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Department of Geography


Visiting PhD Students scheme

The Department of Geography is happy to receive applications to host PhD students displaced from Ukraine, as part of the University of Cambridge process and UK government scheme. If you are interested and believe you are eligible, please follow the below procedure by first making contact with a current academic staff member before asking them to complete and submit the application form. Applications from Ukrainian doctoral students will be considered on a rolling basis and are not subject to the below deadlines.

Applications for visiting PhD students can be made by current academic staff in the Department of Geography. Retired and affiliated staff cannot host visiting PhD students. Academic hosts must be available throughout the period of the visit.

Visits will normally take place towards the later stages of a PhD course of study and applications from 1st year PhD students will not be considered.

Visits of 2 weeks to a maximum of 3 months can be considered. Extensions are not normally permitted. Visits of less than 2 weeks will not come under this scheme.

Desk space in the Department cannot be guaranteed to visiting students, but if there is space they may be able to work in the PhD study rooms or the department library. Visiting students will be given a CRS ID but not a University e-mail address.

Applications will be considered by the Postgraduate Teaching Committee on a termly basis. The Committee will use the criteria below to evaluate applications. An approved applicant will be emailed by the Postgraduate Office and asked for any information needed to process their application and confirm arrangements for their visit.

All applicants applying to Cambridge as visiting students need to meet the University’s standard English requirements. This requirement is satisfied by proof of an acceptable English language test (IELTS or TOEFL) taken within the last two years.

Deadlines for applications

  • Friday 20th October 2023
  • Friday 9th February 2024
  • Friday 19th April 2024
  • Friday 28th June 2024

Please apply early and allow plenty of time for your student visitor to arrange their visit, e.g. accommodation.

Criteria to be considered in evaluating applications

  1. That the period of the student’s research/study at Cambridge comprises part of their registered degree at their home institution.
  2. Whether the academic host has met the PhD student and in what context.
  3. That the visiting PhD’s supervisor has indicated in a reference letter that

    3.1 they feel the student will benefit,

    3.2 they confirm that the visit comprises part of the student’s degree, and

    3.3 they approve of the visit.

  4. What benefits will the student’s time in the Department make to the academic host and his/her PhD students?
  5. Whether the visiting PhD student may offer benefits to other Geography PhDs in the Department, and if so what those benefits might be.
  6. Whether there is any plan for publications or for future research collaboration with the visiting PhD student.
  7. How the costs of the visit will be covered.
  8. Whether the visit will call upon lab, modelling or computing resources, and how these will be covered, defrayed or otherwise managed.
  9. What activities the visiting student will undertake while in the Department.

Further information

  • A deposit of £10 is paid for any keys issued as well as a deposit of £10 for the University card.
  • Other features of such visits: Visiting PhD students to the Department will not be affiliated with a college. They will not receive accommodation. They will not have undergraduate-style supervisions.


An application should be submitted by the academic host/supervisor directly to the Postgraduate Office.

Prospective visiting students should consult the Department of Geography’s Research webpages to get an idea of the types of research done by the department, and consult our online staff list to determine if there is someone in the department willing to supervise their research.

Please note: Identification of a potential supervisor, while an essential requirement for application, does not imply a guarantee of acceptance and the full application procedure must be followed in all cases.