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Benefits for current DTC students

As a current DTC student, you are able to benefit from a number of opportunities both at Cambridge and nationally.

 

Research Training Support Grant (RTSG)

All DTC students (except those in an MPhil year) automatically receive £300 p.a. as an allowance towards research training costs. Your RTSG allowance is handled by your Department, not the DTC Office; your Graduate Administrator will be able to advise you on how to access your RTSG.

 

Cambridge ESRC DTC Discretionary Fund

Over the course of their studentship ESRC DTC PhD students may apply for some financial support from the ESRC DTC Discretionary Fund to support additional activities in their PhD:

  • Collaborative opportunities
  • Additional funding for research training (over and above your RTSG allowance)
  • Overseas Fieldwork
  • Difficult Language Training
  • Overseas Institutional Visit (OIV)

ESRC DTC Discretionary Fund guidance for students and supervisors is available here. Please read the guidance carefully before submitting an application.

Please note that the ESRC DTC will usually only be able to offer partial assistance so we strongly recommend investigating other possible sources of funding with your Department and College. 

 

How to apply

To access the online application forms please click here.

 

Application deadlines

Applications are reviewed on a termly basis (with the exception of support for OIVs which is awarded in an annual competition) and the application deadlines are:

Michaelmas term 2017:        1 November 2017

Lent term 2018:                    7 February 2018

Easter Term 2018:                16 May 2018

If your request for assistance is urgent, applications can be considered outside the usual timetable.  Please submit your application online in the usual way but please let the ESRC DTC office know by that it requires urgent review.

 

More information about the activities supported by the ESRC DTC Discretionary Fund

 

Collaborative opportunities

The ESRC DTC works in partnership with the private, public and civil society sectors to provide opportunities for DTC students to undertake collaborative activities (such as internships and placements) within non-academic organisations.

Students may apply for support with the direct costs of undertaking internships and placements. 

Once you have completed your collaborative activity, you must provide a short report to be posted on this website; the report proforma can be downloaded here.

 

Additional funding for research training

Funding is available to cover any direct research training costs over and above your personal RTSG allowance.  Costs that may be considered include:

  • UK fieldwork expenses
  • UK, EU and overseas conferences (restrictions apply) and summer schools
  • language training courses usually undertaken in the UK prior to an overseas fieldwork trip
  • reimbursement of interpreters, guides, assistants
  • survey costs e.g. printing, stationery, telephone calls
  • purchase of small items of equipment e.g. cameras, tape recorders, films, cassettes
  • gifts for local informants
  • books and other reading material not available through libraries

Discretionary Funding is not available for laptops (and other computer equipment) and specialist clothing.

 

Overseas Fieldwork

Students may apply for help towards the direct costs of overseas fieldwork for their research project. 

Please read the guidance on Overseas Fieldwork and Difficult Language Training before making your application.

 

Difficult Language Training

Students may apply for assistance towards the direct costs of Difficult Language Training. 

Please read the guidance on Overseas Fieldwork and Difficult Language Training before making your application.

 

Overseas Institutional Visit (OIV)

An OIV can help you to acquire language skills; develop research links beneficial to your current of future academic plans; undertake specialist research training not available in the UK; or boost your opportunities for engagement, by participating in seminars or other dissemination activities directly relevant to your PhD project. The ESRC DTC will normally support up to two students per year, to be awarded competitively in a single competition. 

Upon your return from an OIV you must provide a short report to be posted on this website; the report proforma can be downloaded here.

The 2017 competition is now closed for visits taking place 1 June 2017 - 31 May 2018.  The 2018 competition will open in January 2018.

 

Next steps

Students should seek support from their Supervisor and permission from their Degree Committee to undertake additional activities during their PhD. Please note that the Student Registry is not able to make any ESRC DTC Discretionary Fund award payments unless permission has been sought and approved, as outlined below.    

Your thesis submission deadline will not be changed, with the exception of collaborative activities.  If you feel that you will need additional time in which to complete your thesis you must apply for an extension to your submission deadline.  Information on how to do this can be found here.

ESRC DTC Discretionary Fund application

How should I seek permission from my Degree Committee?

