Tagged / studentships

AHRC – Securing the future of arts and humanities research in the UK

ahrcPlans for a new round of Doctoral Training Partnerships (DTPs) have been launched by the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

Designed to provide world-class training opportunities for arts and humanities doctoral students in the UK, this new round of DTPs will commence in 2018 and provide studentships that begin in October 2019.

Research organisations, based in the UK, that are interested in helping to deliver the scheme should look to form a consortium of at least two organisations. To meet the key criteria for DTP2, organisations will be required to focus on excellent training, championing inter-disciplinarity and deepening collaboration with the voluntary, public and commercial sectors.

The Arts and Humanities Research Council is the largest UK funder of postgraduate training in the arts and humanities.

Research organisations delivering the Doctoral Training Partnerships will make the decisions about tailored studentship awards based on the needs of each student.

Any consortium of research organisations that are interested in applying for a Doctoral Training Partnership need to submit a statement of intent by the 13th April 2017. Early in 2017, the AHRC will be running a series of town hall meetings and surgeries to discuss the schemes in more detail.  A research organisation can only be involved in one application.  Therefore, if you’re forming a consortium or have been asked to join one then you must inform RKEO by 31st January 2017.  Please contact Jo Garrad, RKEO Funding Development Manager.

More information and guidelines on the Doctoral Training Partnerships 2 Call can be found on the AHRC website.

NERC Industrial CASE Studentship Competition

Background 

NERC studentships can be delivered in collaboration with non-academic partners from the private, public and third/civil sectors; where studentships are delivered in collaboration they are referred to as ‘CASE studentships’. CASE studentships provide the PhD students with enhanced training opportunities by ensuring they spend between three and eighteen months in total with their CASE partner in a workplace outside the academic environment.

2015 NERC Industrial CASE Studentship Competition

This call is now open. The closing date is 16:00 Wednesday 8 July 2015.

Please see the guidance for applicants document below for full details of this call. Applications will be assessed on the following criteria:

  • research excellence (30%)
  • training excellence and multidisciplinary training environments (30%)
  • collaboration and impact (20%)
  • student recruitment, monitoring and management (20%)

Update

  • Please note, CASE partner financial contributions are to be paid to the lead Research Organisation to supplement the studentship and project, and will no longer be paid directly to the student.
  • In most instances organisations eligible for Research Council funding cannot act as a CASE partner. This includes NERC Research Centres (BAS, BGS, CEH, NCAS, NCEO, NOC)

Guidance for applicants (PDF, 229KB)

All proposals should include a case for support, using the ‘case for support form’, and the ‘Industrial CASE non-academic partner form’. Both forms are provided below. Applications must be submitted via the research councils’ joint electronic submission system (Je-S).

Case for support form (Word, 57KB)

Industrial CASE non-academic partner form (PDF, 35KB)

The assessment panel will meet on 17-18 November 2015. Applicants will be notified of the outcomes by the end of December 2015.

For further information, please contact NERC Studentships & Training Awards Group at stag@nerc.ac.uk.

If you are interested in applying for this call then please contact your Funding Development Officer in the first instance.

AHRC Success Story- Block Grant Partnership

 

Continuing on the AHRC Success Story, we wanted to look at the Block Grant Partnership, (studentships for MSc and PhD students) which was awarded on April 2011 and is now nearing its end, with the final students recruited last September.

We had a chat with supervisors and students, to see both sides of the studentship experience.

 Paula Hughes- MA Graduate

I received the AHRC grant to study the MA in Post Production Editing in 2011/2012.

Receiving the grant was absolutely fantastic. I would not have enrolled on the course without getting the grant. It allowed me to fully dedicate my time to studying without having to get a job and worry about finances. I have noticed the benefit too since graduating. Again I did not have to worry about debt and paying off money spent and so this enabled me to pursue jobs in editing and to not have to get any old job for the sake of paying of a loan. This has meant that my progress as an editor has perhaps been faster than if I had not received the grant.

