Postgraduate research degrees

If you would like to consider taking a higher degree (M.Sc. or Ph.D.) by research, please read the general information below. Then refer to the  research pages to see the research interests of the various potential supervisors.

The number of postgraduate student places available in the Zoology varies from year to year. Numbers are restricted by availability of postgraduate fellowships and the nature of the research grants/contracts held by staff members. Prospective students are encouraged to contact individual staff members directly (by email, letter or phone) to discuss possibilities for projects in particular areas of Zoology of interest to them.

Through exchange programmes and collaborative international research programmes, students of Zoology have benefited from research facilities in other European countries (Poland, France, Italy and Greece), the Middle East (Israel) and North America.

How to apply.

NUI Galway’s Postgraduate Research Prospectus outlines a three-step PhD application process: 

Step 1: Find a supervisor

If you think you would like to undertake research towards a PhD in the following broad areas, then get in touch by email.  You will find more detailed information on each staff member’s research pages.

Prof Louise Allcock  - works on extreme marine environments: Antarctica and the deep sea.  She is interested particularly in the benthic fauna of submarine canyon systems and is fascinated by cephalopods, especially their evolution.

Prof John Dalton - works on the fundamental biology of parasites and their relationship with their hosts, animal and human. With this knowledge he is designing strategies to diagnose parasitic infections and to develop new treatments.

Dr Michel Dugon – is interested in the evolution, development and ultrastructure of venom systems in terrestrial arthropods, particularly centipedes and arachnids. 

Dr Kevin Healy – is a macroecologist interested in the patterns of biology at large scales. He uses comparative approaches to test questions relating to predator-prey interactions, the evolution of venom, animal life history strategies, and the energetics of scavenging. 

Dr Bob Kennedy - is a benthic ecologist researching how macrofaunal community structure and behaviour are linked to bioturbation in soft sediments.  He uses sediment profile imagery (SPI) to study these processes in situ.

Dr Colin Lawton - is a mammal ecologist particularly interested in the ecology of invasive species such as the grey squirrel and the conservation of native species such as the endemic Irish stoat.

Prof Grace McCormack – is an evolutionary biologist currently focusing on the evolution of marine sponges.  She is also interested in the causes and spread of diseases including HIV in humans, pathogens and parasites in bees and the adaptive evolution of honeybees.

Dr Anne Marie Power - is interested in sustainable fisheries, aquaculture, community ecology and impacts of climate change, and in marine natural products  - particularly the potential of barnacles to yield wet-setting glue for medical purposes.

Step 2: Investigate scholarships and funding

Current Zoology PhD and Masters students are funded under a range of schemes including Hardiman and Dr Tony Ryan Research Scholarships, NUI Galway College of Science Scholarships, Irish Research Council postgraduate scholarships, and Science without Borders (Ciência sem Fronteiras).  You can find details of these and other scholarship schemes in the NUI Galway Postgraduate Research Prospectus.  Your chosen academic supervisor can give you further advice on which might be the most appropriate scholarship to apply for and guide you through that process.

Step 3: Apply online

Look up the Entry Requirements:

Structured PhD, GYR12

MSc GYT47 (full-time), GYT48 (part-time)

Apply online here