PhD Opportunities

Glasgow Caledonian University is home to a dynamic research community, with students on campuses in Glasgow, London and spread across the globe. Working closely with GCU’s award-winning Graduate School, we offer supervision for completion of Masters (MPhil) and PhDs as well as Professional Doctorates. We also offer a taught Master of Research Methods programme.

GCU funded PhD opportunities

Efficient systems

  • coming soon

Built Environment


Self-funded opportunities

We are seeking postgraduate applications from highly qualified individuals in areas which fit with our own research expertise. Our self-funded PhDs can be offered in full-time, part-time and distance learning study mode.  Below is a list of project ideas but we welcome your own ideas that align with the broad themes of our expertise.

Self-funded PhD opportunities in Efficient Systems:

Algorithms for underwater optical communication

Big Data Streaming Analytics

Optimisation of a Cascade Chute  

Control and Protection of Networks

The Development of a Novel On-Line Mass Flow Meter

Energy Harvesting for Optical Wireless Communications

Emerging Technologies for Mobile Fashion Consumers

Modelling Feature Similarities in Software Product Lines

Personal Sensors in Clothing for Evaluating Air Pollution and its impact on Skin

Intelligent Self Explaining Systems

Social Signal Processing and Affective Computing

Software Design Pattern Recognition for Software Product Lines

Sounds of Intent: Serious Games

The Tipping Point in a Complex Product Line

Developing Personal Values through Computer Games

Thin-Walled Structural Members – A Complete Cold-Forming Computer Simulation


Self-funded PhD opportunities in Built Environment:

Design and construction of a unique pilot plant

Propagation of Partial Discharge Pulses in High Voltage Apparatus

Eco-technological design for stability & resilience of transport infrastructure

Green infrastructure for adaptation to and resilience‌

Prevention of Construction Accidents & Ill Health through the Design Process

Stewarding water for sustainability

‌‌Sustainable use of vegetation‌

Dean's Scholarships for International Academic Excellence

In the School of Engineering and Built Environment (SEBE) we believe that exceptional academic ability should be recognised and rewarded.

The Dean’s Scholarships offer the opportunity for outstanding research students to participate in some of the most exciting areas of interdisciplinary research carried out at the School.

To recognise academic achievement and to attract the best students from across the globe, the Dean is offering a range of scholarships towards course tuition fees for international (non-EU) fee-paying students with excellent academic qualifications.

The awards will be judged on a 1000 word statement supplied by each candidate that should state clearly how they meet the scholarship aims. Applicants demonstrate through their ideas how they would use their specific knowledge, experience and background to:

  • ensure that the research aims of their project are met and exceeded;
  • fully align their project with the School’s research strategy;
  • act as an ambassador for SEBE and GCU, and ensure dissemination and wider impact arising from their research work.

SEBE has up to three Dean’s Scholarships of £3,800 per year available for academically outstanding students who applied and have been accepted onto one of the School’s full time PhD Programmes. The Dean’s Scholarship can only be applied for at entry into the PhD research programme, and it is awarded for a total of three years pending annual renewal upon satisfactory performance.

For all successful applicants, the total scholarship will be awarded in the form of a partial fee-waiver against their annual fees.

Dean's scholarship application

How to apply

To apply for a PhD or Professional Doctorate degree please complete the GCU Research Application Form

PhD Applications

Please complete the research application form above, stating the project title and reference number and attach a research proposal.*

The form should be sent with copies of academic qualifications (including IELTS if required), two references and any other relevant documentation to: If you require further information about a project, please refer to the staff contact in the project summary. Applicants shortlisted for a PhD will be contacted for an interview.

Guidance on writing a research proposal

Professional Doctorate Applications

Please complete the research application form above, indicating your chosen pathway in section 3 [see Prof D programme for pathways available] and including a summary of the proposed research in section 4. The form should be sent along with copies of academic qualifications (including IELTS if required), 2 references, a letter of support from your current employer and any other relevant documentation to:

Applicants shortlisted for a Prof D programme will be contacted for an interview. Please note that the programme commences in January of each year. The deadline for applications is 31st October for entry the following January.