PhD Studentship (Sport and Exercise Sciences Pathway)

Enhancing equality in sport: informing the development of a standardised starting system for deaf athletes

Bangor University, School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences, supported by the ESRC Doctoral Training Partnership for Wales (Wales DTP), invites applications for funded PhD study. This particular studentship, known as a ‘collaborative studentships’, involves liaison with non-academic organisations, namely UK Deaf Sport and England Athletics, at many key stages of the research programme. The above collaborative studentship is now available to apply for and will commence in October 2019.

The project will be supervised by Dr Vicky Gottwald and Dr Gavin Lawrence of the Institute of Psychology for Elite Performance at Bangor University. Part of the College of Health and Behavioural Sciences, the School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences (SHES), has been providing high-calibre undergraduate and postgraduate degrees since 1978. Our research was ranked 7th in UK according to a national assessment of research quality (REF) published in 2014 (Times Higher Education, 18 December 2014). The School is ideally situated to local amenities and overlooks the beautiful Menai Strait.

UK Deaf Sport and England Athletics are committed to their vision for every deaf individual across the UK to be active and inspired by sport, with more opportunities to participate and perform on the world stage.

Applications are invited from exceptional candidates with a first class or strong upper second class honours degree, or appropriate Master’s degree. Both the University and the ESRC Wales DTP value diversity and equality at all levels and we encourage applications from all sections of the community. We welcome applications for both full-time and part-time study and this studentship is available as either ‘1+3’ (i.e. one full time year of research training Masters followed by three years of full-time Doctoral study, or its part-time equivalent), or ‘+3’ (i.e. three years of full-time Doctoral study or its part-time equivalent), depending on the needs of the applicant.

Applications welcomed by 1st February 2019 (1200 hours).

What the studentship will cover

Studentship Awards commence in October 2019 and will cover your tuition fees as well as a maintenance grant (currently £14, 777 p.a. for 2018/19 for full-time students, updated each year); and includes access to an additional Research Training Support Grant (RTSG), though an element of this latter fund may be ‘pooled’ and require separate applications from 2019 onwards. There are other opportunities and benefits available to studentship holders, including an overseas fieldwork allowance (if applicable), internship opportunities, overseas institutional visits and other small grants.


ESRC studentships are highly competitive, candidates should have an excellent academic academic background in the social sciences, holding a 1st or strong upper 2nd class degree; applications from those also holding a relevant research training Masters degree (or an equivalent background in research training) will be considered for the +3 award. Full awards (fees plus maintenance stipend) are open to UK Nationals and EU Students who can satisfy UK residency requirements.

1+3 or +3?

This award is available on either a 1+3 or +3 basis. A 1+3 studentship provides funding for four years (or part-time equivalent), completing a research training Masters in the 1st year, followed by 3 years research funding for a PhD. A +3 studentship provides funding for the three years PhD research study only (or part-time equivalent).


The closing deadline for applications is 12.00 noon on Friday 1 February 2019. Short-listed applicants will be invited to interview, which are expected to take place in late February/early March 2019. After review, a final short-list of applicants will be put forward to a Panel convened by the ESRC Wales DTP Management Group at which final decisions with regard to studentship awards will be made. In most cases, successful applicants can expect to hear by early April 2019.

How to apply

Applications must contain the following documents:

  • Covering letter: Please address to Dr Vicky Gottwald. The covering letter must name the collaborative studentship being applied for. It must set out your reasons and motivation for applying to study at Bangor University, and the Sport and Exercise Science Pathway; your understanding, and expectations of doctoral study; and your academic interests generally, and particularly how these relate to the description of the project supplied. The covering letter should be no more than two pages. Please also specify whether you wish to apply on a +3 or 1+3 basis.
  • Academic / Professional Qualifications: Where appropriate, this should also include proof of English Language Competency (7.0 IELTS minimum).
  • References: All applications require two academic references to be submitted in support. Candidates must approach referees themselves and include the references with their application.
  • Curriculum Vitae: This should be no longer than two pages.
  • Research Proposal: For collaborative studentships, the proposal should build directly on the outline description that has been supplied. The proposal should be up to a maximum of 1000 words, not including bibliographic references. We suggest that you use the following five headings in your research proposal:
    • Your reflections on the title, aims and purpose of the research;
    • An overview of some key research literature relevant to the study;
    • Your proposals for developing the design and methods of the study;
    • A description of potential outcomes of the project for understanding, knowledge, policy and practice (as appropriate to the topic);
    • Bibliographic references


This studentship is a collaborative award and applicants should take careful consideration of the working title and description of the project. You may wish to contact Dr Vicky Gottwald with any queries or to request further particulars:

School of Sport Health and Exercise Sciences, Bangor University, Tel: (+44) 01248 382824, Email:

For further information about the Institute for Psychology of Elite Performance Research Group, UK Deaf Sport, England Athletics, or research training within the School, please visit the following: