PhD by Research

The Program of Doctor of Philosophy by research is designed to develop an integrative approach to research in veterinary science. The program emphasizes development of a firm scientific background in fundamental and basic biomedical sciences, in-depth knowledge in an area of veterinary science, and the conduct of in-depth original research.

Program learning outcome (PLO)

Upon completion of the PhD, students are able to:

PLO1 Demonstrates research skills and techniques
  • the ability to recognise and validate problems
  • original, independent and critical thinking, and ability to develop theoretical concepts
  • a knowledge of recent advances within one’s field and in related areas
  • an understanding of relevant research methodologies and techniques and their appropriate application within one’s research field
  • the ability to analyse critically and evaluate one’s findings and those of others
  • an ability to summarise, document, report and reflect on progress
PLO2 Understand research environment
  • show a broad understanding of the context in which research takes place
  • demonstrate awareness of issues relating to the rights of other researchers and of research subjects eg confidentiality, attribution, copyright, ethics, malpractice, ownership of data
  • understand relevant health and safety issues and demonstrate responsible working practices
  • understand the processes for funding and evaluation of research
  • gain an understanding of the process of academic or commercial exploitation of research results
PLO3 Comprehend research management
  • apply effective project management through the setting of research goals, intermediate milestones and prioritisation of activities
  • design and execute systems for the acquisition and collation of information through the effective use of appropriate resources and equipment
  • identify and access appropriate bibliographical resources, archives, and other sources of relevant information
  • use appropriately information technology for database management, recording and presenting information
PLO4 Demonstrates personal effectiveness
  • demonstrate a willingness and ability to learn and acquire knowledge
  • be creative, innovative and original in one’s approach to research
  • demonstrate flexibility and open-mindedness
  • demonstrate self-awareness and the ability to identify own training needs
  • demonstrate self-discipline, motivation and thoroughness
  • recognise boundaries and draw upon/use sources of support as appropriate
  • show initiative, work independently and be self-reliant
PLO5 Demonstrate communication skills
  • write clearly and in a style appropriate to purpose, eg progress reports, published documents, thesis
  • construct coherent arguments and articulate ideas clearly to a range of audiences, formally and informally through a variety of techniques
  • constructively defend research outcomes at seminars and viva examination
  • justify one’s own research to the funding bodies and promote the public understanding of one’s research field
  • effectively support the learning of others when involved in teaching, mentoring or demonstrating activities
PLO6 Practice networking and teamworking
  • develop and maintain co-operative networks and working relationships with supervisors, colleagues and peers within the institution and the wider research community
  • understand one’s behaviour and impact on others when working in and contributing to the success of formal and informal teams
  • listen, give and receive feedback and respond perceptively to others
PLO7 Understand career management
  • appreciate the need for and show commitment to continued professional development
  • take ownership for and manage one’s career progression, set realistic and achievable career goals, and identify and develop ways to improve employability
  • demonstrate an insight into the transferable nature of research skills to other work environments and the range of career opportunities within and outside academia
  • present one’s skills, personal attributes and experiences through effective CVs, applications and interviews.

Area of specialization

 

PhD candidates may undertake study in one of the following area of specializations:

 

  1. Anatomy
  2. Physiology
  3. Nutrition
  4. Pathology
  5. Microbiology
  6. Parasitology

PhD (Anatomy)

PhD with specialization in anatomy comprises multidisciplinary research of biological structure and function ranging from ultrastructure to gross anatomy levels with major interest in clinically relevant anatomy, surface anatomy, neurobiology, histology and embryology. Other research interests include cell biology, cell culture, immunocytochemistry, microsurgery, phase contrast, fluorescent microscopy, optical imaging, transmission electronmicroscopy (TEM) and scanning electronmicroscopy (SEM).

PhD (Physiology)

PhD with specialization in physiology focuses on behavioral physiology, cardiovascular and respiratory physiology, endocrinology, environmental and comparative physiology, gastrointestinal and metabolic physiology, membrane and epithelial physiology, molecular and cellular physiology, neural and sensory physiology, physiological genomics, reproductive physiology.

PhD (Nutrition)

PhD with specialization in animal nutrition emphasizes research in both ruminant and non-ruminant species. PhD candidates will develop and pursue research projects that improve feed, digestive and growth efficiencies for the production and health of the animals.  The module also emphasizes research towards enhancing the human health attributes of animal products while sustaining environmental quality. Research approaches range from fundamental molecular nutrition to applied whole animal systems.

PhD (Pathology)

PhD with specialization in veterinary pathology focuses on understanding of the pathogenesis of both infectious and non-infectious diseases in animals which is essential for the development of vaccines, management of the spread of infectious disease, diagnosis and therapeutic intervention. Research in pathology provides the opportunity to further our understanding and therefore inform our intervention in both human and veterinary medicine.

PhD (Microbiology)

PhD with specialization in microbiology focuses on the study of the microbiological agents responsible for animal diseases and zoonotic diseases: bacteria, viruses, fungi, mycoplasma, Chlamydia, rickettsia. This includes the study of underlying mechanisms of pathogen virulence, diagnostics and identification of pathogens, pathogen epidemiology, and antimicrobial resistance.

PhD (Parasitology)

PhD with specialization in parasitology encompasses the biology, transmission, immunology, epidemiology and control of parasites of veterinary and medical importance. In this faculty a range of parasitic diseases including zoonoses will be studied.

Admission Requirements

 

Master’s degree from recognized institutions of higher learning or equivalent qualification as endorsed by the Senate.

University Senate may permit a candidate with an outstanding First Class Bachelor’s Degree (CGPA >3.70) for direct entry to PhD after going through the evaluation process set by the University.

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