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Meet the Students

The MRC funding available supports Home/EU students within standard research council restrictions.

Please read the MRC’s residency requirements for studentships to determine whether you are eligible for an award before you start the application process.  If you have been classed as ‘overseas’ for fees purposes by the institution you are applying for admission to, you will not be eligible.  More information regarding eligibility can be found on the MRC website. If you are unsure if you meet the eligibility criteria, contact our Admissions Team for clarification.

The programme is very competitive and applicants must have, or be predicted to obtain, a high quality BSc degree with a 1st or a high 2:1. Alternatively, students must have a master’s qualification at Merit/Distinction grade.

Research Councils in Britain have confirmed that funding for EU students recruited for a September 2019 and 2020 start date (or prior date) will remain in line with Home students. This means that EU candidates recruited to start in September 2019 and 2020 that have been resident in the UK for at least 3 years prior to their start will remain eligible for a full MRC DTP Studentship: covering the full tuition fee, stipend and Research Training Support Grant (RTSG). They will remain eligible for this funding for the duration of the PhD with the MRC DTP.

King's Apply

All applications must be submitted via the King’s Apply Portal. We will not accept any other form of application. Read our Application Process information for further details and instructions on how to apply.

On your application you must provide the contact details of two academic referees. If you feel it would be more appropriate, we can accept one reference from a non-academic research environment, e.g.: an employer from a research institution or company.

Note: academic references must list a university email address and employer referees should list the official email address of the company. If you already have two references you can scan and upload these directly to King’s Apply instead (note that they must be signed and on headed paper).

Note: it is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure references are submitted to the portal by the application deadline. Be sure to start your application before the deadline and contact your referees to let them know we will be requesting a reference from them.

Referees will only receive a notification to submit an applicant’s reference once the applicant has submitted their application. Referees will not be contacted whilst the application is still in progress.

It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure references are submitted to the portal by the application deadline and so we advise to submit you application before the deadline and contact your referees to let them know we will be requesting a reference from them.

The Admissions Team can add any attachments to your application if you send it as an attachment to a message via the King’s Apply portal. If you have any problems, please get in touch with mrc-dtp@kcl.ac.uk for support.

We will be accepting applications up until 23.59 on Sunday 25th November 2018. Applications submitted after this date will not be considered. We advise that you do not wait to submit your application until close to the deadline, in case there are problems with uploading documents etc. Applications missing mandatory attachments may not be considered for shortlisting.

Yes. In the research proposal section, please enter the funding code that corresponds to the theme in which your first choice project is listed as the ‘Project Title’ (see below for an example). Please list three projects of interest in order of preference in the free-text box under the Research Proposal section (see below for an example).

Project Title: Insert funding code: MRCDTP2019_Theme 1

State your three preferred PhD projects from the list of PhD projects on offer for 2019 Entry. These should be listed in order of preference and you should include the number that is assigned to the project and the project title. Please list these in the free-text box under the Research Proposal section of the application, for example:

17.1 ‘’Project Title’’

27.2  ‘’Project Title’’

2.1   ‘’Project Title’’

You do not need to take an English Language Test before making submitting the application. However, should you be successful in gaining a place of the programme, this will become a condition of your offer and an IELTS test must be taken before we can make an unconditional offer.

Further information is available on English Language requirements.

Please ensure that you include your MSc as part of the Education section of the application. Please upload the certificate/transcripts from your Undergraduate Degree as part of your application. If you are unsure, please contact the Admissions Team via the messaging service on the portal.

The Fee Status Questionnaire is only mandatory for EU applicants; British Nationals who have resided in the UK since birth do not need to complete this form.

