EFDA-JET fusion
An interior view of the JET vacuum vessel, with a superimposed image of an actual JET plasma taken with a visible light camera
(Image Credit: EFDA-JET / CCFE)

Fusion Power (EPSRC CDT)

About the course

The Fusion Power Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) is provided by a collaboration between five UK universities (Durham, Liverpool, Manchester, Oxford, and York), other research organisations including Culham Centre for Fusion Energy, and industry such as Tokamak Energy, First Light Fusion and OxfordSigma.

The Fusion Power CDT provides training from world-leading experts in a range of fusion-relevant disciplines, focusing on the aspects of materials science, and plasma physics, required to make fusion power a reality.

You will be trained to PhD-level (a PhD is known as a DPhil at Oxford) in disciplines related to fusion power. A significant number of fully-funded four-year full-time and eight-year part-time doctoral studentships are expected to be available each year. The programme expects to train at least 80 students over five intakes from 2024 to 2028.

The majority of projects are expected to collaborate with the wider fusion industry.

You will have access to a range of fusion materials facilities within Oxford and across the UK, and international links provide access to many other fusion devices around the world.

The combination of world-leading experts and world-class facilities creates an outstanding training environment for the next generation of fusion scientists - the generation who may exploit STEP, ITER, NIF and other international experiments to make fusion energy a reality.

Course outline

In Oxford, students will focus on materials for fusion power. You will train and study alongside students undertaking the DPhil in Materials, together forming an Oxford cohort of research students in materials.

The programme is normally carried out in four years of full-time study (or eight years of part-time study) under the supervision of an experienced member of staff. The first year (first two years for if you are studying part-time) will be focussed on training.

If studying full-time, you will spend the first eight months of the programme (the first 16 months if studying part-time), attending a number of technical fusion modules designed to provide the best possible platform for your substantial research project. Please note that the modules offered may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of staff. Some examples of modules include:

  • Introduction to Fusion Plasmas
  • Introduction to Materials
  • Plasma Facing Technologies
  • Irradiation Damage and Degradation
  • Leadership and Research skills
  • Tritium and the Fusion Fuel Cycle
  • Plasma Surface Interactions Lab
  • Functional and Superconducting Technologies
  • Data Management and Software Skills
  • Analytical Tools for Fusion Materials
  • Manufacturing and Design Codes
  • Multi-scale Computational materials engineering 

Many of these modules take place at the University of York, and all students will be based at the York Plasma Institute to begin with, following registration at the University of Oxford. There will also be a number of intensive one-week modules based at the other collaborating universities. Travel and subsistence funds are provided for attending the different week-long courses.

During your first year if studying full-time (your first two years if studying part-time) , you will also attend 'Frontiers of Fusion and Interfaces', an annual workshop which features fascinating talks by well-known and internationally-respected external speakers. Students from all cohorts (and their supervisors) will gather for a scientific meeting exploring a range of fusion issues and how they link to related fields, such as fission, advanced instrumentation, technological plasmas, and more.

The remaining three years of the full-time programme (six years if studying part-time) will be spent conducting research. A wide range of exciting DPhil projects is available and they are listed on the Department of Materials website under Fusion Power DPhil projects.

Fusion materials research at the University of Oxford

Research interests in Oxford's Department of Materials extend over most branches of materials science, as well as some aspects of solid state physics and chemistry. These include the study of a wide range of materials of relevance in advanced technological applications, including metals and alloys, composites, semi- and super-conductors, polymers, biomaterials, ceramics and materials for quantum information processing.

Much of the research is carried out in close collaboration with industry. World-leading research takes place on:

  • the characterisation of materials, where there is emphasis on electron microscopy and related techniques
  • processing and manufacturing of materials
  • modelling of materials, where there is attention to both structures and processes
  • properties of materials
  • energy materials, including those for batteries, nuclear fusion and photovoltaics
  • quantum information processing, which includes groups working on experimental studies, theory and modelling.

