Am I eligible for an ESRC studentship?

We base eligibility for studentships on academic and residential conditions. Our Doctoral Training Partnerships (DTPs) and Centres for Doctoral Training (CDTs) will determine an applicant's eligibility to apply. If you have any questions about eligibility please speak to the relevant DTP or CDT contact.

Academic conditions

In order to receive ESRC studentship funding you must have qualifications/experience equal to the standard of a good honours degree at a first or upper second class level or a masters from a UK academic research organisation.
Degree qualifications gained from outside the UK, or a combination of qualifications and/or experience that is equivalent to a relevant UK degree, may be accepted.

Residential conditions

To be eligible for a full award (stipend and fees), you must meet all of the following conditions:

  • have settled status in the UK, meaning there are no restrictions on how long you can stay
  • have been 'ordinarily resident' in the UK for three years prior to the start of the studentship grant. This means you must have been normally residing in the UK (apart from temporary or occasional absences)
  • not have been residing in the UK wholly or mainly for the purpose of full-time education. This does not apply to UK and EU nationals.

To be eligible for a fees-only award, you must:

  • must be ordinarily resident in an EU member state, in the same way as UK students must be ordinarily resident in the UK.

These eligibility criteria are based on the Education (Fees and Awards) Regulations 1997 and subsequent amendments. These regulations cover England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Limited relaxation of student eligibility requirements in strategic areas

Some DTPs have relaxed the residential rules for international students in Economics and Advanced Quantitative Methods. This may allow some students without prior residency in the UK to be eligible for a full fee and stipend award. 

Our full guidelines are available in our Postgraduate Funding Guide.

Please speak to the relevant DTP or CDT contact to discuss individual DTP and CDT policies.

How do I apply for an ESRC studentship?

We provide funding through our network of 14 Doctoral Training Partnerships (DTPs) and two Centres for Doctoral Training (CDTs).

We do not provide funding to students directly. Studentships can only be held on accredited pathways within a DTP or CDT.

Prospective students must apply directly to a DTP or CDT in order to secure an ESRC studentship and they will decide which students are eligible for funding.

DTPs and CDTs have strict internal processes for selecting students and must abide by UK Government regulations in determining residential eligibility. As such, students should contact the DTP or CDT at the earliest opportunity.

When is the closing date for applications?

Individual DTPs and CDTs have their own closing dates. Prospective students should contact directly the DTP or CDT they wish to apply to for further information on the application process, including the closing date for applications.