Research Experience Placements

Undergraduate Research Experience Placements

The application window for Summer 2024 will open early May 2024.

Please read the following information before applying

The Natural Environment Research Council’s (NERC) Research Experience Placement (REP) Scheme is aimed to encourage undergraduate students who are doing a degree in a quantitative disciplines to consider a career in environmental science.

The SCENARIO DTP has six placements in this scheme this year, based at the University of Reading. This scheme is an excellent opportunity to get experience of working in a thriving research environment before considering applying for a PhD next year (whether with SCENARIO or elsewhere). SCENARIO will ensure that all research experience students are offered a PhD interview, where appropriate. 

Details of the projects will be announced early May,2024.

Please note that all of these topics will require computing skills to perform, in terms of data handling and presenting your results. Some projects may be run remotely (please check each description). Supervision, including guidance in using software, will be provided by the supervisors.

Projects will take place this summer. You will have a PhD student mentor to help with the practical aspects of the project and to discuss the experience of being a PhD student.

You would receive £10.42 per hour. We allow flexibility in working patterns, between 7 and 10 weeks to a maximum of 245 hours in total.

What’s it like doing a REP with Scenario?

Photo of male studentVitor Ferreira was a REP student in 2022

I applied for a REP because I wanted to use the skills that have gained throughout my degree and get involved in real research environments.

The project offered to me was entitled “Transforming Research Visualisation in Ecology with Interactive Graphics” and the aim was to analyse studies that modeled biodiversity loss, achieving a broad synthesis of the field and identify knowledge gaps. For that, I did a systematic mapping of the literature by collating studies that looked at interactions between ecological drivers or used generalised linear models, to analyse temporal change in biodiversity and objectively code these studies according to their methodical decisions, results visualisation and interpretations. The final aim of the project was to develop an R Shiny app to improve interpretation, transferability and transparency in ecological research with interactive graphics.

This experience have exposed me to a wide range of research that improved my critical skills, consolidated my knowledge on statistical modelling and increased my passion for data science and visualisation applied to ecology. Moreover, I was always surrounded by great researchers and exciting discussions that definitely have encouraged me for a career in research.

Equality Diversity and Inclusion

The University of Reading is committed to having a diverse and inclusive workforce, supports the gender equality Athena SWAN Charter and the Race Equality Charter, and is a Diversity Champion for Stonewall, the leading LGBT+ rights organisation.

NERC feedback is that some student groups are typically underrepresented within the Higher Education pathways including (but not limited to) students from ethnic minorities, those with a disability or from low-income backgrounds, and we welcome applications from these student groups.

SCENARIO is committed to widening the diversity of our student cohorts.


Applicants should:

  • be undertaking their first undergraduate degree studies (or integrated Masters). Note: students in their final year who have graduated and no longer have student status at the time of the placement are not eligible.

How to Apply

The application portal for Summer 2024 placements will open early May, 2024 .

You’ll find a step-by-step guide to the application process in Application Submission Flow Chart.

We aim to let you know the outcome of your application shortly after the closure date.  There is no interview process. To help reduce unconscious bias, applications are anonymised before being assessed.

For more information please contact:

Your feedback

To help us improve our applications process, please complete this Feedback Form  This will also be sent to your email after submitting your application successfully. Your feedback is really important and will not be used as part of the application process.