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Postgraduate School of Life Sciences

 

About this award

Applicants to taught MPhil courses based in the School of Biological Sciences (SBS), who have received a conditional offer of admission to start in October, may be eligible to apply for an SBS Master’s Bursary Award in support of their studies here at Cambridge, subject to the eligibility criteria listed below. The Bursary Award will provide a top-up maintenance grant (c.£5,000) to support living expenses when a postgraduate Master’s loan or grant is taken with Student Finance England, Student Awards Agency Scotland, Student Finance Wales or Student Finance NI. 

These awards are aimed at applicants from low-income households with experience of socio-economic or educational disadvantage or disruption and who qualify for the University's Home or UK fee status. Applications will be assessed on the basis of the essential and additional criteria listed below. Applicants who narrowly miss these criteria but feel that their particular circumstances should be considered, are encouraged to apply and provide details about this in the text box provided at question 26 on the online questionnaire.

How to apply

To be considered for this award, please complete the short online questionnaire as soon as possible after you receive a conditional offer of admission from one of the following courses:

  • MPhil in Basic and Translational Neuroscience
  • MPhil in Biological Sciences (multiple pathways*) by Advanced Study

*Biomolecular Science or Cell Science or Crop Science or Developmental Biology or Infection Biology & Molecular Immunology or Reproduction & Embryogenesis

Please note that you may be asked to provide evidence in support of your answers, before an award will be made.

Essential criteria 

To qualify for consideration for one of the awards, you must: 

1. be a Home (UK fee rate) student 

2. not already qualified at Master's level or higher 

3. hold a conditional offer on either of the following courses:

  • MPhil in Basic and Translational Neuroscience
  • MPhil in Biological Sciences (multiple pathways) by Advanced Study

4. be predicted to achieve, or have already achieved, a 1st or high 2i in your undergraduate degree 

5. not have existing financial means (in the form of savings, assets, or an income independent of hours worked) to finance the proposed course of study yourself.

Additional criteria

In addition to the essential criteria above, one or more of the following should apply to you. If there are other challenging life circumstances, not listed here, which you feel should be taken into account, for example, educational disruption due to moving school or illness, doing paid work during full-time undergraduate study, circumstances that limited your choice of undergraduate university, an unusual route to postgraduate study, or anything else, then you may be eligible; please detail this in the relevant section on the questionnaire. 

At secondary school

1. You were in receipt of Free Schools Meals 

2. You spent time in local authority care or as a Foyer resident 

3. You were a young carer with caring responsibilities for a family member who could not cope without your practical support

4. You lived in one of the most deprived areas of the country. (This is defined according to the government's IMD database. You can check your postcode ranking using the government website for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland)

At university 

1. If you started your undergraduate course prior to August 2016: You were/are in receipt of a full or partial Maintenance Grant from the UK Government as an undergraduate 

2. If you started your undergraduate course after August 2016: you were eligible for a means-tested maintenance loan from the UK Student Loans Company and your residual household income was assessed as £42,620 or less 

3. You are/were in the first generation of your immediate family to do an undergraduate or Master’s course 

4. You are/were estranged from your immediate family or care-givers 

5. You are/were a full-time undergraduate with caring responsibilities for a family member who could not cope without your practical support 

6. You are/were a full-time undergraduate who is/was a single parent, lone foster parent, or lone guardian of a young person who was still in full-time education 

7. You are/were disrupted in your undergraduate education due to health difficulties or bereavement of an immediate family member

Questionnaire

The below questions appear on the online form and are provided here for your information only. To be considered for this award, please complete the short online questionnaire by the course deadline.

 

1.    Full name (first and surname) 
2.    Email address (as used on university application form)
3.    Application Reference Number: 
4.    Are you already qualified at Master's level or above? 
5.    Are you a Home (UK fee status) student? 
6.    Are you applying to study for a full-time Master's qualification at Cambridge? 
7.    Are you predicted to achieve, or have already achieved, a First or high 2i in your undergraduate degree? 
8.    Were you awarded a Master’s application fee waiver at Cambridge? 
9.    Have you applied or will you be applying for a postgraduate Master’s loan or grant from Student Finance England, Student Awards Agency Scotland, Student Finance Wales or Student Finance NI? 
10.  Have you applied for or are in receipt of any other funding for this Master's qualification? 
11.  If your answer to question 10 is ‘Yes’, please provide details. 
12.  Please provide the postcode of your secondary school (if you attended more than one secondary school, please use the postcode of the last one you attended): 
13.  At secondary school, were you in receipt of Free School Meals? 
14.  At secondary school, did you spend any time in local authority care or as a Foyer resident 
15.  If the answer to question 14 is ‘Yes’, how long (in weeks) did you spend in local authority care or as a Foyer resident? 
16.  At secondary school, did you have caring responsibilities for a family member who could not cope without your practical support? 
17.  When you applied for your undergraduate course, were you living in an area defined by the government's IMD database as one of the most deprived areas in the country, that is, in Deciles 1-5?  (This is defined according to the government's IMD database. You can check your postcode ranking using the government website for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland - links available on the questionnaire.)
18.  If you answered Yes to question 17, please specify.
19.  If you started your undergraduate course prior to August 2016: were you in receipt of a full or partial Maintenance Grant from the UK Government as an undergraduate? Or, if you started your undergraduate course after August 2016: were you eligible for a means-tested maintenance loan from the UK Student Loans Company and your residual household income was assessed as £42,620 or less? 
20.  Are/were you in the first generation of your immediate family to do an undergraduate course? 
21.  As a full-time undergraduate, are/were you estranged from your immediate family or care-givers? (For the definition we use to understand 'estrangement' please see: 
https://www.thestandalonepledge.org.uk/who-are-estranged-students.)
22.  As a full-time undergraduate, do/did you have caring responsibilities for a family member who could not cope without your practical support? 
23.  As a full-time undergraduate, are/were you a single parent, lone foster parent, or lone guardian of a young person under the age of 18 or still in full time education? 
24.  As a full-time undergraduate, do/did you face disruption due to physical or mental health difficulties, or bereavement of close family? 
25.  If you take up your place on your chosen course at Cambridge, would you be in the first generation of your immediate family to do a Master’s? 
26.  Are there other challenging life circumstances you feel should be taken into account? For example, educational disruption due to moving school or illness, doing paid work during full-time undergraduate study, circumstances that limited your choice of undergraduate university, an unusual route to postgraduate study, or anything else. Please give brief details (maximum 150 words). 
27.  What would receiving this award mean to you (maximum 150 words)? 
28.  Please confirm: The information I have provided is true to the best of my knowledge and I understand that I may be asked for evidence. 
29.  Please confirm: I do not have the existing financial means (in the form of savings, assets, or an income independent of hours worked) to finance the proposed course of study myself. 
30.  Please confirm: I consent for my data to be shared with the University of Cambridge for the purpose of assessing my eligibility for the award, and for compiling anonymised data for monitoring purposes. 

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