Please be sure to complete the following sections of the form with all relevant information (all questions with an asterisk are mandatory and you will not be able to submit without answering these):

  • Personal Information*
  • Education*
  • Employment history (you will be able to enter up to five sets of employment information)
  • The ‘Nature of work’ field allows only 50 characters, but you can upload further employment information on the references screen
  • Personal statement*. Please include your personal statement in this section. You should type your personal statement directly into the Personal Statement free text box (Personal Statements uploaded onto the application as a separate PDF will not be accepted). There is a 4000 character limit, so please ensure that any text you plan to copy and paste into the box is within these limits (you should note that the Personal Statement character limit includes punctuation and spaces and so may differ from the character count in your source text).
  • CV*: upload a PDF copy of your CV as an attachment to the Personal Statement Section.
  • Fee Status Questionnaire: If you are an EU Applicant, please attach a complete a MRC DTP Fee Status Questionnaire to the Personal Statement section, this is a mandatory requirement of all EU Applicants.
  • References*: Contact details for two academic referees or relevant employers in research institutions/companies (we will then contact your referees directly).
  • Funding*: In the funding section of the online application form please enter the funding code that corresponds to the theme in which your first choice project is listed (see drop down menu below for all funding codes).
  • Research Proposal*: In the research proposal section, please enter the funding code that corresponds to the theme in which your first choice project is listed as the ‘Project Title’ (see drop down menu below for all funding codes). Please list three projects of interest in order of preference in the free-text box under the Research Proposal section (see below drop down for an example).

If you have any queries about the King’s Apply portal, please get in touch with the Admissions Team directly via the messaging service on the portal.

The MRC Doctoral Training Partnership will award a number of fully-funded MRC postgraduate research studentships to support research and training in Biomedical and Translational Science. We offer two types of studentships: MRC DTP Studentships (available as a one-year MRes followed by a PhD (‘1+3’), or as a 3.5 year PhD (‘0+3.5’)). If we do not fill all of our studentship places in our October – January recruitment round, we may run another recruitment process in the Spring.

The MRC DTP also open applications for MRC DTP iCASE Studentships – these studentships are available full-time (or pro-rata as part-time studentships) as a 4-year PhD. iCASE Studentships have a separate recruitment timeline and will have different iCASE Projects. iCASE Projects are only available as a 4-year PhD (not as a one-year MRes followed by a PhD ‘1+3’).

Student choice and flexibility is core foundation of the KCL MRC DTP. We ask students to list three projects of interest, in order of preference, to ensure they have the flexibility to conduct further research via discussions with supervisors; we appreciate that applicants may change their preference via this process and do not hold students to the choices listed on their application as being those they select if offered a place on the programme.

Application Process



Meet the Team

Professor Mike Malim MRC DTP Director
Date Recruitment Stage
Applications Open Monday 8thOctober 2018
Applications Close Sunday 25thNovember, midnight
Application Shortlisting Monday 10thDecember – Friday 4thJanuary
Invitations to Interview Week commencing 7th January*
Interviews Wednesday 30th & Thursday 31st January
Interview Outcomes Week commencing 4th February **
Acceptance of studentship offer By Tuesday 19thFebruary

*If you have not received a response regarding your application by Friday 14th February, please contact the MRC DTP Team mrc-dtp@kcl.ac.uk. Please do not contact the team regarding the outcome of your application before this date. All applicants will be informed of the outcome of their application the week commencing 7th January.

** If you have not received a response regarding your interview by Friday 8thFebruary, please contact the MRC DTP Team mrc-dtp@kcl.ac.uk. Please do not contact the team regarding the outcome of your application before this date.

All available PhD Projects for September 2019 Entry will be advertised on our Project Page from Monday 8th October. There are four project catalogues: one per theme. Only projects listed in the 2019 catalogues are available for funding.

Applicants can select one project on the application form if they wish, however we strongly encourage students to consider the breadth of projects available in the MRC DTP catalogues and select three projects of interest, listed in order of preference.

You can pick any three projects; they do not need to be within the same theme.

All shortlisted applicants will be informed no later than 21st January 2019. If you have not received an email invitation by this date, unfortunately you have not been successful this time. Please take a look at other studentships available in the Health Faculties at King’s.

