Apply to study for a PhD or MSc at the Department of Pharmacology & Therapeutics

How to apply to read for a PhD in Pharmacology


Applying to study for a PhD at the Department of Pharmacology, University College Cork

The Department is part of the School of Medicine, UCC

Step One – Identifying a Supervisor

The first step in making an application to study for a PhD is to identify a suitable supervisor.  Please see details of Research Profiles   academic staff in the Department

 Other Information

 Department Pharmacology & Therapeutics, UCC Research Page:

 The Department is part of the School of Medicine, UCC where you could also check for PhD Opportunities

 It is also worth considering making an application to read for a PhD through the School of Pharmacy.  

 Graduate Studies Office

 Applicants can contact the Graduate Studies Office for further information on the process of making a PhD application.

Step Two – PAC Application

Once a PhD candidate has successfully identified a supervisor, and has worked with this member of the academic team to devise a short research plan, they then make their PhD application online via 

Step Three – Approval at Departmental Level – Choosing of Taught Modules as part of Structured PhD Programme

Once the candidate has submitted their application through PAC, it is then forwarded to UCC’s Graduate Studies Office for preliminary processing and eligibility checks.  If the candidate’s application passes these preliminary checks their application is then forwarded to the Department

What is a Structured PhD?

All PhDs in UCC are structured, and candidates must take a minimum of 15 Credits over the course of their PhD, and can take a maximum of 30 over a 3 year PhD programme.   Details of the Structured PhD can be found at  There are four different types of module that can be taken, and a candidate can choose from among each set.  The first is generic or skills modules which have a prefix of PG.  The second are Discipline Specific Modules.  The candidate needs to fill out an application form in order to be able to take one of these modules .   The candidate can also make an application to study a module that lies outside those listed online but generally these would be at MSc and not undergraduate level.  Finally, the candidate can apply to have previously completed modules counted against their credit requirements.   

Please note that the application for credits is only made once the student has been through the complete application process and has been approved to register. 

Step Four – Approval at level of College of Medicine & Health (CoMH)

Once the PhD application has been approved at Departmental level it is then forwarded to CoMH for final approval.  If approved at this level, the candidate can then register for their studies at the next available starting date.  There are four start dates for PhDs to register, 1st April, 1st July, 1st October and 1st January. 

Fees and Bench Fees

Fees for EU students are set at €5,770 for the first four years and at €1,700 for each year thereafter.  Fees for Non-EU students are set at €11,540 for years 1-4 and at €1,700 for each year thereafter. See Fee Schedule for 2017-2018. For eligibility for EU fees and the NON-EU Fee Waiver Scholarship please see

Bench Fees may also be payable at a rate set by the individual supervisor. 

Funding Opportunities

The Department of Pharmacology & Therapeutics does not currently offer PhD studentships, but individual supervisors may offer payment of a stipend (to include fees) to individual PhD candidates through their own research funding programmes. 

Full information on studentships, scholarships and other funding opportunities can be found on the Graduate Studies Office website at

Candidates could also refer to the Human Resources website which regularly posts information about PhD studentship opportunities in UCC


English language proficiency requirements for applicants whose first language is not English

The required overall attainment in the IELTS exam for candidates applying to study for a PhD through the College of Medicine is 6.5, and candidates must also attain no less than this score in every element of the IELTS exam (reading, writing, listening and speaking).  Applicants may apply to the Cork English College to take the IELTS exam if this English language requirement applies to them ( 

Start Dates

As stated above, there are four start dates for PhD candidates but no deadlines are set for applications and you may apply to read for a PhD at any time during the academic year. 

Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics

Cógaseolaíocht agus Teiripic

2nd Floor, Western Gateway Building, University College Cork, Cork