Study with us

We are now accepting applications for the 2019 intake of our programme. Apply early, as the application process is competitive. To be considered for the next round of interviews, please apply by 31 January 2019.

We welcome applications from graduates of a wide variety of science and engineering disciplines who already have, or expect to obtain, a first or upper second class honours degree and have a strong interest in sustainable chemical technologies.

All students in the Centre receive foundation training to supplement their undergraduate knowledge, as well as training in sustainable chemical technologies and transferable skills. All will conduct high quality, challenging, truly interdisciplinary research directed by supervisors from a number of departments, including Biology & Biochemistry, Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, Pharmacy & Pharmacology and Physics.


We place fundamental concepts of sustainability at the core of research, training and outreach in applied chemical sciences.

Professor Matthew Davidson, Director, Centre for Sustainable Chemical Technologies
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The application process

Why study with us?

Practical & relevant research

Studying with us gives you the opportunity to contribute to technologies which are making a real difference to the world today. The centre focusses on the core areas of molecules, materials and processes to find practical ways of reducing environmental impact, developing cleaner energy sources, reducing reliance on rare elements and much more.

Interdisciplinary research

As a student in the Centre, your research will cross the boundary between traditional subject areas and may draw on elements of many disciplines, from biology to mechanical engineering. This interdisciplinary approach enables us to follow all the way through from new molecules to industrial applications.

We are looking for talented candidates from a broad range of scientific backgrounds with an interest in sustainability, not just chemists and chemical engineers.

Industrial and international collaboration

Each doctoral research project within the centre has, alongside the academic supervisor, an external supervisor from one of the many commercial companies and world-class academic institutions with which we are partnered.

These partners will provide valuable input and support to your project, and also offer placements where you can place your research in a wider industrial or international context.


In your first year, you will conduct two short research projects from the wide range available, reflecting the Centre’s diverse research portfolio. This will allow you to try out more than one research area and supervisor before committing to your final PhD project.

Be part of a group

Traditional PhD programmes can be very isolating, but being part of a Centre is very different. You will study as part of a cohort of around 12 other students from a range of backgrounds and a shared interest in sustainable science and engineering. The Centre also has a strong social scene, with the existing students organising regular events.

More than just a PhD

Our doctoral programme is a four-year course, with the first year focusing on preparing for your main research in the remaining three. At the end of the first year, you will graduate with an MRes in Sustainable Chemical Technologies, providing evidence to future employers of your strong research and transferable skills.

You will receive training and development opportunities in technical and research skills, as well as the wider commercial and societal aspects of sustainability, including environmental management and public engagement.

Great environment

We have a spacious open-plan office providing space for all first-year students and hot-desking for all other students. This office, along with our comfortable modern meeting room, is located in the Department of Chemistry’s main research building on the beautiful University of Bath campus.

What our alumni say

Marking the 10th anniversary of the centre, we recently asked our graduates “how CSCT impacted their career paths”. See what some of them had to say.

Course information

We are the only Centre for Doctoral Training to focus on developing new molecules, materials, processes and systems from the lab right through to industrial application, with an emphasis on practical sustainability. We train scientists and engineers to work together with industry to meet the needs of current and future generations.

We offer a full programme of specialist and generic skills training to complement and enhance our students’ research. Our training programme has been accredited by the Royal Society of Chemistry for satisfying the professional requirements for the award of Registered Scientist (RSci) and Membership (MRSC).

The skills and evidence obtained in the final years of the Integrated PhD have also been accredited to partially satisfy the requirements for Chartered Chemist (CChem). CChem is awarded following graduation from the Centre combined with one more year of relevant experience.

See what our students have to say

To find out more about the centre, please email us at

General structure

The Integrated PhD in Sustainable Chemical Technologies is a 4-year research degree, split into two main parts:

  • Year 1 (MRes) consists of two small research projects, combined with training in technical aspects of sustainable chemical technologies as well as transferable skills and business and societal aspects of sustainability;
  • Years 2-4 focus primarily on the main PhD project, with some advanced training courses and a range of ongoing supporting activities.

Approximately 75% of your time will be spent on high-quality, interdisciplinary research, with around 15% specialist training in sustainability concepts and 10% transferable skills training.

In the first year, you will undertake two distinct research projects, one of which will usually (but not always) lead directly into a PhD project. The projects have equal weight in the assessment process, the first taking place during Semesters 1 and 2 and the second completed over the summer.

