability of large quantities of high quality labelled data from NHS patients,
  • and the availability of scientists and software engineers with the requisite algorithmic and programming skills.

All three are addressed by our CDT, by virtue of its novel hospital-embedded approach to training and a close involvement of commercial partners, structured internships and leadership and entrepreneurship. This will create an entirely new cadre of individuals with both clinical knowledge and algorithmic/programming expertise.

UCL vision - 'AI for People and Planet'

UCL's AI vision ‘AI for People and Planet’ encapsulates the belief that the purpose of research and innovation in AI and related technologies is ultimately to benefit people and societies around the world, and to make a positive impact on the planet.

Excellence both in AI and biomedical research
Supported by the UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), the Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in AI-enabled Healthcare combines UCL’s excellence both in AI and computational science, and in biomedical research. UCL uniquely hosts three NIHR (National Institute for Health Research) biomedical research centres that translate world-leading research with its partner NHS hospitals. UCL’s Department of Computer Science is a global leader (ranked 1st in the UK in REF2014) with foundational research in AI consolidated with the creation of the Centre for Artificial Intelligence.

A broad network of expertise
Trainees have the opportunity to interact with a broader landscape of excellent institutions including the Institutes of Big Data, Digital Health, Digital Innovation, and Health Informatics; Health Data Research UK, the Turing Institute, the Gatsby Computational Neuroscience Unit, and will benefit from the strong entrepreneurial spirit, with AI spinouts from UCL, including BrainTree, BloomsburyAI, Deontics, Matrix Mill, Reinfer, and Prediction.io. This forms an environment of unparalleled richness and depth in foundational AI, applications of AI, and their social implications.