How to apply

The Grand Union DTP will be awarding more than 35 studentships each year, which will be available across all pathways.

Studentships will be awarded through open competition. Pathways will assess all applications and nominate their strongest candidates for consideration by a panel looking across the DTP. As part of this competition, four Advanced Quantitative Methods (AQM) studentships will be awarded.

If you are interested in applying for an ESRC studentship at the Grand Union DTP for entry in 2021-22, these are the steps you need to take:

Grand Union studentships are linked to training pathways, so you should first review the Pathway pages to see which is most relevant for your proposed research project. The DTP offers different different training routes or structures depending on your previous experience. If you are unsure which is the most appropriate pathway or training route, please contact the relevant Pathway Lead or your potential supervisor for advice. 

The names and contact details of the pathway leads are available on the Pathway pages.

    Submit an application to the university which hosts the programme you wish to follow. In the case of a route though a pathway which involves an MSc at Oxford followed by a PhD elsewhere, your University application should be submitted to Oxford, however you should first contact the relevant pathway lead to discuss your application.

    Please note that the application deadlines for programmes may differ both across institutions and within them. In addition to the general application deadline information below, please ensure that you refer to the individual programme pages and university application information pages for further information on the applicable deadlines.

    Brunel University: For further information and how to apply please see Funded Research Degree Opportunities and Research Degrees - Grand Union DTP. Please contact with any queries.

    The Open University: See Research degrees - how to apply. The application deadline is Tuesday 12th January 2021; please contact with any queries.

    Oxford University: See the graduate admissions guide Applying to Oxford for full details. To be considered for a Grand Union award at Oxford you will need to do the following:

    •  Apply by the relevant January deadline for your course, either 12 noon UK time on Friday 8th January 2021 or Friday 22nd January 2021, depending on programme. Please ensure you confirm the correct deadline on the University admissions pages, as late applications will not be accepted.
    • Select 'ESRC Grand Union DTP Studentships in Social Sciences' in the University of Oxford scholarships section of the University's graduate application form. 
    • Upload a completed Grand Union application form with your University application, which can be found on the University's Research Council Studentships page.
    • Applicants wishing to be considered for the Migration pathway must also indicate their interest by contacting the relevant office. Details are available on the Migration Studies pathway pages. 

    In order to be considered for a studentship you must complete a Grand Union DTP Application Form. If you are applying to Oxford or the Open University you must submit the form along with your University application materials before the relevant application deadline. For Brunel University, the DTP Manager will be able to advise on the application process. 

    If your chosen supervisor and/or pathway think your application is strong enough to put forward for an ESRC award, they will prepare a nomination form to support their case, highlighting the strengths of your project, relevant aspects of your career record to date and your suitability for doctoral research, comments from your referees, and why your project fits well in your pathway.

    Each pathway puts forward a number of such nominations, and ranks them in order of merit. These are then reviewed by the Grand Union DTP Awards panel*, who will consider the information provided on the pathway nomination form, Grand Union DTP application form, and University application materials. This is a fully open competition across our partnership, and a single ranking of candidates is produced.

    *Nominations are assessed by a panel composed of academic members of staff drawn from the three institutions within the partnership, irrespective of which institution an application for study has been made to. For further information on how your data is used by the partnership, please see the data protection notice page