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PhD Studentship

Definition of the Diabetes UK PhD Studentship

To enable experienced researchers to recruit outstanding science graduates to study for a PhD in the field of diabetes-related research. Applications are particularly encouraged from those aspiring to join the next generation of talented independent investigators interested in continuing a career in diabetes research. 

Studentships are awarded annually, by open competition. A key aim of our research strategy is to help a new generation build life-long careers in diabetes research and therefore awards are made to projects that have clear relevance to the aims of our research strategy and provide training in diabetes research within a supportive environment.

Please note that one studentship will be funded in partnership with the Masonic Charitable Foundation.

Financial support

Studentships are for a duration of three years.

Research expenses include a stipend, student fees and consumables.


The stipend offered is as follows for studentships starting October 2019:

Student fees

Tuition fees are paid by us upon receipt of an invoice, which must be sent at the end of each grant year.


Materials and consumables

Support for materials and consumables can be requested and should not exceed £10,000 per annum. Costs associated with travel and registration for conferences may also be requested in addition to the budget. These must be fully justified and will be agreed by the Review Panel.


Applications must be from potential supervisors only.

Supervisors must be able to show that they have a full-time position at a UK-based institution for the lifetime of the grant. We will not accept applications from potential students themselves.

Please ensure that more than one supervisor is on an application and that funding details are provided for all supervisors


The Diabetes UK PhD Studentship scheme is advertised in the scientific/medical press in March of each year and has an annual deadline of 31 August.

How to apply

Administrative processes

The remote Panel

Applications are sent to a remote Panel comprised of members of the Research Committee. PhD Studentship applications will not be externally peer reviewed. The remote Panel assess applications and make recommendations for funding.

Decisions are usually made by January the next year. Applicants will be notified as to the success of their application by email and letter.

Due to the high volume of applications submitted to this scheme we are unable to provide individual feedback on applications.

Assessment criteria

Applications are judged on the following criteria:

  • Relevance of project to diabetes
  • Supervisor’s training record
  • Suitability of project for PhD training
  • Scientific quality of proposed project

Recruitment post-award

Awarded supervisors should begin recruiting for the studentship post-award. Please note that the CV of potential students must be submitted for approval to Diabetes UK before appointment is made and students are expected to hold a degree (classification minimum 2:1) or equivalent.

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