Can I suggest my own project?
The project list is designed to give prospective students an idea of the scope of projects and supervisors available within the DTP, but candidates apply to the programme rather than to individual projects, and we welcome project suggestions from applicants. There is no need to include a research proposal at this stage, but applicants should identify at least one supervisor with whom they could conduct their proposed research project.
Alternatively, individuals with a predetermined project and supervisor are also welcome to apply. In either case, candidates will be asked to describe their research plan or aspirations in detail at interview; and this will form part of the selection process.
What should I enter in the project selection field on the application form, if I am entering my own project proposal?
If you are entering your own project, then please enter ‘own project proposed’ in the field where project numbers are normally required.
Then use the “Research summary” field to provide a brief synopsis of why you are choosing your own project.
Please also provide the name of the primary supervisor in the “Research Supervisor” field. You can also use this section to outline why you have chosen the project and how this might fit with your academic or professional aspirations.
Am I required to select two projects?
These selections are for guidance only, as most students will make their final project selections after they have received an offer of a place, through mutual agreement between applicant and the project supervisor.
Once the panel have interviewed and selected the candidates, Supervisors will be advised and invited to meet with the candidates to discuss a research project and PhD place. You will still be free to alter your originally selected project at this stage, and you are not committed to the projects indicated on application.
As I am not a medical student or clinician, what should I enter in this section of the application.
These two course specific questions are set by the Clinical School, who require this information to be included on the application form. If neither of these two statements apply, then please leave blank and continue with your application.
Why is it recommended that I submit two applications; one to the MRC DTP PhD programme and one to the relevant Department?
We recommend that all applicants also apply directly to the department, and tick the apply for funding box on the application form. By doing so you will automatically be considered for a place and funding via the Department should you not be awarded a Research Council funded place.
There is a three for one offer on the application fee for courses within life sciences, so there will only be one application fee. Further details can be found here: https://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/application-process/how-do-i-apply/application-fee/fee-life-science-courses
How do I find the relevant course number for the separate departmental applications?
Further details of all the departmental PhD courses can be found on the course directory: https://www.postgraduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/cvcmpdmsc
Will International Fee status applicants receive full funding?
UK students will be eligible for a full MRC DTP studentship, covering full fees and a stipend of £18,000 per annum for 3.5 years. For further information on your fee status, please see https://www.postgraduate.study.cam.ac.uk/finance/fees/what-my-fee-status
UKRI have confirmed that international students (EU and non-EU) will be eligible for all Research Council-funded postgraduate studentships from the start of the 2021/22 academic year. The text of the August 2020 public statement is here https://www.ukri.org/news/ukri-funded-postgraduate-programmes-to-open-to-international-students/
Cambridge MRC DTP will be able to offer a limited number of studentships to international students, and funding will cover both fees and a stipend to support living costs. These international studentship awards will be subject to eligibility and the availability of complementary funding (to provide the differential to the international fee rate); we expect there to be keen competition for these places.
Please note that EU, EEA and Swiss nationals benefitting from Citizens’ Rights (under the EU Withdrawal Agreement, EEA EFTA Separation Agreement or Swiss Citizens’ Rights Agreement respectively), and Irish nationals living in the UK and Ireland (whose right to study and to access benefits and services will be preserved under the Common Travel Area arrangement), will continue to be treated as Home students for the purposes of Research Council funding.
How can I check if I meet the residency eligibility to be classed as a Home student?
To be classed as a Home student, candidates must meet the following criteria:
• Be a UK National (meeting residency requirements), or
• Have settled status, or
• Have pre-settled status (meeting residency requirements), or
• Have indefinite leave to remain or enter
How can I check if my International qualification meets the University Academic Minimum Requirement?
If I need to take an IELTS test, do I need to submit the test report at the time of application?
If you are made an offer of admission, and have not provided a test report, you will be asked to upload a valid test certificate via the Applicant Self Service to meet the language condition of your offer, so this doesn’t need to be done before application. https://www.postgraduate.study.cam.ac.uk/find-out-more/applicant-faq/international-students
How may applications do you usually receive?
In 2020, a total of 193 eligible applications were received for the programme. Infections & Immunity – 41, Molecular & Cellular – 78, Neurosciences and Mental Health – 67, Population and Systems Medicine – 8.
This was an increase from last year (154 applications). Applications were scored based on academic transcript and testimony of referees. As a result 74 shortlisted applicants were invited to interview. At interview the candidates were further assessed on their knowledge of their field, an ability to explain their research (exemplified by a 5 minute presentation in particular), degree of creative thinking shown in addressing research questions, aptitude, experience, and how well they would fit within the theme of the doctoral training programme in which they had expressed interest.
26 final offers were made and accepted, funded in collaboration with the Programmes co-funders.
|Oncology – 1||Pathology – 3|
|Zoology -1||Biochemistry – 1|
|Psychology – 4||CRUK – 1|
|Clin Neuro – 6||PDN -2|
|CIMR – 3||Clinical Biochemistry – 2|
|Medicine – 1||MRC LMB – 1|
Further information about the admissions process, together with FAQs can be found at: