Institute for Women's Health MPhil/PhD

London, Bloomsbury

The UCL EGA Institute for Women's Health (EGA IfWH) encompasses the academic team at UCL and the clinical team at UCL Hospitals (UCLH) NHS Foundation Trust, and accommodates a broad range of research, from basic to clinical and translational science. Our research programmes not only allow you to develop academic skills, but also to pursue laboratory and clinical skills, and to go on to compete in the broadest range of career opportunities.

UK students International students
Study mode
UK tuition fees (2024/25)
£6,035
£3,015
Overseas tuition fees (2024/25)
£31,100
£15,550
Duration
3 calendar years
5 calendar years
Programme starts
October 2024
February 2025
May 2025
Applications accepted
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

Prospective students should apply at least four months before their intended start date. If you require a visa we recommend allowing for more time.

Entry requirements

Science graduates must have a minimum of an upper second-class UK Bachelor’s degree in a relevant discipline or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Clinical candidates must have a registerable qualification appropriate to the programme to be followed in Medicine, Dentistry or Veterinary Studies.

The English language level for this programme is: Level 2

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level.

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

Equivalent qualifications

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. Please note that the equivalency will correspond to the broad UK degree classification stated on this page (e.g. upper second-class). Where a specific overall percentage is required in the UK qualification, the international equivalency will be higher than that stated below. Please contact Graduate Admissions should you require further advice.

About this degree

Our research covers the life course of women from childhood to puberty, motherhood to menopause, and maturity to old age, with the objective of making a difference to the health of women in the UK and internationally. Research may be pursued across the fields of maternal and fetal medicine, neonatology, reproductive health, and women's cancer.

Who this course is for

PhD students enter a range of careers including clinical medicine, allied healthcare professionals, diagnostics, therapeutics, epidemiology, policy making and academia.

What this course will give you

The Institute brings together the expertise of diverse clinicians and researchers who are leaders in their field of women's health. We offer excellent basic science facilities, opportunities to work in cutting-edge clinical and translational research, and expertise in study methodology. The Institute's research environment is not only enriched by the UCL/UCLH collaboration at its core, but also by the multidisciplinary work pursued with colleagues across UCL in areas including child health, epidemiology and healthcare, global health, psychology, and medical physics and biomedical engineering. Our work is further underpinned by a cross-cutting strategy to strengthen and develop programmes of research and education that are of benefit to healthcare professionals and the women, mothers, and newborns they care for around the globe.

The foundation of your career

Development of research and transferable skills is core to all our research programmes, enabling you to compete in the broadest range of career opportunities. The institute brings together the expertise of clinicians and researchers, enabling you to work in a translational research environment. Research students can attend, and gain teaching experience on, our graduate taught programmes, participate in organisation of the annual student conference, and expand generic research and transferable skills through the UCL Doctoral School’s Skill Development Programme.

Employability

Research students graduating from the EGA IfWH pursue a diverse range of careers in science and medicine, reflecting the breadth of the institute’s research. Many of our medical research students specialise in clinical medicine, for example in obstetrics and gynaecology, neonatology, oncology, and genetics. Recent graduate destinations also include academic research posts in the UK and overseas in academic and private sector environments. Other students go on to work in related fields, from clinical diagnostic units to healthcare analyst companies.

Networking

The EGA IfWH prides itself in offering long-term networking opportunities. Alumni are linked via Facebook and Linkedin, involved in the career development of current students (such as coming back to UCL to take part in regular career afternoons) and invited back to the Institute's annual alumni event. Institute staff involvement in a wide range of professional organisations, such as ESHRE (European Society of Reproduction and Embryology) and the British Maternal and Fetal Medicine Society, also provides students with important connections and networking opportunities.

Teaching and learning

The overall delivery of the programme is managed by supervisors. At the start of the programme students and supervisors agree upon a structure of regular meetings which may change according to the type and stage of the project.

All students undertake mandatory training which includes Research Ethics Training. Students work with their Supervisors and Thesis committees to design their own Personal Development Plan to select appropriate courses from the Doctoral School or other resources.

Overall, students undertake a minimum of 10 days of training per year. Within the EGA IfWH, as part of the Early Career Researchers Group, students can attend a variety of specialised lectures, workshops, and social events.

Students can attend termly institute meetings where research across the four departments within the IfWH is presented and discussed. The IfWH holds an annual research meeting where students have the opportunity to present their own work. Students also have access to academic, career and social events organised at faculty and UCL level.

Progress across the full programme is monitored by the Departmental Graduate Tutor.

