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Join our Department to work alongside other PhD students and research staff, and contribute to our research outputs.

We are a friendly, supportive Department, fostering a collaborative culture that values the development of transferable skills.

Each year, we attract awards from research councils, industry and the University of Reading to support new PhD students.

Learn about the wider PhD community at Reading

I enjoy the variety within my PhD, especially the laboratory work and problem-solving. I have been able to get involved in teaching and demonstrating as well as mentoring undergraduate and master's students, which I have found very rewarding. I love the people and the atmosphere; it's a very friendly Department.

Ruth Barnes, PhD student

Doctoral research community

You will work alongside postdoctoral researchers and academic staff. PhD students within the Department arrange a weekly seminar session for second and third year students. Our Doctoral and Researcher College co-ordinates a range of activities that bring students together from across the University.

Doctoral Research Conference

The Doctoral Research Conference showcases the variety and excellence of postgraduate research taking place at Reading.

The conference features a number of competitions and presentations including the PhD researcher of the year award.

Research Day

We hold an annual symposium where PhD students give oral or poster presentations to fellow students, staff and visitors from industry.

It's an opportunity to showcase the diversity of research in our Department while you hone your presentation skills in preparation for important conferences.

Presenting your work

Over the course of your PhD you will also be involved in opportunities to communicate your work and network with other researchers. You'll also have the chance to present a seminar, speak at conferences and workshops, and visit or host researchers from elsewhere.

The Department encourages you to attend conferences and other events to widen your network of contacts. To this end we assist with arranging travel and accommodation.

Fairbrother Lecture

Another event that celebrates academic excellence is the Fairbrother Lecture, an annual public lecture hosted by the Doctoral and Researcher College and delivered by a current or recent doctoral student.

This is a fantastic opportunity for a wider audience to hear about high quality doctoral research taking place at Reading.


Life on campus

Whiteknights campus is set on 130 hectares of beautiful parkland, so you'll find plenty of places to relax. The campus is a thriving community and features the Students' Union, Library and places to eat.


Life in Reading

Step off campus and you'll find yourself in a bustling town centre offering a variety of shops, restaurants and activities. We're also well-connected – you can reach London Paddington within half an hour by train.


Our research

Reading has a long-standing reputation for the quality of its research in food science. 95% of our research is of international standing (Research Excellence Framework 2021, combining 4*, 3* and 2* submissions – Agriculture, Food and Veterinary Sciences).

Athena SWAN Silver Award