Frequently Asked Questions

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Find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about our training programmes, to help  you find the right training opportunity for your skills.

Which Training Opportunity is right for me?

There are various training opportunities to suit everyone’s academic background.

For postgraduate taught training programmes, the Master’s opportunities provide in-depth training in various cancer fields, from experimental medicine, to cancer research and molecular biomedicine. Further details can be found on the Master’s Opportunities webpage.

For postgraduates looking for a research opportunity, the PhD Studentships are ideal for you, and will involve taking on a specific research projects in fields such as early detection, radiotherapy and many more. Further details can be found on our PhD Studentship webpage.

For anyone who has trained as a clinician, but wants to undertake a field of research, our clinical training programmes are tailored to you. If you are an MBChB student studying at the University of Manchester or University of St Andrews, then you may be interested in our MB-PhD projects, intercalating research into a medical degree. For post-registration clinicians, our Clinical Research Training Fellowships provide a detailed programme of work for you to undertake a research project within a clinical environment.


How can I secure a PhD opportunity?

Our opportunities are highly competitive, and each have different application processes and criteria. We advise checking with the administrators of your chosen course to confirm you meet eligibility criteria and for specific advice relevant to the course.


Does the MCRC offer placements or internships?

The MCRC does not offer any specific opportunities for undergraduate placements. Any placements and short-term internships are organised directly by individual supervisors, and we would therefore advise you identify a lab you would want to work in and contact and liaise with the investigator directly to see what opportunities are available. MB-PhD summer placements were offered formally for the first time in 2021.

You can find contact information for the academics on the Division of Cancer Sciences website.

Organisations such as the BBSRC also offer summer research placements.


When do opportunities open at the MCRC?

PhD opportunities open throughout the year and we advise regularly checking the MCRC, The University of Manchester Doctoral Academy, CRUK Manchester Centre and CRUK Manchester Institute websites for the latest opportunities.

The majority of postgraduate research opportunities open for application in the late Autumn with a projected start date of the subsequent year.


Will my opportunity be fully funded?

Postgraduate research opportunities including PhD Studentships and Clinical Research Training Fellowships available through the CRUK Manchester Centre and CRUK Manchester Institute are fully funded by Cancer Research UK.

Other PhD opportunities are subject to different funding criteria and we advise checking with the course administrators on the funding status or contacting with additional queries.


What should I write in my PhD supporting statement?

The University’s Biology, Medicine and Health ‘PGR Research: How to Apply’ webpage contains details about the supporting documents to include with your PhD application, including structuring your supporting statement.

What are supervisors looking for in a PhD application?

Our CRUK Manchester Centre PhD Virtual Open Week session introduced attendees to studying at the MCRC and CRUK Manchester Centre, including what we typically look for in applications to our PhD programmes. You can re-watch videos from this event here.

As an undergraduate student applying for the MB-PhD programme, how do I demonstrate sufficient research experience?

For our PhD programmes, candidates are asked to provide evidence of their track record and future potential appropriate to their research experience and current career stage. You can hear from one of our Cancer Research UK-funded MB-PhD students and Postgraduate Programme Manager about applying to these schemes here.

PhD Opportunities

Discover the postgraduate research programmes available in Manchester.

Master's Opportunities

Discover the postgraduate taught and research opportunities available in Manchester that will…

Clinical Fellowship Opportunities

Discover opportunities for clinicians enabling them to drive research from the bench…


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