The University of Manchester allocation of EPSRC DTP studentships is based on student excellence (academic record and research potential), and makes full use of the flexibility offered by the DTP.
For 2018/19 (and again in 2019/20) we will have approximately 53 x 3 ½ year studentships (home fee and standard RCUK stipend) available for application. At least 9 of these will be in collaboration with Industry (CASE), whereby a minimum of 3 months will be spent by the student researcher in an industrial setting co-supervised by a qualified employee of that company.
We will also consider a limited number of exceptional non-UK applications i.e. applicants that do not fit the RCUK residential criteria for ‘home’ student status.
Our selection process is straightforward and transparent. Applicants select a pre-approved project from those advertised, or may devise their own project in collaboration with a potential supervisor (subject to approval). The project approval confirms that all necessary support is in place for the work, and ensures that any strategic steer from the institute has been considered before a subject is opened for applications. Student ability then becomes the over-riding factor in awarding studentships, excepting where matched funding or CASE support is used to distinguish between students of equal ability. In this situation the project with the additional financial input would usually be supported by award of the studentship.
A small number of the most exceptional candidates will also be offered the opportunity to become part of the annual cohort of President’s Doctoral Scholars, an honour that provides them with advanced leadership training as well as an enhanced stipend.
Applications are made centrally, but the selection of successful applicants is devolved to discipline specific experts. Start here for information about funding, applications and discipline specific projects and programmes: www. www.se.manchester.ac.uk/our-research/funding/faculty-phd-studentships/epsrcdoctoralpartnership2018. Candidates are invited for interview by potential supervisory teams and a selection panel, before any offers are made. We welcome applications throughout the academic year, but the majority of DTP funded students begin their studies in September, with the studentship offers made during the early months of the year. Decisions are made as soon as possible (from the announcement of offer) although core science subjects tend to interview and offer earlier in the year than the engineering subjects. Our studentship numbers are approximately equal for engineering subjects and science subjects although there are cross-disciplinary aspects to many of our projects.
Broad subject breakdown
We have studentships available for PhD programmes in all EPSRC-themed areas:
Chemical Engineering and Analytical Science
Electrical and Electronic Engineering
Textile Design, Fashion and Management
Soft Matter and Crystals
In addition to an individual project, all our PhD programmes incorporate research training for early career researchers. This is widely available across the University and includes discipline-focused training as well as generic skills illustrated with discipline-specific examples. All training is provided on a needs-based model. Early career researchers undertake an annual skills audit to identify gaps in their skills appropriate to their stage of study. They can then be directed to the appropriate training programme to meet their needs.
Finally, we are committed to support for early careers researchers and as such 10% of the DTP will be used to fund the University’s EPSRC Doctoral Prizes. These are fellowship awards which are open to all EPSRC-funded researchers who have submitted their PhD thesis within 6 months of the start of the prize.