I have just finished working on a feature documentary which is expected to be released later this year. I am also attending my first premiere in February, which I assisted on. I also have been accepted on to Skillset Craft and Tech Trainee scheme.

I have benefitted very much from the grant and I am very grateful for receiving it.

Ella Egberts, PhD student, Applied Sciences

Getting this PhD position has been very good for me. I wanted to continue in the field of research I got into during my masters. Preferably I wanted to do this in England as my research interests go out to the Palaeolithic of Britain. Moreover being able to do a PhD in another country (I am from the Netherlands) seemed to me a great experience and an opportunity.
Studying in different countries increases my international network of friends and colleagues.
So far I am still getting started, but it is all going very well. I have pushed myself already in so many new situations and have done things I would not have done if I wasn’t doing a PhD.
I have studied collections of hand-axes in the museum of Salisbury which was great. Some of these pieces are over 300.000  years old, touched by our very early ancestors and now I get the chance to see them, feel them and reveal their story to a wider public.

 

 

Professor Hugh Chignell, Media School

This was a collaborative application which brought me, my colleague Neal White from the Media School and Kate Welham from the School of Applied Sciences working closely together for this proposal. We found it challenging as it is a long process which has different levels that required a lot of work but we have also found it very positive, as we have learnt so much in the process and of course once awarded that was a real bonus, as it is very competitive.

We were awarded a studentship by the AHRC and then received internally a match funded studentship as well, which was a great boost for the Centre for Media History and has benefited the students immensely as they work closely together.

It is an exciting opportunity for students and supervisors, students can focus on their research for 3 years, producing the best possible quality work.

The AHRC funded studentship went to Tony Stoller to study classical music on radio and the match funded BU studentship went to Kathryn McDonald to study the development of the radio interview.  They have both been an inspiration to work with.  

To close, the key thing for a successful application apart from it being well written, well budgeted and so on is the research idea, once you have a good idea, that jumps from the paper, the rest will slot into place.

Find out more about the Grants Academy and the sessions coming up in February. The internal peer review has been credited with producing higher quality research proposals and increased success rates, find out more details about it here. Don’t miss Friday’s post on funding opportunities coming up at AHRC.

 

ESRC – Grant linked studentships funding opportunity

Grant Linked studentships are designed to add value to the proposed research outlined in the grant application, whilst providing a clear opportunity for a distinct and independent course of enquiry for the student. Through being embedded with a high quality research team, they should offer the student an opportunity to both develop their substantive research skills, alongside broader professional development.

Grant linked studentships may be requested on any research application (with the exception of the Future Leaders scheme) as long as:

  • the grant applied for is for 3 years or more
  • the Principal or Co-Investigators are approved to act as primary supervisors for PhD students
  • the student(s) will be located in an ESRC accredited Doctoral Training Centre (DTC) and they are studying on an accredited pathway.

Up to three studentships can be applied for on any single grant application. It must also be clear that the studentship is not a displacement for the normal research support required on the grant. The student must have a distinct, independent area of enquiry that will add value to the overall research objectives of the grant.  

For further details on the application process for Grant Linked Studentships please read the information available within the Research Funding Guide.

More information on the details on the rules and regulations for Grant linked studentships can be found within the Postgraduate Funding Guidelines.

If you require further assistance please contact ptdenquiries@esrc.ac.uk

 The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

Leverhulme Trust – Study abroad studentships

Study Abroad Studentships support an extended period of advanced study or research at a centre of learning in any overseas country, with the exception of the USA.

Value

The Studentships comprise: a basic annual maintenance allowance of £17,000; a partner allowance of £6,000 if a Student is accompanied by a dependent partner; a return air fare; and a baggage allowance. Further allowances are payable at the Trust’s discretion, e.g. assistance with overseas tuition fees and essential research costs.

Please ensure that applications do not include any of the ineligible costs listed here.

