How to apply
Decide on level of programme you wish to apply for:
If you are interested in applying for a funded programme, ensure you follow the How to Apply instructions on the specific webpages and check the deadlines:
Wellcome Trust 4 Year PhD
BBSRC Doctoral Training Partnership
Applicants for standard MPhil or PhD programmes should ideally apply at least four months prior to the date of registration.
Decide on the project(s) that are most relevant to your research interests. Search our list of projects available. For UK/EU applicants interested in our funded studentships, search: Studentships for UK/EU students.
For international or UK/EU applicants with self-arranged funding, search: Self-funded projects for International or UK/EU students. You can also look at Our Research pages to gain an idea of the type of research being carried out by our supervisors.
In a small number of cases, it will not be possible to match you to one of your preferred projects. However, we will always endeavour to find you an alternative project by bringing your application to the attention of other potential supervisors.
Once you have decided on your programme and project, please then apply using the online application form. Please make sure you read all instructions for completing the online application carefully. If you have any problems with the online form please contact us.
When on the screen ‘Create New Application’, for MPhil and PhD applications select:
- ‘Academic Career’ – Postgraduate Research
- ‘Mode of Attendance’ - Specify full/part time
- ‘Program Description’ – search for your main subject area of interest, eg Biochemistry, Immunology etc. Do not worry too much about the area, but try to select one that meets your general interest. Most projects advertised will have a list of subject areas that they relate to, so you can select one of those.
- ‘Step 3’ of the online application form asks for your Proposed Research Supervisor. You can indicate up to three supervisors here; one in the box ‘Proposed Research Supervisor’ and up to two more in the ‘Further Information’ box.
- ‘Step 8’ funding. If you are applying for a fully-funded studentship please select "Internal" from the Internal/External drop-down menu and "University Scholarship" from the Award Type drop-down menu. If you are self-funding or have other sources of funding, please indicate this here.
Your application form must be accompanied by a number of supporting documents. These are:
- A supporting statement. This should be a maximum of 500 words summarising your motivation for PhD study, outlining any research experience and why you want to do a postgraduate research degree in Manchester.
- Two references from people who have knowledge of your academic ability. References must be signed, dated and on headed paper. References should be accompanied by a Referee Report Form. Please ensure that your referees complete this form electronically and submit this with your application, or email it to email@example.com
- Certificates and transcripts from all your previous degrees.
- Official English Language transcript (IELTS or TOEFL).
- Current Curriculum Vitae (CV).
- A current photograph of yourself.
All supporting documents can be uploaded and submitted with the online application form or, alternatively, can be sent directly to the Faculty of Life Sciences Graduate Office. Your application can not be considered until all your supporting documents are supplied.
For applicants whose first language is not English 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. Please note the IELTS and TOEFL are only valid for 2 years. 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 the UK Border Agency.
For PhD applicants we require a minimum IELTS score of 6.5 overall [or TOEFL (paper) 577, TOEFL (computer) 233, TOEFL (internet) 90]. The University of Manchester's TOEFL code is 0757. Following an update to UKBA requirements, each component of the English test should meet the minimum requirement of IELTS 5.5 in all components, TOEFL IBT (Listening/Writing 17; Reading 18; Speaking 20). Please contact us for further information.
Please also provide evidence of how you intend to fund your studies.
Once submitted you will receive acknowledgement that your application has been received. Once all your supporting documents have been received your application will be reviewed by the relevant admission tutor and the proposed supervisor(s).
You will be kept informed of the progress of your application throughout the application procedure. If appropriate, you will be invited for interview either in person or via the web.
Please note: If you are made a PhD or MPhil offer, you may need to apply for an ATAS certificate before applying for your visa. For more information see: