Students entering the Structured PhD Programme in Biology will be under the supervision of an experienced researcher. All academic staff members in the Biology Department are experienced and active researchers and can supervise PhD students. Information about their research can be found on the Biology Department Website (https://www.maynoothuniversity.ie/biology/our-research) and interested students should initially contact researchers directly to discuss potential PhD projects.
In most but not all instances, your stipend, university fees, consumable, equipment and travel costs will be paid from a research grant from a national or international grant agency or charity. Your supervisor usually competitively obtains this grant, but students can also obtain their own scholarships, such as from the Irish Research Council (IRC). Scholarship awards, such as the John Hume Scholarship, are also available from Maynooth University via an annual call. There is usually no support available for extra time required to complete your degree, so you should try and manage your research and thesis writing to take place within the allocated timeframe (usually 3-4 years).
Upon entering the programme each student will be assigned two additional mentors, an Advisor and an Assessor. The Advisor provides additional mentorship for the student throughout the four-year programme and is someone the student can discuss issues with in addition to their supervisor. The Assessor is a member of staff who will provide an annual constructive critique of the students work programme and will aid, together with the Advisor, in outlining possible future research plans.
In addition to the research project, training is provided through compulsory attendance of a variety of generic and transferable skills as well as subject specific modules. For example, the established Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning will provide research students with experience in practical class demonstrating and teaching and learning methodologies. Training in subject specific skills is provided through modules offered either through the Biology Department or as part of the Dublin Region Higher Education Alliance (DRHEA). Advanced modules in many life science topics are already established within the Biomedical Sciences and Chemistry strands of the DRHEA provides a variety of to students on the programme. Finally, research students will be encouraged to attend at least one international conference during their four-year programme, at which they will be expected to present an oral or poster presentation.