Work and Train in the IMSR


We are passionate about delivering outstanding education as well as world-leading research. Find out more about our opportunities below.

Current Job Opportunities

Research Fellow & Lead for MSc Biomedical Innovation

This unique role comprises two main parts to which you will devote your time equally:

  • Education: You will establish and contribute to the delivery of a new MSc programme in Biomedical Innovation alongside Professor Terry and other members of SMQB. In addition, you will establish a framework for medical-facing project provision for the MSc programme in Data Science (led by the School of Computer Science) and will contribute to project supervision;
  • Research: You will develop your own programme of research in an area aligned to the focus of the Centre

Apply here

Closing Date - 18 October 2020

PhD Programme

IMSR PhD places, which are designed to attract the brightest scientific minds from around the world, present a fantastic opportunity for highly motivated and exceptionally talented individuals to embark on their career in biomedical research.

Researcher in lab.Currently the IMSR has 73 PhD students at various stages of their three/four‐year training. The students contribute to the international flavour of the Institute, with many students from elsewhere in the EU or further afield. The energy and enthusiasm from this student population are a vital part of Institute’s research community, and the comprehensive IMSR PhD training ensures all students have strong future career prospects in science.

For current PhD opportunities within the IMSR, please visit our current vacancies.

For funded PhD programmes associated with the IMSR, please visit Mechanisms in Inflammatory Disease (MIDAS), the Integrative Midlands Partnership for Biomedical Training (IMPACT), BBSRC SyPhy, Birmingham-Maastricht, Birmingham-Melbourne Universitas 21.

For self-funded PhD opportunities, please see our current projects and visit IMSR Principal Investigators profiles to directly contact them to ascertain placement availability and current research roles. To register for a PhD in the IMSR please visit our PhD Programmes.

Postdoctoral Training

The IMSR provides Postdoctoral Training Fellows (PTFs) with a stimulating, interactive and international scientific environment, combined with cutting edge facilities, extensive seminar series and a strong collaborative, multidisciplinary culture. Intertwining cutting edge metabolome profiling, innovative systems science approaches and in vivo imaging and physiology approaches with world-leading expertise in endocrinology, metabolism and reproductive biology, the IMSR is perfectly placed to train the next generation of science leaders.

Two men talking.The IMSR laboratories are resourced to an excellent standard and its researchers have access to first-class Technology Platforms to aid discovery. Among the facilities available to IMSR researchers are bioinformatics, protein analysis, histopathology, mass spectrometry resources atthe University of Birmingham Metabolomics Core, next generation sequencing facilities, advancedconfocal imaging, fluorescence activated cell sorting, peptide synthesis, protein purification as well as the Biomedical Service Unit with a state-of-the-art animal facility. Training can be presented as hands-on one-to-one training or through developed training courses, for example atthe Birmingham Metabolomics Training Centre.

Furthermore, IMSR’s Postdoctoral Training Fellows have the benefit of living and working in the UK’s second city. Birmingham is a global city containing many nationalities and cultures. Our PTFs and students come from every corner of the world and provide a stimulating environment for scientific collaboration.

More information on career development and support for postdoctoral training fellows at the College of Medical and Dental Sciences (PERCAT)

Academic Clinical Training

The IMSR offers the opportunity for integrated academic clinical training from Medical School through to your first senior clinical academic appointments. We have a long-standing, excellent track record in helping our fellows obtain externally funded, prestigious fellowships and several of our trainees have gone through from summer student to group leader.

Two people talking.If you are interested in research in metabolism, endocrinology, reproduction and systems science, please contact us at

We are hosting academic clinical training posts in Endocrinology & Diabetes, Obstetrics & Gynaecology, and Neurology. Please see below for information on academic clinical fellowship posts on the West Midlands Deanery Website.

Please also see Summer studentships for undergraduate research experience opportunities as well as information on our Clinical Science BMedSc intercalated degree for MBChB students.

A useful overview and more information on the UK academic clinical pathway can be found:

Many of our clinical academic trainees come from countries outside the UK and we have a lot of experience in helping them to integrate into the UK clinical pathway.

Current opportunities for academic clinical training in the IMSR

  • Academic Foundation Year (AFY)posts – next application deadline for posts starting 1 August 2021 in the autumn of 2020
  • Academic Clinical Fellow (ACF) posts – next application deadline for posts starting 1 August 2021 in the autumn of 2020Academic Clinical Lecturer (ACL) posts.
  • If you are not from the UK but hold a higher degree (MD or PhD) and would like to explore the opportunity to come to the IMSR as a Clinical Lecturer, please contactus . Also if there is no current vacancy advertised, we have regularly ACL opportunities arising.
  • Clinical Research Training Fellowships – you can contact us any time if you are interested to undertake PhD or MD training in the IMSR-

View more information on IMSR Principal Investigators and their research. 

If you are interested in working with a specific IMSR research group, please contact the principal investigator directly to arrange a meeting and discuss options.

Academic Foundation Year (AcFY) Posts

Academic Clinical Fellow smilling.

