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Accodion Widgit

How do I apply for my PhD?

Glad to hear that you are interested in a PhD in the Department of Materials!

Here you can find a list of DTP and other funded projects. Otherwise, please, have a look at the list of academics, and just get in touch with the ones in fields relevant to you - just a head up, teaching fellows cannot be PhD supervisors. Whether they have a position advertised or not, it is good practice to get in touch before applying to check if they are willing to support your application.

Make sure that you choose a supervisor in your PhD application so your application can be shared with them.

You can submit your application through the Imperial application portal. Also, check the admission policy.

Please visit How to Apply for more info. Once on the page, please follow the step-by-step guide to complete your application. 

What are the entry requirements?

For admission to a PhD research programme, the College would normally expect you to hold or achieve a Master's degree, in addition to a Bachelor's degree at UK Upper Second Class Honours Level.

If you are an international student you can find more details on the Entry Requirements webpage.


What are the English requirements?

The College's English language requirements can be found on our English Language Requirement webpage.

All Materials courses require Standard-level English.

What documents do I need to submit for my application?

To apply, you will need to fill in your personal details in the application form and upload the following documents:

  • CV
  • Transcripts
  • Personal statement
  • English certificate 
  • Contact details of 2 referees

Can I upload the reference letters myself? Or can my prospective supervisor be one of my referees?

Unfortunately, you will not be able to upload your reference letters and your prospective supervisor cannot be appointed as one of the referees.

Your referees will need to upload your reference using their work email. Alternatively, they can send your reference directly to Engineering Admissions.

What should I include in my personal statement?

What to include in your statement will depend on the scholarship that you are applying for. We recommend that you send a research proposal (no longer than two pages) and a short presentation letter. To ensure you meet all the requirements you can also ask for advice from your prospective supervisor.

Where can I find which academics are available?

To find available academics for your application, please visit our 'our staff' webpage.

Can I apply to more than one academic?

Unfortunately, the application process allows you to only apply with one academic per Department.

Please add the name of your chosen academic and the project you are interested in to your application. 

How long will it be before I recieve a decision?

Once you have submitted your documents to the College, they will be reviewed by our admissions team. This takes approximately a week but can take up to a month during extremely busy periods (December - late January). 

When the admissions team has reviewed your documents, they will be sent to your chosen academic (if your application contains at least one reference). 
Once your application is sent to an academic, they have up to five weeks to make a decision.

Therefore the total application process is expected to be between six to nine weeks.

Do I have to meet all the conditions before I apply?

We accept applications if you are still finishing your degree, and if your application is accepted, you will be given a conditional offer until you meet the requirements. 

This process is the same for English requirements. 

How many live applications can I have?

You are only allowed to have two live applications for one given academic year.

If you have already applied for a department and you would like to add a second choice, you can add this to your application. 

What scholarships are available?

Depending on your citizenship, you can apply for different scholarships.

Here you can find all the scholarships offered by the College. Remarkably, the Scholarships search tool can help you search for all available scholarships in one place.

Please, find below some of the available scholarships:

In particular, the Department of Materials offers some funded opportunities:

I am an overseas student, can I apply for a CDT project?

If you are an overseas student, you will have to contact the CDT administrator before applying.

CDT's, unfortunately, cannot fund overseas students and most of the CDTs do not accept self-funded students. 

My fee status is incorrect, how can I change it?

If you think your fee status assessment is incorrect, please visit our Fee Status webpage for more information.

I am an overseas student. What CAH code shall I use for my ATAS application?

The CAH code to use for PhD programmes in the Materials Department: CAH10-03-02

For queries about visas, ATAS clearance and other international student matters, you can contact the International Student Support team.

I am unsure whether my academic background is suitable for the programme. Is it even worth applying?

Of course, if you have a STEM background and meet the entry requirements you can definitely apply! Materials research is such an interdisciplinary field so you can definitely bring your unique perspective and contribution to your prospective PhD research group, even if you have a different background. 

I am a mature student and I am concerned about how easy it will be able to mix with my peers. How can you help me address this concern?

No worries! Each research group comprises a mix of students and postdocs of different ages. Additionally, the Department is a large welcoming community! Departmental events and seminars will allow you to connect and interact with other researchers and research students with a variety of backgrounds, ethnicity and age. 

Any further questions?

If you have any further questions, please contact Annalisa Neri, Postgraduate Research Coordinator in the Department of Materials.