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Postgraduate Admissions

Teaching

Although the course is a research degree, PhD students are entitled to attend all lecture courses within the Department. They should discuss with their supervisors which courses would be most beneficial to their research.

Additionally, first-year students are normally required to take two master's-level taught modules (selected from a list of over 80 modules) as part of their first-year assessment, and will participate in regular seminars, which will equip them with essential skills in research practice and communication. Students may also be expected to engage in additional researcher development activities.

All doctoral research takes place in University of Cambridge facilities. However, the Department and its supervisors have strong links to other institutions both in the UK and around the world. After their first year, students may, therefore, apply for permission to undertake research in other institutions for extended periods of time. All necessary practical arrangements are the responsibility of students and their supervisors.

One to one supervision

PhD students can expect to attend at least eight one-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 which sets out the University’s expectations regarding supervision.

Seminars & classes

Over the course of the first year, students will attend approximately 24 hours of seminars targeted at developing their research and communications skills.

Lectures

Most students will attend two 16-hour lecture courses in the first year.

Literature_reviews

Conducting a literature review is a normal part of the PhD writing process.

Placements

The Department is flexible in permitting students, with the support of their supervisors, to undertake research in an industrial setting. Permission to work away from the University is required. However, students may not undertake any paid work in an industrial setting during the course of the PhD.

Feedback

Throughout the PhD, students can expect to receive feedback from their supervisors, who they will meet for regular supervisions, and assistance from those working in the same research group. Supervisors will also submit a termly report on students' progress which will be made available via the CamSIS self-service system.

Every student is also allocated an advisor, who is available for consultation alongside the supervisor. Additionally, in the first year, students will receive feedback from coursework assignments and the Researcher Development Course leaders in the first year.

Assessment

Thesis / Dissertation

The PhD is assessed through the examination of a thesis, including an oral ("viva voce") examination. The thesis must not exceed 65,000 words (including appendices, footnotes, tables and equations), and must not contain more than 150 figures.

Written examination

First-year students are normally required to take two master's-level taught modules (selected from a list of over 80 modules) as part of their first-year assessment and will participate in regular seminars, which will equip them with essential in research and communication skills.

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Key Information


3-4 years full-time

5-7 years part-time

Doctor of Philosophy

Department of Engineering

Course – related enquiries

Application – related enquiries

Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Applications open
Sept. 3, 2019
Application deadline
Oct. 4, 2020
Course Starts
Jan. 5, 2021

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

Michaelmas 2021

Applications open
Sept. 1, 2020
Application deadline
June 30, 2021
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2021

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

Applications open
Sept. 1, 2020
Application deadline
Oct. 4, 2021
Course Starts
Jan. 5, 2022

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

Graduate Funding Competition
Dec. 3, 2020
Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 14, 2020

These deadlines apply to applications for courses starting in Michaelmas 2021, Lent 2022 and Easter 2022.


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