9th February, 2018
Dahlia based diabetes drug developed by Physiology researcher ready for human trials
In partnership with Plant and Food Research, researchers will soon begin human trials of a drug made from dahlias.
9th January, 2018
Otago breakthrough in diabetic heart disease
The molecule responsible for heart disease in diabetics has been identified by University of Otago researchers, greatly improving chances of survival.
13th November, 2017
Otago study could mean hope for infertile couples
Crucial new information about how the brain controls fertility has been unlocked by University of Otago researchers, with their findings just published in prestigious journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America.
13th November, 2017
Phenomenal success for Physiology researchers in latest Marsden funding round
Four 3-year project grants were awarded to Department of Physiology researchers in this year’s Marsden Fund - totalling over $3.8M.
25th October, 2017
Charlotte Steel, BSc (Hons) NEUR student in the Department has gained a Cambridge Rutherford Memorial PhD Scholarship
Our congratulations to Charlotte who is currently completing a BSc (Hons) degree in Neuroscience in the Department of Physiology with supervisor Assoc Prof Phil Sheard.
26th February, 2018
Rachel Lund (1-yr PhD Presentation)
Opportunities exist in our internationally-recognised research programmes in the areas of Cardiovascular & Respiratory Physiology, Cellular & Molecular Neuroscience and Membrane & Ion Transport.
Whilst applications to undertake a PhD are welcome at any time, applications for our Departmental Scholarship round close on Monday 4 September 2017. Candidates can be of any nationality and must have attained an excellent degree (minimum of four years study) in biomedical science or closely related subject. Applicants must apply to the Department of Physiology as follows:
For further information on research in the Department, see our 'Research' page.
See our Postgraduate Handbook for Prospective Thesis students for further information.
A list of PhD projects available in the Department of Physiology for 2017-2018 is below.
The following projects are available in the Cardiovascular & Respiratory Physiology group:
The following projects are available in the Cellular & Molecular Neuroscience group:
The following projects are available in the Membrane & Ion Transport group:
What is the cost of living like in Dunedin? The University of Otago offers a detailed website that gives information about the cost of living in Dunedin. It should be noted that the costs of flatting quoted on the website are for shared accommodation with other flatmates.
How much does a PhD scholarship provide? University of Otago PhD scholarships and our Departmental PhD scholarships are worth $25,000, plus the payment of tuition fees for three years. Sundry fees and insurance (compulsory for international students) is not included.
What are the requirements for a PhD in the Department of Physiology? PhDs are usually completed within 3 years and are 100% thesis based. This means that there are no courses or papers to take and that the majority of the time will be spent conducting research. Postgraduate students are required to present ongoing thesis research as they progress through their degree.
Do I need to pay tuition fees? Tuition fees are paid for by the Department or the University if you receive a PhD scholarship, however, there are other fees that you will still have to pay. These include membership fees for the Otago University Students Association, however, this will give you access to a number of clubs and societies. Membership to the University gym is also included.
Are there English language requirements? Yes, click here for more information.
When should I start my application process? Applicants are encouraged to apply to the Department as soon as possible, so that documentation can be vetted by your prospective supervisor and by the Department?s Research Committee. After approval by the Department, the University's application processing time can be up to four weeks for coursework programmes, and up to three months for programmes that are research only.
What is life in Dunedin like? Dunedin is a small city of around 120,000 people located on the lower east coast of New Zealand's South Island. Dunedin is in close proximity to pristine beaches and rugged mountains. More information about life in Dunedin can be found on the Department of Physiology website and the University of Otago website.
Do I require medical insurance if I am an international student? International students in New Zealand are required to be insured against a range of events including medical, personal liability, loss of personal effects etc. Insurance can be purchased overseas, but needs to fulfill certain criteria. Alternatively insurance can be purchased from a provider chosen by the University or other New Zealand insurance companies that meet the criteria required. More information can be found here.
Do I need to have a minimum grade average to be accepted? Admission into the PhD programme normally requires the completion of a BSc (Hons) at the 2.1 level or a B+ grade average in a MSc or a PGDipSci in the same area of study or a related discipline, as the intended area of research. However to be considered for a PhD scholarship, higher grades are required.
If you still have questions, please contact:
PO Box 56
Telephone: +64 3 479 7317
My interest in Physiology was aroused while doing PHSL345 as part of my 300-level papers. I was intrigued by how little is known about how the human body works under normal and pathological conditions.