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How are research degrees funded?
Postgraduate research assistant
Many of our postgraduates are employed on a research grant funded by industry or a government body. By completing the work needed by industry or government, you usually will have completed enough original work to complete a doctorate. The program of work is fixed in the research grant and must be followed, so you don't have a completely free hand about what you study. Research assistantships get a good salary for a new graduate. Tuition fees are paid by the University. Posts are advertised on www.jobs.ac.uk. If you are interested, and contact us at least a year before you wish to start, we can discuss applying for research grants in an area of interest to you.
You have freedom to chose the subject of study and the programme of study under the guidance of your supervisor. If you are funding the research degree yourself, you will need to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are about £3k per annum for EU students and about £10k per annum for non-EU students (tuition scholarships are sometimes available, please enquire). The University, research councils or industry fund studentships. In this case, a studentship carries a stipend which is about £12,000/annum.
Some funding sources for PhD Studentships:
- Bursary from the acoustics research centre. These are limited to EU-only students if the money comes from EPSRC. Only a very small number are irregularly available.
- Bursary from a company. Companies will sponsor our research students if the topic is of interest to them.
- Self-funding. It is possible to apply for fee-waivers so that you don’t have to pay tuition fees, then all you need is enough money to live on. These are allocated within the University on a competitive bid basis.
- GTA - Graduate Teaching Assistantship are offered by the University and allow people to carry out teaching to fund their research work.
- Employer sponsorship. Part-time postgraduates can have their fees paid by their employers. Industry and commercial companies also contribute to the CASE studentships offered by the Research Councils. In some instances, industrial CASE awards are made direct to a company, which then seeks an academic partner. If you are in employment and seeking professional development, or if you are a recent graduate seeking employment, ask about sponsorship.
- Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP). This scheme places recent graduates (especially engineers and scientists) in companies to tackle a technical challenge under the guidance of an academic supervisor. The graduate does a postgraduate degree as part of the KTP.
- Charities and Trusts. Awards for postgraduate study are made by many organizations but often we have to apply for these. You can consult the Grants Register in a careers centre and do a web search using a good search.
- Doing part-time work at the same time as full-time postgraduate research. This is not recommended. The commitment needed to succeeded in research is much greater than in a first degree.
- If you are not a UK national, there are often grants that can be applied for from a variety of sources to study in the UK. For example, try your government education department. There are a number of organizations that support international postgraduate students, but you should also do a web search to look for others. You could look at http://www.ukcosa.org.uk/ which has a page of possible funding sources.