The plasma-facing components and breeding blanket of any future fusion tokamak will be subjected to one of the most extreme engineering environments possible. Materials will experience temperatures of up to 1200C in steady state and 3300C in transient events, and irradiation with 14MeV neutrons, causing displacement damage, transmutation giving rise to compositional changes, and internal H and He generation, plasma facing surfaces also can have  high erosion rates due to interactions with the fusion plasma. Ideally, the materials should not retain tritium or themselves transmute to long-lived radioactive isotopes. For fusion to be feasible as an economic power source, the materials must be able to survive these conditions, retaining usable thermal and mechanical properties, for five years or more.

Materials of current interest include special 'reduced activation' steels, tungsten alloys and composites, ceramic composites for neutron shielding, silicon carbide and high-temperature superconductors.

The University offers a range of projects, both experimental and modelling, on the processing, joining, microstructure, mechanical properties, and resistance to radiation damage of these materials.

Projects will use a range of specialised research techniques, usually in combination:

  • advanced processing, coating and joining methods (mechanical alloying, rapid solidification, spray forming, additive manufacture, friction-stir welding)
  • irradiation of materials by high-energy ion-beams, protons and neutrons.
  • liquid metal corrosion
  • characterisation of superconducting materials
  • electron microscopy of microstructures, and radiation damage effects, including in-situ irradiations, and field-ion microscopy of radiation damage
  • microanalysis by atom-probe tomography and electron-optical methods
  • X-ray diffraction including use of the diamond light source mechanical testing, including micromechanics, over a wide temperature range
  • computer modelling of radiation damage effects, deformation and microstructural development.

An overview of the provision for research students in the Department of Materials can be found at the Summary of Provision for Materials Research Students webpage. Also available is Guidance on Supervision Arrangements.


The allocation of graduate supervision for this course is the responsibility of the Department of Materials and it is not always possible to accommodate the preferences of incoming graduate students to work with a particular member of staff. Under exceptional circumstances a supervisor may be found outside the Department of Materials.

You will usually meet with your supervisor approximately every two to three weeks.


All students will be initially admitted to the status of Probationer Research Student (PRS). Normally after six terms as a full-time PRS student (and normally by the fourth term), and 12 terms as a part-time PRS students, you will be expected to apply for transfer of status from Probationer Research Student to DPhil status.

A successful transfer of status from PRS to DPhil status will require completion of the taught aspects of the Fusion Power course and a report on the first six months of work on your DPhil project if studying full-time (first 12 months of work if studying part-time).

If successful at transfer, you will also be expected to apply for and gain confirmation of DPhil status within nine terms of admission (within 18 terms if studying part-time), to show that your work continues to be on track.

Both milestones normally involve an interview with two assessors (other than your supervisor) and therefore provide important experience for the final oral examination.

You will be expected to submit a substantial thesis after four years from the date of admission if studying full-time (eight years if part-time). To be successfully awarded a DPhil you will need to defend your thesis orally (viva voce) in front of two appointed examiners.

Graduate destinations

There are a number of careers open to Fusion Power graduates and, more generally, Oxford materials graduates are highly regarded by a wide range of employers, including universities, national laboratories in the UK and abroad, high-tech start-up companies, engineering consultancies, industry (including aerospace, electronics, automotive, steel manufacture, medical and household products sectors), world-famous technology companies, schools and colleges, and the financial and business sectors.

Changes to this course and your supervision

The University will seek to deliver this course in accordance with the description set out in this course page. However, there may be situations in which it is desirable or necessary for the University to make changes in course provision, either before or after registration. The safety of students, staff and visitors is paramount and major changes to delivery or services may have to be made in circumstances of a pandemic, epidemic or local health emergency. In addition, in certain circumstances, for example due to visa difficulties or because the health needs of students cannot be met, it may be necessary to make adjustments to course requirements for international study.

