Primary Care Clinical Sciences PhD/MSc by Research

Our research programme focuses on the impact of major diseases among the population, and our researchers have significant expertise in smoking cessation, clinical decision-making, exercise and how ethnicity affects health.

Primary Care Clinical Sciences at Birmingham is one of the largest centres for academic primary care in the UK and has a very substantial teaching role.

Primary care research focuses upon three main clinical areas:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Cancer and chronic disease
  • Behavioural medicine and mental health research 

These are supported by cross-cutting methodology expertise in health services research, research on health related quality of life, trials methodology, and qualitative research. In addition, we have a strong cross-cutting theme on ethnicity and health. The Department has invested in and supports its research programme through the Primary Care Clinical Research and Trials Unit (PCCRTU) and large Primary Care Research Network (MidReC).

Our research crosses all stages of the translational spectrum, from early stage studies through to implementation research and service delivery research. We do research on devices, pharmacological, psychological, and organisational interventions to improve health. 

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
We are able to offer a small amount of paid undergraduate tutoring in medical ethics to full-time research students and local part-time research students; home/EU students should contact the School directly for further information. International students can often gain funding through overseas research scholarships, Commonwealth scholarships or their home government.

For further information contact the School directly or email

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

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