How to Apply for Students

UPDATE: We’re now open to student applications for the GW4 BioMed2 MRC DTP October 2023 (cohort 2) intake! The closing date is 5pm on Wednesday, 2nd November 2022. Please read all the information below before completing an application.

What We Offer

The GW4 BioMed2 MRC DTP operates across four research-intensive universities (Bath, Bristol, Cardiff and Exeter) providing students within our programme access to the combined research strengths, training expertise and resources of each institution. Many DTP projects are co-supervised across two or more of these universities, allowing students to join existing and emerging research partnerships

The GW4 BioMed2 MRC DTP offers competitive, fully-funded studentships in one of our three research themes:

All projects within our programme reflect on the collective strengths of the DTP:

  • Quantitative skills (including mathematical modelling)
  • Using data for discovery
  • Interdisciplinary skills and approaches (including physics, engineering, chemistry and health economics)

Students in the GW4 BioMed2 MRC DTP have access to a broad range of training opportunities across all four universities. In addition we provide bespoke training specific to students within the DTP, that spans the three strands of our training programme including research skills, professional and career development skills and opportunities to broaden horizons.


Key Documents

2023/24 Student Application Form Sample

Overseas Degree Equivalency Table

GW4 BioMed2 MRCDTP – Full List of Available Projects 2023-24

2023/24 Application Timeline


Application Timeline

Friday 2nd September 2022 – Wednesday 2nd November 2022 Projects advertised for student applications
Tuesday 20th September 20221pm – 2pm Candidate Support Webinar. Register to attend here
Thursday 22nd September 20223.30pm – 4.30pmCandidate Support Webinar. Register to attend here
Monday, 10th October 202210am-11amCandidate Support Webinar. Register to attend here
Wednesday 2nd November 2022By 5pmStudent application deadline
Tuesday 8th November 2022 – Monday 12th December 2022Panel triages, scores and shortlists applicants
Thursday 15th December 20221pm – 3pmStudent shortlisting panel
Friday 16th December 2022By 5 pmDTP notifies candidates and supervisors of successful applications
Friday 20th January 2023By 9 amSupervisor interviews all candidates by this date
Friday 20th January 2023By 9 amCandidates send references and transcripts to the DTP
Wednesday 25th January and Thursday 26th January 2023DTP interviews
Wednesday 1st February 20231pm –3pmStudent shortlisting panel
Thursday 2nd February 2023 – mid March 2023Clearing period
w/c Monday 25th September 2023Local induction events
Sunday 1st October 2023Official funding start date

How to Apply

Students can apply to the GW4 BioMed2 MRC DTP online beginning Friday 2nd September 2022 using this online form. Applications will be accepted until 5pm on Wednesday, 2nd November 2022.

HELP IS AVAILABLE! Candidate Support Webinars

To support your application we are holding three live webinars that will provide an overview on what doing a PhD entails and, in particular, what the GW4 BioMed2 MRC DTP can offer you. We will also spend time on how applications are assessed and provide information on what is expected within each section of the online application form. We recommend attending one of the sessions before you submit your application. You can register to attend one of the sessions via the links in the timetable above or here below, pick the date that is the most convenient for you.

  • Tuesday, 20th September, 1.00pm to 2.00pm GMT – closed
  • Thursday, 22nd September, 3.30pm to 4.30pm GMT – closed
  • Monday, 10th October, 10.00am to 11.00am GMT, register here

Later in the year we will also be holding a webinar to support those candidates who are invited to interview. We will contact shortlisted candidates with further details at the beginning of January.

Here are the presentation slides for the candidate support webinars for information for those who are unable to attend one of the scheduled sessions.


Eligibility

GW4 BioMed2 MRC DTP studentships are available to UK and International applicants. Following Brexit, the UKRI now classifies EU students as international unless they have rights under the EU Settlement Scheme.

The GW4 partners have all agreed to cover the difference in cost between home and international tuition fees.  This means that international candidates will not be expected to cover this cost and will be fully funded but need to be aware that they will be required to cover the cost of their student visa, healthcare surcharges and other costs of moving to the UK to do a PhD.