Where possible your academic supervisor will not change for the duration of your course. However, it may be necessary to assign a new academic supervisor during the course of study or before registration for reasons which might include illness, sabbatical leave, parental leave or change in employment.

For further information please see our page on changes to courses and the provisions of the student contract regarding changes to courses.

Entry requirements for entry in 2024-25

Proven and potential academic excellence

The requirements described below are specific to this course and apply only in the year of entry that is shown. You can use our interactive tool to help you evaluate whether your application is likely to be competitive.

Please be aware that any studentships that are linked to this course may have different or additional requirements and you should read any studentship information carefully before applying. 

Degree-level qualifications

As a minimum, applicants should hold or be predicted to achieve the following UK qualifications or their equivalent:

  • a first-class or strong upper second-class undergraduate degree with honours in a suitable science subject such as materials science, chemistry, physics, or mathematics.

Other subjects may be acceptable depending on the area of research chosen.

For candidates offering a UK bachelor's degree or UK integrated undergraduate master's degree normally we require an overall grade of at least 65%. As examples of international equivalents to this requirement: for the US system we normally regard a GPA of 3.5 to 3.6 out of 4.0 on a four-year bachelor's programme as equivalent and for the Chinese system we normally regard an overall degree mark of 85% on a four-year bachelor's degree programme from a Double First Class University, Project 985 or Project 211 institution as equivalent.

If you were awarded a bachelor's degree in a country where your degree would not usually be accepted for direct progression to a PhD, your bachelor's degree on its own would not normally be acceptable for direct entry to this course. If you hold such a degree you should also hold or expect to achieve a master's degree with an overall mark equivalent to at least 65% in a UK taught master's degree.

If your degree is not from the UK or another country specified above, visit our International Qualifications page for guidance on the qualifications and grades that would usually be considered to meet the University’s minimum entry requirements.

Normally the required qualification(s) must be achieved by the date of commencement of the research programme for which you have applied.

GRE General Test scores

No Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or GMAT scores are sought.

Other qualifications, evidence of excellence and relevant experience

Additional indicators that will be considered when assessing your application against the department's criteria include your performance in previous research project(s), the award of national prizes, the award of substantial scholarships, preliminary knowledge of relevant research techniques, and your suitability for the research projects in which you have expressed interest.

The criteria against which your written application and interview will be assessed are:

  • Appropriate indicators of proven and/or potential: academic excellence, research excellence, originality, ability to absorb new ideas, reasoning ability, creativity of thought, initiative, and capacity for sustained and intense work;
  • sufficient evidence, in the view of the assessors, to suggest that you have the academic ability, motivation and commitment to (i) pursue the chosen research programme to a successful conclusion within the required time limits, and (ii) to pursue research in the subject of materials at a high level;
  • the programme of study, including research topic, that you wish to pursue is well suited to your academic interests and abilities to which you/your referees have drawn attention in the application. For some projects this may include the ability to work as part of a team; and
  • sufficient evidence of ability to (i) engage in a scientific or technical discussion in English at a satisfactory level, both verbally and in writing, (ii) understand a reasoned case presented in English and (iii) present a reasoned case in English.

Publications are not essential but will be taken into account. Please include details of any publications you may have in peer-reviewed international journals in the relevant field of the application form which you will find in the Qualifications and experience section

Further guidance

It should be noted that acceptance on a particular course gives no guarantee of final success, and all research programmes require the student to develop their learning and skills to new levels in order successfully to undertake all the assessment hurdles of a research programme.

English language proficiency

This course requires proficiency in English at the University's standard level. If your first language is not English, you may need to provide evidence that you meet this requirement. The minimum scores required to meet the University's standard level are detailed in the table below.

