Postgraduate study

Edinburgh Parallel Computing Centre (EPCC)

Awards: PhD

Study modes: Full-time

Funding available

Edinburgh Parallel Computing Centre (EPCC) offers the opportunity to study for a PhD in topics related to high performance computing.

Founded in 1990, EPCC is one of the leading supercomputing centres in Europe and a major provider of training in high performance computing. EPCC’s expertise includes advanced research, technology transfer, commercial consultancy and the provision of supercomputer services to academia and business.

EPCC hosts the UK’s national supercomputing service, ARCHER (Advanced Research Computing High End Resource), which is the UK’s primary academic research supercomputer.

EPCC has a team of experienced consultants and software engineers who have a wealth of expertise in the latest technologies. A particular strength of EPCC is in grid computing, especially grid middleware and application development, two areas that are of interest to industry and commerce. Our computing research covers: software for future HPC systems, modelling and simulation, performance characterisation and benchmarking, and developing a pan-European HPC service.

We are working on several ‘Big Data’ research projects, ranging from earthquake prediction and astronomical data analysis to the development of international data infrastructure for managing today’s immense growth in data generation.

Meanwhile our software specialists have an impressive portfolio of projects, including many industrial applications. We remain at the forefront of the field, for example through our leadership of the UK’s Software Sustainability Institute, ensuring that today’s new software continues to be improved and supported in the future.

EPCC is home to some of Europe’s most advanced supercomputing systems that enable high-level grid computing, data integration, computer simulation and process optimisation. These include national-level facilities used by researchers on behalf of various UK research funding councils:

  • ARCHER - UK national supercomputing facility provided by RCUK
  • DiRAC - UK national supercomputing facility provided by STFC
  • UK Research Data Facility (UK-RDF) - UK national data facility provided by RCUK

Graduates from EPCC have found rewarding employment in the computing industry, universities and government organisations.

The minimum entry requirement is a UK 2:1 degree, or its international equivalent.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your spoken and written English:

  • IELTS Academic: total 6.5 (at least 6.0 in each module)
  • TOEFL-iBT: total 92 (at least 20 in each module)
  • PTE(A): total 61 (at least 56 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)
  • CAE and CPE: total 176 (at least 169 in each module)

If you completed a CAE or CPE before January 2015 please contact the Admissions Office for the accepted grades.

Find out more about our language requirements:

Academic Technology Approval Scheme

If you are not an EU, EEA or Swiss national, you may need an Academic Technology Approval Scheme clearance certificate in order to study this programme.

For detailed information on fee status, policies and payment see:

  • School of Physics & Astronomy
  • James Clerk Maxwell Building
  • Peter Guthrie Tait Road
  • The King's Buildings Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH9 3FD

We encourage you to apply at least one month prior to entry so that we have enough time to process your application. If you are also applying for funding or will require a visa then we strongly recommend you apply as early as possible. We may consider late applications if we have places available, but you should contact the relevant Admissions Office for advice first.

You must submit two references with your application.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • School of Physics & Astronomy
  • James Clerk Maxwell Building
  • Peter Guthrie Tait Road
  • The King's Buildings Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH9 3FD