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NIHR School for Social Care Research PhD Scholarship based at the University of Birmingham


   School of Social Policy

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  Prof C Needham  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

The Department of Social Work and Social Care is recruiting to one PhD scholarship, starting in late September 2022. A start of January 2023 could also be considered. 

This Scholarship aims to support a promising researcher in the field of adult social care practice. Applications will be considered for research on any aspect of English adult social care practice that is consistent with the NIHR School for Social Care Research (SSCR)’s priorities. We are keen to support proposals that demonstrate originality – perhaps in terms of exploring innovative approaches to engaging with citizens and communities or in terms of applying new theoretical or methodological approaches.

The scholarship is available to a candidate of high academic calibre who wishes to conduct doctoral level study on a topic within the research areas of the SSCR. A successful applicant will be expected to have a good undergraduate degree, minimum of a 2:1. They should also hold, or expect to achieve, a good Masters degree (preferably at a distinction level) in a relevant subject. As part of the Department of Social Work and Social Care's commitment to improving social work research capacity, candidates with social work qualifications are encouraged to apply, although practice experience is not essential. 

We encourage applications from women and those of diverse backgrounds, including Black, Asian and minority ethnic candidates, as these groups are underrepresented across the University of Birmingham. 

Applications will be assessed on (a) the quality of the student’s academic achievements and preparedness for doctoral level study; (b) the quality of the research proposal; (c) the potential to contribute to cutting edge research; and (d) the match of the proposal to areas of research strength within the School. Since we are particularly keen to build on existing areas of research strength, all applicants are strongly advised to contact potential supervisors and to discuss their proposal with them prior to online submission.

How to apply

Potential candidates should apply to undertake a PhD in Social Work and Social Care at the University of Birmingham, and indicate when applying that they want to be considered for this studentship. See here for guidance on the application process.

As part of preparing the application please make contact with potential supervisors. Professor Catherine Needham will be able to direct you to potential supervisors.

The deadline for applications is Thursday 21 July.

Applicants that already hold an offer of a place on the PhD programme are able to apply, please discuss with Professor Catherine Needham whether this would be a suitable studentship for you.

About the funder

The studentship will be funded by the National Institute for Health Research's School for Social Care Research (NIHR SSCR).

The doctoral student will be required to conduct research relevant to adult social care practice in England and in line with the SSCR Business Plan.

The successful applicant will be expected to participate in activities organised by NIHR SSCR, particularly activities that involve other PhD students funded under this programme at other universities, and, as appropriate, other National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) and NIHR Academy activities.


Funding Notes

A full scholarship covers Home fees (£4,656 p.a.) plus a living allowance (stipend) of £15,500 per annum for three years, subject to satisfactory progress. For international applicants a full scholarship equates normally to £20,156 per annum for three years, covering most of the fees (£21,300 p.a.). Additional support (for travel, conference attendance, general research expenses) will also be available.

How good is research at University of Birmingham in Social Work and Social Policy?


Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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