Doctoral Training Partnerships

TGAC 01 Collaboration on DTP funded projects

The EPSRC continues to encourage industrial collaboration through CASE awards in science and engineering. These awards are a type of doctoral studentship designed to incorporate an element of collaboration and industrially related training to broaden experience. To support this through the DTP mechanism, the EPSRC has set the Research Organisation the target of converting 10% of these DTP funds into CASE awards. The numbers of CASE conversions must be reported through the annual reporting process and CASE conversions will be monitored by EPSRC.

TGAC 02 EPSRC Doctoral Prize

The 2018/2019 DTP includes funds for EPSRC Doctoral Prizes, which enable research organisations to selectively target the very best students and support their development beyond the end of their PhD,  to help launch a successful career in research. Research Organisations may choose to use up to 10% of their 2018/2019 DTP for EPSRC Doctoral Prizes and recipients of the ‘EPSRC Doctoral Prize’ may receive up to two years of additional funding.  Details of the funding used for this purpose must be reported through the annual reporting process and identified separately when the Final Expenditure Statement (FES) is submitted to the EPSRC.

TGAC 03 EPSRC Vacation Bursaries

The 2018/2019 DTP includes funds to support EPSRC Vacation Bursaries, which enable undergraduate students to gain first-hand positive and practical experience of research in a UK university. Research Organisations may choose to fund up to 15 Vacation Bursaries a year from the 2018/2019 DTP. Details of the funding used for this purpose must be reported through the annual reporting process and identified separately when the Final Expenditure Statement is submitted to the EPSRC.

TGAC 04 International Doctoral Scholars

Research Organisations may choose to provide open eligibility for up to 10% of the students starting in a year.  This will help strengthen the research base by enabling recruitment of the very best students, whether international or otherwise. As part of this, Institutions will be able to allocate a proportion of their 2018/2019 DTP to the very best students of all nationalities, without the normal eligibility restrictions applying. This flexibility is for up to 10% of the students starting at the research organisation in an academic year. Details of the students funded through this flexibility must be reported through the JeS Student Details as ‘International Doctoral Scholars (IDS grant)’ and ensure the student record is linked to the relevant EPSRC training grant.

Additional information

Payments

Whilst Research Organisations are encouraged to use the flexibility afforded within the DTP, EPSRC reserves the right to re-profile the account if it considers that payments to the Research Organisation are significantly at variance with expenditure.

Electronic offer letters

An electronic version of the grant offer letter will be sent through the JeS system to the main JeS portal at the RO accompanied by an offer acceptance and payment data.  The RO will be responsible for the distribution of the offer letter to the Principal Investigator and all Co-Investigators (including those at other ROs) and will have to return the offer acceptance via JeS within 10 working days of receipt.  The Start Confirmation (formerly the Starting Certificate) will only be sent out, electronically, to the RO when the offer acceptance has been returned.

Flexibility

Universities may offer 3 or 4 year PhDs, or intermediate periods, as appropriate to the needs of individual projects.  The funded period and duration of the doctoral project should be agreed with the student at the outset.
In return for the considerable flexibility provided by Doctoral Training Partnerships, EPSRC expects research organisations to make a commitment to the quality of supervision and training offered to students (e.g. offering of skills training, career advice) and also to provide the council with accurate information on the students supported on its Doctoral Training Partnerships. Research Organisations are referred to the RCUK Statement of Expectation for Postgraduate Training; how Research Organisations are responding to it will form part of ongoing discussions regarding EPSRC’s training investment in the Research Organisation.

Collection of Information

EPSRC will use information collected via the Je-S Student Data Capture System to monitor financial, project and other aspects of the doctoral training funded through Doctoral Training Partnerships. EPSRC will continue to monitor the quality of student data in terms of content and numbers submitted, and also any records which do not have enough information to assign to a subject area or do not appear to be within the remit of the Research Council.

EPSRC will monitor Vacation Bursaries, Doctoral Prize and CASE conversions through the annual reporting forms submitted to EPSRC.

Certain information, such as information on the post-award employment of students, may be collected on EPSRC's behalf by other organisations (such as HESA).

Student Eligibility

The conditions of training grants refer to residence requirements.

Students must be able to demonstrate a capability to complete research training to the standard necessary to qualify for a PhD.  This normally requires an upper second class honours degree, or a combination of qualifications and/or experience equivalent to that level.  The Research Organisation may use discretion in making decisions on the suitability of individual candidates for research training. The University is expected to apply the eligibility criteria in a fair and transparent manner, recognising that an element of judgement may be required in individual cases.