ESRC/SENSS Doctoral Studentships


Goldsmiths is part of the South-east Network for Social Sciences (SeNSS) Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP), funded by the ESRC to train the next generation of social scientists.

Fully-funded ESRC studentships are available to research students via this DTP. There are up to 40 studentships are available across the 10 SeNSS institutions for entry in October 2020.

Award amount

‌Home students

Studentships will cover your tuition fees for up to four years full-time (including for an MA or MSc, if relevant) or the part-time equivalent and will provide an annual stipend.

This is currently worth £16,777 (as of 2019/2020) including London weighting. Those studying on a part-time basis will be eligible for  £8,504.50 per year, pro-rata.

EU students

EU students are welcome to apply for awards starting in Autumn 2020 and, if successful, will receive a fees-only award.

International students

We regret that international students are not eligible for this funding.

Routes for research and training

There are a variety of flexible routes for research and training, depending on your background and the research you’re planning to undertake. SeNSS positively encourages applicants from talented students whose highest qualification is an undergraduate degree, who may be funded to undertake a Masters (see 1+3 route below)

  • 1+3 route
    If you don’t already have a Masters degree with an extensive methods component, you should consider applying for a 1+3 route. This offers one year of funding to undertake an approved research Masters, followed by three years of funding to undertake your PhD.
  • +3 route
    If you already have a Masters degree with an extensive research component (for example, a research Masters offered by an ESRC Doctoral Training Centre), you will need to apply for this route, which offers three years of funding to do your PhD.

  • +4 route

    Some of our departments don’t offer a suitable research Masters, but instead offer a +4 route: four years funding to do your PhD, with a requirement to take core research training courses from the Doctoral Training Partnership in your first year. You will cover equivalent material to students on the 1+3 route, but you will not receive a separate Masters degree.

Please note, candidates who, on application, have completed approximately half of the required research methods training may be offered 3.5 years of funding, with the first six months used to enhance and complete the required level of training. 

Eligible subject areas

Goldsmiths students are eligible to apply for funding in the following disciplinary pathways:

How to apply

Please complete the following steps:

Wherever possible please submit all supporting documents with your online application. In very unusual cases where this is not possible, please send them directly to the postgraduate administrator in the Goldsmiths academic department you are applying to, making it very clear that it's for an ESRC-funded studentship

Goldsmiths Departmental academic contacts are:

As part of your application, you’ll need to nominate two academic referees who will provide a reference on your suitability for a PhD programme. It is your responsibility to ensure that they provide the references by the deadline required.


You need first to apply to departments for a PhD place (or Masters and PhD if appropriate). You should indicate that you are interested in being considered for SeNSS ESRC funding. 

Please note there are some variations in application deadlines for individual pathways. The specific local deadlines for pathways involving Goldsmiths are as follows:

  • Educational Studies: Monday, 20 January 2020 (11:59 pm)
  • Psychology: Sunday, Wednesday 15 January 2020 (5 pm)
  • Social Anthropology: Monday 20 January 2020 (11:59 pm)
  • Sociology & Media & Communications: Monday 20 January 2020 (11:59 pm)

Selection process

The academic department to which you’ve applied will consider your application and may invite you for an interview. If successful you will be offered a place on the relevant PhD research programme.

The department has a limited allocation of nominations that they can make to the relevant pathway for funding. If you are amongst the strongest candidates applying within the pathway at Goldsmiths, then you may be nominated to go forward to the next stage of the competition.

If you are nominated to go forward to this stage, you will be advised and required to complete a separate studentship application (please note that this separate studentship application will be required to be completed between 1 February 2019 and 15 February 2019).

If nominated, your application will be considered at the SeNSS DTP studentship selection panels, who will then make their funding offers to the best of the nominated candidates.

Further information

If you would like further information about the South-east Network for Social Science Doctoral Training Partnership or would like to informally discuss the studentship application process, please contact Chris Robson ( 

For further information please visit the SeNSS and ESRC web pages.