Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre 

Fully funded 4-year PhD studentship 

Clinical and Population Informatics  

To start:  February 2018

Application Deadline:  Wednesday 27th September 2017 (23:59 GMT)

The NIHR Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) is offering one fully funded 4-year PhD studentship in the Clinical and Population Informatics research theme. 

We are seeking outstanding applicants with backgrounds in epidemiology, statistics, informatics, or another relevant discipline to work at the cutting edge of mental health research in order to help fulfil the strategic objectives of our Clinical and Population Informatics Theme: 

  • To extend clinical and population mental health data resources through online recruitment platforms and enhanced clinical databases
  • To apply these data resources for improving physical health outcomes, supporting precision psychiatry and novel therapeutics, and delivering informatics-based interventions
  • To export data-generation / processing tools though a national e-network for mental health informatics

Specifically, the Clinical and Population Informatics theme is responsible for maintaining and developing applications of our Clinical Record Interactive Search (CRIS) data resource. This allows pseudoanonymised analysis of routine electronic medical records (EHR), using expertise in data security, record linkage and natural language processing, and linkages with internal and external datasets from a variety of sources, to maximise the research potential of these data.

This theme brings together a multidisciplinary group of investigators with a breadth of expertise in bioinformatics, statistics, biobanking and neuroimaging. 

The award is funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) through the Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM) and the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, King’s College London (KCL). 

Our aim is to pioneer multidisciplinary translational research and experimental medicine in the areas of mental health and neuroscience.

 

To achieve this we select the best students and provide them with excellent training, tailored flexibly to their individual needs and interests. We will equip them with the intellectual and technical skills that are needed for the future of translational research, and complement this with key transferable skills (including public engagement, business development and entrepreneurship) to ensure that they emerge as well-rounded scientists, prepared for their next career stage. Our excellent clinical setting will ensure all students benefit from an understanding of the context of research, and produce scientists with a strong translational ethos.

 

SLaM is the UK’s largest NHS mental health service provider with a long history of involvement in translational research and training in partnership with the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience (IoPPN), King’s College London. The IoPPN is the largest academic community in Europe dedicated to the study, treatment and prevention of mental health problems and neurodegenerative disease. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework we were judged to have the second highest research power in the UK for Psychology, Psychiatry and Neuroscience, and the impact of our work was 100% world leading or internationally excellent, and our research environment judged as 100% world leading.

We offer excellent opportunities for research training in basic and clinical science across the mental health spectrum including its interface with physical health. Studying at the IoPPN you will benefit from world class research and clinical facilities plus internationally recognised supervisors.

Application Deadline:  Wednesday 27th September 2017 (23:59 GMT)

Interviews will be held week commencing 30th October 2017 (day to be confirmed) 

We aim to inform shortlisted applicants by Thursday 19th October 2017.  

 

Awards

Funding is available for one 4-year PhD to commence February 2018.  The award covers academic fees (Home/EU rate); a stipend (£16,553 per year) and a generous contribution towards training, conference attendance and research costs.

Eligibility

The NIHR Maudsley BRC funding supports Home/EU students who meet current UK Government residency requirements. 

Unfortunately, we cannot accept applications from non-EU candidates.

If you are unsure about your eligibility status, please contact the King’s Admissions team

Entry Requirements

The programme is very competitive and applicants must have, or be predicted to obtain at least a 2.1 or higher in a relevant science subject.

Students who do not meet the above primary criteria may apply if they satisfy the following conditions:

  • A 2.2 BSc degree and a research-based MSc in a relevant subject with Merit or Distinction
  • A 2.1 or higher non-science first degree (BA) and a research-based MSc in a relevant subject with Merit or Distinction

English Language

If your first language is not English you must be able to provide recent evidence that your spoken and written command of the English language is adequate.

Further information is available on the English language entry requirements page. If you have questions, please contact the King’s Admissions team  

A range of PhD projects are offered within the NIHR Maudsley BRC's Psychosis and Neuropsychiatry research theme, with opportunities for applicants from diverse academic disciplines. Please refer to the project catalogue for more information about the research theme and to view the projects available to apply for.

Please see details under How to apply (below) about the information you must submit for your project choices.

Please note:  The final choice of funding, project and project details are agreed after successful interview. 

You will benefit from the wide range of training and support offered by King's College London to its postgraduate research students. In particular, you will join the doctoral training programme provided jointly by the NIHR Maudsley BRC and the MRC Doctoral Training Partnership.  BRC students will also have access to additional resources and training opportunities provided nationally through the NIHR trainee infrastructure. 

Applications must be submitted via the King's College London on-line application system

First, register to use the online application system at King's Apply

Next, complete our postgraduate online application form

If you are unable to access the online postgraduate application form, please contact the King’s Admissions team for advice.  

Programme selection

Under Programme Type click Research degrees

Under Keyword type studentship 

Under Programme select IOPPN Research Studentships MPhil/PhD (Full-time)

Once the programme has been selected, please select February 2018 for the start date and read the on-screen information about how to progress through the application.

Please be sure to complete the following sections of the form with all relevant information:

  • Personal Information
  • Education
  • Employment history (you will be able to enter up to 5 sets of employment information
  • The ‘Nature of work’ field allows only 50 characters, but you can upload further employment information on the references screen)

Note:  All questions with a red asterisk next to them are mandatory and you will not be able to submit your application without answering these.

Project Proposal

To apply for these studentships, you are not required to complete and submit a project proposal.

Supporting statement

Please include your personal statement in this section.  Your personal statement must include the following:  

  • Tell us why you would like to apply for this programme (maximum 200 words)
  • Tell us about any relevant research experience, including employment (maximum 200 words)
  • If you have published work (including reports or other outputs) please provide full reference/s for your publication/s.

If you wish, you may attach your supporting statement as a separate document with the on-line application.  Please ensure you keep to the above specified word limits. 

Project choices

Important: Please upload a separate single-side A4 document listing your first and second choice projects.  Your project choices should be listed in order of preference and include the number that is assigned to the project together with the project title.  Under your project choices please provide a statement explaining why you have chosen your first choice project and why you would like to take this forward as a PhD (maximum 300 words). 

Please note: This document is in addition to your personal/supporting statement (see above).

Funding

In the funding section, please select option 5 (I wish to be considered for a King's College London Award) and enter the following Award Scheme Code:  BRC2017-4

References

Provide contact details for two academic referees or relevant employers in research institutions/companies (we will contact your referees directly).

Notes 

  1. At least one of your referees must be academic.  If you have no academic referees please explain why. 
  2. Academic referees must have university email addresses and employer referees must have the official email address of the institution/company they work for.
  3. If you already have two academic references, you can scan and upload these with your application (note that they must be signed and on headed paper). 

Please remember that it is your responsibility to ensure we have received your references before the shortlisting process starts.  Contact your referees to let them know we will be requesting a reference from them.

Further Information

If you have questions please contact Julia Wootley, BRC Research Training & Capacity Development Manager

Julia.wootley@kcl.ac.uk   0207 848 0759