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Durham University

Biophysical Sciences Institute

BSI Summer Research Bursaries

BSI Summer Research Bursaries are aimed at undergraduates who are currently in their penultimate year of study and offer funding for 4-8 weeks of biophysical research over the summer vacation. Previous BSI Summer Bursary projects have resulted in students being included on publications, have given students important research skills and have led to students continuing onto PhDs in biophysical science.

Applications are accepted using the online form:

Key Facts

  • Closing date 29 April 2019.
  • Funding of £260 per week available
  • For penultimate-year undergraduates (from within Durham University or beyond)
  • Research projects are written by supervisor(s) and bursary applicants

  • Only one application per primary Bursary Supervisor will be accepted
  • Teaches research and communication skills, important for future employability.

“The placement was a fantastic opportunity and a great experience!”

Hannah, BSI Bursary 2012

The BSI Summer Research Bursary Programme aims to:

  • Provide research training opportunities for undergraduates entering the final year of their course (e.g. Level 2 students on BSc programmes; Level 3 students on MSci programmes). The experience gained gives bursary holders confidence when carrying out research, important in the final year of their degree, and the interdisciplinary skills acquired are valuable evidence in future applications.

  • Encourage interdisciplinary research; Specifically to support projects that are aligned to the BSI's remit i.e. fall into one of the BSI's key areas of research (more information about these can be found at and show clear evidence of interdisciplinarity, for example, projects being co-supervised by academics from different departments.

How to Apply

1. Find Summer Research Bursary Supervisors

To find suitable supervisor(s) you should first approach a Durham University academic whose research interests match your own and who is happy to act as your primary Bursary Supervisor. Please note that you must have the support of a potential Bursary Supervisor before your application can be considered.

If you need help identifying suitable Bursary Supervisor(s) e.g. from another department, please contact the BSI Administrator using the email address:

2. Develop a Research Project

It is expected that applicants will be involved in the development of their research projects. The amount of input will depend on both the Bursary Supervisor(s) and the applicant.

3. Fill in the BSI Bursary online application form

When the bursary form is submitted by the applicant it is automatically sent to the nominated supervisor. The application will only be considered when approval has been given by the primary Bursary Supervisor.

The project description can be cut and paste into the form or sent by email to

Further Details

Funding will be available to support programmes of a minimum 4 weeks and maximum 8 weeks duration (please specify the length of programme required in the application form). Start and end dates are to be discussed and agreed with the proposed Bursary Supervisor(s). Bursary Students will be required to complete a short report including an abstract at the end of the placement outlining key outcomes of the programme of work.

Allocation of funding is by competition. Applicants should complete the online form, with guidance and input from their proposed Bursary Supervisor(s). Completed forms should be submitted by 5 pm on 29 April 2019.

Any queries should be directed to

Interested but don't know who to approach?

BSI Summer Research Bursaries applications are prepared jointly by the undergraduate applicant and their proposed supervisor. This means that as an applicant you must approach a potential supervisor. Supervisors can come from any department.

For help finding a Summer Research Bursary Supervisor please contact