How to Apply


The ACCE DTP is committed to recruiting extraordinary future scientists regardless of age, disability, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, faith or religions belief, pregnancy or maternity, parental or caring responsibilities or career pathway to date. We understand that a student’s potential can be shown in many ways and we strive to recruit students from all backgrounds, and support them on their scientific journey. 

We have designed our application systems to identify candidates who are likely to be successful in research regardless of what opportunities may have been available to them prior to their application.

The video guidance explains the ACCE application process and how to apply.

For guidance on writing a personal statement please see the proforma below and use it as a template.

ACCE Personal statement proforma

Following our recent webinar, please also see our Frequently Asked Questions document, available here: ACCE FAQs

The application process

Applications to ACCE are made directly to the institution you are applying for. Click on the relevant ACCE Academic partner below to see available projects. You need to look at the guidelines for applicants for each University or Department hosting the PhD as they may vary. 

University of Liverpool

University of Sheffield

University of York

Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH)

Natural History Museum (NHM)

Where to start: We recommend that you get in touch with the supervisors before you apply to discuss the project further. You can simply email the main supervisor (first listed name) by finding them on their institutional webpages. 

What to include: Your application should include a CV, two referees and a personal/supporting statement/cover letter. We strongly recommend you use our guided personal statement in place of a standard personal/supporting statement/cover letter.

How ACCE selection works: Applications are sent directly to the supervisors of each project. Where supervisors receive multiple applications they then select 1-2 applicants to put forward for interview. It is likely that they will want to have an informal chat with each candidate to help them choose the best fit. Note: As some projects have many more applicants than others, we encourage applicants to consider applying for more than one project within ACCE to maximise their chances of being interviewed. If you are nominated for interview by more than one supervisor, you will have to choose the one project for which you want to be interviewed.

Finally, applications are then assessed by ACCE at each institution and a number of those students will be selected for interview (in mid-February).

Eligibility and funding

ACCE DTP studentships are available to UK and international students. International students, if selected, would need to find additional funding to cover fees over and above the UK fee rate, as UKRI do not cover international fees; EU students will also need to pay international fees from the 2021/22 academic year. There is a possibility that bursaries will be available from the universities but due to the newness of these changes we are unable to confirm this. Further information about eligibility can be found in the UKRI Terms and Conditions

Applicants are usually expected to be predicted or have achieved a first-class or strong upper second-class undergraduate degree (or equivalent international qualifications) in environmental sciences, archaeology, ecology, biology, botany, chemistry, computing, geography, geology, mathematics, meteorology, physics, statistics, zoology, and other related subjects.