School of Mathematics Teaching

About vacation scholarships

Information about the application process and research projects

Why do a vacation scholarship research project?

Vacations scholarships allow you to explore an area of mathematics outside of the curriculum over the summer. In particular, they enable you to do one or more of the following.

  • Research a topic or carry out original research with the guidance of a professional mathematician, without the constraints of studying for credit.
  • Gain an appreciation of the nature of advanced mathematics and what it is like to work with it in a research environment.
  • Gain a broader and more professional understanding of mathematics, and some familiarity with the research ideas being worked on by lecturers in the School.
  • Record the completed project on your HEAR transcript.

How are the projects run?

Each scholarship will last for the duration of 6 weeks, and the suggested time frame is the months of June, July and August. The value of each scholarship is £300 per week.

At the end of your project, you will be asked to submit a short written report (typically around 10 pages).

Who is eligible to apply?

The majority of scholarships will be available to Year 3 students on a (possibly joint) maths degree, with some funding also available to Year 2 students and Year 4 students on a five year degree. Priority wll be given to students that have not been awarded a scholarship previously, in the sense that a maximum of two scholarships per year is available to students who have previously been awarded School of Maths vacation scholarships. You should be looking to do a research project in the School of Mathematics, i.e with a supervisor from the School of Mathematics. Please see the Frequently asked questions for further details and other possibilities.

What is the application process?

The vacation scholarship organiser will hold an information event at 5pm Tuesday of Week 3 (January 31-st 2023). This will be in Lecture Theatre B in JCMB, and will explain the application process.  The slides from last year (the information about the process is exactly the same) are available here.

The application is a two stage process. An inital expression of interest by the student is asked for by the end of Friday of Week 3 (February 3-rd 2023). This is done by filling in this Google form. Note that this does not constitute an application per se, but is a mandatory first step in the application process. There is no need to have contacted a potential supervisor at this point.

After the expression of interest forms have closed, the School will go through the submissions and the top students will be invited to submit an application in the second stage. Invited students should submit an application by March 15-th. The application forms can be found here. At this stage, the vacation scholarship organiser will facilitate contact between students and potential supervisors if required. Any student applying for a vacation scholarship will be expected to be on track to obtain at a 2:1 (second class upper division) honours degree as a minimum requirement.

The School of Mathematics is committed to a minimum of 10 vacation scholarship research projects running every summer. Students should apply to the "School of Mathematics vacation scholarships", as well as at least one other source of funding, as listed here.

Key dates 2023:

  • Tuesday Week 3 (January 31-st 2023): Information event
  • Friday Week 3 (February 3-rd 2023): Expression of interest via Google form (mandatory first step in application)
  • March 15-th: Applications to be submitted to the School by invited students
  • April-May: Outcomes announced
  • June-August: Research projects take place
  • Friday Week -2 (September 1st 2023): Report submission deadline

Who to ask about vacation scholarships?

If you are considering a vacation project, you should discuss this with your Personal Tutor, who might be able to offer some guidance on potential research topics and project supervisors.

The Vacation Scholarship Organiser  is also happy to discuss queries, and will be available to answer questions at the information event described above. If you send an email, please put ‘Summer Vacation Scholarships’ in the subject. Before emailing, please make sure you have checked the Frequently asked questions for an answer to your question.