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Funding opportunities for PhD study

In addition to our funded PhD programmes, the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health provides a range of funding options from internal and external sources for our postgraduate research applicants.

UK/EU studentships

Each year, we have a number of studentships on offer to eligible UK/EU applicants.

These studentships are:

  • funded by awards from UK research councils (ie BBSRC, EPSRC, MRC, ESRC, AHRC), plus some charities;
  • linked to specific PhD projects within the laboratories of named supervisors.

We also offer CASE studentships, backed by an industrial sponsor.

In addition we can occasionally provide a stipend bursary for excellent EU students who do not meet the full eligibility criteria set by the research councils. This will be discussed at interview.

For a list of available PhD studentships, look at our projects database and search for opportunities that are funded and open to UK/EU applicants.

President’s Doctoral Scholar (PDS) Awards

The Faculty offers the opportunity for UK/EU offer holders to apply for a recognition award via the PDS scheme each year. Please note you cannot apply for a PDS award if you are a current student.

These recognition awards give successful applicants ‘PDS’ status plus a £1,000pa stipend enhancement.

Successful PDS Award holders will have the opportunity to:

  • be invited to attend a series of exclusive events where you can meet The University of Manchester's President and Vice Chancellor, interact closely with our academic community and network with other PDS Awards students;
  • benefit from international research leadership under distinguished scholars;
  • become a PDS Awards ambassador for the University;
  • receive a President's Doctoral Scholar medal at graduation;
  • benefit from our extensive transferable skills training for PhD researchers.

Criteria

Applicants must have obtained (or expect to obtain) a minimum first-class honours degree (or equivalent), and ideally hold a master's-level qualification at merit or distinction. They should ideally have a track record of engaging with research. This may include contributions to publications/articles, promoting their research to a wider audience, prizes for previous research or project work.

How to apply

Applicants from the UK/EU must hold an offer of a place on a funded PhD programme in the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health.

Once you have been made an offer of a studentship (ie BBSRC, MRC, Wellcome Trust, BHF) we will send you and your supervisor information on how to apply for the PDS recognition award.

The closing date for applications is Friday 11 May 2018. We may accept applications beyond this initial deadline, as we appreciate some funded studentship offers are made later in the year.

More information

Enquiries regarding PDS Awards within the Faculty should be directed to the scheme coordinator, Jessica Bowler.

To find out more, visit the President's Doctoral Scholar Award website.

International funding opportunities

President's Doctoral Scholar (PDS) Awards

For entry in September 2018, the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health will award three fully-funded PhD scholarships through the President’s Doctoral Scholar Awards scheme. The PDS Awards will be allocated to our most outstanding applicants seeking PhD opportunities and are open to all nationalities and research areas.

Criteria

In order to be considered for this award, candidates must meet all of the following criteria in order to be considered:

  • hold a conditional/unconditional offer for a PhD programme to commence in September 2018;
  • hold (or are about to obtain) a first class honours undergraduate degree (or international equivalent) from a reputable institution;
  • ideally hold a master’s-level qualification at merit or distinction (or international equivalent);
  • have a track record of engaging with research. This may include contributions to publications/articles, promoting their research to a wider audience, prizes for research or project work;
  • be interested in attending a series of exclusive events to facilitate interactions with our academic community and network with other PDS award holders.

We will only consider applications for these full scholarships once you are in receipt of a formal offer. Application forms will be provided to the Primary Supervisor following the issue of an offer letter to the candidate for a PhD programme.

Funding

The 3-year fully-funded scholarships will cover:

  • all university tuition fees at the international rate;
  • an annual maintenance stipend at £14,000 per annum.

Successful PDS Award holders will have the opportunity to:

  • be invited to attend a series of exclusive events where you can meet The University of Manchester's President and Vice Chancellor, interact closely with our academic community and network with other PDS Awards students;
  • benefit from international research leadership under distinguished scholars;
  • become a PDS Awards ambassador for the University;
  • receive a President's Doctoral Scholar medal at graduation;
  • benefit from our extensive transferable skills training for PhD researchers.

How to apply

If you wish to be considered, you must first follow all the usual admissions processes and be in receipt of a conditional/unconditional PhD offer no later than the end of February. As such, we ask that online PhD applications are submitted no later than Friday 2 February 2018 to enable review, interview and supervisor selection.

On your application form in the funding section, state that you intend to apply for a PDS Award. See information on potential projects and supervisors and information on how to submit an online PhD application.

Once you have been interviewed and offered a PhD place, you will then work with your Primary Supervisor to complete the PDS application form, which needs to be submitted to the Faculty Doctoral Academy by Friday 2 March 2018.

All PDS applications will be reviewed internally and a shortlist of candidates will be interviewed before final offers on funding are made (interviews are expected to take place in early April 2018). We will award three fully-funded scholarships – one per School within the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health.

Partial funding support

If you are in receipt of a scholarship and require a top-up to cover any shortfall in fees or living costs, we may be able to consider you for a partial award, either through the President’s Doctoral Scholar Award or through a Doctoral Academy Research Scholarship.

