Studentships and funding

PhD degree

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree is a fully supervised research degree. Our students come from scientific and from clinical backgrounds and register with the University of Nottingham on either a full-time (three years) or part-time (six years) basis.  Some of our students continue to work in clinical practice while studying part time. All of our students are part of the School of Medicine and benefit from an innovative programme of doctoral training in translational research. Training in generic research skills is an integral part of this programme.

We strongly encourage our students to participate in national and international conferences to disseminate their research findings and to meet scientists from across the UK and overseas. We have a lively postgraduate student culture, with a mixture of students from both the UK and overseas.

What is translational research?

Translational research is an approach to life sciences research that is intended to accelerate outcomes applicable to healthcare. Funding organisations have poured billions of pounds into basic life sciences research, but the practical return on their investment has not been as substantial as expected. Translational research is the key missing component, the bridge that joins the traditionally separated disciplines of basic sciences research and applied healthcare research.

Translational research focuses on removing barriers to multi-disciplinary collaboration. Collaboration between clinicians, researchers and operational staff ensures that research is carried out by those with the most suitable expertise. Fruitful cross-disciplinary research and open communication are achieved through an understanding of the possibilities, expertise and needs of adjacent disciplines and through using a common language.


Each student has a supervisory team of between two and four supervisors who contribute expertise in all areas of the project. The lead supervisor will be a senior academic member of staff within the NIHR Nottingham BRC. Other supervisors may be NIHR Nottingham BRC staff, other staff of the University or clinical colleagues within the NHS as appropriate.

Criteria for applications

Applicants should have obtained or expect to obtain a good first or 2.1 honours undergraduate degree, or equivalent, in a relevant subject. A postgraduate degree including research methodology is desirable.


We are offering NIHR-funded studentships and University funded studentships that are available through open competition.   

We have a good track record of supervising international and EU students and particularly welcome queries from students who have secured their own funding.

Studentships are usually taken up at the start of the academic calendar (October) each year, but this is negotiable

For information on how to apply, please click here