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School of Medicine, Dentistry & Biomedical Sciences

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Dr L Garcia , Dr R Hunter No more applications being accepted Funded PhD Project (European/UK Students Only)

About the Project

This PhD studentship would be of particular interest to those with a background on health or life sciences, public health, psychology, and related areas.

The purpose of this project is to generate evidence to inform actions for physical activity promotion and reduction of health inequalities, in different contexts and conditions.

Physical activity leads to better health. However, opportunities to be active are not equal to everyone and it is unclear in which contexts and conditions different types of physical activity promotion strategies are more impactful, both in terms of population health and health inequalities.

During the PhD, the student will (1) estimate and compare the potential public health impacts of physical activity promotion strategies targeted to whole communities and to high-risk groups, and (2) investigate in which contexts and conditions these two broad categories of strategies can be more impactful.

A systems thinking and complexity science (ST/CS) approach underlies the project. ST/CS is gaining prominence in public health as it provides frameworks and tools to understand and act in complex landscapes and situations, a challenge recurrently faced by the public health sector.

During the PhD, the student will be joining a vibrant Research Group with supportive mentoring, and will receive training in physical activity behaviour and promotion, complex systems approaches in public health, evidence synthesis, systems-oriented modelling (e.g., agent-based or system dynamics model), data analysis, and scientific writing.


Candidates should have or expect to obtain a 2:1 or higher Honours degree or equivalent in a relevant biomedical or life sciences subject.

English Language

Candidates applying from countries where the first language is not English should produce evidence of their competence through a qualification such as IELTS or TOEFL score.

The minimum recommended score for the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Science is:
• IELTS score of 6.0 with not less than 5.5 in each of the four component elements of listening, reading, speaking and writing taken within the last 2 years;
• TOEFL score of 80+ (internet basted test), taken within the last 2 years, with minimum component scores of; Listening 17, Reading 18, Speaking 20, Writing 17);
• A valid Certificate of Proficiency in English grade A or B;
• A valid Certificate of Advanced English grade A; or
• A first or upper second class honours degree from a university based in the UK, Republic of Ireland or other suitably quality assured location in a country deemed by the UK Border Agency to be majority English speaking.

For a list of English Language qualifications also accepted by the School and University please see the following link:

INTO Queen’s English Language Courses offers both pre-sessional and in-sessional courses in English for academic purposes and study skills. Courses vary in length and full information can be obtained at:

Funding Notes

*FUNDING CONFIRMED – Department for the Economy (DfE) Award*

Eligibility for both fees (£4,407 for 2020/21) and maintenance (£15,285 2020/21) depends on the applicants being either an ordinary UK resident or those EU residents who have lived permanently in the UK for the 3 years immediately preceding the start of the studentship.

Non UK residents who hold EU residency may also apply but if successful may receive fees only.

For further details re eligibility criteria (including academic, citizenship and residency criteria) please click on the following link:


Please visit the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences, Centre for Public Health, website for further details about the Centre:

When applying, please choose 'MEDICINE' as your subject area/School.

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