Placement group

PGR Career Enhancement Placement Scheme


Have you developed a connection with a certain organisation in which you would love to do a placement to enrich your skills and career prospects but are not able to as it is unpaid? This is where the PGR Career Enhancement Placement Scheme comes in. The scheme has been set up as a pilot in 2022/23 and provides funding (up to 3 months long, or part-time equivalent) for this academic year, up to 31 July 2023.  If the placement you have sourced is likely to extend past 31 July, this may still be possible so please contact for advice.


What are the benefits of doing a placement during your research degree?

'I’d absolutely encourage anyone thinking about doing a placement to go for it, and if you aren’t thinking about it maybe explore some options!'

Postgraduate researchers at Royal Holloway who have been able to secure placements during their research degree have consistently reported how positive the experiences have been, providing them with the opportunity to develop a wealth of employability skills and invaluable networking links.

Find out more about the benefits of doing a placement and read some testimonials from our PGRs


Who is eligible to apply?

Any current Royal Holloway postgraduate researcher who has identified a suitable placement opportunity and is not able to secure funding to support the placement elsewhere (e.g. via their Research Council).  This is open to all registered PGRs researchers regardless of whether you are full-time or part-time, in your first year or have submitted your thesis and waiting for your viva.  Those of you on Student Route visa are also eligible, although we need to take care that you do not exceed the number of hours that you are permitted to work under your visa.

It is strongly recommended that you submit your application at least six weeks before you wish to start the placement, so that everything can be put in place in time.


What does the scheme offer?

Read the PGR Career Enhancement Placement Scheme guide for full details

Funding and impact on submission deadline:

  • If you are a College-funded student, you will continue to receive your stipend during the placement and your funding date will be extended by 3 months full-time / 6 months part-time to reflect the time you take away from your research to do the placement.
  • If your PhD is self-funded, you will receive a bursary commensurate with a studentship stipend i.e. equivalent to £378 per week full time during the placement.
  • In both cases:
    • You will also be eligible to apply for up to £1,500 in addition to support travel, accommodation, and other expenses.  How to claim expenses.
    • Your submission deadline will  be extended to reflect the time taken away from your research to do the placement.
  • If you are UKRI-funded, you can still apply for these placement opportunities.  However, if you are successful, it will be expected that you source the funding for the placement from your own Research Council's placement scheme.


How to find a suitable placement opportunity?

If you are self-sourcing a placement, there are a number of strategies you could adopt e.g. speculative applications, LinkedIn, networking, industry directories. The Careers Service delivers a workshop throughout the Autumn and Spring terms entitled 'Finding jobs, placements and internships' which offers an overview of the various strategies you can use to find work opportunities.  Find out more about the workshops and register on the Careers Portal:

There are also placement opportunities sourced by the College which you can apply for: view the current placement opportunities open for application.


Interested in applying?

Once you have identified a potential placement opportunity and have had unofficial discussions with the placement provider to confirm the possibility:

  1. Read the PGR Career Enhancement Placement Scheme guide carefully.  If you have any questions that are not addressed, there, please contact the Doctoral School.
  2. Discuss your plans with your supervisor, as they will need to approve your request
  3. If you are sponsored on a Royal Holloway Student Route visa, contact the International Student Support Office for advice on how much you would be able to work on the placement.
  4. Submit your application via the PGR Career Enhancement Scheme application form or, where the opportunity has been sourced by the College, via the specific application form.
  5. The Doctoral School will be in contact with you within a week to advise on the probable timeline for the decision and to explain the next part of the process.


Can I take part in the scheme if I am on a Student Route visa?

Yes - but it will need to be done in line with your responsibilities under the visa i.e.

  • you are restricted to working a total of 20 hours a week (at the placement and any other work you are already doing)
  • you will not be able to interrupt (as you would need to leave the UK if you were to interrupt)

It is strongly recommended that you speak with the International Student Support Office if you are considering applyng for a placement so that they can advise on your options.

Is it possible to apply for a part-time placement?

Yes - please refer to the PGR Career Enhancement Placement Scheme guide for the implictaions of doing the placement part-time.

I'm not able to find a placement myself.  Will there be any other  placement opportunities I can apply for?

Yes - any placements opportunities suitable for postgraduate researchers that School Directors of External Engagement are able to set up with current partner organisations or placements within the College (e.g. in the Library) will be advertised to all PGRs, and funded through the PGR Career Enhancement Placement Scheme.

Does this scheme cover placements which are integral to my research?

No - this scheme is to support placements which will strengthen your employability experience and skills and does not support placements which are integral to your research.


If you are not able to find the answer to your question on this page or in the PGR Career Enhancement Placement Scheme guide, please do not hesitate to contact the Doctoral School.

Contact us

By email:

By phone:

  • 01784 276886
  • Manned 10am-4pm, Tuesday to Thursday

In person:

  • Visit our helpdesk in room S-105, Founder's South Tower
  • Open 10am-4pm on Tuesdays

Quick links

PGR Career Enhancement Placement Scheme guide

PGR Career Enhancement Scheme application form

Current PGR placement opportunities

How to claim expenses

PGR Employability Experiences brochure

PGR Employability Experiences homepage

Doctoral School Researcher Development Training brochure

Researcher Development Programme

Careers support for PGRs

Book a one to one appointment for Careers advice