Funding for UROPs
NEWS: read the Summer 2024 update here.
February 2024 (amendments to previous statement in italics): To confirm that the following depts within FoE and FoNS have made it known to the UROP Manager that they will no longer allow UROPs to take place (to be registered) without financial support for the student having been agreed: Chemistry, Life Sciences, Mathematics, Physics, Aeronautics, Chemical Eng, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Computing, Design Engineering, Earth Science and Eng, Electrical and Electronic Engineering and Materials. These departmental rules apply to all UROPs whether the student participating is an Imperial undergraduate or not. The following depts within FoE are very likely to take the same stance by spring 2024: Mechanical Engineering. In all instances queries should be addressed to the relevant Dept's Student Office.
NEWS (December 2023): The College's UROP Bursary competition (for UROPs to be undertaken in summer 2024 by Imperial College undergraduates on degree programmes) will be open at the beginning of the spring term.
There are two aspects to funding a UROP.
- the costs to the academic supervisor of providing a research experience, which may include consumables (e.g. materials, software, hardware, chemicals, licences) and space (e.g. desk, workshop, bench, laboratory). Normally these costs are borne by the host department in agreeing to host a student. Students are kindly asked to remember this if the host department is unable to provide a bursary towards your living costs although the College does strongly encourage the provision of bursaries. However, although very rare, a department at Imperial College does reserve the right to seek a contribution from a student for specific costs.
- the costs to a student of living in London for the duration of the research experience (most notably local travel costs, accommodation and other necessary subsistence costs) where the said period is not covered by funding provided for their degree programme. Naturally, when a UROP (which is not employment) takes place in a vacation period a student's normal sources of funding do not always extend to non-term/semester periods, nor (by selecting to undertake a UROP) is the student in a position to undertake paid work. Imperial College strongly encourages either the provision of a bursary by the host department OR freely given assistance from the proposed supervisor to the student so that they may apply for third party sources of funding. However, it remains acceptable for a student and supervisor to agree to collaborate on a UROP without a bursary having put in place for the period. Students and staff should ensure they make themselves familiar with any local departmental policy in this regard.