Once you are made an offer for PhD programme, you will be sent the relevant funding application form for completion. If you are interested in also being recognised as a President’s Doctoral Scholar, then you should meet the criteria for that award specifically (see above). Please note that partial awards are only available to a small number of applicants who provide evidence that they can meet the majority of the costs of their PhD (tuition fees and stipend) through a scholarship they have obtained themselves, or through personal funds.

If you have any queries about partial awards, please contact the Doctoral Academy Admissions Team at admissions.doctoralacademy@manchester.ac.uk.

 

External international funding

The list below is a summary of the most frequent sponsors of PhD students to our Faculty.

If you are unsure whether there are any scholarship opportunities that apply to your country, please contact the Doctoral Academy Admissions Team at admissions.doctoralacademy@manchester.ac.uk.

Brazil - Science without Borders

The Faculty is keen to support Brazilian applicants looking to undertake full PhD programmes or short-term PhD visits.

There is more information on how to apply on the University's Brazil page for Science without Borders (Ciência sem Fronteiras).

China Scholarship Council

The Faculty is pleased to announce that there will be six tuition fee-waivers for Chinese students who are applying through the joint scheme with The University of Manchester and China Scholarship Council (CSC).

The deadline for applications is Wednesday, 31 January 2018. Candidates will need to hold an offer for PhD study from September 2018 onwards.

They must also meet the following criteria:

  • Candidates must be citizens and permanent residents of the People’s Republic of China at the time of application.
  • Overseas Chinese students may be eligible for application subject to CSC policy at the time (CSC publicises the policy in October or November every year).
  • Successful candidates must return to China upon completion of their studies and/or research.
  • Candidates must hold an unconditional offer letter from The University of Manchester. They must therefore fulfil the relevant academic entry requirements set by the University, including a high level of English language proficiency, as outlined on the University's website.
  • Candidates should satisfy the selection criteria set out by CSC.

The CSC agreement will only cover projects set at our lowest band fees (Standard or Band 1). Band fee information can be found alongside the project details in the project search tool.

For further information regarding the scheme for the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health, please see our CSC page or email stefanie.cunliffe@manchester.ac.uk with any queries. Further information regarding the scheme can also be found on the country-specific page for China.

Chile - CONICYT Scholarships

The Faculty is able to consider applications from students applying for CONICYT scholarships.

Previously, the scholarship has been able to fund fees and stipends for up to 48 months.

If you hold or are applying for a CONICYT scholarship and require more information, please email admissions.doctoralacademy@manchester.ac.uk for more details.

Further details are available on the CONICYT website.

Commonwealth Scholarship Commission

The Commonwealth Scholarship Commission has scholarships opportunities to study in the UK. These awards are open to students from Developed Commonwealth Countries and Developing Commonwealth Countries.

Please ensure you submit your online application in plenty of time ahead of the deadline to enable us to process it. We cannot send offer letters until your PhD application has been fully assessed and a formal interview has taken place.

The deadline for applications is typically November for a September start date in the following year. Funding is currently limited to 36 months.

The Commonwealth Scholarship Commission is now accepting applications for students beginning their PhD studies in September 2017. These awards cover tuition fees and stipend. Please visit the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission website for information on how to apply.

Currently, the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission is only promoting scholarships for citizens from developing Commonwealth countries. Please see this list to see if your country is eligible. 

Indonesian LPDP Scholarships

The Faculty has previously been able to consider applicants applying through the LPDP scholarship scheme. These awards are only open to Indonesian nationals who fulfil a set of criteria that is available to view on the LPDP website.

This award would pay tuition fees, stipend and other expenses of PhD study.

Iranian Scholarships

The Faculty is able to consider applicants from Iran who have secured funding from (or are applying to) the Ministry of Science in Iran.

We are able to tailor a study programme that may include pre-sessional English courses, depending upon your level of proficiency in English.

Iraqi Scholarships

The Faculty is able to consider applicants from Iraq who have secured funding from (or are applying to) the Iraq Government for a scholarship.

We are able to tailor a study programme that may include pre-sessional English courses, depending upon your level of proficiency in English.

Malaysian Scholarships

The Faculty has previously welcomed many Malaysian postgraduate research students funded through JPA and MARA scholarships.

Mexico - CONACyT Scholarships

The Faculty is able to consider applications from Mexican students applying for CONACyT scholarships.

Previously, the application period has extended to the June preceding a September start date. The scholarship has been able to fund fees and stipends for up to 48 months.

Please visit the CONACyT website for further details.

Nigerian Scholarships

Although Nigerian applicants are eligible to be considered through the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission (please see above) we have also considered applicants through other scholarship schemes in the past.

PRESSID (Presidential Special Scholarship Scheme for Innovation and Development)

Candidates must have a First degree classification to be eligible to apply. The award would cover fees and stipend. 2015/16 has a successful application list of 102 candidates. Further information can be found on the National Universities Commission website.

PTDF (Petroleum Technology Development Fund)

This has previously funded students applying for Environmental Biology PhD programmes. More details on how to apply for this scholarship can be found on the PTDF website.

Royal Thai Government Scholarships

The Royal Thai Government offers Thai students the opportunity to apply for a Thai Government Scholarship.

The scholarships are normally available for students in the last year of their bachelor degree or who are currently studying a master's or a PhD.

Funding duration will typically extend to three years only. The Faculty is able to consider such students applying for these scholarships.