Doctoral Research Scholarships and funding

The University has a number of awards for UK/EU and overseas candidates starting a one-year Masters programme and for PhD study, some of which are region- and country-specific scholarships. Interested candidates are strongly urged to apply. More information on the Scholarships and grants page.

Home/EU Scholarships

Economic and Social Research Council funding
The University of Birmingham is an ESRC Doctoral Training Centre, and as such is able to offer 22 ESRC scholarships to fund postgraduate training and doctoral research, with both +3 (PhD) and 1+3 (Masters and PhD) funding available. A full ESRC scholarship comprises research fees, relevant bench fees, and an annual Research Council stipend (£14,057 in 2015-16). Information regarding the ESRC funding competition for study commencing in September 2016.

Applications for Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) postgraduate studentships. need to be made to the DTC in February 2016 (deadline is 19 February 2016, at 4pm). Applicants must hold an offer from the university to be eligible. For this reason, we strongly encourage applicants to contact the School as early as possible during the period Oct-Dec 2015 so that we are aware of your intention to apply, can ensure that your initial application is attached to a supervisor and considered promptly by the Admissions Director, and can guide you in preparing your ESRC application. Applicants who submit an application to the DTC in February without having prior discussions with the School are less likely to be successful. If you intend to apply for an ESRC studentship, please contact the School Director of Doctoral Research, Dr Christopher Finlay at the earliest possible stage.

International Scholarships

To award outstanding achievement and to attract students of the highest calibre from around the world, the University of Birmingham is pleased to offer a number of international scholarships. Scholarships for international students.

For information and updates on possible further sources of funding for overseas applicants, see the webpage for the University of Birmingham Brazil Scholarships and for the The Birmingham Li Siguang (李四光) PhD Scholarship.

Central University Scholarships

These are one-year Scholarships which offer fees and - subject to availability of funds - maintenance. Some of these scholarships are subject-specific, for international students and for home students. All scholarships listed below are offered subject to available funds, and are open to both EU and international students in addition to home students, unless otherwise stated. For information on deadlines – including the date by which you must hold an offer of a place on the doctoral research programme.

Postgraduate students may use the Postgraduate Funding Database to search for scholarships and bursaries. In addition, some of the scholarship schemes open to those within the School of Education are listed below. Please read any documentation carefully for eligibility and closing dates. 

General funding advice may also be found on the Student Funding Office webpages.

Awards available:

  • A E Hills PG Scholarship Open to any full-time postgraduate.
  • Alumni PG Scholarship Open to any postgraduate student who is either an alumnus or the child of an alumnus of the University of Birmingham. Preference will be given to nominees that have made significant contributions to wider University life outside of academic achievement.
  • Francis Corder Clayton PG Scholarship Open to any full-time postgraduate undertaking a programme in an Arts subject.
  • Joseph Chamberlain PG Scholarship Open to students undertaking a programme in the College of Social Sciences (except Education) or in the Engineering Schools. The award is limited to students whose parents/guardians have been bona fide residents in the former West Midlands County for four years prior to the start of the course, or who fulfil the residency criteria themselves.
  • Kirkcaldy PG Scholarship Open to students undertaking a programme in the College of Social Sciences (except Education).
  • Richard Fenwick PG Scholarship Open to any full-time postgraduate with the exception of those studying in the College of Medical and Dental Sciences.

School studentships

Each year the School is able to offer some bursaries that cover all or part of PhD fees, and sometimes also a stipend for living expenses.  Limited funds are available each year and are allocated on a competitive basis. This is open to both current PhD students and new offer-holders. To be considered for this funding, applicants must hold an offer by 
May 01, 2016.

For further information, please contact the School Doctoral Director, Dr Christopher Finlay (

Funds for current Doctoral Researchers

The School offers DR funding for the following:

  • Conference funding.  Grants are available for the travel expenses and registration fees for postgraduate research students delivering a paper at an academic conference. These are allocated competitively in three rounds each year. Deadlines for application are circulated by email before each round.
  • General research funding.  Funding from the School is available for small requests from doctoral researchers in order to cover general research costs that cannot be covered by funding from other sources. This fund will be allocated competitively by the same committee which allocates conference funds. Application process and deadlines will be advertised by email.

Further information

Tricia Carr - Doctoral Research Student Administrator
Tel: +44 (0) 121 414 6346, Email: