Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre 

Fully funded 3-year PhD studentships

Translational Research in
Mental Health and Neuroscience

To start October 2018

The NIHR Maudsley Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) is offering fully funded 3-year PhD studentships to applicants with backgrounds in neuroscience; psychology; biological science; physical science; epidemiology; mathematics; applied and health statistics; data science; machine and deep learning; natural language processing; text analytics.

These studentships are offered in the following BRC research areas:

These awards are 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 & Neuroscience, King’s College London.

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 their 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 & 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.  We are the world’s leading centre for mental health research in terms of citations of our publications and in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework the IoPPN was judged to have 100% world leading impacts and 100% world leading research environment.

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

Closing date: Wednesday 25th April 2018 (23:59 GMT)

Interviews: Week commencing 21st May 2018 (day to be confirmed)

We aim to contact shortlisted candidates by Monday 14th May at the latest.  Only shortlisted applicants will be contacted. 


Funding is available for up to seven 3-year PhD studentships to commence October 2018.  The award covers academic fees (Home/EU rate); a stipend (£16,777 per year) and a generous contribution towards training, conference attendance and research costs.


The NIHR Maudsley BRC funding supports Home/EU students.  Unfortunately, we cannot accept applications from non-EU / international 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 MSc in a relevant subject with Merit or Distinction
  • A 2.1 or higher non-science first degree (BA) and a MSc in a relevant subject with Merit or Distinction

English Language

Appliocants for these studentships must meet the King's College London English language requirements.

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

A wide range of PhD projects are offered with opportunities for applicants from diverse academic disciplines.  Please refer to the individual catalogues for more information about the projects available to apply for. 

If you wish, you may apply for more than one studentship.  For each studentship you are applying for, please read the guidance marked Important in the project catalogue for each studentship you are interested in. 

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 training 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 October 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 as an additional document to the Employment History section.  If you wish, you may upload a CV to this section.

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.  Please keep your personal statement concise and note that the following must be included:   

  • 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 a maximum of 2 project choices.  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).

If you wish to apply for more than one of the studentships we are currently advertising, please upload a separate A4 sheet for each studentship you are applying for, stating your preferred project choices from those advertised with the studentship, and a statement about your first choice project (see above).  Please ensure each sheet clearly indicates which studentship you are applying for and lists only projects advertised for that particular studentship. 


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:  BRC2018-02


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


  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   0207 848 0745