Job ID: 116705

4-Year PhD Programme in Translational Neuroscience, University of Edinburgh

Position: Ph.D. Student

Deadline: 4 December 2023

Employment Start Date: 9 September 2024

Contract Length: 4 Years

City: Edinburgh

Country: United Kingdom

Institution: University of Edinburgh

Department: Edinburgh Neuroscience


The University of Edinburgh invites applications to our 4-year PhD programme in Translational Neuroscience.

We are currently offering up to 6 fully funded studentships to start in September 2024.

The Translational Neuroscience PhD programme is a training programme focused on common human brain conditions across the life course, the goal of which is to advance knowledge, expertise and skills in clinical translation.

We take pride in combining scientific excellence with a commitment to continuously improving the working environment and support for our trainees. As such, we are part of an evolving community of practitioners who will develop and share best practices bringing science and research culture together, placing both firmly at the heart of what we do.

Very importantly, the Translational Neuroscience PhD programme is committed to supporting the development of future neuroscience leaders from a diverse range of backgrounds. We particularly encourage applications from outstanding individuals who belong to one or more identity groups which are underrepresented in neuroscience. Edinburgh Neuroscience is a diverse and collegial community, and a proud signatory of the ALBA Network Declaration on Equity and Inclusion.

About the programme

Created and delivered by Edinburgh Neuroscience, our vision is to equip a cohort of non-clinical neuroscientists with expertise in rigorous, cross-disciplinary, cutting-edge neuroscience combined with a deep understanding of clinical brain disorders across the lifespan.

Our programme addresses the lack of opportunity for non-clinical neuroscientists to gain expertise in the complex challenges of clinical research by meeting and interacting with clinicians, patients and their representatives, and covering the key methodologies required to close translational gaps, including disease modelling, biomarker discovery, experimental and clinical trial design.

With the programme now entering its 9th year, we have continuously improved the range of support we offer to the students: mentoring, mental health, careers advice; strong ties to external agencies to prepare them for a wide variety of careers; opportunities to socialise and learn from others on the programme; and an array of scientific training opportunities, including a choice of both early career and established supervisors and mentors.

Programme Structure

During the first year, students will undertake three research projects, each from a different stage of the life-course from development, through to adolescence/adulthood, and, finally old age/degeneration. In parallel, students undertake a bespoke training programme, involving both clinical and basic researchers, that will lead to an appreciation, and understanding, of life-course disorders and the methodologies used to investigate them. These sessions will provide an opportunity to integrate knowledge from across basic and clinical disciplines and provide a deeper understanding of research at the interface of the bench and the bedside.

Drawing on their experience during the rotation projects, students will develop their own PhD projects towards the end of year 1, and will be co-supervised throughout their PhD by a basic and clinical researcher. During years 2 and 3, there will be continued coaching in life-course disorders and key academic citizenship skills, building on the year 1 activities. Students will also be supported to develop a relationship with a community partner who has lived experience of a condition that’s relevant to their research.

Students will then submit their PhD thesis by the end of year 4.

Interdisciplinary community

Edinburgh Neuroscience brings together neuroscience researchers from across the University of Edinburgh, from fundamental, clinical, psychological and informatics arenas to provide an outstanding collegiate and dynamic environment in which to undertake cutting-edge research. We are perfectly placed to provide a unique training experience that encourages interaction across disciplines and the life-course.

Application Procedure

We would like to invite applications from outstanding students worldwide, who wish to develop and advance translational neuroscience research. A generous stipend, research costs and tuition fees are provided.

You can find out more information about our PhD programme, including our entry requirements, on our webpages.

Applications are submitted using the application form available on our website.

12 noon (UK time) on Monday 4th December 2023

The interviews will be held on Thursday 1st February 2024.