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IIAA Research Degrees

We offer both PhD and MSc degree courses.


The PhD is a 3 or 4 year course: there are some taught modules in the first year but the main emphasis is on a major research project, on which the student writes their thesis. They also present talks and posters at conferences, and author academic publications. We have many research projects available, from low energy ion beams to high energy particle physics accelerators, including proton therapy and ADSR systems: the specific project is generally chosen after the student arrives. This is a long course, for someone who wants a future career in accelerator science research. 

MSc by Research

This is a miniature version of the PhD, the difference being that the course is only for one year and the thesis is shorter. Most of the PhD prjects could be adapted for an MSc.

Taught MSc

The MSc is a 1 year course which is a mixture of taught modules and a smaller research project.  This is an intensive course aimed at graduates in the general field of physics and engineering, and giving specialised knowledge and experience of accerators that will make them highly employable, at research centres or in industry.

General advice

The PhD is the mainstream route to a career in research, in academia or elsewhere. An undergraduate whose interest in their subject has been aroused by their undergraduate studies and who wants to go further and deeper into it should see the PhD as the natural next step.

The Taught MSc provides a way of defining, or perhaps redefining, your career path.  If you want to do something 'a bit different' from undergraduate degree - perhaps because of a change of interest, or moving to a different country, or career prospects, or a return to work after a break - then it provides the structured support of taught modules, but with a substantial research component in acknowledgement of your more advanced status.     

The MSc by Research is a rather unusual choice.  To make a real 'contribution to knowledge' in any field usually takes the 3 years of a PhD, and can rarely be achieved in 12 months.  But where a student is sure that they want to do some specific research, but not necessarily for as long as 3 years, it can be  the right option.




Last updated Wednesday 15 July 2015
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