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UCL Quantum Science and Technology Institute

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How to Apply to the CDT

Information on how to apply to the CDT.

Admissions for our 2020 standard entry is now closed. 

How do I apply?

Applications are made through UCL's Online Applications Portal. To apply, search for the research degree "MRes Quantum Technologies", course code TMRPHYSQTE01. The easiest way to find the course is to search for "Quantum". An application for the MRes is also automatically an application for the full 1+3 year programme.

Important: An application for the MRes in Quantum Technologies is the only way to apply to this CDT. Please make sure that you do not apply for the similarly-named MSc in Quantum Technologies, which is a stand-alone one-year course

As part of the application, you are required to submit a personal statement. We would like you to include:

  • An indication of which elements of quantum technologies research interest you, and in particular whether you are interested in undertaking a theoretical or an experimental project.
  • Details of a research project undertaken as part of your studies (including project title and supervisor), and details of any other relevant research experience you have. Please make it clear whether this project was in experiment or theory.
  • Any particular highlights of your academic career so far that may not be apparent from the information on your form (e.g. courses in which you did particularly well, prizes, or publications of previous research). Be as specific and quantitative as you can.
  • Specific reasons for your interest in the Delivering Quantum Technologies Doctoral Programme and your career goals.

Please do not include generic statements that tell us nothing about you. For example, we already know that quantum mechanics and quantum technologies are fascinating and exciting, and that UCL is a good place to study. Don’t waste precious space telling us!

Important: We will require two references as part of your application. Please contact your referees before you apply; view CDT referee information for further information. Please advise your referees that they will receive an email invitation from UCL once you have submitted their application. We require their reference by 28th February. We therefore recommend that you submit your application a week before the 28th February deadline.

Further guidelines on using UCL's online application form for research degrees can be found on the UCL applications website.

What will the CDT be looking for in applicants?

An outstanding academic record in a relevant technical discipline (for example Physics, Computer Science, Engineering, Mathematics, Materials, Chemistry) coupled with a broad outlook and a strong interest in quantum technologies. We will generally be looking for applicants who will have achieved the equivalent of a good UK Masters (e.g. MSci, MPhys, MEng or MSc) degree by the time they join us. The programme will not accept applications from candidates who are only qualified to Batchelors level.

I have a theoretical undergraduate degree and no prior experience of labs. Am I still suitable for this CDT?

This Doctoral Programme is recruiting from a broad background so we know that not all students may have prior labs experience. Lab activities are designed with this in mind. Lab is an essential part of the first year of our programme, because it’s so important in appreciating how quantum technologies actually function – and if you haven’t been in a lab before, you might be surprised at how much you enjoy it. In any case, you should be assured that lab marks will be combined with exam marks in each module so you can do very well in the MRes year even you feel that lab kit tends to break as soon as you enter a room. At the PhD stage our consortium contains many theorists who are potential supervisors, so we expect there to be a significant fraction of largely or entirely theoretical projects.

I have an experimentally-based undergraduate degree and no prior experience of theoretical physics. Am I still suitable for this CDT?

This Doctoral Programme is recruiting from a broad background so we know that not all students may have prior physics theory experience. Theoretical activities are designed with this in mind. Theory is an essential part of the first year of our programme, because it’s so important in appreciating what quantum technologies are aiming to do, and if you haven’t done physics theory before, you might be surprised at how much you enjoy it. In any case, you should be assured that theory marks will be combined with other marks in each module so you can do very well in the MRes year even you feel that theoretical physics gives you a big headache. At the PhD stage our consortium contains many experimentalists who are potential supervisors, so we expect there to be a significant fraction of largely or entirely experimental projects.

What is the process?

We expect to shortlist and interview candidates by the end of March. We usually interview candidates who live outside of the UK via Skype, but can arrange a visit for candidates who are offered a place on the CDT. Candidates will learn the outcome around a week after their interview.