Computer Science

Research in our department is motivated by the needs of industry, business and government; we actively look for opportunities for technology transfer. An important aspect of this is that our research work must be reflected in our teaching.  In essence, our Department nurtures the ingenuity of staff and students to grow expertise, think and live outside the box, and solve global problems.

The Department of Computer Science at Aberystwyth offers facilities for students to read for PhD and MPhil degrees by research. Examples of available PhD projects can be found here. 

Typical Entry Requirements

Entry Requirements 2:1 Bachelors (Honours) degree in a relevant subject area, or equivalent.

English Language Requirements IELTS 6.0 with minimum 5.5 in each component, or equivalent

Other Requirements Applicants should submit a full research proposal at the point of application

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Course Overview

Why undertake a PhD with the Department of Computer Science at Aberystwyth University?

We are a leading computing department in Wales and one of the major UK departments, both for research and for teaching. We intend to build on our past achievements, to become one of the leading departments at international level.

We believe that collaboration in research is essential and we collaborate with industry, with government, and with other academic institutions, at a national and international level. Our industrial collaborators include Qinetiq, Ford, Jaguar Cars, Unilever, Daimler Benz, Integral Solutions Ltd., Costain, Glaxo, and the NHS.

Aberystwyth University has a proud tradition of research excellence, as demonstrated in the most recent Research Excellence Framework assessment (REF 2014), which placed the university in the top 50 institutions for research power and intensity. In this Research Excellence Framework assessment, the Department of Computer Science was ranked 11th in the UK for research intensity with 100% of its research deemed either world-leading or internationally excellent in terms of research impact.

Our postgraduate research students work alongside lecturers and research associates in a lively and well-integrated research community. Members of staff are always happy to discuss possible MPhil and PhD research programmes with suitably qualified graduates. Research should normally be related to one of the main areas of research of the Department. Grants from Research Councils and other sources (e.g., the University and the Institute of Mathematics, Physics and Computer Science) may be available through the Department.

Research Groups

Our principal research groups are:

·         The Advanced Reasoning group, which is well known for its ground-breaking work on automated diagnosis and failure analysis, and its world-leading approaches for knowledge model formulation, optimisation and simplification.

·         The Bioinformatics and Computational Biology group, which conducts research in areas such as data analysis of large scale biological data, formalisation of biological data, biomedical informatics, genetics, pharmacogenomics and systems biology.

·         The Intelligent Robotics group, which is one of the largest and best-known robotics groups in the UK, and is involved in both national and international research consortia from novel computational models to space missions to Mars.  It focuses on both software and hardware issues that are key to "unconstrained environments''.

·         The Vision, Graphics and Visualisation group,which focuses on (medical) image analysis and understanding; extraction of the structure of complex objects; appearance-based methods to provide mobile robots with various capabilities including topological mapping and pose stabilisation; and analysis of multi-spectral satellite data for environmental purposes.

We also have considerable and widely recognised expertise in Software Engineering and Network Technology. 

About this course

To apply for a place on the PhD programme you will need to prepare a research proposal, personal statement, complete an application form and provide two references. Please see the How to Apply pages for more detail.

English Language Requirements:

If you have a Bachelor’s degree from a UK University, you do not need to take an English proficiency test.

Non-native English speakers who do not meet this requirement must take a University-recognised test of academic English language proficiency. For further information please see our English Language requirements page.

Course Fees:

Please see the tuition fee pages for current tuition fees. Please note that all fees are subject to an annual increase.


Grants from Research Councils and other sources may be available through the Department: please contact us to discuss this.Studentships are also available through the AberDoc PhD Scholarship and Overseas Scholarship competitions.  For further information on possible funding, please see our funding calculator.


To discuss possible research projects, please email the Department with a brief CV at

For more information on the application process, please contact the Postgraduate Admissions Office at or +44 (0) 1970 622270.


We are committed to offering courses that prepare you for your professional or academic career; we believe that such courses must combine a sound education in the theoretical and practical aspects of the discipline with the development of lasting personal skills, so that you will have the adaptability to thrive in a world of constantly changing technology.