EPSRC Funding

As a SABS student, you will be enrolled at the University of Oxford. The majority of SABS students are fully funded by the programme, with funding from the EPSRC, the University of Oxford, and our industrial partners and charitable trusts. Restrictions on eligibility set by individual funding bodies apply. Information on eligibility requirements for EPSRC studentships can be found at

Applications for courses offered for admission in 2022-23 opened on 1 September 2021

Non-UK candidates may also be eligible for funding held by the SABS Programme (including funding from EPSRC and industry). This funding covers full fees and a stipend for living expenses, and candidates will be considered automatically based on their application to the programme. Each year a small number of SABS students are also funded through national and international scholarships that they have applied for themselves, often with the support of the SABS Programme. You are encouraged to explore alternative funding options as well, please see for details.

You may also be eligible for various Scholarships:

We also give you the opportunity to share socioeconomic data in your application:


Academic Futures Scholarships

The DTC has funding for up to 8 studentships each year for socio-economically disadvantaged students as part of the Academic Futures programme (these scholarships are all awarded in partnership with Linacre College). 

For more information, see the Academic Futures page on the Graduate Admissions web site.

To apply for these scholarships you will need to complete the socio-economic data survey that is part of the University application process. You will also need to provide a contextual statement providing additional detail on how your personal circumstances have affected your education.

More detail on how we use this additional information is given below in the sections Use of Socio-Economic Data and Use of a Contextual Statement.

If you who would like to be considered for these scholarships, please indicate your agreement for socio-economic data to be used in assessing your application when submitting the standard CV.


Black Academic Futures Scholarships

The Black Academic Futures (BAF) Scholarships offer UK Black and Mixed-Black students financial support to pursue graduate study at Oxford. In partnership with Linacre College, the DTC has up to four full BAF scholarships available covering all course fees and living costs at the UKRI rate (at least £15,609 per year). Awards are made for the full duration of your fee liability for your course. The BAF Programme also provides extensive on-course support to all award holders.

Thanks to the generous support of funding partners across the University and colleges, the scholarship is expanding in scope and scale for the 2022-23 academic year, with more dedicated awards available for eligible candidates than ever before. To date, funding to make up to 30 awards has been offered by partners from across the University and colleges—and the DTC has funding for up to 4 students. The scholarships are open to all academic subjects.

Each scholarship will cover your course fees in full and will provide you a grant for living costs at the UKRI rate (at least £15,609 per year). Awards are made for the full duration of your fee liability for your course.


BAF Eligibility

Up to 30 BAF Scholarships are available across the University for applicants who are ordinarily resident in the United Kingdom, who are of Black or Mixed-Black ethnicity and who hold an offer for either a taught or research postgraduate degree, starting in the 2022-23 academic year. This includes all full-time and part-time DPhil and master’s courses.

These scholarships support students across the University and are open to all subject areas, with some funding dedicated to supporting students on specific courses.

For more information, see the Academic Futures page on the Graduate Admissions web site, and click on the "Black Academic Futures" tab.

To apply for these awards, all you have to do is submit your completed graduate course application, including ethnicity information, by the December or January deadline (whichever is relevant for your course) and you will automatically be considered. You do not need to submit any additional documents and there is no separate scholarship application form for these awards.

In assessing your application, we will also take into account both the socio-economic data and the contextual information that you may also provide in your application as described below (see "Use of Socio-Economic Data").


Shortlisting Black-British Students for Interview

I f you are a Black-British student interested in undertaking research within the remit of SABS and meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • consistently high performance or a strong upward trajectory leading to a predicted or obtained high 2.1 or 1st class degree in a relevant STEM subject;
  • high performance consistent with a distinction in a masters' degree; or
  • substantive relevant work experience consistent with the academic criteria listed above;

we will use information on ethnicity to ensure that you are invited to interview:

The reason for taking this action is to help address the under-representation of Black-British students in doctoral research by ensuring that eligible candidates are given the opportunity to demonstrate their potential for doctoral study at interview.


EPA Cephalosporin-Linacre Scholarships

EPA-Cephalosporin-Linacre Scholarships are funded by the EPA Cephalosporin Fund in association with Linacre College. They provide full scholarships for both SABS and Oxford Interdisciplinary Bioscience Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) students from socio-economic backgrounds that are under-represented in doctoral research.

Eligibility is assessed on the same basis as for participation in the University of Oxford’s UNIQ+ Graduate Access internship programme. Therefore, to be eligible for these studentships students should have been previously admitted to, or determined to be eligible for admission to UNIQ+, or meet the criteria for admission for UNIQ+ based on socioeconomic information provided during the online application process.

If you who would like to be considered for these scholarships, please indicate your agreement for socio-economic data to be used in assessing your application when submitting the standard CV (used by SABS R³ as well as the DTP, CiC, and NERC programmes).


Use of Socio-Economic Data

SABS, like the other DTC Programmes, will take into consideration socio-economic data in the assessment of applications. The University currently collects a range of socio-economic data from candidates who apply for graduate study. This information is used to understand the demographics of those applying and of candidates who are offered places, but it is not normally available to assessors.

We will use these data to contextualise our shortlisting and decision-making processes. Academic assessors will be enabled to do this by the use of a flagging system similar to that used for United Kingdom applicants for undergraduate admissions.

By better understanding your socio-economic background, we can better understand the challenges that you have had in your education to date.

To allow us to use this information, you should fill in the questionnaire on your socio-economic background as part of your application.


Use of a Contextual Statement

We recognise that socio-economic data may not fully capture an individual student’s personal circumstances, so if any of the criteria listed below apply in your case, we encourage you to submit a statement providing additional detail on your personal circumstances using the contextual statement form.

Your contextual statement will not be made available to assessors during the initial phase of academic shortlisting, but may be used in association with socio-economic data to contextualise the short-listing and decision-making processes.

You may wish to provide a contextual statement, particularly if you:

  • are in the first generation of your family to go to university;
  • have been in care for at least three months;
  • have been a young carer;
  • are from a low-income background;
  • you have received a means-tested scholarship;
  • you have needed to work to support yourself during your academic studies because of your socioeconomic circumstances;
  • are a refugee;
  • are neurodivergent;
  • have or have had one or more disabilities or chronic illnesses that have affected you in education or at work; and/or
  • wish to disclose other circumstances that have substantially affected you in education or at work.

Please note, this statement is in addition to completing the 'Extenuating circumstances’ section of the standard application form.