Admin and Finance

Interruption of studies

If  you need to interrupt your studies for any reason e.g.  illness, a summer internship, extenuating circumstances, then you may extend your PhD student status for the amount of time your studies were interrupted. For example, if you began in October 2016 and took a 3 month summer internship in summer 17 you may extend your studies until the end of December 2019 (i.e. you don’t become a 4th year student until January 2020).

NOTE: You must apply for the extension and submit an ‘interruption of studies form’ at the time your  studies are interrupted. If you do it retrospectively you will not be granted an extension.

You can choose to suspend your payments in which case they will be continued during the extended period or continue the payments and then you will not be paid during the extended period.

For more information please visit Registry pages.

Travel Insurance

As a PhD student you are eligible for Imperial College travel insurance for fieldwork, conferences and other work-related travel. For more information and the travel insurance certificate you should print out see here (to log onto the ORACLE collaboration suite just use your IC username and password). To be covered you must email Amanda Allotey the dates of travel and where you will be travelling to.

Funding information

Most students in ESE are funded by NERC, EPSRC and Science and Technology Facilities Council (formerly PPARC and CCLRC).

Find out more information on the College fees and funding section. 

Payment and forms

Most bursaries are paid monthly and the payment is usually made in advance just after the start of the month. Completed pay forms (for bursary payments and demonstrating) should be delivered to the Departmental Finance pigeon hole in the Reception Office (G.22). See the demonstrating page.

Any queries should be directed to the Departmental Finance Officer - Sripriya Niranjan.


Expenses come under the supervisor's jurisdiction, so enquiries should be directed there, and completed forms emailed to

Purchasing computers for research purposes

Please speak to your supervisor in the first instance to ascertain any budget and the specification required. The next step is to contact the ESE Computing Team for advice on the type of machine that would suit you. 


Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTAs) are an active part of taught courses in Earth Science and Engineering, find out more about about demonstrating.

Support and loans

We have hardship funds available for students experiencing financial difficulty. Postgraduate applicants are expected, prior to applying, to explore the availability of other resources, e.g. overdrafts, assistance from family, Career Development and Professional Studies Loans.  Email for details.

Postgraduate loans has information from the registry about getting a loan and is especially useful for international students. 

Awards and bursaries

There are many awards available. Postgraduate scholarships has information about awards and scholarships available for postgraduates. The Old Centralians' Trust Awards may also be of interest.

Each year, the department awards the Janet Watson Centenary Memorial Prize, a £1000 award for research excellence and for good citizenship. PhD supervisors and PhD students will be notified by email when nominations open.

There are also many awards available from professional societies and most will offer a variety of awards for conferences, field work, lab work and so on. A good first place to look is in the student section of the society web page. If you're not sure apply anyway, you never know and often there is flexibility when awarding the money.

Many conferences will have funds to support student attendance, again have a look in the student section of the webpage. 

Finally, always check in advance, awards are typically given once a year and so you need to know when the deadline is as most funds will not be given retrospectively.