The Soc-B Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) offers unique PhD training in biosocial research funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the Biotechnology & Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) to build capacity in this growing area of interdisciplinary scientific endeavour.
The purpose of Soc-B research is to identify social exposures and causal pathways that lead to sub-clinical biological change, the ultimate aim to identify points for intervention with the potential to improve health and redress health inequalities. Soc-B takes a lifecourse perspective to biosocial research to investigate how social environments, biology and behaviours intersect to influence health and functioning. Soc-B combines theoretically derived social drivers of health with state-of-the-art biological information to provide insights into mediating pathways providing points of interventions to influence population health. Thus, the programme seeks to understand social contexts and how these might influence biological processes using a range of advanced quantitative approaches key to the interpretation of biosocial research findings.
The programme equips students with an understanding of the interaction between social and biological processes by exploiting rapidly developing streams of biosocial data. This is achieved through a unique blend of experiences - bespoke learning modules from basic to advanced level in social science and biological theory, ‘taster’ project rotations, PhD proposal development, and internships with non-academic partners.
Students on the Soc-B four-year (+4) studentship spend their first year in project rotations and doing biosocial training, before developing their own PhD research topic for years two to four. Thesis projects must lie a minimum of 50% within the social sciences.
Applicants are expected to have a First Class or Upper Second-Class Bachelor’s degree and/or a Master’s degree (preferably with a merit or distinction) in a social, biological or mathematical field or computer science.
Candidates must apply to only one of the three participating Soc-B institutions (University of Essex, University of Manchester or UCL).
The studentship is available for home fee status students only.
Programme Duration: 4 Years
Programme Start: January 2024