Importantly:

  • All studentships will be competitively awarded
  • There is a limit to the number of international students we can accept onto our programme (up to 30% cap across our partnership per annum)

Academic Requirements

Applicants for a studentship must have obtained, or be about to obtain, a UK degree, or the equivalent qualification gained outside the UK, in an appropriate area of medical sciences, computing, mathematics or the physical sciences. Please check the entry requirements of the home institution for each project of interest before completing an application. Academic qualifications are considered alongside any significant relevant non-academic experience.


English Language Requirements

If English is not your first language, you will need to meet the English language requirements of the university that will host your PhD by the start of your programme. Please refer to the relevant university guidance for further information on these requirements via the link here Bath, Bristol, Cardiff and Exeter.


Funding

A GW4 BioMed2 MRC DTP studentship includes full tuition fees at the UK/Home rate, a stipend at the minimum UKRI rate, a Research & Training Support Grant (RTSG) valued between £2-5k per year and a £300 annual travel and conference grant based on a 4 year, full-time studentship.

Part-time study is also available and these funding arrangements will be adjusted pro-rata for part-time studentships. Throughout the duration of the studentship, there will be opportunities to apply to the Flexible Funding Supplement for additional support to engage in high-cost training opportunities.


The Application Process

To begin a GW4 BioMed2 MRC DTP studentship, applicants must secure an offer of funding from the DTP and an offer of study from the home institution of the project for which the applicant was granted funding.

Stage 1: Applying to the DTP for an Offer of Funding

  1. Select your projects from the project descriptions available on this website. You may select up to two projects in your application.
  2. Submit your application using this online form before 5pm on Wednesday, 2nd November 2022.
  3. Student shortlisting is conducted in a blind review of studentship applications by theme-specific panels. Up to 60 top candidates who emerge from this deliberation will be invited to interview.
  4. Informal, virtual meetings will be arranged by the successfully shortlisted candidates with the lead supervisors of each project to which they have applied before the formal interview.
  5. Formal interviews will occur virtually by theme-specific panels including representatives from each GW4 institution on Wednesday 25th January and Thursday 26th January 2023.
  6. Student selection for up to 20 funded studentships occurs after the formal interviews. Projects are allocated based on the rank of the successful candidates, therefore, it is not always possible to offer an applicant their first-choice project.
  7. A clearing period will follow until approximately mid-March 2023 until all places have been offered and accepted. For this reason, it is not possible to provide immediate interview results to shortlisted applicants.

Stage 2: Applying to the lead institution for an Offer of Study

Once you have been offered a studentship with the GW4 BioMed2 MRC DTP, you will need to apply for an Offer of Study at the home institution of your lead supervisor.

Applicants for any of our projects should apply to the DTP first to secure an offer of funding. Once an offer of funding is issued by the DTP, you will receive more information on submitting a formal application to the relevant institution, guided by the DTP and local admin contacts.

Selection Criteria

Your online application form will be evaluated against the following criteria:

Proven academic quality: normally evidenced by an excellent performance to first degree and/or Master’s level but may also be demonstrated by an equivalent, high quality provision of evidence related to professional practice.
Research potential: evidenced through examples of achievement within academia/research related projects and outside of academia, evidencing relevant skills.
Personal motivation and commitment: evidenced through supporting statement of understanding, motivation and suitability for their first choice project and by their wider enthusiasm, interest and commitment to the MRC DTP programme.
Non-biomedical disciplines: In line with supporting interdisciplinary and quantitative skills, special consideration will be given by the interview panels to non-biomedical applicants. Such candidates should not feel the selection criteria are biased towards biomedical applicants as their unique skills will be taken into account.

Candidates selected for interview will be evaluated against the following criteria:

Critical thinking assessed via discussion of a student-selected piece of data
Fit with the project: The interview panel will evaluate the candidate’s aptitude and understanding of the key issues in the project, supported by feedback from informal meetings with the potential lead supervisor.
Personal commitment & motivation

Contacts

If you have any queries about the GW4 BioMed2 MRC DTP or about applying for an Offer of Funding, you can get in touch with the DTP Team by emailing GW4BioMed@cardiff.ac.uk.

If you have any questions about applying for an Offer of Study, you can get in touch with the administrative team at your home institution:

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