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Graduate Admissions

The PhD in Physics is a full-time period of research which introduces, or builds upon, research skills and specialist knowledge. Students are assigned to a research supervisor, a specialist in part or all of the student's chosen research field, and join a research group which might vary in size between four and 80 individuals.

Although the supervisor is responsible for the progress of a student's research programme, the extent to which a graduate student is assisted by the supervisor or by other members of the group depends almost entirely on the structure and character of the group concerned. The research field is normally determined at entry, after consideration of the student's interests and facilities available. The student, however, may work within a given field for a period of time before his or her personal topic is determined.

There is no requirement made by the University for graduate students to attend formal courses or lectures for the PhD. Graduate work is largely a matter of independent research and successful graduates require a high degree of self-motivation. Nevertheless, lectures and classes may be arranged, and students are expected to attend both seminars (delivered regularly by members of the University and by visiting scholars and industrialists) and external conferences. Graduate students are also expected to participate in the undergraduate teaching programme at some time whilst they are based at the Cavendish, in order to develop their teaching, demonstrating, outreach, organisational and person-management skills.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the research programme, students will have demonstrated:

  • the creation and interpretation of new knowledge, through original research or other advanced scholarship, of a quality to satisfy peer review, extend the forefront of the discipline, and merit publication;
  • a systematic acquisition and understanding of a substantial body of knowledge which is at the forefront of an academic discipline or area of professional practice;
  • the general ability to conceptualise, design and implement a project for the generation of new knowledge, applications or understanding at the forefront of the discipline, and to adjust the project design in the light of unforeseen problems;
  • a detailed understanding of applicable techniques for research and advanced academic enquiry; and
  • the development of a PhD thesis for examination that they can defend  in an oral examination and, if successful, graduate with a PhD.

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Key Information


3-4 years full-time

5-7 years part-time

Doctor of Philosophy

Department of Physics

Enquiries

Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Applications open
Dec. 1, 2016
Application deadline
Oct. 4, 2017
Course Starts
Jan. 5, 2018

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Applications open
March 1, 2017
Application deadline
Jan. 14, 2018
Course Starts
April 17, 2018

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Michaelmas 2018

Applications open
Sept. 4, 2017
Application deadline
June 30, 2018
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2018

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Applications open
Dec. 6, 2017
Application deadline
Oct. 4, 2018
Course Starts
Jan. 5, 2019

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Applications open
March 17, 2018
Application deadline
Jan. 14, 2019
Course Starts
April 17, 2019

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Graduate Funding Competition
Dec. 6, 2017
Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 11, 2017

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