Studying for a doctorate in Chinese studies? Up to three major bursaries now available for UK home students

The Universities’ China Committee in London is offering 4th year bursarships for Home Status PhDs who have been studying, or undertaking research on, China-related topics; this to enable writing up or the completion of studies in the period from September 2023.

These competitive awards will provide up to £10,000 (major) and £3,000 (lesser) bursaries, each towards the costs of a ‘writing up’ (also known as ‘thesis pending’) year, where no other substantial funds are available.

To be eligible, students must:

  • Have a good academic record at academic level (i.e. a first or upper-second class honours degree), with any postdoctoral qualifications likewise at a good level (ie merit or distinction MA, MSc or MSci). 
  • Have reached a third year of research or the equivalent in part-time terms, with demonstrable progress available in the form of supervisor’s reports and an assessable body of written work, c. 5,000-10,000 words in length.
  • Be a UK citizen or other student eligible for ‘Home Fee’ status.

In addition:

  • Candidates must be able to demonstrate a sufficient knowledge of Chinese language in their written work.
  • The financial situation of the candidates will be taken into account.
  • Preference will be given to candidates intending to progress into an academic career in which researching and teaching on China forms a significant part of their duties.


Applicants must submit

  • A UCCL Doctoral Studentship application form at the UCCL website.
  • A short abstract outlining the overall project; a table of contents as currently planned plus a piece of written work, of length no more than 10,000 words and best suited to inform the assessment panel on the quality and breadth of the research. This could take the form of an extended and detailed summation of the written work to be submitted ultimately for the PhD, but it could also take the form of a particular chapter or chapters.
  • Two academic letters of reference, of which at least one must be from the PhD supervisor. These should make reference, where applicable, to any relevant longer term career plan of the applicant. They should also confirm, if known, whether the applicant will be in receipt of any other scholarship or financial support during the period in question.   
  • A broad brush budget for the period in question.

Selection criteria will be based competitively on

  • The originality and rigour of the candidate’s written work
  • The significance of the promised outcome of the research

The results of the selection process will be announced by the end of March 2023.