Cancer Studies PhD/MD/MSc by Research

Cancer Sciences remains a major research strength within the College of Medical and Dental Sciences, with particular strengths in cancer cell signalling, the DNA damage response, gene and immunotherapy and cancer viruses.

We offer a range of postgraduate education opportunities including both research and taught programmes. Opportunities are available on a full or part-time basis leading to the qualifications of MD, PhD, MPhil, MSc, Postgraduate Diploma and Postgraduate Certificate. Continuing professional development (CPD) opportunities are also available as short study programmes. 
The School of Cancer Sciences incorporates the following basic and translational research themes:

  • Structural Biology and Biomarkers
  • Cancer Cell Biology
  • Cancer Genetics and Epigenetics
  • Cancer Clinical Trials (CRCTU)/Clinical Trials (BCTU)
  • Tumour Immunology and Immune Gene Therapy
  • Viral Oncology

Fees and funding

Standard fees apply, although in some projects a bench fee is also payable. 
Learn more about fees and funding

Scholarships and studentships
A number of studentships are available for PhD students each year, funded by major sponsors including Cancer Research UK (through the CRUK Cancer Centre), the MRC and the Leukaemia Research Fund, as well as national and local charities; home/EU students should contact the School directly for further information. For general scholarship enquiries email  

International students can often gain funding through overseas research scholarships, Commonwealth scholarships or their home government.

Entry requirements

Learn more about entry requirements   

International students
We accept a range of qualifications from different countries – learn more about international entry requirements

Standard English language requirements apply

How to apply

Learn more about applying

  • Apply for the PhD full-time or part-time
  • Apply for the MSc by Research full-time or part-time
  • Apply for the MD part-time

When clicking on the Apply Now button you will be directed to an application specifically designed for the programme you wish to apply for where you will create an account with the University application system and submit your application and supporting documents online. Further information regarding how to apply online can be found on the How to apply pages

Apply now

Before submitting an application to the University, you will need to identify potential supervisors in your desired field of research in order that you can indicate this in your application. There will be a delay in processing your application if this information is not provided. You can view the research interests of our staff, and search for an opportunity via our Doctoral Researchers search engine.

Following graduation, Postgraduate Researchers in the College MDS gain employment in a variety of areas though with a majority continuing in research, mostly in Academia but also in the Health,  Pharmaceutical, and Biotechnology sectors.  Others pursue careers in Education, Publishing, Intellectual Property Protection, Technology Innovation, Business, and more besides.

Find out more about where our postgraduate students go