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Microbiology Logo Microbiology & Immunology
Te Tari Moromoroiti me te Ārai Mate


NB: Due to the current Covid-19 pandemic and border closures we are only able to support applications from candidates already present within New Zealand.

I am looking for motivated students interested in pursuing postgraduate studies in microbial ecology and environmental microbiology.  I am interested in students who have specific goals in mind, particularly those with prior research experience, and who are interested in a multidisciplinary research experience centered on topics in microbial ecology.  Students interested in my lab are encouraged to contact me directly. Students should give thought to the area of research they are interested in, what their goals for their tenure in the lab would be, and what they wish to do afterwards.  Interested students should send an email letter of inquiry containing an overview of your research interests, your CV, transcripts, and future plans.  This will all be taken into consideration in order to provide a mutually beneficial collaboration between the student and mentor.  International students are welcome and should visit the University of Otago link with specific information and guidelines for application.

PhD positions requires the applicant be eligible for admission to the PhD programme at the University of Otago and be successful in securing a scholarship ( A GPA of 7.5 or greater and demonstration of proficiency in English are essential.

Funding for the PhD scholarship is NZ$27,000 pa for three years. This scholarship is tax free and tuition fees are waived.

International PhD students pay tuition fees at the New Zealand domestic rate, provided that the students reside in New Zealand and study under a New Zealand student visa.


What you can expect from the lab

The Microbiology and Immunology Department is home to a diverse group of researchers with interests ranging from microbial physiologygut microbiology, to viral pathogenesis and vaccine development.  This ensures that a wide variety of techniques and expertise are readily available for student support.  The lab also has collaborations with national and international groups so students will be exposed to ideas and researchers from many disciplines, and locations around the world.

Additional information for 4th year level and Master's studies

Additional information for prospective postgraduate students

Scholarships for postgraduate students

Scholarships are available on a competitive basis and require acceptance into the school. More information can be found here: 


Sergio E. Morales
Department of Microbiology & Immunology
University of Otago
PO Box 56
Dunedin 9054
New Zealand
Office Phone: +64 3 479 3140
Fax: +64 3 479 8540