Structured PhD (Zoology)

College of Science,
School of Natural Sciences

Course overview

All PhD students in the College of Science will enroll in a Structured PhD

Research in the Zoology Department is mainly concentrated in the following broad areas: evolutionary biology, including the evolution of animal development; ecological parasitology; aquaculture and fisheries management; ecology, behaviour, and conservation of a variety of animal groups, including: inshore marine and freshwater fish; mammals and birds, especially squirrels, bats, and game birds; centipedes (both coastal and inland species); introduced aquatic organisms (such as zebra mussels).

Programmes available

Structured PhD, 4 years full-time

Entry requirements

To be eligible to enter on a programme of study and research for the degree of PhD you must have reached a high honours standard at the examination for the primary degree or presented such evidence as will satisfy the Head of School and the College of your fitness.

Areas of interest

EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY: Evolutionary research in Zoology includes studies of how
certain aspects of the development of animals evolve. Centipedes serve as a 'model system' to examine this question. Current studies involve molecular, developmental and ecological aspects of animals groups. Research also focuses on molecular evolution of animal viruses and micro and macroevolutionary processes in animals generally.

MARINE BENTHIC ECOLOGY: The ecology of animals that live on or near the seafloor and intertidal area. Current research includes population and community level studies e.g. in relation to climate change, as well as systematics and biodiscovery.

MARINE FISH: Filling gaps in our knowledge about the biology of by-catch species and continuing longterm studies on the ecology and distribution of fish and fish larvae.

FRESHWATER BIOLOGY: The ecology of Ireland's rivers and lakes. Work in this area focuses on the River Shannon catchment and eutrophication of western lakes such as Lough Corrib. Other aspects include fish ecology and parasitology of species such as European eel, brown trout, and arctic charr.

DEVELOPMENTAL NEUROBIOLOGYResearch focuses on development and evolution of vertebrate nervous and sensory systems. In particular, we use amphibian embryos to study early embryonic development of cranial sense organs.

MAMMAL ECOLOGYA variety of terrestrial habitats are studied. Recent work has investigated rodent populations, bats, seals, urban mammals, otter diet, fox distribution and conservation projects on native red squirrel.

DEVELOPMENTAL BIOLOGYDevelopmental biologists ask important questions such as how can a complex adult animal be made from a fertilized egg, and what is the function of a stem cell? What makes vertebrates and arthropods segmented?

Researcher profiles

Contact Us

Ms. Anne Quinn

T +353 91 492 323


PAC code


Fees for this course

EU: €4,529 p.a. 2016/17

Non-EU: €13,750 p.a. 2016/17