Research Opportunities | School of Physical Sciences

Research Opportunities


The School of Physical Sciences welcomes applications from postgraduates interested in: 

  • Atomic and Laser Plasma Research
  • Mathematics and Science Education Research
  • Materials Growth and Characterisation Research: Expressions of interest from self-funded applicants or those interested in Irish Research Council-funded postgraduate, postdoctoral, enterprise partnership, and employment-based schemes are welcome at any time and should be addressed to Professor Enda McGlynn or Professor Robert O'Connor.
  • Plasma Research
  • Astrophysics Research
  • Microsystems Research: The Microfluidic Platforms stream is seeking researchers to progress the next generation of integrated, automated, lab-on-a-chip technologies. A proven background in these technologies in life sciences is desirable. Expertise in (ideally centrifugal) microfluidics and other fields (ideally polymer) or e.g. micromachining, instrumentation and bacteria detection will be useful. The successful candidates will be productive researchers with excellent presentation, communication and publication skills, and a proven ability to work within an interdisciplinary team and as part of international academic-industry collaborations.
  • Optical Sensors Research
  • Plasma Diagnostics and Modelling Research

Application Procedure

 Applicants must submit the following: 

  • A research proposal (of approx. 5,000 words) (guidelines below).
  • A complete curriculum vitae, including results for undergraduate and postgraduate awards (for each year of study) and for any research projects, dissertations or thesis completed.
  • Name of the School of Physical Sciences faculty member supporting your application.

You should only apply if a member of faculty is supporting your application. If there are none who have undertaken, or are interested in, research related to your proposal, it is unlikely to be accepted. Therefore, you should ensure your intended topic matches the interests of one or more members of faculty. You can find out more by viewing the research interests of faculty members.  Applications are normally considered between April and September. You may self-fund or get funded for your PhD.

Please direct all inquiries about joining the research programme, in the first instance, to:

Prof. Robert O'Connor
Research Convenor,
+353 1 700 5743 

Writing a Research Proposal

 When preparing your topic, read the guidelines on writing a PhD research proposal and ensure that you: 

  • Clearly outline your chosen research question.
  • Display evidence of your familiarity with relevant literature relating to your research question, including knowledge of published research from appropriate research journals.
  • Position your research question(s) in the relevant research literature.
  • Indicate the contribution your research will make to this body of knowledge.
  • Suggest a possible methodology that is suitable for your study.

Applicants who have the support of a proposed supervisor may be invited to interview.  If successful, you will be required to apply formally to DCU via the Postgraduate Applications Centre. Please note that applications submitted to the PAC before faculty approval has been given, will not be considered.

Further Information 

Scholarship Opportunities 

For vacancies with the Extatic group see the web site:

Click on the 'Physical Sciences' item to see a list of our PhD Research Opportunities.