Postgraduate research 

Environmental Research PhD/MPhil/MSc (Research)

Geyser

PhD opportunities at SUERC

Our 3 main research themes are Isotope Geosciences, Isotope Biochemistry & Radiometrics and Environmental Chemistry & Radiocarbon.

  • PhD: 3-4 years full-time; 6-8 years part-time; Thesis of Max 80,000 words
  • MSc (Research): 1 year full-time; 2 years part-time;
  • MPhil: 2-3 years full-time; 3-4 years part-time;

Overview

Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre (SUERC) is home to state-of-the-art analytical technology, used to address major issues in environmental, earth and life sciences. Our students are trained to become experts in analytical science, and benefit from access to the wide range of equipment and technical expertise.

We comprise approximately 40 academic staff, research assistants, fellows and post-graduate research students that contribute to RCUK, EU and industrially funded research projects. We host several national Facilities for NERC.

We have strong links to science research at the Universities of Glasgow and Edinburgh, and host many visiting international researchers.

Research groups

Research at SUERC is organised around three main themes:

Illustrative research topics

  • Quaternary geochronology (14C, cosmogenic isotopes, OSL, 210Pb)
  • High precision geohronology & thermochronology of deep time (Rb/Sr, Ar/Ar, (U-Th)/He)
  • Tracing and timing climate and environmental change
  • Environmental C cycling (14C, stable isotopes)
  • Fluids in Earth’s crust (14C, stable and noble gas isotopes)
  • Food authentification (luminescence, stable isotopes)
  • Stable isotope biochemistry
  • Tracing man-made and natural radionuclides in the environment
  • Natural analogue studies of nuclear waste stores

 

Study options

  • PhD: 3 years full-time or 5 years part-time
  • MSc (Res): 1 year full-time or 2 years part-time
  • MPhil: 2-3 years full-time or 3-4 years part-time

Entry requirements

2.1 Honours degree or equivalent

Required documentation

Applicants should submit:

  • Transcripts/degree certificate 
  • Two references
  • A one-page research proposal
  • CV

English language requirements

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training)

  • 6.5 with no sub-test under 6.0. 
  • Tests must have been taken within 4 years 5 months of start date. Combined scores from two tests taken within 6 months of each other can be considered.

Common equivalent English language qualifications

All stated English tests are acceptable for admission to this programme:

TOEFL (ib, my best or athome)

  • 90 with minimum R 20, L 19, S 19, W 23. 
  • Tests must have been taken within 4 years 5 months of start date. Combined scores from two tests taken within 6 months of each other can be considered.

PTE (Academic)

  • 60 with minimum 59 in all sub-tests.
  • Tests must have been taken within 4 years 5 months of start date. Combined scores from two tests taken within 6 months of each other can be considered.

Duolingo

  • 120 with 120 in two or more sub-scores including literacy and no subscore below 110 for direct entry, in-sessional support requirement available for those with 120, 100 for 5 week PSE, 100 for 10 week PSE.
  • Tests must have been taken within 1 year of start date.


Glasgow International College English Language (and other foundation providers)

  • 65%.
  • Tests are accepted for academic year following sitting.

University of Glasgow Pre-sessional courses

  • Tests are accepted for academic year following sitting.


Alternatives to English Language qualification

  • Undergraduate degree from English speaking country (including Canada if taught in English)
  • Undergraduate 2+2 degree from English speaking country
  • Undergraduate 2+2 TNE degree taught in English in non-English speaking country
  • Masters degree from English speaking country
  • Masters degree (equivalent on NARIC to UK masters degree) taught in English in non-English speaking country.

For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use these tests to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level programmes. The University is also able to accept an IELTS test (Academic module) from any of the 1000 IELTS test centres from around the world and we do not require a specific UKVI IELTS test for degree level programmes. We therefore still accept any of the English tests listed for admission to this programme.

Pre-sessional courses

The University of Glasgow accepts evidence of the required language level from the English for Academic Study Unit Pre-sessional courses. We also consider other BALEAP accredited pre-sessional courses:

Fees and funding

Fees

2021/22

  • UK: £4,500
  • International & EU: £23,000

Prices are based on the annual fee for full-time study. Fees for part-time study are half the full-time fee.

Additional fees for all students:

  • Re-submission by a research student £540
  • Submission for a higher degree by published work £1,355
  • Submission of thesis after deadline lapsed £350
  • Submission by staff in receipt of staff scholarship £790

Depending on the nature of the research project, some students will be expected to pay a bench fee (also known as research support costs) to cover additional costs. The exact amount will be provided in the offer letter.

Alumni discount

We offer a 10% discount to our alumni on all Postgraduate Research and full Postgraduate Taught Masters programmes. This includes University of Glasgow graduates and those who have completed Junior Year Abroad, Exchange programme or International Summer School with us. The discount is applied at registration for students who are not in receipt of another discount or scholarship funded by the University. No additional application is required.

