PhD Studentship in Animal Welfare, Newcastle University, United Kingdom

Award Summary

100% of home tuition fees covered and a minimum tax-free living allowance of £17,668 (2022-23 UKRI rate). Additional funding to cover research costs and national/ international travel (conferences and exchanges).


Interested in improving the end-of-life experiences of laboratory rodents? The aim of this PhD is to evaluate the welfare implications of different methods of killing for laboratory rodents. You will collect and integrate behavioural, physiological, and pathological data to assess how each method impacts on welfare. Determining the level of aversion is inherently challenging, therefore a particular focus of this project will involve complex behavioural studies utilising operant response paradigms.

You will need to apply for a Personal Home Office Licence and will work directly with laboratory rodents, R programming, telemetry implantation and analysing spontaneous and operant animal behaviour. The project will provide key insights and proven approaches to support identification and uptake of the best methods to euthanise millions of laboratory rodents, providing the evidence base to underpin future policy and legislation.

The successful candidate will be registered at Newcastle University, within the Animal Science Group and the Comparative Biology Centre (the University’s world-renowned animal facility). The campus is home to a range of disciplines and attendance at talks/seminars ensures a broad and comprehensive exposure to many different areas of expertise, including gaining knowledge in a range of transferrable skills.

Number Of Awards


Start Date

18th September 2023

Award Duration

3 years

Application Closing Date

14th June 2023


School of Natural and Environmental SciencesNewcastle University


Dr Jessica MartinSchool of Natural and Environmental SciencesNewcastle University

Dr Matt LeachComparative Biology CentreNewcastle University

Dr Jasmine ClarksonSchool of Natural and Environmental SciencesNewcastle University

Dr Dorothy McKeeganSchool of Biodiversity, One Health and Veterinary MedicineUniversity of Glasgow

Eligibility Criteria

You must have, or expect to gain, a minimum 2:1 Honours degree or international equivalent in a subject relevant to the proposed PhD project.

Applicants whose first language is not English require an IELTS score of 6.5 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in all sub-skills.

The studentship covers fees at the Home rate (UK and EU applicants with pre-settled/settled status and meet the residency criteria). International applicants are welcome to apply but will be required to cover the difference between Home and International fees.

How To Apply

You must apply through the University’s Apply to Newcastle Portal

Once registered select ‘Create a Postgraduate Application’.

Use ‘Course Search’ to identify your programme of study:

Search for the ‘Course Title’ using the programme code: 8010F

Research Area: Animal Science

Select ‘PhD Agriculture & Rural Development (full time) – Animal Science’ as the  programme of study

You will then need to provide the following information in the ‘Further Details’ section:

A ‘Personal Statement’ (this is a mandatory field) – upload a document or write a statement directly in to the application form

The studentship code SNES255 in the ‘Studentship/Partnership Reference’ field

When prompted regarding your research proposal – select ‘Write Proposal’. You should then type in the title of the research project from this advert. You do not need to upload a research proposal.

Contact Details

Informal enquiries can be made to Dr Jessica Martin ([email protected])

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