ESRC multidisciplinary PhD in Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry

(1+3 Programme)

Three studentships available

The MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry Research Centre at the Institute of Psychiatry is advertising ESRC PhD Studentships to start in September 2013.

ESRC funding is available to support three 1+3 full-time studentships based within the MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry Centre (SGDP) at the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London. 

These studentships are specifically geared towards providing students with multidisciplinary research training in social sciences, developmental psychology, social development, gene-environment interplay, molecular genetics and epigenetics, quantitative and statistical genetics, and psychopathology. 

The PhD project will be required to involve at least two disciplines – one from within the social sciences and the other from any of the above genetic fields, neurophysiology or from clinical or biological psychiatry.

For students wishing to learn about molecular genetic techniques or EEG, laboratory-based training can form a substantial component of the multidisciplinary research degree. The programme includes continuous involvement in Centre research on such topics as: antisocial behaviour, anxiety, autism, depression, psychosis and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Further information on research conducted at the Centre and the PhD programme can be found at:  Research at the SGDP.

Entry requirements and eligibility

Applicants for each ESRC studentship should have, or expect to gain at least an upper second class honours degree in an appropriate subject.  Applicants will also need to meet the ESRC eligibility requirements for a full award.

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The Centre welcomes applications from candidates with a good first degree in behavioural, biological, mathematical or social sciences for its PhD research studentships. These are available for the Centre’s unique four-year full-time multidisciplinary course, which includes a taught component in the first year (after which an MSc is awarded). 

A full studentship stipend will be paid for the duration of the award and fees are met.

The first year includes training in social, genetic (both quantitative and molecular), epigenetic, developmental and cognitive approaches to psychiatry and psychology, as well as a module in statistical genetics. 

During the subsequent three-year PhD component, students will benefit from multidisciplinary supervision from leading experts in social and developmental epidemiology, clinical psychiatry, genetics and bioinformatics. Students will also receive comprehensive social science training provided by the King’s Interdisciplinary Social Science Doctoral Training Centre: KISS-DTC. 

Limited funding is also available for conference attendance and consumables and there is also the possibility of stipend enhancements for multidisciplinary training. 

For full details, including how to apply, please see the Apply link below.

Closing date: Monday 17 June 2013


The Institute of Psychiatry is world renowned for the quality of our research, for psychiatry and psychology. We are the most cited research centre outside the US, and the second most cited in the world as ranked by Thomson ISI Essential Science Indicators. In the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise we were judged to have the highest research power of any UK institution within the areas of psychiatry, neuroscience and clinical psychology.

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The MRC SGDP Centre is an interdisciplinary, collaborative research group that combines genetic and environmental strategies in order to study how nature and nurture interact in the development of complex behavioural dimensions and disorders. The SGDP Centre was described in the RAE 2008 as providing a “world leading” environment for research.  The Centre is equipped with cutting-edge research facilities, including extensive modern laboratories with state-of-the art genomics equipment, an EEG laboratory, bioinformatics resources, and a high-powered computing cluster.

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