Skip to content Skip to menu

How to apply

1. Do I satisfy UCL Entrance Criteria?

Before you start the application process it is advised that that you establish that you satisfy the UCL entry requirements.


2. Can we supervise your research?

You’ll need to identify and contact a member of staff who is able and willing to act as supervisor. Our research falls into eight themes: behavioural neuroscience, cognitive neuroscience, cognition and decision sciences, language, learning and memory, sensory systems, evolutionary approaches to behaviour and social cognition.

A list of our research staff is available and describes the research carried out in each lab. If you find a potential supervisor you should send them an email containing:

  • A clear statement that you are interested in studying for a PhD, including why you would like them as a supervisor
  • When you hope to start, and how you will fund your research.
  • A brief CV
  • A brief statement and research proposal (1-2 pages), indicating the methods of investigation you think appropriate to carry it out.


3. Securing approval of the supervisor

Typically people respond fairly quickly to these email requests but this is just the beginning of the process.  It will be important to discuss your proposal in detail with your supervisor and agree on a plan for the PhD.  The supervisor will need to see your formal, written PhD proposal and agree to it before your application can be submitted.


4. Submit a formal on-line application.

  • Please note that your application will be deemed incomplete if you do not submit the name of your prospective supervisor and a brief research proposal along with your completed application.  When submitting the application please bear in mind the application deadlines.
  • Please bear in mind that the department will need time to process your application.  To avoid delays please submit your application 3-4 days before deadline/s.
  • Please ensure when submitting an application on-line that you apply for a place to study in the Experimental Psychology Research Department. The department can only view applications from applicants wishing to study in their respective departments.
  • If you do submit an application, please contact the PhD Administrator, Antonietta Esposito () , via return of email to let her know that you have done so.
  • Useful country specific information with entry requirements can be found on the UCL International Students site:
  • Referees: Please ensure that your referees are aware and willing to provide a reference in the given time frame. An email reference request will be made as soon you submit your online application. The department will not receive your application until both references have been submitted.


5. What happens next?

In early January you will receive notification about whether you will be invited to interview for a PhD position. If applying by June deadline you will be receive notification about whether you will be invited to interview in early July.  Where possible, these are done in person at the department but if necessary, they can be done remotely via Skype. The results of interviews are announced informally shortly thereafter and followed-up with a more formal letter from the UCL Doctoral School anytime between March and April. If accepted for admission, the program begins at the end of September/early October.

Please also visit the Psychology and Language Sciences website, which gives good advice regarding the PhD Application process


Timeline for applying for the 2020-2021 academic year


  • Friday, 3 January 2020: Applications from any students seeking funding must be submitted to Antonietta Esposito () so that they arrive at the department by 3 January 2020 (complete with references and research proposal, max. 1500 words).
  • Week beginning Monday 6th January 2020: Interviews will be held at the department this week.
  • Friday, 26th June 2020: Applications from self-funded students must be at Departmental desk (complete with references and research proposal).