Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
A PhD degree involves the conduct of specialised research to obtain recognition as a fully trained scientist.
Our Department offers PhD programmes in two fields of specialisation: Zoology and Entomology. In both cases, the PhD degree is conferred on the grounds of a written thesis reporting the results of research that makes an original contribution to the field. An oral examination on the thesis and general subject knowledge is also required in order to obtain the degree, as is the publication of at least one article resulting from the PhD research in a peer-reviewed scientific journal. For a PhD in Entomology, the topic of the research project must focus on an insect study system.
The duration of study is usually three years of uninterrupted full-time study. To remain in the PhD degree programme, students must demonstrate satistfactory progress by:
- Presentation of an oral research proposal within six months of registration
- Delivery of an oral presentation of research results to the Department at its Annual General Meeting at the end of each calendar year of registration
- Meeting milestones agreed to between the student and supervisor(s) in a memorandum of agreement
The entry requirement for PhD degree study in Zoology or Entomology is an MSc degree in an appropriate field. Potential PhD students must also have the support of a potential supervisor in the Department to be offered admission. If you are interested in pursuing PhD degree study within the Department of Zoology and Entomology, contact a potential supervisor from amongst the academic staff with similar interests to your own to discuss available options and obtain in-principle support before applying for admission.
Applications for admission should be submitted using the UP online application form.
For further information, or for assistance in identifying a suitable potential supervisor, contact the Postgraduate Coordinator, Prof. Catherine Sole.
To find out more about being a postgraduate student in the Department of Zoology and Entomology, or to raise an issue relating to the postgraduate experience within the Department, contact the Postgraduate Representative, Miss Alexandra Howard.
PhD bursary opportunities
PhD bursaries are sometimes linked to specific projects for which research funds have been obtained by academic staff. Advertisements for these project-linked bursaries are circulated on the mailing lists of scientific societies and on the Facebook page of the Department of Zoology and Entomology, University of Pretoria.
PhD bursaries can also be sought from the University of Pretoria and external sources:
UP Postgraduate Research Support Scholarships
Students registered for and within three years of registration of a PhD programme at the University of Pretoria may apply for a UP Postgraduate Research Support Scholarship.
UP Commonwealth Doctoral Scholarships
The University of Pretoria administers Commonwealth Doctoral Scholarships for citizens of the Commonwealth countries to pursue a PhD degree at UP. South African citizens and MSc and PhD students currently registered at UP may not apply. Applications open in the first half of the year preceding the year of commencement.
NRF Freestanding, Scarce Skills and Innovation Doctoral Scholarships
The South African National Research Foundation offers PhD scholarships on a competitive basis to students registered for PhD degree study at South African Universities. Depending on the scholarship category, applications from foreign students will be considered. A call for applications is made in the second half of the year preceding the year of commencement.
The GreenMatter Fellowships support outstanding graduates, passionate young professionals and experienced leaders from all walks of life to pursue Honours, MSc and PhD study. It promotes the view that leadership for biodiversity can and should be evident across sectors, occupations, qualifications and positions.
The GreenMatter Fellowship has several unique characteristics. These include:
- Specifically targeting the priority skills needs of the biodiversity sector, as informed by research;
- Providing a quality, holistic support package, supplementing financial awards with mentoring, personal and professional development support; and
- Supporting individuals, but also connecting them to the wider national context.
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Last edited by Christopher WeldonEdit