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ESRC Studentship in Public Health Research

7 March 2012

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School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University

Deadline: 12 Noon, Tuesday 10th April

In addition to the general announcement of ESRC Doctoral Studentships in Cardiff School of Social Sciences at Cardiff University commencing in 2012, applications are being sought for a three-year (‘+3’) full time PhD Studentship, funded jointly by the MRC Doctoral Training Grant and the ESRC Doctoral Training Centre for Wales (Wales DTC)

DECIPHer is a UKCRC Public Health Research Centre of Excellence, the funders of which are ESRC, Wellcome, MRC, CR-UK, BHF, Welsh Government. Students located within DECIPHer are allocated 2 or 3 supervisors from across multiple disciplines and the emphasis on their training is to develop a trajectory towards multidisciplinary applied research in health improvement. 

The School of Social Sciences has an international reputation across a number of disciplines and fields and was ranked number one in the UK for social sciences ‘research power’ in the most recent Research Assessment Exercise.

The studentship topic should be linked to one of DECIPHer’s strategic research programmes, that on multiple risk behaviours. Applications will be particularly welcome from candidates with a social science background (education, sociology, geography, psychology), and quantitative methods will be emphasised in project and training plans.

Candidates may suggest a specific topic and suggested topic areas include:

  • Clusters of risk behaviours and their determinants in peer relationships, families and/or schools
  • Family meal time as an important determinant of adolescent risk behaviour
  • Assessing the relationship between deprivation and health behaviour across the adolescent life course
  • Social networks and adolescent physical activity and/or diet
  • Data linkage of the HBSC survey and routinely collected health and education data to identify relationships between emotional health and well being, health behaviours and school performance
  • Peer mentoring and peer education in schools to improve pupils’ health and wellbeing
  • Engaging parents in school based health improvement programmes.

The studentship will commence in September 2012 and will cover tuition fees as well as a maintenance grant and an additional Research Training Support Grant (RTSG) for three years for full-time students. In 2011 the maintenance grant for full-time students was £13,590 and the RTSG was £750, but the award levels for 2012 have yet to be published by the ESRC. An enhanced stipend may be available for an exceptional candidate.


UK and EU students who meet residency requirements set out by the ESRC. Please consult the ESRC Postgraduate Funding Guide for full details on residential eligibility requirements.

This award is made on a +3 basis only. A +3 studentship provides funding for the three years only, and assumes that the applicant will already have had research training from an appropriate master’s degree.

How to Apply

Applicants must complete and submit the following documentation by the deadline of 12.00pm, 23rd March 2012. Note that the deadline is absolute and applications received after this specified time and date will not be accepted. 

A completed application form for admission to doctoral study in the School of Social Sciences – submitted to the Academic Registry via the online admissions portal.

(Please specify a PhD in Social Sciences with a start date of October 2012)

Academic References – all admissions applications require two references to be submitted in support. Please ensure that your chosen referees are aware of the funding deadline, as we will be using these to help us evaluate your ESRC studentship application.

Academic Transcripts – where applicable, academic transcripts must be submitted with the online admissions application by the funding deadline. We will be using these to verify your academic qualifications.

Applicants should also complete the ‘Research Proposal’ and ‘Personal Statement’ sections of the application form, but are strongly encouraged to speak to Professor Moore before doing so.

If you have any queries about the application process, these should be directed to Vicky Parkin at

Further Details

Applicants may contact Professor Laurence Moore to discuss any of these topic areas:

Tel: 02920 875 387

For further information about the application process, contact Vicky Parkin:

Tel: 029 20 870855


Research Degrees at the Cardiff School of Social Sciences