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Course options

  • Qualification

    PhD/DPhil - Doctor of Philosophy

  • Location

    University of Glasgow

  • Study mode

    Full time

  • Start date


  • Duration

    3 years

Course summary

PhD project outlines

We address a broad range of fundamental and applied evolutionary problems via the identification and analysis of genetic and phenotypic variability underlying biodiversity at all taxonomic levels, from viruses to vertebrates.


Within evolutionary analysis, our specific areas of interest include the basis of adaptation to changing biotic and abiotic environments, the process and underlying mechanisms of speciation, the role of mating systems, host-parasite interactions, and the linkage among ecological and evolutionary processes. Frequently, this work requires the integration of genetic information with other types of data (e.g. phenotypic, geographic, demographic); developing novel bioinformatic tools and approaches to achieve this integration therefore represents another research focus.

Due to evolutionary principles being fundamental to all aspects of biology, our research activities are naturally linked with those of other research themes within the institute and throughout the College of Medical, Veterinary & Life Sciences, with particular ties to the Glasgow Polyomics Facility, the Scottish Centre for Ecology and the Natural Environment (SCENE), and the Centre for Virus Research.

Individual research projects are tailored around the expertise of principal investigators within the institutes. A variety of approaches are used, including ecology, epidemiology, mathematical, computational and statistical modelling, bioinformatics, parasitology, immunology and polyomics (genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics). Basic and applied science projects are available for study, as are field-based projects with research programs underway in both the UK and overseas.

Specific areas of interest include:

  • host/parasite interactions and coevolution
  • evolutionary arms races between parasitic trypanosomes and their hosts
  • molecular ecology and evolution in infectious diseases of wild and domestic animals
  • behavioural ecology of fish
  • influence of genomic, ecological and environmental factors on emergence of new species
  • viral and bacterial population genomics
  • antimicrobial and anthelminthic resistance
  • evolution of viviparity in animals
  • physiology and behavioural ecology of marine and freshwater fishes
  • physiology and behavioural ecology of birds in urban and rural environments
  • evolutionary implications of daily rhythms, life-cycle timing and seasonal movements
  • phylodynamics of multi-host pathogens
  • life-history evolution, resource allocation, sexual selection and community ecology
  • evolution of resistance
  • evolutionary and conservation genetics
  • evolutionary developmental biology
  • gene family evolution, polyploidy, and mating systems
  • interaction between parasites, African trypanosomes and their hosts
  • organism response to their environment, both natural and captivity
  • attack and Escape Strategies in Aquatic Predator-Prey Interactions
  • phyloinformatics, biodiversity informatics, biological data visualisation
  • genetic and developmental basis of craniofacial shape in fish
  • role of divergent natural selection for determining phenotypes
  • phenotypic plasticity
  • mathematical, computational and statistical analysis of biological datasets, particularly those of pathogens and vaccines
  • ecological genomics and adaptive divergence in animals and plants.

Tuition fees

Students living in United States
(international fees)

£ 23,950per year

Tuition fees shown are for indicative purposes and may vary. Please check with the institution for most up to date details.

University information

University image

University of Glasgow

  • University League Table


  • Campus address

    University of Glasgow, The Fraser Building, 65 Hillhead Street, Glasgow, Glasgow, City Of, G12 8QQ, Scotland

A wide range of international scholarships are available including International Excellence scholarships and postgraduate awards.
Meet students from across the university with over 250 clubs and societies available – ranging from international student societies to the Harry Potter society.
Pre-sessional English language provision available prior to starting university, and English language support options throughout the duration of study.

Subject rankings

  • Subject ranking

    10th out of 100 6

  • Entry standards

    / Max 240
    199 90%


  • Graduate prospects

    / Max 100
    72.0 72%


  • Student satisfaction

    / Max 5
    4.10 82%



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