Minimum scores required to meet the University's standard level requirement
TestMinimum overall scoreMinimum score per component
IELTS Academic (Institution code: 0713) 7.06.5

TOEFL iBT, including the 'Home Edition'

(Institution code: 0490)

100Listening: 22
Reading: 24
Speaking: 25
Writing: 24
C1 Advanced*185176
C2 Proficiency185176

*Previously known as the Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English or Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE)
Previously known as the Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English or Cambridge English: Proficiency (CPE)

Your test must have been taken no more than two years before the start date of your course. Our Application Guide provides further information about the English language test requirement.

Declaring extenuating circumstances

If your ability to meet the entry requirements has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic (eg you were awarded an unclassified/ungraded degree) or any other exceptional personal circumstance (eg other illness or bereavement), please refer to the guidance on extenuating circumstances in the Application Guide for information about how to declare this so that your application can be considered appropriately.


You will need to register three referees who can give an informed view of your academic ability and suitability for the course. The How to apply section of this page provides details of the types of reference that are required in support of your application for this course and how these will be assessed.

Supporting documents

You will be required to supply supporting documents with your application. The How to apply section of this page provides details of the supporting documents that are required as part of your application for this course and how these will be assessed.

Performance at interview

Interviews are normally held as part of the admissions process.

Interviews normally take place after you submit your application and normally within an eight-working week period of the application deadline for which you submitted a complete application.

These interviews may be conducted in-person, by telephone or video-link. Shortlisting for interview is carried out according to the criteria included in the present entry requirements as judged from your submitted application (including your references).

Normally, the applications of candidates who are shortlisted for interview will be assessed by at least two members of staff with relevant experience and expertise, and in addition may be assessed by the department’s Director of Graduate Studies. All decisions to offer a place require the approval of the Director of Graduate Studies or deputy.

How your application is assessed

Your application will be assessed purely on your proven and potential academic excellence and other entry requirements described under that heading.

References and supporting documents submitted as part of your application, and your performance at interview (if interviews are held) will be considered as part of the assessment process. Whether or not you have secured funding will not be taken into consideration when your application is assessed.

An overview of the shortlisting and selection process is provided below. Our 'After you apply' pages provide more information about how applications are assessed

Shortlisting and selection

Students are considered for shortlisting and selected for admission without regard to age, disability, gender reassignment, marital or civil partnership status, pregnancy and maternity, race (including colour, nationality and ethnic or national origins), religion or belief (including lack of belief), sex, sexual orientation, as well as other relevant circumstances including parental or caring responsibilities or social background. However, please note the following:

  • socio-economic information may be taken into account in the selection of applicants and award of scholarships for courses that are part of the University’s pilot selection procedure and for scholarships aimed at under-represented groups;
  • country of ordinary residence may be taken into account in the awarding of certain scholarships; and
  • protected characteristics may be taken into account during shortlisting for interview or the award of scholarships where the University has approved a positive action case under the Equality Act 2010.

Processing your data for shortlisting and selection

Information about processing special category data for the purposes of positive action and using your data to assess your eligibility for funding, can be found in our Postgraduate Applicant Privacy Policy.

Admissions panels and assessors

All recommendations to admit a student involve the judgement of at least two members of the academic staff with relevant experience and expertise, and must also be approved by the Director of Graduate Studies or Admissions Committee (or equivalent within the department).

Admissions panels or committees will always include at least one member of academic staff who has undertaken appropriate training.

Other factors governing whether places can be offered

The following factors will also govern whether candidates can be offered places:

  • the ability of the University to provide the appropriate supervision for your studies, as outlined under the 'Supervision' heading in the About section of this page;
  • the ability of the University to provide appropriate support for your studies (eg through the provision of facilities, resources, teaching and/or research opportunities); and
  • minimum and maximum limits to the numbers of students who may be admitted to the University's taught and research programmes.

Offer conditions for successful applications

If you receive an offer of a place at Oxford, your offer will outline any conditions that you need to satisfy and any actions you need to take, together with any associated deadlines. These may include academic conditions, such as achieving a specific final grade in your current degree course. These conditions will usually depend on your individual academic circumstances and may vary between applicants. Our 'After you apply' pages provide more information about offers and conditions

In addition to any academic conditions which are set, you will also be required to meet the following requirements:

Financial Declaration

If you are offered a place, you will be required to complete a Financial Declaration in order to meet your financial condition of admission.

