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University

University of Auckland
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Doctor of Philosophy in Biological Sciences

This course is available

On-Campus

Level of Study

Doctoral Degree

Duration

3 years

Next start date

Expected Dec 2022

Campus

Grafton Campus

Summary

The PhD is a globally recognised postgraduate research degree and the highest level of degree you can achieve. PhD students are critical, curious, creative thinkers who undertake original research over at least 3 years.

This course is also offered at overseas locations.

Biological Sciences

The scope of Biological Sciences is extensive. It covers the structure and function of all living organisms, their relationships and evolutionary origins. It also looks at their interactions, and the physical and chemical worlds around them.

The biological sciences have never been more important for preserving New Zealand’s economic prosperity and the natural biodiversity of our islands in the face of global threats such as climate change and population growth.

Discovery in the biosciences has advanced at breathtaking speed. This has led to a new generation of therapies in health and medicine, sustainable consumer-focused products in agbiotech industries, and novel strategies for the protection of fragile ecosystems.

We teach courses that span the spectrum of biology from atoms and molecules to ecosystems, with each of these areas supported by active research groups and well equipped facilities:

  • Biomedicine
  • Biotechnology
  • Ecology
  • Evolutionary biology
  • Genetics
  • Marine, freshwater and animal biology
  • Microbiology
  • Molecular biology
  • Plant sciences

Programme structure

The University of Auckland PhD is a three-to-four year full-time advanced research degree.

On possible to the PhD programme, you will be enrolled provisionally. By the end of your first year, you must meet a number of goals to be confirmed into the PhD programme, including developing a full thesis proposal. After confirmation, you will continue to work on your research before submitting your thesis for examination after three years and within four years of your start date. The examination process includes an oral exam.

As part of your PhD study, you can take part in our doctoral skills programme, designed to help you achieve success in your research and develop skills for your future. We have a dedicated postgraduate careers advisor, and our library service includes specialist subject librarians to help you in your research. The central School of Graduate Studies provides dedicated support and advice for the doctoral community.

Where could this programme take you?

Our PhD graduates are successful in a wide range of fields and careers, as well as the traditional academic research career path. The PhD gives you extensive specialist and transferable skills, which are sought after in many sectors, including industry and government, and can even help you to develop entrepreneurship skills to run your own startup.

Entry criteria

Masters-level qualification or the equivalent of a bachelor's degree with honours

Evidence of significant research, usually undertaken as part of prior study

IELTS (Academic): Overall score of 6.5 and no bands less than 6.0; Internet-based TOEFL (iBT): Overall score of 90 and written score of 21; Paper-based TOEFL: Overall score of 68 and a writing score of 21; Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) or Cambridge English Proficiency (CPE): Overall score of 176 and no bands below 169; Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic: Overall score of 58 and no PTE Communicative score below 50; Foundation Certificate in English for Academic Purposes (FCertEAP): Grade of B-; Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB): 85.

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