Duration

Studentships are tenable for between 12 and 24 months, and the current round of awards must commence between 1 June 2012 and 1 May 2013.

Please read the following before submitting and application.

Contact

If your query has not been answered in these pages please contact Bridget Kerr (020 7042 9862).

The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

Action on Hearing Loss – PhD Studentships

Action on Hearing Loss PhD studentship scheme aims to encourage the best students to become involved in hearing, deafness and tinnitus research in the UK.

The projects should bring tangible benefits closer for people who are deaf, hard of hearing or who have tinnitus.

Summary of grant

  • Deadline: Monday 17 September 2012. This grant round is for PhD Studentships starting in Autumn 2013. 
  • Duration: Three years
  • Eligibility: Students and supervisors must be based at a recognised UK university or research institute

Application procedure

Guidelines and application form – applications must be submitted by the proposed supervisor:

Selection procedure

All proposals are sent to two/three external referees, usually within the UK, who are asked to judge the scientific merit of the project as well as the suitability of the project for a PhD student. These reviews and the original proposals are then rated by our PhD review panel. The top-rated proposals are then funded – they expect to award at least four new PhD studentships per year.

Applicants are notified of the outcome as soon as possible. AHL aim to decide on the successful projects before Christmas each year to allow successful applicants plenty of time to recruit a suitable student.

Action on Hearing Loss PhD review panel

  • Dr Andrew Faulkner, University College London
  • Prof Matthew Holley, University of Sheffield
  • Dr Adrian Rees, University of Newcastle
  • Prof Karen Steel, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute

For more information contact:

Biomedical research - beakers.Action on Hearing Loss,
19-23 Featherstone Street,
London
EC1Y 8SL, UK

Telephone: +44(0)20 7296 8013

Email: research@hearingloss.org.uk

 The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

Opportunities for existing ESRC Students

Overseas institutional visits

All full-time ESRC studentship holders are eligible to apply for financial support for overseas institutional visits (OIVs) within their studentship period, to visit overseas universities or esteemed research organisations. This additional funding is intended to provide applicants with the opportunity to:

  • establish research networks
  • disseminate early research findings
  • participate in seminars and other academic activities that are directly relevant to their research
  • undertake specialist research training that is not available within the UK.

How to apply

You should submit completed applications to your research organisation (RO) nominated contact who will check the form before forwarding it to ESRC. You should note that applications are sent to ESRC in batches by 16.00 on the last working day of the month. If you miss a batch deadline this will delay the processing of your application.

Applicants must allow at least three months between the batch deadline for the month in which they apply and commencing the visit (eg if your application was received by ESRC on 30 January, the earliest you would be able to commence your visit would be 1 May).

We will aim to process and send applications to assessors within five working days. We will normally communicate funding decisions to nominated RO contacts within two months of the batch deadline, although this may take longer at certain times of the year.

You should read the scheme guidance notes before completing the application form:

All successful overseas applicants are required to submit an end of award report within two weeks of the end of the overseas institutional visit. Students undertaking more than one visit should submit a report on completion of each separate visit.

Further information

If you have any queries about the scheme please contact:

fEC step by step guide to costing! ~ Step 5 Exceptional costs

This week is fEC week on the Blog! Each day we have been explaining a different element of fEC as a quick reference guide to help you prepare the budgets for your research proposals. Today is the last in the series and the focus is on Exceptional costs.

See Friday’s blog post (Introduction to full economic costing) for an explanation of what fEC actually is and why we use it.

Step 5 – Exceptional costs

For Research Council applications in particular, certain costs will be classified as Exceptional and will be subject to a different funding arrangement to the rest of the costs on the project. These are:

  • Postgraduate student fees and stipends
  • Equipment costing in excess of £10k
  • Large survey fees

Research Councils will usually pay 100% of the fEC of these exceptional costs, with the exception of equipment costing in excess of £10k for which the Research Councils will pay approximately 50-100% of the fEC depending on the total cost of the equipment. For further information, see the RCUK statement on the Changes to Requests for Equipment from 1st May 2011.

