Studentship information for supervisors

This information about STFC studentship awards is for supervisors, Training Grant Co-ordinators and administrative officers at research organisations (universities, institutions or other independent research organisations eligible to receive research council funding).

Students should read our information for students.

STFC postgraduate studentships enable promising scientists and engineers to continue training beyond a first degree. All studentship projects supported through STFC funding must fall within STFC remit.

Types of training

STFC fund Doctoral Training Partnerships, Centres for Doctoral Training and Industrial CASE Studentships.

Find out more about the types of studentship awards and summer schools for students.


Find out more about the payments made to students and research organisations.

Overseas fieldwork

STFC studentship training grants are awarded with unit costs for short term overseas fieldwork. In addition departments can apply for Long Term Attachment funding.

Find out more about overseas fieldwork and LTA application process.

Rules and regulations

Training grants

Doctoral Training Partnership studentships and CASE studentships will be awarded to research organisation departments in the form of a training grant.

Training grants are awarded under terms and conditions that have been agreed cross council. UKRI have issued a guide to training grants that you should read with the terms and conditions.

All studentships funded from the training grant are subject to the terms and conditions set out in this document.

Acceptance of PhD studentships

STFC strongly recommends that prospective students should not be placed under undue pressure by departments to accept PhD places within short timescales. Therefore students should not be compelled to accept offers of PhD places prior to 4:00pm UK time on 31 March each year. Any prospective student subjected to pressure to accept a PhD place prior to the 31 March deadline is advised to email studentships at

In the efficient matching of students to available PhD places it is unhelpful if students keep multiple offers open until the 31 March deadline. Students should therefore aim to decide promptly (within two weeks) when they receive more than one offer and reject all but the one most favoured at that point. The rejected studentships can then be offered by departments to other students without having to wait until the deadline.

Accreditation of training quality

STFC requires greater assurance over the quality of the training a department provides for their students before allocating studentships to the department.

The current method of allocating studentships is by algorithm. To be entered into the algorithm, departments are requested to apply for accreditation of their training provision ahead of each studentship allocation every second year.

An application for accreditation is assessed by the Education,Training and Careers Committee (ETCC) on a simple pass or fail basis against a set of criteria drawn from STFC’s current expectations of student training. Departments are asked to respond to a set of structured questions, derived from the criteria, to enable the assessment to be made. The ETCC assess each of the five categories:

  • training environment
  • quality of training
  • quality of supervision
  • careers advice
  • recruitment.

Departments passing accreditation are entered into the algorithm in the normal way. Any that do not pass accreditation will not receive an allocation that time.

STFC PhD studentship allocation for 2023

Departments eligible for an STFC studentship quota will continue to be those with core research activity in the areas of astronomy, solar system science, particle physics, accelerator science and nuclear physics.

Read more about the STFC PhD Studentship quota allocations for 2023.

Contact us

If you need any more information you can ask us.


Last updated: 27 July 2023

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