PhD Studentship in Cerebrovascular and Environmental Physiology: Investigating human cerebrovascular responses to extreme environmental stress

Applications are invited for a three-year, full time PhD studentship funded by the School. The successful candidate will be supervised by Dr Oliver, Dr Sandoo and Dr Macdonald from the School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences, Bangor University.

The successful candidate will use cross-sectional and interventional study designs to investigate cerebrovascular responses to extreme environmental stress. The project will build on existing research and collaborations with Dr Paul Mullins (School of Psychology, Bangor University) and Prof Justin Lawley (University of Innsbruck).

The studentship will cover UK/EU registration fees plus maintenance stipend of £12,000 per annum paid quarterly and £2,000 per annum paid monthly in return for a contribution to School activities of 100 hours per annum.

Scope of Project

What are we looking for?

We are looking for a determined, motivated individual with a strong interest in human and environmental physiology. In addition, the student must be able to work as part of a team but equally be comfortable working independently. The student must be aware of the possible travel and challenges of conducting research in extreme environments. 

Successful applicants will normally have a Masters degree, or in exceptional cases a First Class Honours Degree, in physiology, sport science, or health-related science subject. Applicants must also show an ability to work independently with support from a supervisor, and demonstrate enthusiasm to contribute to stimulating research, applied practice and teaching environment.

Why study at Bangor?

Part of the College of Health and Behavioural Sciences, the School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences (SHES), has been providing high-calibre undergraduate and postgraduate degrees since 1978. Our research was ranked 7th in UK according to a national assessment of research quality (REF) published in 2014 (Times Higher Education, 18 December 2014). The department has well-equipped physiology laboratories including state-of-art environmental chambers. The School is ideally situated to local amenities and overlooks the beautiful Menai Straits. 

Structure of the Programme

The period of registration for a PhD is normally three years full-time. During the first year of study, students will normally take our MSc Advanced Research Skills module and take courses from Bangor University’s Graduate Programme.

The first year of registration will be provisional. Under guidance of the supervisory committee, the student will be required to develop knowledge and understanding of the human and environmental physiology, and advanced imaging techniques (e.g. ultrasound). During the first year of registration, the student will also complete a research proposal. Progression to full registration in Year Two is subject to satisfactory progress, completion of the Graduate Programme and the approval of a research proposal by their Thesis Committee and the School's Board of Studies. For the remaining two years of the studentship, the student will be required to develop the initial proposal into a completed PhD thesis.


Eligibility depends on your ability to register as a home/EU student (students from other countries may apply but must be prepared to pay Bangor University international student fees).


Please contact Dr Sam Oliver if you have any queries and to request further particulars: E-mail:  

For further details on PhD programs and research training in the School, look at our Guidelines and Code of Conduct for Research Training.

How to apply

If you meet the criteria outlined above, and you wish to apply for the studentship, you should email a cover letter, CV and include two completed references to Dr Oliver. The cover letter should include a clear statement detailing how your qualifications, experience and research interests make you a suitable candidate for this studentship.

The closing date for formal applications will be: Sunday 22nd July and short-listed applicants will be required to attend an interview on Friday 3rd August.

Interview Process

Short-listed applicants will be required to complete the University’s online application form:

Short-listed applicants will then be required to attend interview on Friday 3rd August. At interview you will be asked to complete a 15 min presentation on the PhD topic and answer further questions. There will be opportunity to meet current postgraduates and tour the School and laboratories.

Selection Criteria



  • Masters degree or a First Class Honours Degree in physiology, sport science or a health-related science subject.


  • Immediate Life Support course.



  • Experience of conducting relevant research projects.


  • Experience of advanced imaging techniques;
  • Proven track record of disseminating findings to both scientific and lay audiences;
  • Research background in relevant area;
  • Experience of developing research protocols and completing ethics proposals.



  • Able to work flexibly;
  • Excellent interpersonal skills;
  • Ability to prioritise work load and work to deadlines;
  • Good verbal and written skills;
  • Proficient computer skills, including MS Office, PowerPoint, and statistical analysis packages;
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team.


  • Proven project management skills;
  • Good analytical skills, ability to analyse numerical data and present results appropriately;
  • Any other skills/abilities relevant to the duties and responsibilities.



  • Driving licence or willingness to use public transport to travel between research sites;
  • Willingness to travel to complete research;
  • Willingness to complete research in remote outdoor environments;
  • Able to undertake manual handling tasks.


  • Awareness of confidentiality and data protection issues.