Research course


The University of Manchester · Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health

Entry requirements

We require applicants to hold, or be about to obtain, an Upper Second class Honours degree (or overseas equivalent) in a related subject area for entry to a PhD programme. A Lower Second class Honours degree may be considered if applicants also hold a Master's degree with a Merit classification.

Months of entry

January, September, April

Course content

Researchers in the Eye and Vision Sciences group work on basic science and clinical projects to improve our current understanding of the structure and function of the human visual system. Our PhD/MPhil Optometry programme enables you to undertake a research project that will improve your understanding of Optometry.

Our postgraduate research in Optometry follows several key themes:

  • Function and Dysfunction

The measurement of functional loss in various ophthalmic conditions, along with the evaluation and development of measurement technologies forms the basis of this theme.

  • Visual Optics and Instrumentation

Optimal visual performance depends on the production and maintenance of a high-quality optical image on the central retina. In practice, the image may be degraded by refractive error, a failure to focus (accommodate) accurately, optical aberrations and scattering.

  • Ocular Imaging

Researchers in ocular imaging use a spectrum of innovative techniques to visualise the tissues of the eye, from the corneal layers to the retina and the optic nerve head.

  • Visual Psychophysics and Ocular Electrophysiology

Visual psychophysics explores the relationship between a range of visual stimuli and the sensations they evoke, whilst ocular electrophysiology investigates the signals passing along the visual pathway.

  • Low Vision

Research in low vision concentrates on the design of aids, training in their use, and the appropriate measurement of treatment outcomes.

  • Contact Lenses and the Cornea

Research into optimising the clinical performance of contact lenses and understanding the response of the ocular surface to contact lenses and their care solutions.

Information for international students

For applicants whose first language is not English, or for those who have not recently studied in the United Kingdom, you must supply an official IELTS or TOEFL transcript to support your application, or provide a date on which you will be taking a test. Please note IELTS and TOEFL are only valid for two years.

We require a minimum IELTS score of 6.5 overall or TOEFL iBT 90. For the writing component, we expect that you have achieved a minimum of 6.0 (IELTS) or 21-23 (iBT). For each of the other components of the English test you should meet the minimum requirement of IELTS 5.5, TOEFL iBT 18.

For more information about English language tests see English language requirements.

We accept a range of qualifications from different countries. For these and general requirements, including English language, see entry requirements from your country .

Fees and funding

UK students
Standard £4,260, Low £8,500, Medium £15,000, High £20,000
International students
Standard £22,000, Low £23,500, Medium £29,500, High £34,500

PhD funding is offered annually via Research Council studentships, and several studentships are available from charities, internal funds and some industrial sponsored awards. The eligibility criteria and level of the awards are subject to change so please check the Faculty of Life Sciences website for current information.

Qualification and course duration


part time
72-96 months
full time
36-48 months


full time
12 months
part time
24 months

Course contact details

Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health
+44 (0) 161 275 5608