ink cloud 1900x800

The physiological effects of plastic ingestion


Funded PhD


3 years

Application deadline:

Wednesday 23 January 2019

About this project

Understanding the physiological impacts of plastic ingestion is key to understanding the level of threat they pose to aquatic animals.

Ingestion of plastics is expected to affect organism physiology through direct negative physical or chemical consequences and by reducing energy intake, which will lower physiological condition and may make them more susceptible to environmental challenge.

This project will test the impacts of plastics on energy budgets, reproduction and escape response. Key taxonomic groups (molluscs and crustaceans) will be studied across latitudinal gradients from the Southern Ocean to temperate regions.

We will experimentally manipulate and monitor these animals to understand whether polar species show similar responses to tropical and temperate species. The student may have the opportunity to undertake work at the British Antarctic Survey Rothera Research Station and BAS HQ in Cambridge.


The University's Postgraduate Training Scheme (PGTS) provides a range of generic and discipline-specific modules to support research students through their programme.

Find out more

The library has an exclusive lounge for postgraduate research students and a dedicated Skills Team to provide a wide range of study and research skills help. 

Find out more

The Graduate School provides support to postgraduate research students. Offering skills development opportunities and dedicate facilities, the school is here to help you achieve your potential. 

Find out more

Research at Hull tackles big challenges and makes an impact on lives globally, every day. Our current research portfolio spans everything from health to habitats, food to flooding and supply chain the slavery.

Find out more


Full-time UK/EU and International PhD Scholarships will include fees at the ‘home/EU' student rate and maintenance (£14,777 in 2018/19) for three years, depending on satisfactory progress.

PhD students at the University of Hull follow modules for research and transferable skills development and gain a Masters level Certificate, or Diploma, in Research Training, in addition to their research degree.

Entry requirements

Applicants should have a 1st class undergraduate degree or Masters level research qualification in a relevant discipline. A 2:1 may be considered, if combined with relevant experience.

Additionally, experience of working in the field and knowledge of marine ecosystems would be beneficial.

Successful applicants will be informed of the award as soon as possible and by 15 March 2019 at the latest.