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Postgraduate Study


The CDT is run in conjunction with the University of Oxford and the University of Loughborough.  There will be placements at Oxford and Loughborough, and short courses in the industry.

MRes students will be required to pass four core modules, two elective modules and three mini-projects, to attend three industry courses, and to write a project proposal dissertation. Teaching will take place through a variety of media: lectures; small-group teaching; student-led and tutor-led seminars; field visits; guest speaker presentations and case studies; short block courses; mini-projects and industry courses; dissertation supervision. 

Successful MRes students will then proceed to a three-year programme of supervised doctoral research, during which time they will continue to be supported by the CDT. They will continue to participate in CDT seminars and workshop events.

Students who proceed to the PhD may be supervised at any of the three partner universities; the destination university is determined from the start of the course. Additionally, MRes students must complete mini-projects based at both Oxford and Loughborough.

The numbers given below reflect the MRes year only.

One to one supervision

20 hours per year.

Cambridge PhD students can expect to attend at least eight hour-long individual meetings with their supervisor every calendar year. This is in addition to daily contact with the research group in which they are placed.

The University of Cambridge publishes an annual Code of Practice for Master's Students which sets out the University’s expectations regarding supervision during the MRes year. Expectations for the PhD are set out in a separate Code of Practice for Research Students.

Seminars & classes

16 hours per year.


88 hours per year.


220 hours per year.

Small group teaching

48 hours per year.

Literature Reviews

A full week (40 hours) will be spent doing a literature review at the beginning of the dissertation.

Posters and Presentations

Every MRes student is required to prepare a poster for the annual Advisory Group meeting (a meeting of both the core course staff and external advisers).


MRes students can expect to receive termly reports from their course director, via an online system, and will have an  opportunity to submit a self-evaluation report in the first term. They will receive comments on items of coursework and will have access to a University supervisor for their dissertation. All students will also have personal access to the course director and the other staff delivering the course.

Throughout a Cambridge PhD, students can expect to receive feedback from their supervisors, who they will meet for regular supervisions, as well as assistance from those working in the same research group. Principal supervisors will submit termly reports on students' progress, which will be made available via an online system. Students will also have an opportunity to submit an annual self-evaluation report, on which their principal supervisors may comment.


Thesis / Dissertation

A major part of the MRes assessment is a PhD project proposal dissertation of up to 12,000 words.

Cambridge PhD students will be required to submit a report of 10,000 to 15,000 words at the end of the second year of the degree (the first year of the PhD programme). The doctoral thesis itself must be submitted by the end of the fourth year (the third year of the PhD programme) and must not exceed 65,000 words. A compulsory viva voce examination will follow thesis submission.


One of the MRes core modules (Turbomachinery Aerodynamic Design) will be assessed by a coursework report of up to 4,000 words; another (Experimental Methods) will be assessed partly by a coursework report of up to 2,000 words.

MRes elective options may also be assessed wholly or partly by coursework.

MRes students will also be required to complete three mini-projects, which will each be assessed either through a 4,000-word report or through a presentation.

Written examination

One of the MRes core modules is assessed by examination. Elective options may also be assessed wholly or partly by written examination.


The MRes Researcher Skills core course and the three industry courses will be assessed by a standard credit linked to attendance.

The assessment for some MRes modules may involve poster displays or oral presentations.

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Key Information

1+3 years full-time

Study Mode : Research

Doctor of Philosophy
Master of Research in the first instance

Department of Engineering

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Application - related enquiries

Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Michaelmas 2024

Applications open
Sept. 4, 2023
Application deadline
June 25, 2024
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2024

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

Course Funding Deadline
Dec. 5, 2023
Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 11, 2023

These deadlines apply to applications for courses starting in Michaelmas 2024, Lent 2025 and Easter 2025.

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