University of Oxford: Biochemistry

InstitutionUniversity of Oxford
Department Interdepartmental
Web https://www.ox.ac.uk
Email graduate.admissions@admin.ox.ac.uk
Telephone 01865 270059
Study type Research

Summary

**The information provided on this page was correct at the time of publication (November 2019). For complete and up-to-date information about this course, please visit the relevant University of Oxford course page via www.graduate.ox.ac.uk/ucas**

This programme aims to train students in cutting-edge laboratory research applying techniques in bionanotechnology, biophysics, computational biology, microscopy, molecular biology, structural biology and systems biology to a broad range of fields including cell biology, chromosome biology, drug discovery, epigenetics, host-pathogen interactions, membrane proteins, ion channels and transporters, and RNA biology.

You will be admitted directly to a particular research area led by departmental members who will be appointed DPhil supervisors. If you are admitted to a particular research supervisor you will not normally do laboratory rotations. You will be based in a research lab and undertake research on a subject agreed with your supervisor.

There are no taught courses examined by written papers, however you will have access to a wide range of lecture courses at taught master’s level and foundation or preliminary level, as appropriate. If you have changed fields, this will allow you to fill in gaps in your background knowledge. There is also a wide range of courses and workshops which you can attend to acquire skills that will be necessary for the pursuance and presentation of your research, as well as your professional development as a research scientist.

You will begin your course as a probationary research student (PRS) and near the end of the first year you will write a report to transfer to DPhil (PhD) status. To transfer your status you must make a formal application which will include a research report and statement of future research plans. You will also take an independent assessment by two assessors. Continuation in the programme is subject to passing the Transfer of Status exam.

After eight terms of study you will need to apply formally to confirm your DPhil status. You will be required to present your on-going work in a formal context where it will be reviewed by two independent assessors. Continuation in the programme is subject to successfully completing the Confirmation of Status.

The length of the programme ranges from three to four years with the exact duration depending on the following factors as judged by your supervisor(s) and assessors:
- focus and rate of your research development and progress

- achievement of acceptable focus and scope of thesis

- publication quality research

- length of available funding

A small proportion of DPhil students (about 5%) submit their theses within 3 years from starting, however on average most students submit within 3 to 4 years. By the end of the fourth year, 70-90% of students have submitted their theses.

Research at the Department of Biochemistry is divided into five main themes:
- cell biology, development and genetics

- chromosomal and RNA biology

- infection and disease processes

- microbiology and systems biology

- structural biology and molecular biophysics.

**MSc by Research**
If you wish, you may attempt to transfer to DPhil status instead of MSc by Research status at the end of your first year. To transfer to DPhil status, you are required to follow the same procedure as probationary research students on the DPhil in Biochemistry and must have supporting statements from your supervisor(s) and college. The length of the programme depends on the following factors as judged by your supervisor(s) and assessors (2):
- focus and rate of student researcher development and progress

- achievement of acceptable focus and scope of thesis

- publication quality research

- length of available funding.

The MSc by Research in Biochemistry is normally a two year course, though if you have an appropriate background in research, you may complete it in one year.

DPhil

MSc (Res)

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