Disclosure of criminal convictions

In accordance with the University’s obligations towards students and staff, we will ask you to declare any relevant, unspent criminal convictions before you can take up a place at Oxford.

Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS)

Some postgraduate research students in science, engineering and technology subjects will need an Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) certificate prior to applying for a Student visa (under the Student Route). For some courses, the requirement to apply for an ATAS certificate may depend on your research area.


The Department of Materials has available excellent and wide-ranging research resources including:

  • a world-class suite of electron microscopy facilities including a JEOL ARM analytical TEM, a JEOL 2200FS aberration-corrected high resolution TEM, and two new Zeiss Merlin ultrahigh resolution SEMs optimised for EBSD and EDX analysis, together with a number of supporting and training instruments. Much of this equipment is installed in the David Cockayne Centre for Electron Microscopy;
  • acoustic and scanned probe microscopes together with extensive further facilities for characterising materials including, for example, nanoSIMS, XPS and Raman microscopy;
  • advanced sample preparation and micromachining facilities including a Zeiss NVision 40 FIB/SEM and two other FIB instruments;
  • unique microhardness measurement facilities (at high temperatures and at the nm scale);
  • special processing or manufacturing facilities for ceramics, composites, carbon nanomaterials, rapidly solidified materials and devices such as novel batteries;
  • superb facilities for 3D atom probe analysis (including LEAP 3000XSi and 3DAP-LAR); 
  • a new alloy processing and mechanical properties laboratory, for aerospace and nuclear materials; and
  • several parallel computation Linux clusters with InfiniBand interconnects, operated by the Materials Modelling Laboratory, and access to all the Oxford Supercomputing Centre facilities.

The department’s Institute for Industrial Materials and Manufacturing is housed at the University's Begbroke Science Park and has world-class facilities for advanced materials processing and characterisation. A major suite of equipment is available for the characterisation of materials used in microtechnology and nanotechnology, as detailed on the Oxford Materials Characterisation Service website.

The Begbroke site also houses a number of materials-related spinout companies.

In addition to the excellent central and college library provision, there is a specialist Materials Science Library housed in the department.

Department of Materials

As a student on one of Oxford's research degree programmes in materials, you will be part of one of the top-ranked materials departments in the world (QS World University Rankings 2023).

In the 2021 Research Excellence Framework (REF) assessment of research excellence in UK universities, research from the University's Department of Materials and Department of Engineering Science was jointly submitted to REF Unit of Assessment (UOA) 12 - Engineering (there is not a specific REF UOA for Materials). The results for this submission show that:

  • 71% of the research activity of the two departments was judged to be in the highest category of excellence, Grade 4* ('World-leading');
  • a further 26% of the research activity of the two departments was judged as Grade 3* ('Internationally Excellent'); and
  • 90% of research impact was judged to be ‘World-leading’.

The department's high rating for research is evidence of its excellence in a wide range of materials research.

The department's vibrant materials research community consists of around 33 academic staff, 13 Senior Research Fellows, and around 240 DPhil students and 80 postdoctoral researchers. Research students are of many nationalities and come to the department from diverse scientific backgrounds.

Leading-edge research is carried out across a wide range of materials science, ranging from atomic-scale characterization, through state-of-the-art materials modelling, to pilot industrial-scale processing. 

Research students in the Department of Materials are also members of the University's MPLS Graduate School, which provides a wide range of support and training in addition to that offered by the department.


We expect that the majority of applicants who are offered a place on this course will also be offered a fully-funded scholarship specific to this course, covering course fees for the duration of their course and a living stipend.

For further details about searching for funding as a graduate student visit our dedicated Funding pages, which contain information about how to apply for Oxford scholarships requiring an additional application, details of external funding, loan schemes and other funding sources.

