The CQIF includes two members of DAMTP Faculty, one affiliated member of DAMTP Faculty, two affiliated members of other Faculties, and several senior researchers. Applications to start a PhD in October 2017 will be considered from November 2016 onwards. However, note that we do not generally take on many PhD students and always have to turn away some outstanding applicants: if you are considering applying to us you should also apply widely elsewhere. Applicants who are not UK citizens should also carefully consider the information about funding below, and note the very early deadlines for applications for funding from Foundations and Trusts.
Successful applicants are likely to have a first class undergraduate degree in mathematics, physics or computer science, and should ideally also have an M.Sc. or equivalent qualification. Candidates considering applying directly from an undergraduate degree are encouraged to consider applying first to take Cambridge's one-year Masters-level course, the Master of Advanced Study in Mathematics (Part III of the Cambridge Mathematics Tripos). The course includes lecture courses (two in 2015-16) on aspects of quantum information and foundations, as well as courses on a wide variety of other topics in theoretical physics and pure and applied mathematics.
Applications from graduate students to research centres in DAMTP are handled by the Board of Graduate Studies in the first instance, and then administered by the department. Applications for PhD places should thus be made to the Board of Graduate Studies in the first instance, specifying an interest in working at the CQIF in DAMTP. The information needed can all be found on this page. Note that the timetable for applications has some very early application deadlines.
The University's admissions process is quite slow and, beyond the initial acknowledgment of receipt of your application, past experience suggests it could be as late as May before you hear any more from the University. Once the application process has started, your application can be tracked at the University's online tracking page,
although past experience suggests it may not supply information any faster than the mail.
Applications for the Part III course should also be made to the Board of Graduate Studies. The information needed can be found on this page.
Our standard method of funding UK and EU graduate students is by grants from the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council. These are allocated by the department, mostly after the Part III results in mid to late June. EPSRC studentships provide full support for UK students, and cover tuition fees for EU students from outside the UK.
There are some other possible sources for funding (which are not generally restricted to EU students): for example the Gates Foundation, the Cambridge Commonwealth Trust, and a small number of the wealthier Cambridge Colleges. Decisions on these scholarships are made in May. Unfortunately (at least for us!), these funding sources are entirely outside our control or influence; in particular there is nothing we can do to get a decision from them sooner than May. Applications to these organisations and institutions need to be made separately. The University's Board of Graduate Studies web pages --- reached from the above-mentioned links --- have some information; anyone needing clarification or advice should contact either them or the relevant organisation. We have no independent sources of support for non-EU students.
While we try to be helpful where possible, there is normally little that we can add to the information given here. We cannot generally comment in advance on the chances of any individual application to the CQIF being successful or offer advice in putting together an application. Applicants may find it helpful, though, to look at the information on these web pages, and especially useful to look at some of the recent papers of CQIF members, which can be found on the quantum physics archive. (Some recent papers are also linked from CQIF members' personal pages on this site.)
We may offer interviews to selected candidates once applications have been reviewed: the timetable for these varies from year to year.