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Postgraduate Admissions


The course combines taught lectures (October-April), followed by a summer internship project (May-August). There are typically three or four taught modules per term, and each module consists of 16 hours of lectures. Each module is assessed by coursework, and there is one general examination in May.

One to one supervision

The Course Director is available throughout the year for individual meetings and briefly meets termly with each student to check on progress. Each lecturer is also encouraged to arrange an office hour whereby students can talk about their progress.

The University of Cambridge publishes an annual Code of Practice which sets out the University’s expectations regarding supervision.

Seminars & classes

These are arranged on an ad-hoc basis if extra support for a particular module is required.


Typically 16 hours per module, with students taking eight modules.


Typically two hours per module, but this varies from module to module.

Journal clubs

A weekly seminar is held during the first two terms on topics across Computational Biology. These seminars help students to select an appropriate project.


Students give a 25-minute presentation on their internship project as part of the formal assessment. Some assessed coursework may also require students to present their work.


Students undertake a mandatory internship (May to August) in either a university or industrial laboratory. The Department will compile a list of possible opportunities which students can discuss directly with the host laboratory.  Alternatively, students may organise their own internship, subject to the approval of the Course Director.


The Course Director will submit a termly report on each student's progress following a short one-to-one meeting held towards the end of each term. Students are also provided with provisional coursework marks as an indication of progress, usually within four weeks of submitting a piece of work. Students will also receive a short written feedback report from the assessors of their internship project. This will be released with the final marks.


Thesis / Dissertation

A 15,000-word (maximum) report must be written to summarise the student's internship. An oral presentation on this report must also be given.


Each module is assessed typically by two written assignments. These assignments involve significant computational elements.

Written examination

A compulsory two-hour general examination is sat in May on the material taught within the modules.

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Key Information

11 months full-time

Master of Philosophy

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

Course – related enquiries

Application – related enquiries

Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Michaelmas 2021

Applications open
Sept. 1, 2020
Application deadline
March 31, 2021
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2021

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

Graduate Funding Competition
Jan. 7, 2021
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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