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School of Mathematical Sciences

Application process

Application deadlines:

Applicants that wish to apply for the following funding sources please note that the application deadline is 31 January 2024 (17:00) for September 2024 entry.

Projects with guaranteed funding may be added throughout the year and will state the application deadline in the project listing.

Other funding bodies may have different deadlines. See fees and funding for details.

We welcome applications from self-funded students throughout the year.


Application Process

1. Identify a potential supervisor

Before applying, you should identify a potential supervisor for your PhD. We have some funded PhD projects which are advertised on our PhD Projects page. Applications from candidates intending to self-fund their PhD are also accepted all year round.

Once you have found a PhD project you would like to apply for, you should express your interest, usually via email, with the supervisor before you make a formal application. Contact details for supervisors, and any information/documents they require from you, are listed on the PhD Projects page. If you are applying for one of our postgraduate research studentships, please ensure that you complete the formal application before the advertised deadline.

You may also discuss the possibility of other PhD projects with a prospective supervisor. The research themes of the School can be found on our research pages and research interests of individual members of staff can be browsed on their profile pages. Applicants should contact suitable members of staff by email to enquire about possible research opportunities, ideally including the following information:

  • Curriculum Vitae (CV)
  • Information on research interests
  • An outline of how you intend to fund your studies

2. Formal application

Once you have contacted a potential supervisor, and they have agreed to consider your application further, you will be required to make a formal application. Applications should be submitted through the Queen Mary online portal – links are provided at the end of this webpage.

Your application should include the following:

  • Completed application form
  • Transcripts
  • Proof of English language ability (for applicants from non-English speaking countries)
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV)
  • Personal statement (two-sides A4 maximum) - This should set out:
    • Your previous academic experience relevant to the proposed research
    • Why you wish to undertake this research at Queen Mary
    • Your previous research or professional training and what further training you think you will need to complete a PhD
  • Research proposal (optional)
  • References: supply contact details of two academic referees. At least one reference must be from an academic referee and where appropriate, a second referee can provide comment on your professional experience.

References received by email can only be accepted it if it is sent from a university or company email address (i.e. not Hotmail, Yahoo etc.). Paper references should be endorsed by an appropriate official stamp or on institution/company letterhead. Alternatively, if your referee has agreed to provide an open reference letter, you can scan this and upload it in the upload document section of the online form.

3. What happens next

All applications are reviewed initially by the Admissions Office and then forwarded to the School to be reviewed by academic staff, including your potential supervisor. If the School is interested in taking your application further, they will contact you directly to arrange an interview with two members of academic staff (one of whom will be your potential supervisor). The interview may be in person or virtually, for example using Skype. You should be prepared to answer questions about your application, experience, motivation and background knowledge relevant to your proposed project.

We aim to inform you of a decision on your application within six to eight weeks of receipt if you have provided all the required documentation. If you require a decision by a given deadline in order to apply for funding please make this very clear on your application, and also to your potential supervisor.

If you are unsure about the application process for your chosen PhD project, please contact us for further advice:



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