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2020/21 fees

  • £4,407 UK/EU
  • £21,920 outside EU

Prices are based on the annual fee for full-time study. Fees for part-time study are half the full-time fee.

Additional fees for all students:

  • Re-submission by a research student £525
  • Submission for a higher degree by published work £1,315
  • Submission of thesis after deadline lapsed £340
  • Submission by staff in receipt of staff scholarship £765

Depending on the nature of the research project, some students will be expected to pay a bench fee (also known as research support costs) to cover additional costs. The exact amount will be provided in the offer letter.

Alumni discount

We offer a 20% discount to our alumni commencing study in Academic session 2020/21, on all Postgraduate Research and full Postgraduate Taught Masters programmes. This includes University of Glasgow graduates and those who have completed a Study Abroad programme or the Erasmus Programme at the University of Glasgow. This discount can be awarded alongside other University scholarships. 

Funding for EU students

The Scottish Government has confirmed that fees for EU students commencing their studies 2020/21 will be at the same level as those for UK student.

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Funding

Support

Resources

We house a diverse range of high quality analytical technology that is integral to our research. SUERC-based research students are trained to become experts in analytical science, and benefit from access to the wide range of equipment and technical expertise on a single site.

Any enquires regarding our facilities can be directed to Professor Fin Stuart (fin.stuart@glasgow.ac.uk)

Laboratories

  • Radiogenic isotopes
  • ICP-MS and -OES
  • Stable isotopes
  • Noble gas isotopes & Ar/Ar dating
  • Radiocarbon dating
  • Accelerator mass spectrometry
  • Organic mass spectrometry
  • Optically stimulated luminescence
  • Environmental radioactivity
  • Aerial and vehicular survey
  • Scanning electron microscope
  • Mineral separation

The vibrancy of our research environment derives from our large body of postgraduate students.

Our postgraduate students benefit from many fieldwork opportunities, ranging from short day excursions close to Glasgow to longer residential field trips, which may involved overseas travel.

We arrange many guest speakers and there are also informal opportunities to meet people from industry at open events. Projects may be carried out in conjunction with industry.

Graduate School

Studying ccience or engineering at research or masters level at the University of Glasgow means that you will be part of a Graduate School which provides the highest level of support to its students.

The overall aim of our Graduate School is to provide a world-leading environment for students which is intellectually stimulating, encourages them to contribute to culture, society and the economy and enables them to become leaders in a global environment. We have a diverse community of over 750 students from more than 50 countries who work in innovative and transformative disciplinary and interdisciplinary fields. An important part of our work is to bring our students together and to ensure their consider themselves an important part of the University’s academic community.

Being part of our Graduate School community will be of huge advantage to you in your studies and beyond and we offer students a number of benefits in addition to exceptional teaching and supervision, including:

  • A wide-ranging and responsive research student training programme which enables you to enhance your skills and successfully complete your studies.
  • Mobility scholarship funding of up to £40,000 each year to encourage students to undertake work in collaboration with an international partner.
  • A diverse programme of activities which will ensure you feel part of the wider-research community (including our biannual science slam event).
  • A residential trip for all new research students.
  • The opportunity to engage with industry-partners through training, placements and events.
  • Professionally accredited programmes.
  • Unique Masters programmes run in collaboration with other organisations.
  • State-of-the-art facilities including the James Watt Nanofabrication Centre and the Kelvin Nanocharacterisation Centre.
  • Highly-rated support for international students.

Over the last five years, we have helped over 600 students to complete their research studies and our students have gone on to take up prestigious posts in industries across the world.

Email: scieng-gradschool@glasgow.ac.uk

How to apply

Identify potential supervisors

All Postgraduate Research Students are allocated a supervisor who will act as the main source of academic support and research mentoring. You may want to identify a potential supervisor and contact them to discuss your research proposal before you apply. Please note, even if you have spoken to an academic staff member about your proposal you still need to submit an online application form.

You can find relevant academic staff members with our staff research interests search.


Gather your documents

Before applying please make sure you gather the following supporting documentation:

  1. Final or current degree transcripts including grades (and an official translation, if needed) – scanned copy in colour of the original document.
  2. Degree certificates (and an official translation, if needed): scanned copy in colour of the original document.
  3. Two references on headed paper and signed by the referee. One must be academic, the other can be academic or professional. References may be uploaded as part of the application form or you may enter your referees contact details on the application form. We will then email your referee and notify you when we receive the reference.  We can also accept confidential references direct to rio-researchadmissions@glasgow.ac.uk, from the referee’s university or business email account.
  4. Research proposal, CV, samples of written work as per requirements for each subject area.

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