University of Dundee

Society and Funding Body Vacation Scholarships

Applicants who are not offered a James Black Prize Studentship may be considered for a Scholarship funded by a Society or other funding body instead.

Many learned societies in the UK also offer fully-funded Vacation scholarships. Your allocated project supervisor must be a member of your chosen society for you to be eligible. Certain research charities also offer similar scholarships.  The Supervisor, with your input, should write a short project outline and submit it around spring time in your penultimate year of study (deadlines vary so be sure to check early).

A selection of vacation studentships available from learned societies and other funding bodies is listed below.   These awards are dependent on a successful funding application made by your allocated Supervisor and are non-transferable. If your allocated supervisor is awarded a Vacation Scholarship for you it cannot be given to someone else if you change your mind. 

The Anatomical Society

The Anatomical Society helps support and encourage young anatomists in the early stages of their careers.

The Society offers up to 5 bursaries a year to encourage enthusiastic and qualified undergraduate students to undertake research in the Anatomical Sciences (including Anatomy Education) for a 4 to 10 week period, normally at their own institution. It is hoped that this opportunity will encourage students to consider a research career in anatomical science. 

  • Length of placement: 4-10 weeks
  • Amount: Max. £2,500 (stipend (£180pw) and a bench fee of £700 (£70pw)
  • Deadline: Details about the 2018 round will be published on the website in early 2018
  • Read more on The Anatomical Society Website.

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council

EASTBIO is the East of Scotland BioScience Doctoral Training Partnership. Placements are allocated to lead research organisations in receipt of a Doctoral Training Partnership award for use across the departments/institutions included within the partnership. Their purpose is to give promising undergraduates a first-hand opportunity to gain greater experience of research in the biosciences, raise the profile of research careers amongst undergraduate students and interest students in postgraduate research in strategically important areas for BBSRC.

The Biochemical Society

This is a large society of scientists with very broad interests in the biosciences, not simply biochemistry. There are sub-panels focused on genetics, cell biology, cellular signalling, metabolism, macromolecular structure, as well as systems biology and modelling. 

The British Society for Cell Biology

This society consists of scientists with broad interests in all aspects of eukaryotic cell and developmental biology.

British Society for Developmental Biology

The BSDB is a society open to everyone with an interest in the science of developmental biology.  It has more than 1,000 members, including researchers of all levels, lecturers, and students.

The British Mycological Society

This is a society of people with a deep love of all things fungal and yeast-like.

British Pharmacological Society

The British Pharmacological Society (BPS) has, at its heart, the development and promotion of pharmacology and of those who are training and working in the field.  With over 3000 members from 60 countries around the world, it is a truly international organization.

BPS Vacation Studentships are designed to encourage undergraduates studying biomedical science. The student must be a BPS Undergraduate Member and the project supervisor must be an Associate or Full Member of the BPS. 

The British Society for Plant Pathology

The British Society for Plant Pathology consists of experts in bacterial, fungal and viral pathogens of plants. There is a mixture of ecologists, molecular biologists and theoreticians involved.

The Carnegie Trust

The vacation scholarship scheme, funded by the Carnegie, is intended for Scottish students undertaking an undergraduate degree in any subject area at a Scottish University.

Gatsby Charitable Trust Opportunities in Plant Science Research

Gatsby plays a crucial role in promoting excellence in plant science research in the UK.  Two schemes for undergraduates are available:

Gatsby Plant Science Summer School – for Level 2 students at University of Dundee

This inspirational week is fully-funded and takes place at the end of the second Semester.

Sainsbury Undergraduate Studentships – for Level 3 students at University of Dundee

These prestigious summer placements are worth £4,000 and should be held somewhere other than the student’s home institution.

To apply, you first need to contact and be nominated by Professor Claire Halpin ( who is the Gatsby Mentor for Plant Science at University of Dundee & The James Hutton Institute.

Read more about Scholarships on the Gatsby Website.

The Genetics Society

The Genetics Society is interested in all aspects of classic genetics, molecular genetics, molecular biology and nucleic acid metabolism, as well as cell and developmental biology.

Medical Research Scotland

An independent Scottish medical research charity, Medical Research Scotland supports young people to pursue a career in biomedical research and improve the diagnostic, treatment or prevention of disease.

Pathological Society

The Pathological Society is dedicate to enhancing high quality research and education in pathology in its broadest sense. 

The Physiological Society

This Society covers a diverse range of scientific research and education topics including cardiac and respiratory physiology, neuroscience, epithelia and membranes, exercise physiology, metabolism and endocrinology, as well as muscle physiology.

The Royal Society of Biology

Researchers, with the backing of their institution, who can offer research expertise and a high quality research experience for the student, may apply. The proposed research project must address at least one of the following themes: detection or control, data & modelling, trade, host plants, high-risk pests or pathogens, knowledge exchange. Applicants are encouraged to look at the risk register of current pests and pathogens on the UK Plant Health Risk Register.

The Royal Society of Chemistry

Summer studentships are available in the area of analytical chemistry.

The Society for Applied Microbiology

This society has a membership focused on microbial biotechnology and medical microbiology.

The Society for General Microbiology

This society has a world-wide membership of scientists who work in all reas of microbiology. The society offers awards to enable undergraduates to work on microbiological research projects during the summer vacation.  The award provides for.  Deadline.

Wellcome Trust

The vision of the Wellcome Trust is to achieve extraordinary improvements in human and animal health.  In pursuit of this, it supports the brightest minds in biomedical research and the medical humanities.

The Wellcome Trust offers Biomedical Vacation Scholarships to provide promising undergraduates with hands-on experience of research during the summer vacation, with the aim of encouraging them to consider a career in research.

Wellcome Trust

The Wellcome Trust summer internship programme for undergraduates is designed to inspire, encourage and support a new generation who will go on to make a difference.  Successful applicants will work alongside experienced staff in the area that most interests them, building on existing skills and gaining new ones.

•    Length of placement: 8 weeks
•    Deadline: 26th February 2018
•    Read more on Scholarships on the Wellcome Trust Website

BBSRC/EASTBIO Research Experience Placements Scheme

The BBSRC/EASTBIO provides an excellent opportunity to undergraduate (second and third year) students to gain hands-on research experience in bioscience research. This year, the EASTBIO Doctoral Partnership will award several 10-week placements across the four universities of the partnership – Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh and St Andrews.