Postgraduate Research

Postgraduate Research

At the Institute of Dentistry, we offer PhD and MRes degrees under the supervision of experts in the fields of head and neck cancer, microbial diseases, population oral health and pedagogic innovation.  

Graduate School Prospectus

Click here to view the dentistry pages of the Graduate School Prospectus.

PhD Opportunities

PhD opportunities are advertised at

For formal applications please visit

Overseas Students

We are happy to offer PhD research projects in different areas of dentistry to self-funded PhD students, applicants to Elphinstone PhD scholarships and Commonwealth scholarships.

To apply you should in the first instance identify and contact a potential supervisor whose profile fits your research experience and/or area(s) of interest. Once you have agreed a project submit your application through the Postgraduate & Online Application Portal Login

Testimonials from our Graduates

JOIN OUR VIBRANT COMMUNITY OF PHD STUDENTS UNDERTAKING PROJECTS IN RESEARCH AREAS OF STRATEGIC PRIORITY - inspired by the mechanistic complexity of the oral environment and its interface with general health, our PhD programmes are dedicated to the pursuit of improving oral health and wellbeing of patients worldwide through multi-disciplinary scientific excellence.

Our PhD programmes span through different levels of research that encompass:

  1. the study of mechanistic processes underpinning oral diseases and how these interact with systemic health
  2. the study of clinical interventions to improve challenging conditions affecting oral and dental health and in all sections of the population, including the vulnerable
  3. the study of educational principles underpinning the training of dental students and educators’

The success of our postgraduate research students has been recognised by the award of national prizes. This is a testament of our dedication to excellence in the training of the next generation of clinical academics.



Hallang, Shirleen

My BDS summer research scholarship at the Institute of Dentistry was my first exposure to oral microbiology, with my project titled “The role of Staphylococcus aureus in the oral cavity”. My project continued to add to my strong interest in dental research and after dentistry, I took up the first Academic Dental Foundation training post in the UK. I am now on an academic training pathway as a NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow at dental core training level. My current research project investigates host-pathogen interactions in the context of oral microbiology, with links to the cardiovascular system, which has now become my research theme of interest.

Piyarathne, Nadisha

“I recently completed my doctoral studies with Institute of Dentistry, University of Aberdeen (2022) with two full paper publications in peer-reviewed indexed journals. My experience with UoA has been life changing. I worked both off-campus and on-campus, and carried out my studies during the COVID pandemic, UoA staff and supervisors were very helpful, flexible, and reliable during these difficult times.

This PhD helped to develop my communication skills, perseverance, teamwork, academic writing and critical thinking skills. All these have helped me in my career as a university academic and a researcher, I currently work as a lecturer at the Faculty of Dental Sciences, University of Peradeniya in my home country, Sri Lanka. Further, I hold the position of the secretary for the Centre for Research in Oral Cancer in the same institute’.

Abbood, Hadeel

My PhD journey at the Aberdeen Institute of Dentistry was amazing. All the staff were friendly and supportive. They were great audience when I needed to rehearse my own presentations. I also get benefit from the well planned CPD programme. 

Currently, I teach periodontology and research methods, passing on the experience acquired at the Aberdeen Institute of Dentistry to the students and colleagues here at Tikrit University. My PhD provided me with the essential foundation to excel as an educator in higher education, lead teams, communicate effectively with others, and manage my own research projects.

Badri, Risheh

I spent around four years, during my PhD trying to extend a mechanistic understanding of immunology to novel immunotherapy applications with the fundamental aim to treat cancer.  I found all the support required at the Institute of Dentistry which funded my international tuition fees throughout the PhD through the Elphinstone scholarships scheme. The institute has a vibrant and collaborative research environment that allows scientists to present their work in regular group meetings, seminars, workshops, and conferences discussing new ideas and troubleshooting technical difficulties. The institute offered opportunities for networking and collaboration with fellow researchers and experts in the field for example, the Institute of Dentistry funded my attendance at the British Society of Immunology conferences where I had the opportunity to present my work on two occasions alongside other immunologists from all around the world to show the latest discoveries and achievements in the field of immunology.  My experience here is very rich, I felt that I had all the tools to grow as a scientist in a supportive and healthy work-life balanced environment!