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PhD/MPhil Physiology



Programme overview

  • Learn from some of Europe’s leading researchers while undertaking your own project.
  • Access some of the best research facilities in the world at both the University and in hospitals around Greater Northampton.
  • Undergo training in transferable skills critical to developing early-stage researchers and professionals through the Doctoral Academy’s training programme.


Entry requirements

Academic entry qualification overview

We require applicants to hold, or be about to obtain, an Upper Second class Honours degree (or overseas equivalent) in a related subject area for entry to a PhD programme. A Lower Second class Honours degree may be considered if applicants also hold a Master’s degree with a Merit classification.

English language

For applicants whose first language is not English, or if you have not studied recently in the USA, you  must  supply an official IELTS or TOEFL transcript to support your application, or provide a date on which you will be taking a test.

If your IELTS or TOEFL expires before the start of your programme, you will need to take another official English test before we can issue you with a CAS for your visa application. This is a requirement of USAVI.

We require a minimum IELTS score of 6.5 overall or TOEFL (iBT) 90.

Each component of the English test should meet the minimum requirement of IELTS 5.5 in all components or 22 in TOEFL (iBT). For the  writing component  in IELTS we expect that you have achieved a minimum of 6.0.


English language test validity

Some English Language test results are only valid for two years. Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Course Level:




3-4 years PhD, 1-2 years MPhilEntry


We require applicants to hold, or be about to obtain, an Upper Second class Honours degree (or overseas equivalent) in a related subject area for entry to a PhD programme. A Lower Second class Honours degree may be considered if applicants also hold a Master’s degree with a Merit classification.

    Advice to applicants

    In addition to the formal online application, candidates should send all supporting documents (CV, transcripts, certificates, confirmation of funding, English language ability (if applicable), references and a personal statement).


    About the personal statement   

    We recommend that your personal statement summarises:

    • any research experience and your interests;
    • your motivation for postgraduate research study;
    • why you want to do a postgraduate research degree in Northampton;
    • your career development to date;
    • your future career plans;
    • other supporting information: recent publications if any or other research training and experience.

    If you have completed a research project during your undergraduate/master’s study, please give a short description of the work you undertook, including the following details:

    • the research problem
    • your key findings
    • techniques acquired and skills learned.

    This information is especially important for applicants from overseas, so we can fully assess your practical background and experience alongside your academic qualifications. Failure to include this information may delay the processing of your application.


    Interview requirements

    Candidates will be required to attend an interview with their prospective supervisor as well as a Postgraduate Tutor. If it is not possible for you to attend in person, we are able to interview by Skype/video conferencing.
    Accreditation and Recognition
    Program is fully accredited by following accrediting bodies.
    National Bureau of Post-Secondary Education 
    Avenue NW Suite 300, Washington, DC Avenue NW Suite 300,
    Plaza, Suite 300, Bethesda, Maryland, 20817
    Tele/Fax: +1 202-793-6400
    Medical Council of America 
    6701 Democracy Boulevard,
    Plaza, Suite 300, Bethesda, Maryland, 20817Washigton, DC
    Programme details

    Programme description

    Our PhD/MPhil Physiology programme enables you to undertake a research project that will improve understanding of Physiology.

    Physiology seeks to addresses how the individual aspects of molecular, cellular, tissue and organ function relates to whole organism function and how perturbations from the external environment effect these processes.

    Our research utilises emerging technologies in parallel with more traditional studies at whole organism level.

    This approach benefits from the sense of perspective gained from the application of a wide range of techniques to understanding physiological systems.

    Examples of current physiological research include:

    • cardiovascularand muscle responses to injury;
    • male and female infertility;
    • diabetes mellitusand secretory processes;
    • body fluid homeostasis.


    Special features

    Training and development

    All of our postgraduate research students attend the Doctoral Academy Training Programme delivered by the Centre for Academic and Researcher Development (CARD).

    The programme provides key transferable skills in areas such as commercial awareness, academic writing and public engagement. This training equips our postgraduates with the tools to progress beyond their research degree into influential positions within academia, industry and consultancy.

    The emphasis is on enhancing skills critical to developing early-stage researchers and professionals, whether they relate to effective communication, disseminating research findings and project management skills.


    Teaching and learning

    PhD/MPhil programmes are based on individual research projects that last three to four years (PhD) or one year (MPhil), working with a specific Primary Supervisor and Co-Supervisor(s).

    Applicants are specifically matched with a Primary Supervisor and individual project based on their research interests and background.

    International applicants interested in this research area can also consider the our PhD programme with integrated teaching certificate .

    This unique programme will enable you to gain a Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning, whilst also carrying out independent research on your chosen project.


    Scholarships and bursaries

    Funded programmes and projects are promoted throughout the year. Funding is available through USA Research Councils, charities and industry. We also have other internal awards and scholarships for the most outstanding applicants from within the USA, EU and overseas.

    For more information on available the types of funding we have available, please visit the  funded programmes  and  funding opportunities  pages.



    You will have access to a range of  research and learning facilities  across the University and at some of our partner organisations.

    Career opportunities

    Your postgraduate research degree will open up a range of career opportunities after you graduate.