Careers Service


Find additional funding during your postgraduate degree

Academic/research funding

If you are aiming at an academic career, winning funding or prizes can:

  • Demonstrate that you are a high calibre researcher who can compete effectively against your peers.
  • Develop your skills in writing persuasively to a defined academic brief.
  • Place you on the academic map of those judging the prize or funding bid.
  • Depending on what the prize is, give you more freedom to attend conferences, visit other institutions - or buy that new laptop you need.

Check the eligibility criteria carefully - many awards will only be open to those currently undertaking doctoral (or even post-doctoral) research, or to students from a specific country or region.

Employer/Non-academic competitions

In addition to academic awards, non-academic employers and other organisations occasionally run competitions aimed at specific groups of students, including some targeted exclusively at Masters or PhDs.

Many business or technical competitions require team entries - make friends with other postgraduates who want to compete!

There is no definitive list of employer/non-academic competitions - they are often launched at short notice, they may not run every year, and are often targeted towards a particular career or technical discipline. However, some good research skills may uncover your ideal opportunity:

  • Try an online search, using the terms 'student competition'. Add your discipline or target career if you want a more focused list.
  • Student Competitions' website does seem to have a good list of some of the big global student competitions. It is not fully comprehensive though - there are many more competitions available, particularly those based just in the UK or for non-commercial organisations.
  • Keep your eyes peeled, particularly at the start of the academic year when many UK-based competitions are launched - and consider signing up to Twitter to spot news of these competitions as soon as they are announced.

Funding for further postgraduate study

The resources above are mainly aimed at providing additional funding for those who are already funded for their postgraduate degree.

If you are a Masters postgraduate (or doctoral researcher) looking to fund a further postgraduate degree: