Postgraduate research funding

We are delighted to invite applications for postgraduate research funding. We cannot guarantee funding, but we are happy to offer advice, support, and feedback on funding applications and research proposals.

Funding the world's brightest PhDs


Information about fees for our research programmes can be found on the PhD fees page.

Applying for funding

Your first step should be to get in touch with the member of staff you are hoping to work with. The funding application process is very competitive and, in addition to holding a first class BA degree, your proposal will need to be very carefully crafted.

We would, therefore, suggest this contact is made around six weeks before submitting an application. This will allow your proposed supervisor to discuss your research proposal with you and offer advice on your application.

We would then strongly encourage you to submit your draft application - taking into account your discussions with your supervisor and their feedback - to the us by our internal deadline, so that we can provide final overarching feedback ahead of the final funding deadline. 

Key steps:

  1. Contact your proposed supervisor to discuss their availability and your initial proposal 
  2. Apply to the History PhD programme - please ensure your referees are aware of the funding deadline
  3. Submit a draft of your funding application by 17:00 GMT, Wednesday 5 January 2022. If you are unable to access Google Apps you can email your draft funding application form to Your draft will be reviewed by our Postgraduate Committee and feedback will be emailed to you by the end of Monday 17 January 2022.
  4. Submit the WRoCAH funding form through the WRoCAH website by 17:00 GMT, 26 January 2022.

Faculty of Arts and Humanities WRoCAH funding Q&A session

The WRoCAH Office and the Faculty will be running a Q&A session for those students interested in applying for a WRoCAH scholarship. 

Date: Wednesday 8th December 
Time: 2pm - 3pm

The session will take place online (Google Meet), and slides will be circulated in advance to those who have registered their attendance. Any questions arising from the slides will be addressed at the session. Potential applicants must make sure they’ve looked at the slides ahead of the session.

You can sign-up here and the deadline to sign up is Tuesday 7th December at 12 noon. If you can't make the session but would like to be sent a copy of slides, there is space to request that in the form. 

If you attended our earlier History Workshop - this Q&A will focus on WRoCAH funding across the Faculty more generally and will offer different perspectives, so you may still find it useful to sign-up.

Funding competitions

Open competitions

The following funding competitions are now open for 2022 entry. 

AHRC White Rose College of Arts and Humanities Scholarships

Deadline: 17:00 GMT, Wednesday 26 January 2022

The White Rose College of the Arts & Humanities (WRoCAH) is a Doctoral Training Partnership of the Universities of Leeds, Sheffield and York. It is responsible for the distribution of AHRC-funded doctoral studentships for these universities and for the coordination of a doctoral training programme.

WRoCAH has around 45 AHRC studentships that will be awarded through open competitions.

Award Details: WRoCAH studentships cover UK/home tuition fees and an annual stipend. More information on the award details and eligibility criteria are available through the WRoCAH website

Guidance notes: applicant guidance notes are available here. You should read the guidance notes carefully before beginning your application, paying particular attention to the Grade Descriptors (from p22) as well as the step-by-step guide to the questions in the form (from p8). 

Applying: You should apply to WRoCAH funding through the WRoCAH website

You will be able to save and return to your application and can make amendments up until the deadline.

You must indicate when the final version of your application has been submitted and this must be done before the deadline for your application to be considered. 

Please note that you can only apply for one studentship at one of the above universities.

China Scholarship Council awards

Deadline: 17:00 GMT, Wednesday 26 January 2022

This scheme provides academically excellent Chinese students with the opportunity to study for a PhD at the University of Sheffield. The scholarships are supported jointly by the China Scholarship Council and the University of Sheffield.

Award Details: The China Scholarship will cover University tuition fees, a grant for living costs and one return flight from China to the UK.

Eligibility: This award is open to Chinese nationals who are ordinarily resident in mainland China. You will need to demonstrate that your research fits with one of Sheffield's identified research priorities. 

Read the full eligibility criteria and apply

External funding sources

Postgraduate Doctoral Loans

Government loans are available for postgraduate students studying doctoral level courses. Loans are non-means tested i.e. your incoming will not effect the amount that you receive and are available to students studying either part-time or full-time.

More information including eligibility criteria

Funding research study through a student loan is a big commitment and we would strongly recommend talking about this option with your proposed supervisor.

Alternative sources of funding

There are many external funding bodies, such as charities and trusts, who offer support for postgraduate study. Funding may be limited and eligibility criteria will vary. Find out more about additional funding for postgraduate study.


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