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PhD in Medical Sciences

Earn a PhD in Medical Sciences

The University of Nicosia Medical School offers a PhD in Medical Sciences to students who successfully complete an independent research programme that breaks new ground in the chosen field of study. The PhD in Medical Sciences enables students to become independent researchers, thus advancing innovation and development. Following the completion of their PhD, graduates will develop capabilities that will allow them to carry out and lead independent research, to innovate and to push forward the frontiers of science and medicine.

Profile of the Programme

Main Aims and Objectives

The PhD programme aims to provide:

  • In-depth study of a specific topic.
  • The ability to express creativity in research.
  • The opportunity to develop skills that allow students to critically examine the existing literature in their specific research area.
  • Development of skills in developing and testing hypotheses.
  • Development of new theories.
  • Development of the skills to plan and conduct experiments.
  • Development of communication skills such as oral presentation skills by participating in conferences and writing up skills by submitting papers to peer reviewed journals.
  • Development of professionalism and networking skills.
Intended Learning Outcomes

Doctoral degrees are awarded for the generation and interpretation of results/knowledge, which enhances and/or extends existing knowledge in a discipline, usually through original research and critical thinking. Students undertaking doctorates will be able to form hypotheses and seek answers by designing and performing appropriate experiments in order to generate significant new knowledge and/or understanding.

Furthermore, holders of doctorates will have been furnished with the qualities needed for employment that requires the ability to make informed judgments on complex issues in specialist fields, and be in a position to tackle and solve problems.

More specifically and according to the Bologna Process and the Framework for Qualifications for the European Higher Education Area students awarded doctorates should:

  • Have demonstrated a systematic understanding of a field of study and mastery of the skills and methods of research associated with that field.
  • Have demonstrated the ability to conceive, design, implement and adapt a substantial process of research with scholarly integrity.
  • Have made a contribution through original research that extends the frontier of knowledge by developing a substantial body of work, some of which merits national or international refereed publication.
  • Be capable of critical analysis, evaluation and construction of new and complex ideas.
  • Be capable to communicate with their peers, the larger scholarly community and with society in general about their areas of expertise.
  • Be able to promote, within academic and professional contexts, technological, social or cultural advancement in a knowledge-based society.

Additionally, according to the European Qualifications Framework (EQF) and more specifically Level 8 of EQF, the Doctoral Degree’s Learning Outcomes must be as follows:

  • Knowledge: knowledge at the most advanced frontier of a field of work or study and at the interface between fields.
  • Skills: the most advanced and specialised skills and techniques, including construction and evaluation, required to solve critical problems in research and/or innovation and to extend and redefine existing knowledge or professional practice.
  • Competence: demonstrate substantial authority, innovation, autonomy, scholarly and professional integrity and sustained commitment to the development of new ideas or processes at the forefront of work or study contexts including research.”
Career Outcomes

Prospects of employment will include positions in clinical medicine (hospitals or private practice), biomedical research institutes, pharmaceutical industry, academia, government agencies, and national and international legislative bodies.

Structure and Assessment

A Doctoral Degree requires the completion of at least 180 ECTS. The minimum number of years for completing a Doctoral Degree is three (3) and the maximum number of years is eight (8).

* In the second semester, students will attend either PHD-102 or PHD-103, depending on the specific focus of their PhD project. Thus, by the end of their first year of enrolment, students would have attended and completed 2 research methods courses by the end of which students will obtain 20 ECTS.

The Doctoral Degree comprises of the completion of compulsory research courses and research work by the students under the guidance of the Supervisory Team, as well as the writing up of the Thesis, submission of the Thesis and defence of the Thesis before the Examinations Committee. The award of a Doctoral Degree thus requires:

  1. Successful completion (Pass) of the two compulsory Research Courses (Year 1);
  2. Successful defence of the Thesis;
  3. Publication of one journal article in a Scopus indexed journal (where applicable);
  4. Presentation in at least one research conference (where applicable).

Research Proposal

Development of the PhD Research Proposal

PhD Applicants should make sure that their Research interests align with the Research Priority Areas of the Medical School. The selection of the Main Supervisor and the development of the PhD Research Proposal is an integral part of the application process. The Proposal should be innovative and original in its conception. It should outline the research problem, present the literature review, demonstrate the research methodology as well as the budget requirements (maximum of 5-8 pages, approximately 2,000-3,000 words). The Admissions Office can provide the relevant PhD Research Proposal Template. It should be noted that the Proposal should be reviewed by the selected Main Supervisors and it should be approved prior to starting an application. PhD Applicants who apply under a specific PhD Scholarship or Research Project offered by Faculty of the Medical School are not required to submit the PhD Research Proposal at this stage. Please check out the ‘Scholarships & Research Projects’ section to review these projects.

