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MRC Centre for Neuromuscular Diseases Studentships

4- year MPHIL/PHD Programme: MRC Centre for Neuromuscular Diseases


Our programme

The MRC Centre for Neuromuscular Diseases is a partnership between the UCL Institutes of Neurology and Child Health, and Newcastle University, and is a recognised centre of excellence for research and education in neuromuscular diseases.

Our 4-year MPhil/PhD programme is a vital part of the MRC Centre and offers an excellent opportunity to carry out unique and exciting research in one of our five disease themes: muscular dystrophy, channelopathy, neuropathy, IBM/protein aggregate myopathy and mitochondrial disease.

Applications are now open* for entry into the programme in September 2015, based at the London UCL MRC Centre for Neuromuscular Diseases site. There are three studentships available, jointly funded by the MRC Centre and UCL. All studentships will be located in the MRC Centre for Neuromuscular diseases on the London site. 

Students will carry out three lab rotations in year 1, and in years 2-4 complete a main research project in the lab of their choice. During the first year, through a variety of lectures and tutorials and the three lab rotations, students will be given the skills and knowledge they need to undertake the subsequent three years of their PhD. First year students will be mentored and offered guidance in choosing their subsequent 3 year PhD project.

Successful applicants will be awarded an annual stipend of £18K, plus EU / Home Fees. NB: Candidates who are not EEA nationals are eligible to apply if they meet the minimum application requirements but all non-EEA applicants must demonstrate the ability to pay the difference between the home Home/EU fee and the International fee for 3 years from the start date of the studentship.

*Applications will be accepted from 8thth October 2014 until 14th November 2014. Applications received after this date cannot be considered.

How to apply

Application is by CV and covering letter.

Your application should be emailed to  by the stated deadline of 14th November 2014.

Only Word documents or PDF files will be accepted. Please send two files clearly labelled SURNAME, CV MRC CENTRE and SURNAME, COVERING LETTER MRC CENTRE.

Entry requirements

You should already hold, or anticipate being awarded in 2015, a UK Bachelor’s degree with first or upper second-class honours, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard from a recognised higher education institute.

We will consider applicants with a lower second-class honours degree if they also have a recognised taught Master's degree. 

Your degree should be in a related subject, for example; Neuroscience, Biological or Biomedical Sciences, Psychology, Medicine.

What should I include in my CV

  • Details of your first and/or Masters degrees
  • Details of any relevant work experience
  • Details of any voluntary research/clinical experience
  • Details of any academic publications, conference presentations or posters you have written or presented
  • Details of any academic prizes you have won
  • Names and contact details (email preferred) for TWO academic referees
  • Details of any English language qualifications held if your first language is not English

What should I include in my covering letter

You should not repeat the information presented in your CV but expand upon it.

For example:

  • what is it you can bring to this programme?
  • What do you hope to learn?
  • How will a PhD in Neuromuscular Diseases fit into, or further your career plans?
  • Why is a four year programme attractive?

Recruitment timetable

Applications close on 14th November 2014 and interviews will be held in London in w/c 8 December 2014.

An alternative interview date cannot be offered to individual shortlisted candidates.

Due to the high number of applications we receive we regret that we will only be able to contact those who are shortlisted for interview.

Contact us

Candidates are invited to contact us with any questions or to arrange to visit the site.

For questions on the application process please contact Ms Christine Oldfield, MRC Centre Administrator, at