Darwin Studentships

Level of study
Doctoral research
Subject area
Biological Sciences
EU, Overseas (Non-EU)
Type of Award
Deadline for applying
Closed 07/01/2024 (Note: competition closed for this year)

Award Description

The Darwin Studentships specifically fund PhD projects in the area of microbiology (focused on bacteria, fungi or viruses) that are supervised by staff in the Institute of Microbiology and Infection.  Students are registered in the School of Biosciences but their primary supervisor can be from a different School so long as they have a co-supervisor who is from Biosciences. Applications are considered from 31 December each year for a 1 October start the following year and excellent candidates are chosen for available projects until all Studentships are allocated. Late applications will be considered if not all the studentships have been allocated.

Value of Award

Darwin studentships are funded by The Darwin Trust of Edinburgh and pay a stipend for 4 years. The value is £20,692 per year for the 2023-24 session and is adjusted annually in October based on the UK Consumer Price Index in March of that year.

Eligibility Criteria

Studentships are awarded to International Students or EU Students who are not citizens of the UK and are not eligible for a full RCUK PhD studentship.

Applicants should possess, or expect to achieve, at least a good upper second class honours degree or equivalent qualification in an appropriate subject. Evidence of previous research experience, for instance undergraduate project work, is desirable.

Qualifications of a suitable standard from every country in the world are accepted for postgraduate entry. Students from different countries whose first language is not English will need to show that they have an adequate knowledge of written and spoken English with a formal English test result. Once registered for a PhD there is scope for further improvement in English via the University's English for International Students Unit.

How to Apply

Identify potential projects and supervisors from the list of staff associated with the Institute of Microbiology and Infections (Institute of Microbiology and Infection (birmingham.ac.uk)).  Contact staff informally to check whether they are recruiting new PhD students and are eligible to recruit a new Darwin-funded student this year.  They will want to see a CV and may want to have an on-line meeting with you.  To apply formally, even if the primary supervisor is in a different School, you should apply through the  Biosciences PhD course page on our Course Finder.

Applicants using the University Standard Application form should state in the funding section of the application form that they would like to be considered for a Darwin Studentship. Late applications will be considered if all the studentships have not been allocated.

In the application form, please reply to the question - "Which Study Programme do you wish to apply for?" with PhD Biosciences and to "For research degrees, give details of your proposed area of research" specify the supervisor(s) and project(s) in which you interested.

See our  full list of available PhD Projects.


Biosciences Graduate Research School