These posts offer standard clinical training with protected time for dedicated research in a chosen field. This allows the postholders to develop research, teaching, leadership and management skills, as well as basic clinical competencies.

Appointments are for two years and cover the first two years of clinical training after graduation from Medical School.

Academic Clinical Fellow (ACF) Posts

These are 3-year posts that comprise of an individualised programme of training and mentoring. Postholders are encouraged to undertake a research project and take part in a programme of formalised research training, with the opportunity to complete a Master’s degree if desirable.

Postholders are supported by dedicated academic, clinical and educational supervisors. The ultimate goal of this post is to apply and obtain an externally funded Clinical Research Training Fellowship for those wishing to pursue an academic career.

Our ACF posts provide 25% protected time for research and usually offer the opportunity to front-load the dedicated research time to years 1 and 2 to ensure that each post-holder achieves publications and other outputs that make them more competitive when applying for a CRTF.

Clinical Research Training Fellowships (CRTFs)

The IMSR has an excellent track record in supporting Clinical Training Fellows funded by external bodies including MRC, NIHR, Wellcome Trust, CRUK and other Charities. These posts are obtained through a competitive process and allow postholders to complete a dedicated period of research out of the clinical training programme leading to completion of a higher degree (MD or PhD).

Academic Clinical Lectureships (ACLs)

A number of NIHR and University funded Lectureships are available for those wishing to pursue an academic clinical career following completion of a higher degree. These posts allow completion of Specialty Clinical Training with 50% protected research time. An individualised programme of training and mentoring is offered. These posts constitute a platform for competing for post-doctoral funding and clinician scientist schemes.

 Appointments are generally for 4-5 years or until completion of clinical specialist training (CCT), whatever is earlier, with a six-month grace period following CCT.

Our ACLs are encouraged to apply to the Academy of Medical Sciences (AMS) Starter Grant Scheme for Clinical Lecturers and to choose an external mentor to support their career development throughthe AMS Mentoring Scheme for Postdoctoral Clinicians.

Summer Studentships

The Institute of Metabolism and Systems Research, an interdisciplinary research institute, is always committed to training the next generation of scientists and has a very successful Summer School which runs between June and August.

Participants of the IMSR Summer SchoolThe IMSR Summer School, led by Dr Paul Foster and Dr Vicki Smith, is aimed atundergraduates who are considering a future in biomedical research. These short placements (6-10 weeks) provide students with hands-on experience of what it's like to work in a research laboratory, attend a weekly Journal Club and have the opportunity to participate in IMSR seminars.

The school provides an invaluable opportunity to do scientific research and to bolster student CVs. Some of our past summer students have found their experience so rewarding they have returned to intercalate or to take their PhDs at the University of Birmingham.

Who is eligible to apply?

Students should currently be an undergraduate and must not be in their final year of study. We encourage students from any biological/chemical field to apply, including from Medicine (MBChB), Biomedical Sciences (BMedSci), Biochemical Engineering, Biosciences, Biochemistry and Pharmacy (MPharm).We accept University of Birmingham students and students from other national and international Universities.  Applications are made online via the IMSR website, applications for IMSR Summer School 2020 have now closed. 

Is any funding available to support Summer School students?

Funding is not necessary to apply, however students who are accepted into the IMSR should be prepared to apply for funding to support their time with us. This document (PDF, 180kb) is a guide to students and Principal Investigators to help identify potential funding streams and relevant deadlines.

For questions regarding any aspect of the IMSR Summer School please contact Dr Paul Foster ( or Dr Vicki Smith (

Here are some comments from previous IMSR summer students:

Past summer school students speaking about their experiences









Masters by Research Studentships

The Institute of Metabolism and Systems Research, an interdisciplinary research institute, is always committed to training the next generation of scientists.

 The Institute hosts students registered for a research masters degree in the UK or Europe to complete projects that can be written up for a masters thesis. The students work for a period of up to 12 months in a host laboratory within the Institute.

Interested students should contact IMSR group leaders directly.

View more information on IMSR Principal Investigators and their research.

Undergraduate courses

The Institute of Metabolism and Systems Research (IMSR) is committed to training excellent scientists and healthcare professionals, with a strong ethos of delivering outstanding undergraduate teaching underpinned by cutting-edge research, in line with the University of Birmingham 2026 vision.

IMSR staff participate in the delivery of several UG programmes including MBChB, BSc Biomedical Science (BSc), MPharm, BDS, and the intercalated BSc Clinical Sciences. In addition, IMSR staff contributes to UG teaching for the School of Biosciences.

IMSR staff regularly serve as personal tutors for students on the MBChB, BMedSc and MPharm programmes, contribute to MBChB Year 1 research taster sessions and supervise electives and audit projects of MBChB students. IMSR staff regularly supervise final year dissertation projects for BMedSc and intercalated BMedSc Clinical Sciences students.

To find out more about our undergraduate courses, please visit the College of Medical and Dental Sciences

Postgraduate Taught courses

To find out more about our postgraduate taught courses, please visit the College of Medical and Dental Sciences.