Besides performing research at the highest international standards, the University considers training and nurturing of the next generation of researchers a top priority. The PhD Programme therefore represents a major activity in the College of Life Sciences and is aimed at making this period an exciting and rewarding experience. The aims of the PhD Programme are:
- To train students in research methods and practice by performing well-supervised, high-quality research projects at the forefront of international science in well equipped laboratories.
- To make students aware of the theory, practice, capabilities and limitations of modern techniques in life science research.
- To train students in the generic skills of scientific research i.e. experimental design, data analysis, literature survey, communication skills, teamwork and computer skills.
- To assist students to obtain appropriate employment upon completion of their studies.
- To provide an intellectually exciting and supportive work environment.
Our PhD programmes offer studentships to UK, EU and overseas applicants through a variety of funding mechanism from MRC, BBSRC, CRUK, Wellcome Trust, A-Star (Singapore) and from the University itself.
The Wellcome Tust PhD studentships include a programme in Molecular Cell Biology in the College of Life Sciences and a cross-college Clinical PhD programme where clinicians are trained in basic science laboratories.
For the Wellcome Trust 4-year PhD programme in Molecular Cell Biology, in the first year, students select 3 rotation projects of around 3 months duration in each of the the broad areas of "Cell Signalling and Gene Expression", "Biological Chemistry and Molecular Physiology" and "Cell and Developmental Biology and Immunology". At the end of the first year, students can choose to do their full 3-year project with any of the ~40 supervisors on the Programme. Students also undertake an innovative practical training course (“boot-camp”) in tissue culture, molecular biology, proteomics, cell imaging, flow-cytometry. This exposes students to the outstanding core facilities available within the College and trains them in the basic skills underpinning their rotation and PhD projects. In addition to gaining laboratory experience in the first year, students undertake advanced course work, principally in the form of 'Super Seminars'. These consist of weekly meetings with potential supervisors who give a research seminar and then convene a journal club in his or her area of interest, to be led by one of the students. This format is designed to stimulate pro-active learning in the diverse areas of Life Sciences currently being researched in Dundee and provide a broad basis of knowledge that will assist students in making their decisions for rotation projects and ultimately their 3-Yr PhD project. Other specialised workshops and courses are also be available, for example in bioinformatics, statistics and microscopy, as well as an extensive choice of Generic Skills training.
For the clinical PhD students, there is the exciting cross-college Wellcome Trust-funded 3 year PhD Programme and a Dundee Cancer Centre 3 year PhD programme. The aim of these programmes is to nurture and develop the talents of the brightest junior doctors for academic medical research. The fellowships are open to young clinicians who intend to pursue a career in academic medicine. For successful applicants, this training programme provides:
- A PhD research project in a key science discipline within a well-resourced, world-class environment for science and medicine.
- Highly experienced supervisors with an excellent track record in basic research.
- A clinical mentoring programme closely linked with the postgraduate deanery.
- A unique 6 week full-time introductory course in laboratory techniques.
- A clinical salary, PhD registration fees, general training funds and travel-costs.