Postgraduate research


The College of Medical and Dental Sciences is heavily research focused and has a worldwide reputation in medical, dental and health research projects. We offer a wide range of training opportunities in all aspects of biomedical science ranging from state of the art molecular genetics and cell biology to patient-directed gene therapy, students working typically with world leaders in their field.

postgrad research

Programme aims

As one of our students within the College of Medical and Dental Sciences, you will be part of a research community which includes around 600 MSc and PhD students, from all over the world. Each Research student is hosted within one of our eight research Institutes. Further information on each of our Institutes can be found on the College of Medical and Dental Sciences website

Programme structure

In the College of Medical and Dental Sciences, postgraduate researchers can undertake research work leading to the award of a Master of Science by Research (MSc by research), Master of Research (MRes), Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) or Doctor of Medicine (MD). This activity is managed by the College of MDS Graduate School, Institute Graduate Directors and Co-ordinators and other academic staff to ensure that postgraduate researchers following this route of study receive the necessary support.

MRes
A programme, normally of one year's duration of training in research with an emphasis on the acquisition of research skills. The programme comprises between 30 and 70 credits of taught modules from a notional 180 credits for the programme, together with one or more research report(s) or a thesis.

It is a stand-alone programme that would be of particular interest to students who wish to apply for further training at PhD level.

MSc by Research
Supervised research degree awarded on the basis of a thesis and oral examination and can be studied full time or part-time.  MSc by Research students are registered for 1 year full time or 2 years part time. Ideal for those seeking research training for progressing to a PhD.

PhD students are registered for 3 years full-time or 6 years part-time. Assessment is based on the production of a thesis and oral examination. A PhD thesis should represent an original contribution to knowledge, demonstrate that you can exercise independent judgement and be worthy of publication in whole or in part in a learned journal or the equivalent.

All students in the College of Medical and Dental Sciences wishing to study for a PhD are first registered onto the MSc by Research programme and expected to progress to PhD by going through a formal upgrade process after about one year. Successful candidates will then be registered for a PhD.

Doctor of Medicine (MD)
A supervised research degree for students already registered with the General Medical Council, is studied part-time over two years. MD students are registered for 2 years part time.

The first year of PhD studies is probationary. Your supervisor will identify your training needs, if any, and invite you to attend lectures relevant to your research topic. Towards the end of the first year you will be expected to undergo a Progress Review where you will be expected to attend a viva style assessment and submit documents in order to assess your progress. If successful you will upgrade to PhD. Your progress is reviewed annually with submission of a thesis expected at the end of the third year, followed by an oral examination. You will be awarded a doctorate if your thesis is judged to represent an original contribution to knowledge in your chosen area.

Our research degrees

Course NameLevelCourse typeStudy options
Applied Health Research - PhD/MSc by ResearchPostgraduateDoctoral researchFull time, part time
Biomedical Sciences - PhD/MSc by ResearchPostgraduateDoctoral researchFull time, part time
Cancer and Genomic Sciences - PhD/MSc by ResearchPostgraduateDoctoral researchFull time, part time
Cardiovascular Sciences - PhD/MSc by ResearchPostgraduateDoctoral researchFull time, part time
Clinical Sciences - PhD/MSc by ResearchPostgraduateDoctoral researchFull time, part time
Dentistry - PhD/MSc by ResearchPostgraduateDoctoral researchFull time, part time
Immunology and Immunotherapy - PhD/MSc by ResearchPostgraduateDoctoral researchFull time, part time
Inflammation and Ageing - PhD/MSc by ResearchPostgraduateDoctoral researchFull time, part time
Metabolism and Systems Research - PhD/MSc by ResearchPostgraduateDoctoral researchFull time, part time
Microbiology and Infection - PhD/MSc by ResearchPostgraduateDoctoral researchFull time, part time
Nursing - PhD/MSc by ResearchPostgraduateDoctoral researchFull time, part time
Pharmacy - PhD/MSc by ResearchPostgraduateDoctoral researchFull time, part time

Our combined taught and research degrees

Course NameLevelCourse typeStudy options
Biomedical Research: Integrative and Translational MResPostgraduateCombined research and taught, taughtFull time
Cancer Sciences MResPostgraduateCombined research and taught, taughtFull time
Cardiovascular Science MResPostgraduateCombined research and taught, taughtFull time
Clinical Health Research MResPostgraduateCombined research and taught, taughtFull time, part time
Clinical Research - Academic Clinical Fellows (ACF) Framework MRes/PGDip/PGCertPostgraduateCombined research and taught, taughtPart time
Professional Doctorate in Pharmacy (DPharm)PostgraduateCombined research and taught, taughtPart time