Tuition fee and stipend levels for Research Council funded students can be found on the RCUK webpages.

This is the final installment of this week’s step by step guide to fEC. The other steps can be accessed here:

Step 1 – Directly Incurred costs

Step 2 – Estimating staff time

Step 3 – Directly Allocated costs

Step 4 – Estate and Indirect costs

BU Studentship Competition 2011

We are delighted to announce that up to 20 match-funded studentships are available for October 2011, or January 2012 starts.  These will be allocated to project teams on the basis of a competitive process across the whole of BU led by Professor Matthew Bennett (PVC Research, Enterprise & Internationalisation) and the Graduate School.  Only the best projects will be funded and proceed to advert as set out in the criteria below.  Preference will be given to those projects demonstrating match-funding, however exceptionally innovative or timely projects on a non-applied theme will be considered for full funding.  Applications should be submitted to Fiona Knight (Graduate School Manager) no later than the 13 June 2011.  Staff are asked to check the eligibility criteria carefully before applying.  Good luck!

Studentship Competition: Details & Criteria

  • Preference will be given to matched funded projects
  • Matched-funding (50%; £21k over three years) may come from: industry/business partners, government and non-government organisations, Academic Schools, NHS, Research Councils or other external bodies.  In seeking match-funding and developing the associated projects applicants are encouraged to avoid a local or regional focus.
  • Exceptionally 100% funding may be granted for highly original, timely and non-applied or “blue-sky” research projects especially where they are strategic importance to a research group/centre.
  • All projects should be linked to a REF Unit of Assessment and map on to its strategic goals.  They must be endorsed by the applicants Line Manager and Head of Academic Group or Deputy Dean (Research & Enterprise).
  • All projects should be innovative, novel and applicants are encouraged to appeal to the imagination of the assessment panel.
  • The first supervisor should take responsibility for the applications and ensure that they meet the eligibility criteria set out below.
  • Studentships are offered on a stipend basis for 36 months only, with fees waived for the same period.  Fees will be charged after 36 months.  Schools (or match funder) are responsible for providing each studentship with a guaranteed grant of between £3k and £5k over 36 months for use by the student to support fieldwork, consumables and conference travel. 
  • Normal studentship terms and conditions will apply.
  • Applications will be assessed and awards made by a panel chaired by: Vice Chancellor – Professor John Vinney and consisting of: Deputy Vice Chancellor – Professor Tim McIntyre-Bhatty, Pro-Vice Chancellor – Professor Matthew Bennett, and three Senior Grade 2 Professors.  None of the panel members are eligible to apply for support.
  • Feedback on all applications will be provided to encourage proposal development.
  • Once awarded all Studentships will be advertised and subject to a recruitment process managed by the Graduate School.  Note that these funds cannot be used to support BU staff to complete doctoral programmes.

 

Eligibility Criteria

  • The first supervisor should be the person completing the application and must be a permanent member of academic BU staff.
  • The first supervisor should be an experienced supervisor defined as having successfully supervised an entire cycle of a research degree or successfully completed the full PG CERT Research Degree Supervision.
  • The first supervisor should be research active, and be in consideration for the REF submission.
  • The applicant should be supervising no more than 6 PGR students including this project.
  • All proposals should have a balanced supervisory team.

