Thinking about applying?

There are two main routes into the Department of Plant Sciences Graduate Programme dictated by different funding mechanisms: If, after discussion with a potential supervisor, you decide that one of these programmes is right for you, you will need to apply directly to the relevant programme.


These are fully-funded, 3-4 year graduate training programmes in which students undertake a training period of taught courses of 3-6 months prior to embarking upon their D.Phil. research. In some programmes students undertake two short ‘rotation’ projects before deciding upon their D.Phil. project. Some programmes also include professional internships.

The programmes from which students can go on to do a DPhil in Plant Sciences are:


Students are admitted directly to the Department of Plant Sciences Graduate Training Programme for projects of 3-4 years of duration, depending on funding arrangements.

The programme includes training in research skills (including courses on: analysis of the scientific literature; presentation skills; statistics; bioinformatics; plant biodiversity; science communication; scientific writing) but these courses are spread throughout the first year and run alongside the research project which starts immediately.

Fully-funded studentships may be available, and these opportunities are highlighted in the details to specific projects. More usually, however, successful applicants will apply for competitive scholarships either from within the University of Oxford or from elsewhere.

Click here for full details of the DPhil programme in Plant Sciences, including selection criteria, eligibility and the application process.


You are strongly encouraged to communicate with potential supervisors prior to submitting an application to explain why you want to work in your chosen field of study, to answer any questions on research projects and to refine your application, especially if applying for competitive scholarships. 

DPhil Research Projects

We advertise our DPhil Research projects here.

Application process

Detailed information on preparing, submitting and following your application will guide you through the admissions process for Oxford's graduate courses may be found here.

Application deadlines

Applications must be submitted by 12 noon (midday) on these days:

  • Friday 15th November 2019
  • Friday 24th January 2020 (Latest deadline for most Oxford scholarships.)
  • Tuesday 3rd March 2020 (Applications may remain open after this deadline if places are still available.)

Please ensure that you contact potential supervisors well in advance of these deadlines. Later applications may be considered if places are available.

Applying to more than one related course

If you plan to apply to both Plant Sciences and a linked Doctoral Training (CDT) programme then you are entitled to apply for up to two related programmes without paying any additional application fees. Next steps: You will need to contact Graduate Admissions using the CDT Fee Waiver form.
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