If you are wondering whether a PhD is right for you or whether you want to enter the job market then here are a few pros and cons of doing a PhD


  • You are still a student and can take advantage of student deals such as student discount
  • You are still exempt from council tax.
  • If you are funded by a research council your stipend is tax free, so if you earn around £13,000 this would be the equivalent of earning £16,000 in a standard taxed job. You also have a guaranteed income for 3 to 4 years.
  • You can often do extra paid work in the university, bar work or other academic work for undergraduates.
  • Once you do graduate you are more likely to get a higher paid job.
  • You will gain invaluable laboratory experience, as well as the ability to attend and participate in conferences and other workshops designed to help with doctoral training.


  • You will have to write a thesis after 4 years.
  • You could possibly earn more in industry in the short term.
  • PhD’s require 3-4 commitment, and you will have to get used to regular failure.
  • If you do a PhD in industry you may be prevented from writing up or publishing some of your work.

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