 

Indicative Timetable

It is envisaged that projects will start in October 2011 or January 2012, as such

  • It is envisaged that projects will commence either in October 2011 or January 2012.
  • The call for proposals will go live on the 16 May 2011 via the BU Research Blog.
  • In late May 2011, a generic “teaser” advertisement campaign (e.g., banner in THES or Guardian) will run announcing forthcoming studentships at BU encouraging potential applicants to watch the website.
  • The call for proposals will close 11.30 AM on the 13 June 2011.  Submission to the Graduate School Manager who will circulate to the judging panel for consideration.  The panel will score each proposal and meet formally to select the successful projects.  
  • Successful applicants will be informed on the 27 June 2011.  Unsuccessful applicants will be provided with formative feedback in the following two weeks. 
  • Full marketing campaign to be launched on the 27 June and projects advertised externally.
  • Closing date for all student applications will be 31 July 2011 using the standard application form and submitted to the Graduate School.  The Graduate School will manage the recruitment process.
  • Interview days for all October project starts will take place in August.  If an October start is proposed the first supervisor must ensure their availability during August to conduct the interviews.  All interview panels will be consist of a member of the selection panel, first supervisor and a Professor from the host School and will be arranged and managed by the Graduate School.  UEG approval of candidates is required and formal offer letters will be issued by the Graduate School.
  • Interview days for all January project starts will take place in September.  All interview panels will be consist of a member of the selection panel, first supervisor and a Professor from the host School and will be arranged and managed by the Graduate School.  UEG approval of candidates is required and formal offer letters will be issued by the Graduate School.
  • Project Start Date 1; 3 October 2011
  • Project Start Date 2; 9 January 2012

 

Proposal forms can be downloaded from here or email the Graduate School Manager.

The Graduate School story part I…

Professor John Fletcher founded BU’s Graduate School in 2002. Here he reflects on what life was like before the Graduate School and where we have come to so far…

This blog is a reflection of the BU Graduate School story so far as the first incarnation of the Graduate School makes way for a new vision. When I was asked to set up the Graduate School in November 2002 as 0.2FTE of my time, it was in the wake of two RAEs where BU had been criticised for its lack of institutional support of its PGRs and a stream of complaints from our postgraduate researchers via the Student Union.  The first step was to examine the processes and systems in place across both campuses which quickly revealed that the seven Schools had seven different sets of processes and systems and, even more challenging, it transpired that we had somewhere between 80 and 147 PhD students but nobody quite knew how many.  When looking at the qualification rates at that time BU was only managing to get 11% of its PGRs through within 4 years and some researchers had been registered for more than 13 years!  Eight years on the Graduate School has implemented a Code of Practice and a set of processes that are now common across BU’s six Schools, overseen the introduction of new and innovative doctoral programmes and help improve our qualification rates. The systems that the Graduate School has put in place were deemed to be so effective that members of the panel that came to BU for the institutional audit contacted the VC to ask if they could adopt the BU model for their own institution.  BU was also one of the first handful of universities to introduce a credit bearing training programme for its supervisors, something that is now becoming commonplace across the sector. 

The support provided by the Graduate School to our PGR students has reduced the isolation and the complaints received from PGRs but there is still a long way to go to ensure that we have the correct systems in place to create a best practice research environment.  The introduction of myBUILD as an online research student log and compliance system met with considerable resistance but was innovative at that time and BU was one of the first institutes across the HEI sector to introduce an online log.  The lack of resources has meant that it was not possible to continue to develop the platform as the numbers of researchers increased but even though myBUILD has probably long gone past its “best before” date, it is vastly superior to the varied and somewhat unusual mixture of record keeping that was found in the individual Schools. There is an urgent need to redevelop the online system to make it more intuitive and better integrated with the other platforms across BU.

BU now has well over 300 PhD students and the qualification rates, particularly those of our part-time researchers, is vastly superior to that of 2002.  The Graduate School introduced the Annual PGR Conference which has been enormously successful and was an integral part of the Special Audit of PGR programmes, a working member of the EUA’s programme on improving the quality of doctoral programmes across Europe and was the hub for BU’s application to ESRC and AHRC for doctoral support bids (the former falling foul of the spending cuts but the latter achieving success). It is hoped that Graduate School will move from strength to strength as the importance of the postgraduate segment of our student body becomes more significant as we move forward in the 21st century.