Please ensure that you visit individual college websites for details of any college-specific funding opportunities using the links provided on our college pages or below:

Please note that not all the colleges listed above may accept students on this course. For details of those which do, please refer to the College preference section of this page.


Annual fees for entry in 2024-25

Full-time study

Fee status

Annual Course fees


Further details about fee status eligibility can be found on the fee status webpage.

Part-time study

Fee status

Annual Course fees


Further details about fee status eligibility can be found on the fee status webpage.

Information about course fees

Course fees are payable each year, for the duration of your fee liability (your fee liability is the length of time for which you are required to pay course fees). For courses lasting longer than one year, please be aware that fees will usually increase annually. For details, please see our guidance on changes to fees and charges.

Course fees cover your teaching as well as other academic services and facilities provided to support your studies. Unless specified in the additional information section below, course fees do not cover your accommodation, residential costs or other living costs. They also don’t cover any additional costs and charges that are outlined in the additional information below.

Continuation charges

Following the period of fee liability, you may also be required to pay a University continuation charge and a college continuation charge. The University and college continuation charges are shown on the Continuation charges page.

Where can I find further information about fees?

The Fees and Funding section of this website provides further information about course fees, including information about fee status and eligibility and your length of fee liability.

Additional information

Full-time study

There are no compulsory elements of this course that entail additional costs beyond fees (or, after fee liability ends, continuation charges) and living costs. However, please note that, depending on your choice of research topic and the research required to complete it, you may incur additional expenses, such as travel expenses, research expenses, and field trips. You will need to meet these additional costs, although you may be able to apply for small grants from your department and/or college to help you cover some of these expenses.

Part-time study

Please note that you are required to attend in Oxford for a minimum of 30 days each year, and you may incur additional travel and accommodation expenses for this. Also, depending on your choice of research topic and the research required to complete it, you may incur further additional expenses, such as travel expenses, research expenses, and field trips. You will need to meet these additional costs, although you may be able to apply for small grants from your department and/or college to help you cover some of these expenses.

Living costs

In addition to your course fees, you will need to ensure that you have adequate funds to support your living costs for the duration of your course.

For the 2024-25 academic year, the range of likely living costs for full-time study is between c. £1,345 and £1,955 for each month spent in Oxford. Full information, including a breakdown of likely living costs in Oxford for items such as food, accommodation and study costs, is available on our living costs page. The current economic climate and high national rate of inflation make it very hard to estimate potential changes to the cost of living over the next few years. When planning your finances for any future years of study in Oxford beyond 2024-25, it is suggested that you allow for potential increases in living expenses of around 5% each year – although this rate may vary depending on the national economic situation. UK inflationary increases will be kept under review and this page updated.


Students enrolled on this course will belong to both a department/faculty and a college. Please note that ‘college’ and ‘colleges’ refers to all 43 of the University’s colleges, including those designated as societies and permanent private halls (PPHs). 

If you apply for a place on this course you will have the option to express a preference for one of the colleges listed below, or you can ask us to find a college for you. Before deciding, we suggest that you read our brief introduction to the college system at Oxford and our advice about expressing a college preference. For some courses, the department may have provided some additional advice below to help you decide.

Full-time study

The following colleges accept students for full-time study on this course:

Part-time study

The following colleges accept students for part-time study on this course:


Before you apply

Our guide to getting started provides general advice on how to prepare for and start your application. You can use our interactive tool to help you evaluate whether your application is likely to be competitive.

If it's important for you to have your application considered under a particular deadline – eg under a December or January deadline in order to be considered for Oxford scholarships – we recommend that you aim to complete and submit your application at least two weeks in advance. Check the deadlines on this page and the information about deadlines and when to apply in our Application Guide.

