Postgraduate study

Genetics and Molecular Medicine (MRC Human Genetics Unit) PhD, MScR

Awards: PhD, MScR

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding opportunities

The MRC Human Genetics Unit discovers how changes in our DNA impact our lives.

Research excellence

We combine the latest computational and experimental technologies to investigate how our genomes work to control the function of molecules, cells and tissues in people and populations.

For more than half a century our research has been dedicated to understanding human genetic disease.

Today we continue to apply our clinical and scientific expertise, harnessing the power of complex data, to improve health, and the lives of patients and their families.

As well as delivering outstanding research, the institute creates a vibrant scientific community and a friendly research environment rich in both scientific and social opportunities.

What will I learn?

Our PhD and MSc programmes harness strengths in different research disciplines:

  • genetics
  • molecular biology
  • biochemistry
  • cell biology)

These are tied to our scientific themes:

  • disease mechanisms
  • biomedical genomics
  • genome regulation

Our programmes also provides a strong focus on computational biology, and state of the art imaging as part of the Edinburgh Super-Resolution Imaging Consortium.

Over 30 principal investigators based in the MRC HGU contribute to these cross-disciplinary programmes spanning fundamental to clinical research.

Further information can be found on our Graduate Research and Training website:

Self-funded applicants

We also accept all self-funding/external funding applicants.

We strongly recommend you apply as early as possible, at least one month prior to entry.

Applying

To apply for any of our PhD programmes please select one of the buttons and dates in the Applying section.

For 4 year programmes, please select '3 Years (Full-time)'.

A UK 2:1 honours degree or its international equivalent.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

English language tests

For 2021 entry we will accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS Academic: total 6.5 with at least 6.0 in each component.
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Special Home Edition): total 92 with at least 20 in each section. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • CAE and CPE: total 176 with at least 169 in each paper.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE II with distinctions in all four components.

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries.

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than three and a half years old at the beginning of your programme of study.

Find out more about our language requirements:

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
PhD3 YearsFull-timeTuition fees
PhD6 YearsPart-timeTuition fees
MScR1 YearFull-timeTuition fees
MScR2 YearsPart-timeTuition fees

UK government postgraduate loans

If you live in the UK, you may be able to apply for a postgraduate loan from one of the UK’s governments. The type and amount of financial support you are eligible for will depend on your programme, the duration of your studies, and your residency status. (Programmes studied on a part-time intermittent basis are not eligible.)

Other funding opportunities

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • MRC Human Genetics Unit
  • Institute of Genetics and Molecular Medicine (IGMM)
  • Crewe Road
  • Edinburgh
  • EH4 2XU

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.

You must submit two references with your application.

Before making your application, you must make contact with a potential supervisor to discuss your research proposal. Further information on making a research degree application can be found on the College website:

You will be formally interviewed (in person, by video-conferencing or Skype).

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

Further information

  • MRC Human Genetics Unit
  • Institute of Genetics and Molecular Medicine (IGMM)
  • Crewe Road
  • Edinburgh
  • EH4 2XU