Will my ESRC DTC Studentship be affected?

Collaborative opportunities  

(internships, placements)

Please apply for intermission.

 

Normally your studentship will be extended to take the duration of your activity into account (subject to the time limits outlined here).  You will receive a letter from the Student Registry confirming your new end date.

Your thesis submission deadline will also be extended.

Additional funding for research training

(where awarded to support UK fieldwork or conference, convention or summer school attendance)

Please apply to work away.

Please note that you must have an approved risk assessment and adequate insurance in place.

 

Normally your studentship will be unchanged.

Overseas Fieldwork

Please apply to work away.

Please note that you must have an approved risk assessment and adequate insurance in place.

 

Your studentship will be unchanged.

Difficult Language Training

Please apply to work away.

Please note that you must have an approved risk assessment and adequate insurance in place.

 

Normally your studentship will be extended to take the duration of your activity into account (subject to the time limits outlined here).  You will receive a letter from the Student Registry confirming your new end date.

 

Overseas Institutional Visit

Please apply to work away.

Please note that you must have an approved risk assessment and adequate insurance in place.

 

Normally your studentship will be extended to take the duration of your activity into account (subject to the time limits outlined here).  You will receive a letter from the Student Registry confirming your new end date.

 

Important points to note:

  • You may apply for funding for different activities over the course of your studentship but the discretionary fund will not normally award more than £4,000 in total to any individual student.
  • Retrospective applications for funding cannot be considered under any circumstances.
  • A statement of support from your Supervisor is required for all applications.
  • Food and subsistence expenses are not eligible unless you are able to demonstrate these costs are over and above your usual living expenses while in Cambridge.
  • The ESRC DTC will usually only be able to offer partial assistance so we strongly recommend investigating other possible sources of funding with your Department and College.  Your Supervisor may also be able to suggest other sources of funding.
  • The ESRC DTC Management Group considers each application on a case-by-case basis.
  • The ESRC requires receipts for the total amount awarded; please retain all original receipts and submit them to the Student Registry upon your return with this form. If you are not able to provide exact receipts you will be required to return this portion of your award. Please contact the with any questions.
  • Please note that where required, the Student Registry uses OANDA currency converter https://www.oanda.com/currency/converter/ . Any conversions are calculated at the date of purchase provided on the supporting receipt.

  

Social Sciences Research Methods Centre [SSRMC]

The SSRMC caters for Masters and PhD students. DTC students taking a research preparation Masters year will study many of the core research methods modules offered by the SSRMC. However, the full extent of opportunities available is much greater than the core elements, and DTC students are encouraged to make full use of the SSRMC training programmes to achieve a broad exposure to social science methods.

For further information please see http://www.ssrmc.group.cam.ac.uk/

 

Advanced Training Network

Every ESRC Doctoral Training Centre contributes to a national Advanced Training Network which means that DTC students may access training opportunities at other Universities. They can attend any sessions offered through the network at a capped rate of £30, although many DTCs waive costs for DTC students.

For further information please see http://consultation.ncrm.ac.uk/index.php where you will be able to search for training courses by date, region and type.

 

PhD Partnerships

The Cambridge DTC has an exchange scheme with Rinmen University, sponsored by the subject pathways in Management Studies and Land Economy.

A number of Departments associated with the DTC have collaborative arrangements in place with international partners, and opportunities for exchange.

 

ESRC student conferences

ESRC is keen to help its students form professional networks and learn from each other. Annual conferences for first year students and final year students bring together a community of DTC students from across the UK and offer advice and guidance on doctoral study, social science career opportunities and information about ESRC. Further details are available from http://www.esrc.ac.uk/funding-and-guidance/postgraduates/student-conference/index.aspx

 

ESRC Media training

ESRC runs a number of media training courses for all social science researchers. Opportunities currently available are described at http://www.esrc.ac.uk/funding-and-guidance/impact-toolkit/tools/media/Media-training-for-esrc-funded-researchers.aspx

You can find more information at http://www.esrc.ac.uk/skills-and-careers/studentships/esrc-students/additional-funding-and-other-opportunities