Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland PhD Scholarships 2018, UK

Publish Date: Dec 12, 2017

Deadline: Feb 28, 2018

Carnegie PhD Scholarships

Each year, the Trust offers a number of PhD scholarships to support graduates with first class Honours undergraduate degrees from a Scottish university, who wish to pursue three years of postgraduate research leading to a PhD at a university in Scotland. These prestigious PhD scholarships include: 

Funded by the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland, the Scholarships are open for doctoral study in any field.

Carnegie-Cant-Morgan PhD Scholarship in Botany/Plant Science

Following a legacy from Mr Keith Morgan, the Trust will be offering one additional PhD Scholarship every three years to a student wishing to undertake doctoral studies in Plant Science. This new Scholarship is offered for the first time for 2018-19.

Caledonian Research Foundation (CRF) Scholarships

The Trust administers the CRF Scholarships on behalf of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. The Scholarships are awarded and held under identical conditions as the Carnegie PhD Scholarships and are under the charge and control of the Trustees of the RSE Scotland Foundation, who retain the power to alter the rules and to change the purpose and destination of the Scholarships. One Scholarship is usually awarded for study in the Life Sciences and another in Arts and Humanities.

A total of 16 scholarships are available for doctoral studies starting in 2018-19.

The number of nominations is subject to a quota. To be considered, prospective PhD students must be selected as candidates by one of the Scottish universities and have their nomination approved before their application is submitted to the Trust by the student and their nominator (e.g. the prospective PhD supervisor). Applications received without the required institutional approval will not be accepted. A student can only be nominated by one university and multiple nominations for the same student are not permissible.

Applicant eligibility

  1. A First-Class Honours degree from a Scottish university is a pre-requisite for consideration for Scholarships. This First Class Honours degree must be in a subject related to the field of the proposed doctoral studies. Alongside existing graduates, final year undergraduate students expecting to achieve a First-Class Honours degree are also eligible for nomination. Please note that no exemptions are made to this requirement and nominations for students who do not hold a First Class Undergraduate Honours degree will not be accepted, except in faculties which do not award Honours, e.g. Medicine, where the equivalent standard will be expected Where an award is made in advance of graduation, it will be conditional on obtaining a First Class Honours degree.
  2. A student who has already commenced study for a research degree (MPhil, PhD or equivalent) is not eligible.
  3. The candidate must be nominated by the prospective supervisor of the PhD project and can only be submitted for consideration for a Carnegie or Caledonian PhD Scholarship by one Scottish university.
  4. The number of submissions per Scottish university is subject to a quota (announced annually by the Trust). Each university must select its preferred candidates, according to its quota, in sufficient time to permit submission of the online application and endorsement forms ahead of the Trust’s deadline. The current quota for nominations is available in the appendix to these Regulations.
  5. The university selected candidates must register their details on the Trust’s online application system and complete an online application form. The application portal will open 4 weeks before the closing date for submissions and will be made available to the selected candidates by the administrator in charge of the selection process for the scholarships at their university. The name of the university contact is listed in the regulations for the scheme and applicant guide downloadable under the Guidelines and Regulations tab.
  6. Ahead of the submission deadline, the PhD candidate’s application must be endorsed online by their prospective supervisor. As part of the nomination process, the prospective supervisor must also upload an Institutional Statement of Support completed by a senior academic in the relevant Departmental/School: Head, Deputy Head, Research Director, Postgraduate Studies Director or Dean. The institutional statement of support must also include the signature of a university representative who can confirm the nominee is one of its chosen candidates. The form is available from the university contact listed in the appendix to the Regulations and under the Guidelines and Regulations tab.
  7. The full online application and endorsement by the prospective supervisor for the selected candidates must be completed and submitted online to the Trust by 28th February 2018, 5:00pm. The awards are announced by the end of May each year.
  8. Nominators and Nominees are under an obligation to inform the Trust without delay of any changes to the circumstances of the Nominee, including any awards received and/or examination results obtained after the nomination has been submitted.


  1. Carnegie Scholarships are awarded for the support of full-time or part-time research studies leading to a doctorate at a Scottish university (Aberdeen, Abertay, Dundee, Edinburgh, Edinburgh Napier, Glasgow, Glasgow Caledonian, Heriot-Watt, Highland & Islands, Queen Margaret, Robert Gordon, St Andrews, Stirling, Strathclyde and West of Scotland).
  2. To be eligible, part time students should plan to study for no less than 50% of full time. The research expenses and stipend payable to the student may be adjusted accordingly. Part-time students in full-time, or near full-time employment, are not eligible for a stipend.
  3. Scholarships are normally awarded for 36 months (3 years) for full-time study and up to 72 months (6 years) for part-time study. The tenure period may be extended to a maximum of 42 months (or 84 months for part-time students), but only when a case for such an extension has been made at the time of nomination and approved by the Trust as part of the award. An extended project duration will require confirmation by the University that the tuition fees for the final 6 month period (or 12 months if studying part-time) will be waived (the Trust will pay only the other elements of the scholarship pro-rata).
  4. Scholarships will normally start on 1st October. The Trust may agree to a deferred start date only in exceptional circumstances.
  5.  Scholars are expected to devote their whole time to the purpose for which the Scholarship was awarded.
  6. A Scholarship is not tenable in conjunction with a Government-funded Research Studentship, a Research Council award, or any comparable scholarship.


Nominations for the candidates selected by each university must be submitted online to the trust by 28th February 2018, 5PM (British Standard Time) for PhD projects starting in academic year 2018-19.

Late submissions, submissions without institutional approval or for students who are not one of the selected candidates of a Scottish university will not be considered.

For more information please click "Further Official Information" below.

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