All projects have a supervisory team drawn from two or more academic departments. Your main project will also have input and support from an industrial or international partner.

You may defer your final choice of PhD project and supervisor until the end of Year 1.

Project Selection

The project selection process begins in the first week of term. A large number of potential projects are proposed by supervisors, encompassing the full range of our research.

After discussing options with supervisors and visiting their laboratories, you will select 4 preferred project choices. You will be allocated one of these projects; in many cases students are allocated their first choice.


We are now accepting applications for the 2019 intake of our programme.

Applications from excellent students, including those who are self-funded, are considered throughout the year.

Apply today

How to apply

Please see information under ‘Application guidance’ for supporting information on specific aspects of the online application form.

Application process

There are four rounds of interviews in each year of recruitment and applications are routinely reviewed prior to the interview deadlines.

If your application is successful, you will be invited to attend an interview on campus, which will include the opportunity to visit the facilities and meet current students and members of staff. Places on the CDT are highly competitive and we advise that you apply as soon as possible.

Who can apply

We welcome applications from graduates of science and engineering disciplines, including:

  • biology
  • biochemistry
  • chemistry
  • chemical engineering
  • electrical engineering
  • mathematics
  • mechanical engineering
  • pharmacy and physics

Our applicants must have, or expect to obtain, a first or upper second class honours degree and have a strong interest in sustainable technologies.


Application guidance

Submit your application using the online application form. More details and guidance on particular sections in the online application form can be found below:

Optional upload of documents

It is very helpful if you provide as many of the requested documents as possible. If you are still awaiting transcripts, you will be able to upload these later. Please upload your CV, even if you have already sent this to us.

Your research interests

Under Section 7 of the application form, please do not include a full research proposal, but instead give us some detail about:

  • Your research interests (particularly as they relate to sustainable chemical technologies).
  • Your reasons for wanting to study with us.
  • Any other information that might be relevant, such as professional experience, publications etc.

If this is already covered in your CV, there is no need to repeat the information. If you would like to be considered for one of our project-specific studentships, please mention this here.


Uploading any references you have at the time of application will prevent delays in progressing you through to the shortlisting state.

Although you are only required to have one referee, we prefer you to provide details of two, so please upload both references if you have these.

Some referees prefer to provide confidential reports and, in this case, we will contact them by email, so please ensure that email addresses are correct.


1. How do I apply to the CDT?

Use our online application form – see our application guidance for more details. If your application is successful, you will be invited to an interview. The application process is highly competitive, so you should apply as soon as possible.

2. When do applications close?

Places are highly competitive and we advise that you apply as soon as possible. We usually fill all our places by the end of our interview rounds, however applications are open all year round for outstanding and self-funded students.

3. I don’t have a background in chemistry or chemical engineering, will you still consider my application?

We welcome applications from graduates of science and engineering disciplines, including: biology, biochemistry, chemistry, chemical engineering, electrical engineering, mathematics, mechanical engineering, pharmacy and physics.

4. Do I need to choose or contact a supervisor before applying?

No, you do not need to give us details of a specific academic you would like to work with; this will be worked out later if you are accepted. You can tell us more about your research interests in the online application.

5. Do I need to submit a research proposal during the application process?

You don’t need to submit a full research proposal. There will be an opportunity during the application to upload a document summarising your research interests and reasons for wanting to study with us.

6. I’d like to be considered for one of your project-specific studentships, how do I apply?

Apply as normal using the online application form and specify that you are interested in a project-specific studentship in Section 7 of the form, when detailing your research interests.

7. I have already emailed you my CV, do I still need to apply online?

Yes, we only consider online applications. If you have already sent us a CV, please attach this to your online application form.

8. What qualifications do I need for my application to be considered?

Our applicants must have, or expect to obtain, a first or upper second class honours degree and have a strong interest in sustainable technologies.

9. Why is the course 4 years, instead of 3?

The first year of the course is an MRes, consisting of two smaller research projects and specialised training to prepare you for your PhD. After graduating from the MRes at the end of year 1, you will transition into your PhD.

10. Do I get to choose my MRes research projects?

You will be able to choose four options from a wide range of project titles, which will be presented to you by potential supervisors in your first week. You will be allocated projects from your choices; students are often allocated their first choices.

11. When does the course start?

The programme starts in October each year. It is not possible to start during the year, due to the taught component of the MRes year.

12. Is it possible to study part-time?

No, we only accommodate full-time students on our course.