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The Institute of Cancer Research's virtual learning environment and e-learning resources allow students to fit formal education around their experiments and clinical commitments.

For all current students

Perspectives in oncology

Perspectives in Oncology helps you to gain a common grounding in basic cancer knowledge, including modules in cancer epidemiology, cancer genetics, cell biology, bioinformatics, medical physics, structural biology, cancer treatment and drug development. It is available to staff and students at the ICR and The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust.

Research degree students at the ICR - such as PhD and MD(Res - are expected to complete all modules of the site by the end of their first year. MSc in Oncology students are also encouraged to make use of the website.


The Skills website (formerly known as Lab Book) helps you to develop transferable skills, such as time management, scientific writing, and presenting your work. The blog content (written by staff and students at the ICR and by guest experts) is delivered on a regular basis, giving students advice, ideas and personal viewpoints. It is also delivered when it is most relevant, whether that be in the students’ first few weeks at the ICR, when they are about to start writing their thesis, or when their viva is approaching.

Although the Skills website is specifically designed for research degree students, there is a considerable amount of information that will be of use to MSc students, particularly those on Part C. For example, it covers topics such as critical reading, organisation and time management, literature searches, presentations and scientific writing.

Nature masterclasses

Nature Masterclasses is an online course in scientific writing and publishing. It is taught by editors from the Nature journals in bite size sections and covers the entire scientific publishing process, from writing a paper to publication. Many of the sections covered on the site will help with writing a thesis; particularly Elements of Writing Style.


For research degree students - MPhil, PhD, MD(Res)

Student training needs scanner

The Student Training Needs Scanner helps you to identify and prioritise your personal development needs. The UK Research Councils recommend that students do at least ten days of personal development per year.

Student training tracker

The Student Training Tracker is a tool allowing you to track your training in professional development and transferable skills.


iProgress is an online progression management tool which tracks and follows your work towards the key milestones of your research degree.


Nexus contains various information about studying at the ICR, including details about student induction, student welfare, the student committee, and the Academic Dean's team.


For taught postgraduate students - MSc in Oncology


Canvas is a virtual learning environment for MSc students to access lecture materials and assignments. It enables you to study and interact outside more formal teaching situations at any time of your choosing and provides a general enhancement to the educational experience.

Features of Canvas include:

  • simple and convenient access to course content,
  • tools to enhance communication with fellow students and with staff while away from the campus, and
  • online assessments.

PhD studentships

Applications for our main PhD studentships recruitment round are now closed.

ICR values

Our values – developed together as an organisation – make it clear how each and every one of us work to meet our mission – to make the discoveries that defeat cancer.