Studentships - STFC

This information about STFC studentship awards is for supervisors, Training Grant Co-ordinators and administrative officers at research organisations (universities, institutions or other independent research organisations eligible to receive research council funding).

We have information for students.

STFC postgraduate studentships enable promising scientists and engineers to continue training beyond a first degree. All studentship projects supported through STFC funding must fall within STFC remit.

Rules and regulations

Training grants

Doctoral Training Partnership studentships and CASE studentships will be awarded to research organisation departments in the form of a training grant.

Training grants are awarded under terms and conditions that have been agreed cross council. UKRI have issued a guide to training grants that you should read with the terms and conditions.

All studentships funded from the training grant are subject to the terms and conditions set out in this document.

Acceptance of PhD studentships

STFC strongly recommends that prospective students should not be placed under undue pressure by departments to accept PhD places within short timescales. Therefore students should not be compelled to accept offers of PhD places prior to 31 March each year. Any prospective student subjected to pressure to accept a PhD place prior to the 31 March deadline is advised to email Studentships at studentships@stfc.ukri.org.

In the efficient matching of students to available PhD places it is unhelpful if students keep multiple offers open until the 31 March deadline. Students should therefore aim to decide promptly (within two weeks) when they receive more than one offer and reject all but the one most favoured at that point. The rejected studentships can then be offered by departments to other students without having to wait until the deadline.

Accreditation of training quality

STFC requires greater assurance over the quality of the training a department provides for their students before allocating studentships to the department.

The current method of allocating studentships is by algorithm. To be entered into the algorithm, departments are requested to apply for accreditation of their training provision ahead of each biennial studentship allocation.

An application for accreditation is assessed by the Education,Training and Careers Committee (ETCC) on a simple pass or fail basis against a set of criteria drawn from STFC’s current expectations of student training. Departments are asked to respond to a set of structured questions, derived from the criteria, to enable the assessment to be made. The ETCC assess each of the five categories:

  • training environment
  • quality of training
  • quality of supervision
  • careers advice
  • recruitment.

Departments passing accreditation are entered into the algorithm in the normal way. Any that do not pass accreditation will not receive an allocation that time.

The accreditation process will be repeated ahead of the subsequent studentship allocation process, scheduled for 2020.

STFC PhD Studentship Allocation for 2021

Departments eligible for an STFC studentship quota will continue to be those with core research activity in the areas of astronomy, solar system science, particle physics, accelerator science and nuclear physics.

Read more about the STFC PhD Studentship quota allocations for 2021.

Contact us

If you need any more information you can ask us.

Email: studentships@stfc.ukri.org

Last updated: 15 November 2021

NOTE Council web content is being transitioned to this website – let us know if you have feedback or would like to help us test new developments.