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Graduate Admissions

3 courses offered in the Department of Plant Sciences

The Department of Plant Sciences is an outstanding University Centre for research in plant and microbial sciences. It offers unrivalled research and training opportunities in the following areas of plant and microbial science:

  • Bioenergy
  • Cell Biology and Development 
  • Crop Improvement and Protection
  • Epidemiology and Mathematical Modelling
  • Ecology and Evolution
  • Genetics and Epigenetics
  • Molecular Biology and Physiology
  • Systems Biology

The research MPhil degree essentially follows the format of the PhD but is compressed into one year of full-time study or two years of part-time study. The work consists of research and courses as required under academic supervision. Examples of projects available can be found on the Research Groups page on the Department of Plant Sciences' website.

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This four-year programme provides excellent postgraduate training, addressing the need for trained scientists in strategically important research areas and skills. The DTP programme has four separate research themes addressing the strategic research priorities of BBSRC:

The research topics included in the Cambridge DTP are aimed at improving understanding of basic biological mechanisms, from the study of biological molecules, to cellular and physiological processes, including genetic and genomic approaches. There is an emphasis on multidisciplinary research interfacing with physical sciences and engineering. Biologists learn mathematical and computational methodologies to address biological questions and the programme may interest mathematicians interested in applying their knowledge to biological problems. A major goal of our training programme is to allow the flow of ideas, skills and key capabilities to provide mutual benefit in supporting the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries in the UK.

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The Department of Plant Sciences is an outstanding University Centre for research in plant and microbial sciences. It offers unrivalled research and training opportunities in the following areas of plant and microbial science:

  • Bioenergy
  • Cell Biology and Development 
  • Crop Improvement and Protection
  • Epidemiology and Mathematical Modelling
  • Ecology and Evolution
  • Genetics and Epigenetics
  • Molecular Biology and Physiology
  • Systems Biology

The degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is the University's principal research degree. A PhD in Plant Sciences takes three or four years of full-time study to complete and consists of research and courses as required under academic supervision. Examples of projects available can be found via the Research Groups page on the Department of Plant Sciences' website.

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4 courses also advertised in the Department of Plant Sciences

From the British Antarctic Survey

In this course a PhD is undertaken under the joint supervision of a research scientist at British Antarctic Survey and a University supervisor. The British Antarctic Survey welcomes enquiries from those interested in higher degrees in earth science subjects, physics, chemistry, mathematics, biology and related subjects. Further projects may also be available in the University Department (see other entries in this list).

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From the Department of Earth Sciences

The UKRI Centre for Doctoral Training in the Application of Artificial Intelligence to the study of Environmental Risks (AI4ER) trains researchers (through several multidisciplinary cohorts) to be uniquely equipped to develop and apply leading-edge computational approaches to address critical global environmental challenges by exploiting vast, diverse and often currently untapped environmental data sets. Embedded in the outstanding research environments of the University of Cambridge and the British Antarctic Survey (BAS), the AI4ER CDT addresses problems that are relevant to building resilience to environmental hazards and managing environmental change. The primary application areas are:

  • Weather, Climate and Air Quality
  • Natural Hazards
  • Natural Resources (food, water & resource security and biodiversity)

Students in the CDT cohorts engage in a one-year MRes degree in Physical Sciences (Environmental Data Science) which includes a taught component and a major research element, followed by a three-year PhD research project. Students will receive high-quality training in research, professional, technical and transferable skills through a focused core programme with an emphasis on the development of data science skills through hackathons and team challenges. Training is guided by personalised advice and the expertise of a network of partners in industry, government, the third sector and beyond.

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From the Department of Medicine

The Cambridge MRC Doctoral Training Programme  is a partnership between the University of Cambridge and the Babraham Institute. Included as associate partners are the MRC institutes and units in Cambridge, and other University Partner Institutes.

The Programme is offering at least ten fully funded PhD studentships for projects commencing in October 2019.

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From the Department of Physics

The PhD programme is based on courses, practicals and projects in year one before selection of an interdisciplinary PhD topic for research in years two through four in a Nano group within Physics, Chemistry, Engineering, Materials or another department. A significant element will be a course on "nurturing and managing innovation", delivered through the Maxwell Centre which is the hub of industry–academia interactions in physical sciences in Cambridge.

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Department Members


Professor Alison Smith
Head of Department

  • 20 Academic Staff
  • 47 Postdoctoral Researchers
  • 72 Graduate Students
  • 75 Undergraduates

http://www.plantsci.cam.ac.uk/

Research Areas