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Graduate Admissions

In view of the COVID-19 public health emergency we may need to make changes to the course details outlined on these pages. Offers holders will be notified of changes. Please see this page for further information.

Course closed:

Clinical Medicine is no longer accepting new applications.

This programme is designed to allow clinical academics to reach their full potential and pursue a successful academic career. Four scholarships are offered in 2020 via a further round of admissions.

Fellowships supported either by the University or Wellcome Sanger Institute cover the broad themes of genetic medicine, infection and immunity, neuroscience and mental health, structural and cell biology applied to medicine, cardiovascular medicine, developmental biology, and epidemiology, public health and primary care. To be eligible to apply for the fellowships, you must be qualified in clinical or veterinary medicine and in a training (i.e., not Consultant or equivalent) grade.  Although veterinary graduates are not eligible for a Sanger Institute fellowship, they can undertake research at the Sanger Institute supervised either solely or jointly by a Sanger faculty member, whilst supported by another fellowship from the programme.

The programme includes a series of lectures, workshops, and taught modules aimed at developing a personal portfolio of training. There is also the opportunity for a three month "out of programme experience" (OOPE) for individuals who do not hold academic clinical fellowships. During this time you can attend appropriate lectures, workshops, meet a range of supervisors and undertake mini-projects in laboratories in your area of interest that enable students to select a PhD supervisor and second supervisor, and to prepare a PhD research proposal in the form of a "project grant application".

Students choosing to undertake a PhD in epidemiology, public health and primary care, or requiring computational biology knowledge can undertake an MPhil before embarking on a PhD.

At the start of the Programme, all students attend induction events for graduate students organised by the School of Clinical Medicine.  They also have the opportunity to attend various transferable skills training sessions throughout the year.  It is expected that students spend approximately two weeks each year on transferable skills training.  The Graduate School of Life Sciences provides a large selection of both taught and online courses to choose from.

Throughout the Programme and after completion, you will be mentored by one or more individuals from the Faculty and Management Committee of the PhD programme.

Year one

During year one, students are encouraged to present regularly at lab meetings and to attend journal clubs and seminars. Under University of Cambridge regulations, all PhD students are "probationary" in their first year and must undergo an assessment after 12 months in order to be registered for the PhD. Students are therefore required to write a report on their work to date and plans for forthcoming work, and attend a viva. There is also a summer symposium where students present their work.

Year two

You will be encouraged to present regularly at lab meetings, departmental seminars and at meetings of learned societies. You will also prepare for, and present at the summer symposium. Your progress will also be reviewed by the mentoring committee.

Year three

Regular presentation at lab meetings, departmental seminars and meetings of learned societies. Your progress will be reviewed by a mentoring committee and you will again present at the summer symposium. You will prepare your thesis for submission (deadline of 30 September) and your final viva will take place in October or November.

Further information can be found on the programme website.

Open Days

The University of Cambridge will be hosting its Cambridge Postgraduate Open Day on Friday 1 November 2019. Visit the Postgraduate Open Day page for more details.


This course is advertised in the following departments:

Key Information

3-4 years full-time

Doctor of Philosophy

This course is advertised in multiple departments. Please see the Overview tab for more details.


Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Applications open
Sept. 2, 2019
Application deadline
March 6, 2020
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2020

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

Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 14, 2019

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