Scenario Scholarships for BAME Home Candidates

Applications for Scholarships for Autumn 2022 entry have now closed.

Our aim is to improve ethnic diversity to the DTP Scenario and we are committed to supporting students from Black, Asian, or Minority Ethnic (BAME) groups that are currently under-represented. Therefore, we are excited to announce the launch of Scenario DTP Scholarships for BAME Home candidates to increase the representation of BAME Home students within our cohorts. We will award up to 2 Scholarships for our Cohort 9 (2022 intake) and for our Cohort 10 (2023 intake).

What does a scholarship involve?

Similar to the project-led studentships, the Scholarships cover both fees and stipend – a tax-free maintenance grant which was £15,609 per year in 2021-22. You will also receive a Research Training and Support budget to cover costs such as conferences, workshops and equipment.

Because the Scholarships do not come with pre-defined projects, the successful candidate will design their project upon commencement of the PhD, typically in September (see below), and to reflect the extra time and work involved, Scholarships are initially offered for 3 years and 3 months.

If a gap in knowledge or training is identified for the designed project, the studentship can be extended by an extra 6 months at that point.  Towards the end of the PhD, there is the opportunity to apply for an extension, based on set criteria. The maximum duration of funding is 4 years.

What are the eligibility criteria?

Scholarships are available to applicants who meet the following requirements:

  1. You must be eligible for a Home award. To be classed a Home student, candidates must meet one of these criteria, as set out by the UKRI:
    1. be a UK national (meeting residency requirements)
    2. have settled status
    3. have pre-settled status (meeting residency requirements)
    4. have indefinite leave to remain or enter.
  2. You must identify as Black, Asian, or Minority Ethnic (BAME). We recognise that BAME is an umbrella term highlighting some groups and not others and we emphasize that people of mixed heritage should feel encouraged to apply to these scholarships.
  3. You must meet the criteria based on academic performance and/or relevant previous experience, set out here: https://research.reading.ac.uk/scenario/apply/

Applicants who are eligible for a Scholarship can also apply for project led studentships at the same time.

How do I apply?

You can apply via the Scenario online portal: https://scenario-dtp.grantplatform.com/

Application Deadline: 3 February 2022 (note that this is later than the project-led route)

We aim to let you know the outcome of your application by 9 February 2022.

Main interview day: 16 February 2022 (we will confirm nearer the time whether our interview day will be online, in person or hybrid)

How does the application process differ from the project-based route?

During the application process, you will be asked for similar information as for the project-based route, meaning that you can copy your application to any projects and save time writing multiple applications. We do ask for an additional statement regarding your interests in the Scenario science themes and you will be asked to confirm that you meet the eligibility criteria for the Scholarship. The Scenario science themes can be found here: https://research.reading.ac.uk/scenario/about-us/scenario-science-themes/

How does the interview process differ from the project-based route?

For projects, candidates are selected for interview by the supervisors and supervisors carry out the interviews. For Scholarships, candidates are selected and interviewed by a panel formed of Selection Board members representing the 5 host institutes, plus the Scenario DTP Director and Co-Director. You can find the composition of the Selection Board here: https://research.reading.ac.uk/scenario/about-us/scenario-management-team/

What happens next if I am offered and accept a Scholarship?

The Scenario DTP will match you with potential supervisors based on their availability and your research interests and your supervisors will support you in the project design. One of your supervisors must be based at the University of Reading or the University of Surrey. A list of supervisors and their interests can be found here. You can also get an idea of the types of research we do in the Scenario DTP by looking at our current student projects: https://research.reading.ac.uk/scenario/our-students/

You are not expected to design a project or to find your supervisors as part of the application process and you are not expected to have designed your project before you start your PhD. With support from your chosen supervisors, you will design your project in the first 3 months of your PhD. As with the project-led Scenario studentships, your Scholarship will come with a Research Training and Support budget to cover costs such as conferences, workshops and equipment and you will be encouraged to consider unique training opportunities related to your project. The project design will be reviewed by the Selection Board based on the same scientific excellence and training excellence criteria used for our other projects. Because of the extra time and work involved, this studentship will come with an extra 3 months of funding, if required.