Application fee waivers

An application fee of £75 is payable per course application. Application fee waivers are available for the following applicants who meet the eligibility criteria:

  • applicants from low-income countries;
  • refugees and displaced persons; 
  • UK applicants from low-income backgrounds; and 
  • applicants who applied for our Graduate Access Programmes in the past two years and met the eligibility criteria.

You are encouraged to check whether you're eligible for an application fee waiver before you apply.

Readmission for current Oxford graduate taught students

If you're currently studying for an Oxford graduate taught course and apply to this course with no break in your studies, you may be eligible to apply to this course as a readmission applicant. The application fee will be waived for an eligible application of this type. Check whether you're eligible to apply for readmission.

Application fee waivers for eligible associated courses

If you apply to this course and up to two eligible associated courses from our predefined list during the same cycle, you can request an application fee waiver so that you only need to pay one application fee.

The list of eligible associated courses may be updated as new courses are opened. Please check the list regularly, especially if you are applying to a course that has recently opened to accept applications.

Do I need to contact anyone before I apply?

Having read the guidance and project descriptions on the Department of Materials website, if you wish to learn more about a specific project please contact the relevant supervisor by email.

Before applying you are strongly encouraged to contact the department's Graduate Studies Secretary for advice and assistance.

Completing your application

You should refer to the information below when completing the application form, paying attention to the specific requirements for the supporting documents.

For this course, the application form will include questions that collect information that would usually be included in a CV/résumé. You should not upload a separate document. If a separate CV/résumé is uploaded, it will be removed from your application.

If any document does not meet the specification, including the stipulated word count, your application may be considered incomplete and not assessed by the academic department. Expand each section to show further details.

Proposed field and title of research project

You are not required to complete this field of the application form. Instead, you are required to list up to four projects from the department's website that you are interested in applying to, in order of preference, as part of your Statement of purpose/Personal statement (see below).

You should not use this field to type out a full research proposal. You will be able to upload your research supporting materials separately if they are required (as described below).

Proposed supervisor

You should list all of the supervisors names that are associated with the projects (up to four) that you are interested in, and will be listed in your Statement of purpose/Personal statement (see below). 

Three overall, of which at least two must be academic

Whilst you must register three referees, the department may start the assessment of your application if two of the three references are submitted by the course deadline and your application is otherwise complete. Please note that you may still be required to ensure your third referee supplies a reference for consideration.

It is desirable that one of your references is from an academic staff member who has supervised you in a research project.

If you are a current master’s student or have completed a master’s course, one of your referees should be your supervisor or course director on this course. If you do not provide a reference from your master’s supervisor or course director, the department will usually ask you to do so before completing the assessment of your application.

Normally at least two of your references should be from academic staff members who taught or supervised you during your bachelor’s and/or master’s degree programmes. The primary purpose of the three references is to provide the department with evidenced insight into your potential to excel as a research student.

Official Transcripts

Your transcripts should give detailed information of the individual grades received in your university-level qualifications to date. You should only upload official documents issued by your institution and any transcript not in English should be accompanied by a certified translation.

More information about the transcript requirement is available in the Application Guide.

It is very important that you include official evidence of your overall mark (%) or cumulative GPA if this is not clearly stated on your transcript.

Statement of purpose/personal statement:
400 words, accompanied by a list of preferred projects and supervisors

A detailed research proposal is not required. Instead, you should provide a single document comprising both:
  • a list of up to four research projects (and the associated supervisors) in which you are interested, in order of preference, selected from the subset of currently advertised projects on the department's website, that are offered by Oxford staff associated with the Fusion Power CDT; and
  • an outline of your research interests, written in English, that clearly indicates the rationale behind your choice of projects. Please be sure to also include all of the supervisor(s) name(s) in the supervisors field of the application form. However, there is no need to repeat the project titles in the research project field of the application form.

Start or continue your application

You can start or return to an application using the relevant link below. As you complete the form, please refer to the requirements above and consult our Application Guide for advice. You'll find the answers to most common queries in our FAQs.

Application Guide  Apply - Full time Apply - Part time

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