ESRC Wales DTP PhD studentships in Social Sciences

Key facts

Application deadline 1 February 2018
Start date 1 October 2018
Duration 3-4 years full-time or 5-6 years part-time
Funding body ESRC
Level of study Postgraduate research
Award type PhD studentship

The School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University, supported by the ESRC Doctoral Training Partnership for Wales (Wales DTP), invites applications for PhD study, with the possibility of being awarded a fully-funded ESRC DTP Studentship, available to start in October 2018.

We expect to make doctoral studentship awards in the areas of:

  • Criminology
  • Digital Economy and Society
  • Education
  • Science and Technology Studies
  • Social Work and Social Care
  • Sociology
  • Social Policy.

The award is available on either a 1+3 or +3 basis. A 1+3 studentship provides funding for four years (or part-time equivalent), completing a research training Masters in the 1st year, followed by 3 years research funding for a PhD. A +3 studentship provides funding for the three years PhD research study only (or part-time equivalent).


This studentship is ‘open’ awards. Applicants should consider approaching a potential supervisor before submitting their application to confirm that there is appropriate supervisory capacity within the University and to discuss their draft application.

Information on the research interests of our staff can be found here. Short descriptions of each accredited pathway are available on the ESRC Wales DTP website.

The pathway convener for each of the pathways may be able to advise you. They are:


PhD and MPhil programmes

Funding details

Tuition fee support Full UK/EU tuition fees
Maintenance stipend Doctoral stipend matching UK Research Council National Minimum
Additional funding offered Research Training Support Grant (RTSG) are also available. There are other opportunities and benefits available to studentship holders, including an overseas fieldwork allowance (if applicable), internship opportunities, overseas institutional visits and other small grants.

Eligibility criteria

Residency UK Research Council eligibility conditions apply
Academic criteria

This ESRC studentship is highly competitive, candidates should have an excellent academic background in the social sciences, holding a 1st or strong upper 2nd class degree; applications from those also holding a relevant research training Masters degree (or an equivalent background in research training) will be considered for a +3 award.

If English is not your first language, you will need to have achieved at least an overall score of 7.0  in IELTS (or approved equivalent) by the start of the programme.


PhD and MPhil programmes

Consideraton is automatic upon application for admission to Doctor of Philosophy in Social Sciences with a October 2018 start date.

The application form must contain the following documents:

  • Covering letter: Please address to Dr Teresa de Villiers, Director of Postgraduate Studies. The covering letter must set out your reasons and motivation for applying to study at Cardiff University, and the School of Social Sciences; your understanding, and expectations of doctoral study; and your academic interests generally, and particularly of those relating to your proposed research. The covering letter should be no more than 2 pages. Please note that all studentships are available on a +3 or 1+3 basis full-time, or part-time pro-rata. Please specify +3 or 1+3 and which pathway you will be applying to; Criminology, Digital Economy and Society, Education, Science and Technology Studies, Sociology, Social Policy, Social Work and Social Care.
  • Academic/ professional qualifications: Academic certificates and transcripts must be submitted with the online admissions application by the application deadline. Where relevant, this should also include proof of English Language Competency.
  • References: All applications require two academic references to be submitted in support. Candidates must approach referees themselves and request a reference to be submitted. Please use our referee form and should be sent to when complete. Please ensure your chosen referees are aware of the application deadline, as we will be using these to help us evaluate your ESRC studentship application.
  • Miscellaneous information: Candidates may use this section to add their CV. This should include details of academic achievement and any other material relevant to the application. It should be no longer than two pages.
  • Research proposal: Applicants should use the ‘Research Proposal’ section of the application form to set out their doctoral thesis and project in summary. The proposal should be up to a maximum of 1,000 words, not including references. We suggest that you use the following four headings in your research proposal:
    1. Aims and purpose of the research
    2. Overview of the academic literature relevant to your field
    3. Proposed methodology
    4. Academic contributions of your research
    5. References

Where the form requests a personal statement, please leave this section blank.

We reserve the right to close applications early should sufficient applications be received.


PhD and MPhil programmes

Funding opportunity provided by:

Meet us at our Information Fair on 22 February 2018.

Eligible research programmes