All interviews will take place on Wednesday 30th & Thursday 31st January 2019; please ensure you are available to attend on either day. Shortlisted candidates will be invited to attend an interview on of these dates at Guy’s Campus, St Thomas’ Campus or Denmark Hill Campus. Interviewees are expected to attend all day to engage with the recruitment activities including: an interview panel, tours of facilities, meeting with prospective supervisors, meeting current students and a social event.

Each Theme of the MRC DTP host their own interview days and so the exact format in which the days are run will differ slightly across the themes. You will be contacted w/c 7th January if you have been invited to an interview.

  • All Interview Days will involve an introductory talk from the Theme Lead providing an overview of the programme.
  • Applicants will be asked to prepare a 5 minute presentation and to present this to the panel.
  • Applicants will be asked to critically evaluate a research paper in a discussion scenario with the panel; applicants invited to interview will receive the paper when they are invited to interview.
  • Applicants will be asked to address interview questions relating to their CV and application to the programme.

Many themes also organise campus and lab facility tours for applicants and host a networking lunch/activity with current students.

No. You will only be interviewed once; and in most cases this will be with the panel corresponding to your first choice project.

The MRC DTP will be at the King’s Postgraduate Research Open Evening at Guy’s Campus. Dates will be confirmed in due course.

During the evening you will be able to attend an introduction talk and student panel, join academic staff and research students for light refreshments, and take an optional tour of the campus.

Yes. September is the only entry point each year.

When invited to interview, candidates are expected to arrange their own meetings with supervisors they are interested in working with; the meetings will not be organised nor facilitated by the MRC DTP Team nor the supervisors. You will find the contact details of all supervisors who have an available MRC DTP Project in the 2019 Entry Project Catalogues – applicants are to contact supervisors to arrange a convenient time to discuss their project in greater depth.


All applicants will be informed about the outcome of their interview in the week commencing 4th February 2018 You may request individual feedback from your interview panel.

If offered a place on the MRC DTP, the pathway that you choose (1+3 or 0 +3.5) will be made following a discussion between the student and the theme lead to decide which training route is most suitable for the student’s training needs.

Following acceptance of the offer of a place, King’s Apply will be updated to initiate the formal acceptance process. All applicants will receive an offer letter from the KCL Admissions Department. For students joining the straight PhD pathway, the official offer will be conditional on submitting a complete Project Approval Form (PAF). Our MRC DTP Manager will guide you and your co-supervisors through completing this document and the deadlines to meet for submission.

Yes! All new students will be assigned a buddy in the Spring before you arrive. Your buddy will be a current MRC DTP student; they will send you regular updates about what’s going on in the programme and you can keep in touch with any questions you have. In the early Summer, you will receive an invitation to select the training workshops you would like to attend in your first year on the programme (via email invitation) and our MRC DTP Coordinator will be in touch over the Summer to complete paperwork etc.

For September 2019, new students will be invited to the MRC DTP Induction on Monday 16th September.

0+3.5 students: once students have accepted their offer of a place on the programme they will be asked to confirm their project choice by no later than 19th February 2019. Once this decision has been made, the MRC DTP Manager will prepare the Project Approval Form (PAF) to be completed by the student’s co-supervisors. Students will be included in all correspondance regarding the PAF.

1+3 students: project catalogues will be sent to 1+3 students in the summer. Students are expected to speak with potential supervisors over the summer months and will confirm rotations in:

Rotation 1: September (following induction)

Rotation 2: December

Rotation 3: March/April

To confirm, the rotation choices do not necessarily have to be those projects originally listed on the application by the applicant; students can amend their choices following discussions they have with supervisors as they move through the MRes year.

In early July our MRC DTP Training and Research Coordinator will send all new students a link to an electronic booking system. This system will have details of both mandatory and optional training courses with information about when the workshops are scheduled to take place. You will receive guidance on how to use this system to book your workshop. Take a look at our current workshop and training courses.

If your question is not answered in the FAQ’s, please get in touch with the MRC DTP Team at mrc-dtp@kcl.ac.uk. We will respond to your enquiry as soon as possible.