There are supervision meetings with primary/subsidiary supervisors in person and online and Thesis committee meetings in person and online which are spread across the duration of the programme. Initially, students register for an MPhil then at 9-15 months for FT students or 15 to 24 months for PT students, there is an upgrade assessment involving a presentation, a dissertation, and a viva. On successful upgrade, students are transferred to PhD registration.

Contact hours and hours of self-study are agreed between the student and the supervisor at the beginning of their research degree and should be reviewed on a regular basis. Full-time postgraduate research students are expected to work a minimum of 36.5 hours per week on their project. With the agreement of their supervisors, contact time can be on-site or remote working depending upon the nature and stage of the project. PGR students can have the opportunity to access UCL facilities ‘out of hours’ including weekends and holidays during their period of registration. Students will have research meetings with their supervisors at least once per month. Full-time Research students can take 27 days of annual leave, plus eight days of Bank holidays and six UCL closure days.

Research areas and structure

  • Early placental development and pregnancy failure
  • Epigenetics and development
  • Fetal medicine and fetal therapy
  • Prenatal, fetal, neonatal, and adult gene transfer for disease modelling
  • Oocyte growth and maturation
  • Preimplantation development, genetics, and diagnosis
  • Perinatal and neonatal brain protection
  • Prenatal screening and diagnosis
  • Preterm birth and its prevention
  • Proteomic studies
  • Reproductive endocrinology
  • Sexual health and development
  • Women’s cancer biology and risk prediction

Research environment

The EGA IfWH encompasses an academic team at UCL and a clinical team at UCL Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Together we deliver excellence in research, clinical practice, education, and training in order to make a real and sustainable difference to women's, babies', and families’ health worldwide. Our highly innovative work spans the life course in the fields of reproductive health, maternal and fetal medicine, neonatology, and women's cancer. You will train with clinicians and researchers working across the interface between basic science, clinical practice, and population health research. Our diversity of expertise fosters a vibrant academic environment in which you will have the opportunity to develop research and generic transferable skills, supporting a broad range of future research and employment opportunities.

The length of registration for the research degree programmes is 3 years for full-time.

Within four months of joining the programme, you are expected to agree with your supervisor the basic structure of your research project, an appropriate research method and a realistic plan of work.  Within the relevant timeframe, you will be expected to upgrade from an MPhil to a PhD. To upgrade successfully you must submit an upgrade report, make an oral presentation of your research to a wider audience, and present and answer questions about your research to an upgrade panel consisting of your subsidiary supervisor and another independent assessor.

Upon successful completion of your approved period of registration, you may move to completing research student (CRS) while you write up your thesis.

The length of registration for the research degree programmes is 5 years for part-time.

Within four months of joining the programme, you are expected to agree with your supervisor the basic structure of your research project, an appropriate research method and a realistic plan of work. Within the relevant timeframe, you will be expected to upgrade from an MPhil to a PhD.

To upgrade successfully you must submit an upgrade report, make an oral presentation of your research to a wider audience, and present and answer questions about your research to an upgrade panel consisting of your subsidiary supervisor and another independent assessor.

Upon successful completion of your approved period of registration you may move to completing research student (CRS) while you write up your thesis.

Accessibility

Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support and Wellbeing team.


Fees and funding

Fees for this course

UK students International students
Fee description Full-time Part-time
Tuition fees (2024/25) £6,035 £3,015
Tuition fees (2024/25) £31,100 £15,550

The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Where the programme is offered on a flexible/modular basis, fees are charged pro-rata to the appropriate full-time Master's fee taken in an academic session. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees.

Additional costs

There may be additional costs on this programme depending on individual student projects.

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.

Funding your studies

Please refer to IfWH scholarships page.

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

EGA Hospital Charity Research Scholarship

Deadline: 31st January 2024
Value: Current fees for UK students are £5860 per annum for 3 years of full-time study (total £17580) or £2 (Duration)
Criteria Based on academic merit
Eligibility: UK

EGA Institute for Women's Health BAME PhD Scholarship

Deadline: 31st July 2024
Value: £5,000 towards fees (3 years)
Criteria Based on both academic merit and financial need
Eligibility: UK

Next steps

Deadlines and start dates are usually dictated by funding arrangements so check with the department or academic unit 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 and the institute's prospective student page.

Please note that you may submit applications for a maximum of two graduate programmes (or one application for the Law LLM) in any application cycle.

Choose your programme

Please read the Application Guidance before proceeding with your application.

Year of entry: 2024-2025

Year of entry: 2023-2024

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