Polar and Alpine Change Research Scholarship

Applications for entry in 2023/4 are invited from Home students who are graduates/graduands of our Polar and Alpine Change Masters programme and who, in the course of that programme, received a distinction mark for their dissertation project (GEO6668 or GEO6999).

Image of a glacier

Applications will be assessed on the basis of academic success and qualifications, experience, research background, a clear well-articulated research proposal, the potential impact of the research, and fit with the expertise of the supervisor or the department.

Applications for 2023 entry are now open

This scholarship provides academically excellent Home students who are graduates or graduands* of our Polar and Alpine Change Masters programme with the opportunity to study fully-funded for a PhD at the University of Sheffield. The scholarship is supported by the Department of Geography.

The research to be undertaken for the PhD can be in any area of Polar and Alpine Change, though applications will be assessed partly on fit with expertise of the supervisor or the department and therefore it is recommended strongly that applicants discuss their project idea with an appropriate staff member prior to application. The scholarship will fund stipend and tuition fees for 3.5 years, and includes access to a Research Support and Training Grant (see below).

*Students who have completed study on the programme and are awaiting the formal conferment of their degree as part of a graduation ceremony.

Award details

The award includes:

  • Tuition fees (UK only) and a full maintenance stipend at the UKRI rate (currently £17,668 for 2022/23) for up to three and a half years full-time study (seven years part-time study), subject to satisfactory progress
  • Access to Research and Training Support funds for conference, field and other expenses to the value of £8,000 for the duration of the stipend and tuition-fee paying period

Part-time studentships are paid at 50% of the full-time rate.


You should have a first or upper second class UK honours degree or equivalent and have obtained a mark of 70 or greater in respect of University of Sheffield module GEO6668 or GEO6999 in the course of fulfilment of the Department’s Polar and Alpine Change Masters programme (known as MSc Polar and Alpine Change until 2015-16 and MSc(Res) Polar and Alpine Change from 2016-17 onwards).

You should be applying to start your first year of PhD study on a full-time or part-time basis in the 2023/24 academic year.

Awards are open to Home applicants only.

Scholarship availability

We anticipate awarding one scholarship for entry to PhD study in 2023/4, subject to receiving eligible applications on qualifying topics. A further scholarship for entry to PhD study in 2024/5 may be advertised in due course (details will become available in Autumn 2023).

How do I apply?

Guidance on writing your proposal is available here. We recommend that you use our Find a supervisor page to identify a staff member who can provide you with advice on your topic and proposal before you apply.

You should upload your research proposal document (as a PDF or Word document) within the online application form as part of your PhD study place application. In addition, when completing the Funding section of the online form, indicate that you wish to be considered for the “PAC scholarship” by choosing ‘Scholarship or studentship (not listed below)’ and entering “PAC scholarship” as your funding source.

You do not need to complete any further scholarship sections of the online application form unless you also wish to be considered for any of the other scholarships that are available (further details here).

The deadline for applications is 13th January 2023.