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New funding announced to support social science postgraduate students

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Students outside SchoolThe London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine is a partner in a consortium led by the Institute of Education together with Birkbeck and SOAS, University of London, which has been awarded £500,000 by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) through its Postgraduate Support Scheme to introduce a new form of pre-doctoral programme.

The eight-month, full-time programme will be developed and delivered by the ESRC-funded Bloomsbury Doctoral Training Centre and initially directed at mature students in work, who are also under-represented among entrants to social science postgraduate programmes, leading to a PG Diploma in social science research methods. The programme will develop research skills of employees and also act as pre-doctoral training.

The award also includes funding for innovative research on postgraduate research student's entry profiles and onward career progression, which will significantly enhance the sector's ability to target recruitment and training effectively.

Sharon Huttly, Dean of Studies at the School, said: "We are delighted to be working with our Bloomsbury partners on this innovative programme, and this award will enable us to support postgraduate students and help them develop careers in research."

In all, students at more than 40 universities will receive support through the Postgraduate Support Scheme, a 25 million publicly-funded programme. The 20 successful pilot projects will support more than 2,800 students and involve a range of support activities including financial and pastoral support, mentoring and networking, curricula change, funded studentships, work placements and a variety of bursary and loan schemes.

David Willetts, the Universities and Science Minister, said, "Postgraduate study is good for students, good for universities, and good for the economy. This 25 million investment will help develop partnerships, explore different ways of financing postgraduate study, and attract students from less advantaged backgrounds to postgraduate education. It will also provide a big boost to our internationally renowned postgraduate sector."

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