May The Fourth Be With You – PhD Studentship Applications

Spring has finally sprung and so it’s now time to open our online summary application form for our next round of research grant applications.

This round is for PhD studentship applications, for projects starting in October 2013. The deadline for summary applications is Friday 4 May 2012.

Attracting promising researchers
Through our successful PhD studentship programme we have a track record of attracting and funding promising young scientists to develop their careers in MND research. Since 1998 we have funded 30 studentships, 12 of these are currently ongoing.

We need to continue to develop the UK basic research capacity by attracting more young scientists to develop careers in MND research. We can do this by funding PhD studentships.

Funding the best of the best
As with all of the research projects funded by the MND Association, our rigorous application process allows us to ensure we only fund studentships of the highest quality and of direct relevance to MND.

The way that we fund research starts with a summary application, which is a concise outline of the proposed project. After the deadline date has passed a decision is made as to whether the summary is relevant to ‘classical’ MND and the project aims fit with our Research Strategy. If the summary does not fit, it’s rejected. If all criteria are met, the summary is reviewed by our Biomedical Research Advisory Panel (BRAP).

The reviewer’s comments and scores are then assessed using a two thirds majority rule. Each reviewer scores the summary application. A score under 50 is classed as unsuitable for funding, if it’s over 50 then the applicant is invited to submit a full application.

We hope this year holds an exciting round of PhD studentship applications!

More information:

For further information please see the Prize PhD Studentship Flyer or visit our website www.mndassociation.org

Research grants round in full swing!

With all the excitement of the symposium in Orlando, it is still business as usual for the next research grants round.  As some of you will already know, we sent a record 25 summaries to our Biomedical Research Advisory Panel (BRAP) for review.  Out of these a staggering 18 applicants have been invited to submit a full application, plus 2 deferred from a previous round making a grand total of 20 full applications expected in mid January.  This will be a busy time for the grants team, processing the applications as they arrive in the office.

The next task will be to find external referees (experts from the scientific world), on average 2-3 per application.  They will be asked to provide their opinion on certain aspects of the application which will then be taken into consideration by the BRAP before and during the meeting in April.  This is a very thorough process to ensure we fund top quality research.

More information on research projects we fund is available from our website.