How do I apply?

All applicants should complete the standard online application for admission to postgraduate taught and research degree programmes within the College of Science and Engineering and submit the scanned supporting documentation.

Please note that you will need to register your details before you use the online application system for the first time and you must remember the username and password you create so that you can return to the system at any time. Instructions are provided throughout the online form and you can consult the Applicant's guide to online application!!!! to help you complete your application. You may save and return to your application as many times as you wish before submitting it.

The online forms to apply for a research degree are linked from How to apply


Am I eligible to study for a Research degree?

Applicants for research degrees are normally expected to have obtained or expect to obtain the equivalent of a BSc 2.1 or higher.

What English language requirements will I need?

Candidates whose dominant language is not English must produce proof of English language proficiency achieved within two years prior to application*.

  • IELTS (Academic): overall score 6.5; no sub-test less than 6.0

Common equivalent English language qualifications

  • ibTOEFL: 90; no sub-test less than:
    • Reading: 20
    • Listening: 19
    • Speaking: 19
    • Writing: 23
  • CAE (Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • CPE (Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English, Academic test): 60; no sub-test less than 59
  • Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English: ISEII at Distinction with Distinction in all sub-tests

Full details are found here.

* Study of your first degree in the medium of English in a country where English is not the dominant language may mean that your English is not at a satisfactory level for academic study in the UK.  This is not just a University of Glasgow rule, but a minimum standard of English certificate is a requirement for application for a student visa from the UK Border Agency.  Potential applicants are therefore advised to register for and pass one of the qualifications in good time, prior to making an application.

All students who do not have English as a first language are advised to attend support classes in the University's Language Centre for the first semester even if they have attained the level stated as a condition of entry, since there is a large difference between the minimum requirements for entry and full proficiency in English. The Language Centre provides cultural and social support in addition to an introduction to the local dialect and an essay checking service. For further information, please visit their web site.

How do I obtain information on Physics and Astronomy research in Glasgow?

The University of Glasgow was founded in 1451 and is the fourth oldest university in Britain. Glasgow has a long tradition as a centre for the study of Physics and Astronomy. Physics was taught from an early stage in the history of the University and reached world-wide prominence with the work of Lord Kelvin in the 19th century. In its present research activities, the laboratory is one of the foremost in the UK and its work is internationally recognised. This work is organised around our research groups.

You can find the summaries of the activities of each research group at and specific information on postgraduate opportunities at

Before applying we advise you to make contact with the prospective research group leader and/or the academic in charge of the precise research area you are interested in to discuss possible research projects and available funding.

What higher degrees are offered?

Our standard research degree is the funded three to four year PhD.

We also offer both a range of postgraduate Masters degrees and a Masters by research. For more information on our taught Masters degrees, see here. MSc by research degrees are occasionally offered if you have reached an agreement with the head of the group you wish to join. No funding is available from the groups for any Masters degree.

Am I eligible for UKRI financial support?

The majority of our research studentships are funded by the UK Government research councils, EPSRC and STFC (part of UKRI).  These research councils have eligibility rules which mean that only people who have been resident in the UK for at least three years are eligible to receive a stipend (currently around £12,000 per annum).  Furthermore, this residency should not have been wholly or mainly for the purpose of full time education. EU Citizens will have their fees paid but not receive the maintenance grant, hence UK candidates are preferred for these grant awards. (See or

All candidates must have obtained, or expect to obtain, a BSc 2.1 or better, or equivalent. These grants also provide travel funding.

Applications for research council funded positions are accepted at any time, but the main allocation of places occurs around March each year (with discussions with candidates occurring in the months preceding this) for entry that October. However, a few additional places often become available right up to the start of the positions in October as extra funding is obtained.

Do any other funding opportunities exist?

Information about various alternative funding schemes is available at the College Graduate School website.  The university also maintains a searchable database of Scholarships known to them.

Other funding opportunities:

Other PhD scholarship schemes and places funded in collaboration with industry do sometimes become available.  Alternatively you may have another possible source of funding (e.g. a scholarship from your home government, or other private funding), if so please clearly indicate this on your application form.

How much will my degree cost?

All students pay an annual tuition fee to the University which covers registration, supervision of research or study and examination and recreational facilities of £3,732 for an UK/EU student and £15,000 for an international student (fees quoted are those for academic session 2011-12). Unless you are self-funded this funding will be covered by your scholarship or research council support.

More details on tuition fees can be found at

The University of Glasgow estimates that a single student in self-catering accommodation should allow living expenses of £8,040 per year and a minimum of £12,000 for a married couple. An extra £2,000 per year should also be added per child.