Research Priority Areas

The Medical School espouses the holistic concept of One Health which emphasizes the relationship between the health of humans and animals within a healthy, sustainable environment and promotes the conduct of clinical, epidemiological, basic science and social science research.

The Research Priority Areas of the Department of Basic and Clinical Sciences are as follows:

  • Brain Health and Disease
  • Cancer Biology and Oncology
  • Regenerative Medicine and Genetics
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Medical Education, Clinical Communication and Health Psychology
  • Medical Physics and Emerging Technologies

The Research Priority Areas of the Department of Primary Care and Population Health are as follows:

  • Chronic Disease Epidemiology
  • Infectious Disease Epidemiology
  • Environmental Health
  • Biostatistics and Research Methodology
  • Public Health Policy
  • Clinical and Primary Care Research


PhD supervision is conducted by a 3-member PhD supervisory committee. The Main Supervisor should be a full time Teaching Research Faculty (TRF) of the University, active in research and publications. The other members of the committee may also be faculty members from another School or another University/Research Institute.

If you need any help in finding a PhD Supervisor at the Medical School please contact: Dr Nicoletta Nicolaou | PhD Programme Director  | [email protected]

Admission Criteria

There are two entry points to the PhD programme (Fall and Spring Semester) per year.

All applicants should make sure that the below requirements are satisfied prior to starting their application.

 Eligible Candidates should hold, or hold by the time that the Programme is expected to commence, a recognised degree (Bachelor’s degree or equivalent allowing entry to a Master’s Degree plus a Master’s degree, OR a Doctor of Medicine degree, e.g., MBBS or MD degree). An applicant may be admitted to the Programme subject to completing selected courses offered by the Department, if so decided by the Department Postgraduate Programmes Committee (DPPC).

To start an application, the form (at the top of this page) should be completed and submitted to the School. The application will be reviewed by the Admissions Department and a follow up communication will be sent to request additional information as well as the submission of the below documents:

  • Copies of the applicant’s Bachelor and/or Masters, or MBBS or MD or equivalent qualification(s)/degree(s) – the application can be assessed with scanned copies, but a certified true copy must be provided prior to enrolment.
  • Copies of the applicant’s transcript(s) – the application can be assessed with scanned copies, but a certified true copy must be provided prior to enrolment.
  • Proof of English language proficiency such as IELTS with a score of 7 overall and with a minimum score of 7 in writing or TOEFL iBT with a score of 94 overall and a minimum score of 27 in Writing. Other internationally recognized English language qualifications might be considered upon review. The obligation to present a certificate of success in international English language proficiency exams excludes nationals from UK, Ireland, USA, Australia, New Zealand and Canada (from English-speaking provinces) whose native language is English.
  • Two reference letters, of which at least one should be from an academic.
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV).
  • An approved PhD Research Proposal as per the requirements (when applicable).

For any questions, you can contact Admissions at [email protected]

Financial Information

For self-funded PhD Research Projects, the tuition fees for the PhD programme are €15,120 in total for 3 years. For each additional academic year, tuition is €1,700 per year.

Application fee (one-off/non refundable payment) 60 60
Administrative fee (deducted from the first semester tuition) 500 500
Entry Visa application and Alien’s registration fee (one-off/non refundable payment) 150
Annual health insurance fee (compulsory for non-EU only) 180 180
International student guarantee (one-off/refundable payment) 400
Renewal of visa after one year (international/non-EU) 55
*Please note that the above fees may be subject to change.

Scholarships & Research Projects

PhD Applicants have the opportunity to apply under specific PhD Research Projects offered by Faculty of the Medical School. Please review the post for specific details regarding the PhD Projects, the Funding, the entry and/or application requirements. It should be noted that the review and selection of the candidates is a competitive process, therefore only fully completed applications, containing all necessary supporting documents will be reviewed. Shortlisted candidates will be invited to interviews.

See the available PhD Research Projects below:

Projects Offered as Research Scholarships
(Stipend and Waving of Tuition Fees):

PhD Project in Medical Sciences

The Brain on the Witness Stand:  Investigating Implicit Memory Recall in Crime Witnesses

Main Supervisor: Dr Nicoletta Nicolaou

Projects Offered as Scholarships
(Waving of Tuition Fees):

PhD Project in Medical Sciences

Investigating the possible association of NRG1 and tau, in the development of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD)

Main Supervisor: Professor Dimitrios Kanakis

PhD Project in Medical Sciences

Development of a Machine Learning-based nightmare detection method for recurrent nightmare treatment in PTSD

Main Supervisor: Dr Achilleas Pavlou

PhD Project in Medical Sciences

Climate change-related environmental risk factors and perinatal health

Main Supervisor: Dr Souzana Achilleos

Self-Funded Projects:

PhD Project in Medical Sciences

Investigating students’ preparation for clinical training skills in medical undergraduate education

Main Supervisor: Dr Panayiota Andreou

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