Chemistry Postgraduate Research - PhDs and Studentships

Full Time/ Part Time
PhD by Research, MSc (Res), MPhil (Res)

As one of the first disciplines to be established at the University, the School of Chemistry has always maintained its position as one of the leading research centres in the UK, while retaining a friendly, open and relaxed environment.

We are one of the top 10 Schools of Chemistry in the country, according to the recent Research Excellence Framework (REF2014) with 98% of our research classified as world-leading or internationally excellent. Our research quality was also ranked in the top five..


Our research work is financed by multi-million pound grant holdings, won competitively from sources such as the National Research Councils, the Royal Society, charitable trusts (including Wellcome and Leverhulme Trusts and the Wolfson Foundation), industrial companies and the European Union. Key research in the School includes biological, synthetic, materials, nanoscience and forensic chemistry. 

Our research represents each of the three core branches of chemistry, but is also highly cooperative across them, resulting in three principal research themes. 

Synthetic Chemistry research includes: methodology and target molecule synthesis; synthesis of functional materials and supramolecular chemistry; organometallics and polymerisation catalysts; biological chemistry and unnatural amino acids; mechanism and physical organic chemistry. 

Physical and Analytical Chemistry research encompasses: fundamental theory; calculation and simulation of molecular dynamics; advanced multidimensional laser spectroscopy; biophysics; development of ‘smart’ polymers and biosensors; nanoscience for imaging and energy materials. 

Biophysical Chemistry research involves: protein biochemistry and the development and application of biophysical methods for studying biomolecules. These include: novel magneto-optical spectroscopies; NMR; protein electrochemistry; high resolution structural methods; native mass spectrometry. 

We pride ourselves on our collaborative spirit. This has led to strong interactions not only across the three principal themes, but also with the School of Pharmacy, the other Science Schools, and the research institutes on the Norwich Research Park. 

Take a look at our current PhD and studentship opportunities


Course Modules 2017/8

As a postgraduate research student, your research degree will not contain modules.   


Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules and regular (five-yearly) review of course programmes. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, there will normally be prior consultation of students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff or sabbatical leave. In some cases optional modules can have limited places available and so you may be asked to make additional module choices in the event you do not gain a place on your first choice. Where this is the case, the University will endeavour to inform students.

Entry Requirements

Entry Requirement

To be accepted onto a doctoral degree, the standard minimum academic entry requirement is either at least a 2:1 from a UK undergraduate degree, a Master’s degree, or equivalent. Some research programmes might have higher requirements and the possibility of more specific requirements. Please take a look at our current PhD opportunities or our Faculty Graduate School and School pages to find out more.  

How to Apply

Please take a look at our information on how to apply.

    Next Steps

    We can’t wait to hear from you. Just pop any questions about this course into the form below and our enquiries team will answer as soon as they can.

    Admissions enquiries: or
    telephone +44 (0)1603 591515