The Alan Turing Institute PhD Studentship Ref: 3407

About the award

About the Studentship

The Alan Turing Institute offers the opportunity to motivated graduate students to receive full funding to undertake a PhD at the University of Exeter. The Turing doctoral studentship scheme combines the strengths and expertise of world-class universities with the Turing’s unique position as the UK’s national institute for data science and artificial intelligence, to offer an exceptional PhD programme. Turing doctoral students spend approximately half of their time based at the Institute headquarters at the British Library in London. They will apply and register for their doctorate at the University of Exeter, where they will spend the remainder of their time. Students will be supervised by faculty from the University of Exeter who are also Fellows of the Institute or substantively engaged with it.

Why apply?

The Turing PhD programme offers all the benefits of completing a PhD at a world-class university, as well as a unique opportunity to study in a collaborative research space. Studying at The Alan Turing Institute offers students a unique opportunity to undertake a data science focused PhD in a multidisciplinary environment where more than 400 researchers from different disciplines work side-by-side. Studentships at the Turing support graduates to enrich their research through interdisciplinary engagement with the wider data science and artificial intelligence communities and the world at large. To support students the Turing offers a generous tax-free stipend of £20,500 per annum, a travel allowance and conference fund, and tuition fees for a period of 3.5 years.

What are we looking for?

There is no standard Turing student. The Institute welcomes highly talented and proactive graduates who are significantly engaged in any of the topics core to data science and artificial intelligence and who are interested in engaging with the ethos of the Institute. Participating in The Alan Turing Institute studentship scheme offers the opportunity to collaborate with academics and other students from a broad range of disciplines. The Institute is looking for students who will embrace the opportunity to enrich their research and broaden their learning through their time there. To this end, students must be willing to be based for at least half of their study at the Institute headquarters in London. Applications from a broad range of academic disciplines and backgrounds are encouraged, especially those whose research spans multiple disciplines and applications. Please see the Turing Student Application Guidence for further details.

Entry requirements

Applicants should have obtained, or be about to obtain, a First or Upper Second Class UK Honours degree, or the equivalent qualifications gained outside the UK, in an appropriate area of science or technology.  

If English is not your first language you will need to meet the English language requirements and provide proof of proficiency. Click here for more information and a list of acceptable alternative tests

How to apply

Students should apply through the University of Exeter. You may apply to undertake one of the eight research projects listed below, or may submit your own idea for a research project aligned to the aims of the Alan Turing Institute. If submitting your own research idea you must nominate a primary supervisor from the list of eligible supervisors.

All applications should be made via the appropriate project application link listed below.  If you are wishing to submit your own research proposal, please ensure you use the link 'submitting your own research proposal' and NOT directly to one of the projects listed. If you are choosing to submit your own proposal, please ensure you inform your nominated supervisor that you are applying for this studentship.



The University of Exeter will complete an initial assessment of your application and will refer selected candidates to the Institute in early February 2019. If successful, you will then be invited to attend a further interview at The Alan Turing Institute during the week beginning 25 February 2019.

Find out more at and in the Applicant Guidance

Required Documents

You will need to upload the following documents to the studentship application form. Please note our preferred format is PDF, each file named with your surname and the name of the document, eg. “Smith – CV.pdf”, “Smith – Cover Letter.pdf”, “Smith – Transcript.pdf”:

  • CV
  • Letter of application outlining your academic interests, prior research experience.  You should also indicate which research project you are interested in, and the reasons for wishing to undertake the project.
  • Transcript(s) giving full details of subjects studied and grades/marks obtained.  This should be an interim transcript if you are still studying. Two references (see Reference information section below)
  • If you are not a national of a majority English-speaking country you will need to submit evidence of your current proficiency in English.  For further details of the University’s English language requirements please see
  • If you are submitting your own research proposal, you must attach a completed research proposal form of up to 1000 words, including the name(s) of potential supervisors and the research theme under which your proposal should be considered.

Reference information
It is your responsibility to ensure that your referees email their references to, as we will not make requests for references directly; you must arrange for them to be submitted by 10/01/2019. Please note that applications with missing documentation will not progress to shortlisting.

References should be in the form of a letter. Referees must email their references to us from their institutional email accounts. We cannot accept references from personal/private email accounts, unless it is a scanned document on institutional headed paper and signed by the referee.

All application documents must be submitted in English. Certified translated copies of academic qualifications must also be provided.

The closing date for applications is midnight (GMT) on 10 January 2019.  

In order to ensure your application reaches the correct supervisor for consideration, please apply via the project links below.

Click here to submit an application for Matching Gaussian process emulators to the underlying numerical model

Click here to submit an application for Bayesian Rare Event Estimation: A paradox or new maths?

Click here to submit an application for Accelerometry data analysis: what are the best methodologies to support the analysis of accelerometry data for population health

Click here to submit an application for Discovering the Hidden Spectre: Machine Learning for Deep Dementia Phenotyping

Click here to submit an application for The importance of the historical environment in understanding socioeconomic inequalities in health status load over time: A Data Linkage Approach

Click here to submit an application for Predicting antibody diversification for personalised medicine

Click here to submit an application for Machine Learning Model of Human Motion for Early Diagnosis

Click here to submit an application for Health co-benefits of climate change and air pollution legislation

Click here if you are submitting your own Research Proposal. 

If you have any general enquiries about the application process please email: Project-specific queries should be directed to the supervisor.

Data Sharing
During the application process, the University may need to make certain disclosures of your personal data to third parties to be able to administer your application, carry out interviews and select candidates.  These are not limited to, but may include disclosures to:

  • the selection panel and/or management board or equivalent of the relevant programme, which is likely to include staff from one or more other HEIs;
  • administrative staff at one or more other HEIs participating in the relevant programme.

Such disclosures will always be kept to the minimum amount of personal data required for the specific purpose. Your sensitive personal data (relating to disability and race/ethnicity) will not be disclosed without your explicit consent.


Application deadline:10th January 2019
Value:3.5 year studentship: UK/EU tuition fees and an annual maintenance allowance at current Research Council rate. Current rate of £20,500 per year.
Duration of award:per year
Contact: PGR Enquiries Team