AHRC M4C - How to Apply


  • Funding is only available for students who are UK or EU citizens, beginning a PhD at one of the M4C member universities in September 2019.
  • UK students are eligible for a ‘Full Award’.
  • EU students are generally eligible for a ‘Fees Only Award’.
    However, if you have been resident in the UK for three years immediately prior to the beginning of your studies, you are eligible for a ‘Full Award’.

How much?

  • In 2018 students were awarded a stipend of £14,777. Stipend levels for 2019 are to be confirmed.

How long?

The normal maximum award tenure is 3.5 years (42 months) for full-time study and six years ( 72 months) for part-time study. These periods can be extended if you make a case to the AHRC – you can do this as part of your AHRC M4C application.

Application process for the Open Doctoral Award

There is an Application Writing Workshop at De Montfort University (Leicester) on Saturday 10 November 2018

Times and  Booking and details to be confirmed

1. COMPLETE the University of Leicester Application Form.

  • (NB If you apply for more than one studentship in the same department, please only submit one University application form, but indicate both projects/funding sources. If you are applying for projects in different departments, please complete separate University application forms for each project)
  • Under the funding section select Studentship and in the drop down select AHRC Midland4Cities.
  • In the References section DO NOT include your referee's email address - instead use pgradmissions@le.ac.uk as the email for both referees. References are requested as part of the AHRC M4C application only.


2. COMPLETE the Midlands4cities Application Form Refer to the M4C  guidance notes

There are four tasks to complete the M4C application process:

Eligibility Questions

Application Form

Equal Opportunities Form

Reference Request **

**We recommend that you submit your reference request as soon as possible. This can be completed in advance of submitting your full application form. The references must be submitted by your referees by 14 January 2019**.

Once you have completed the four tasks, and are ready to submit your completed application, click ‘Review & Submit’.

Current PhD students

If you are already a PhD student at the University of Leicester, you can still apply for this AHRC funding provided that you have at least 12 months of research to complete (or 24 months for part-time students).  You do not need to submit a new Leicester PhD application. You just need to complete the AHRC Midlands4Cities application. Include your University of Leicester Student ID number.


AHRC M4C Referees

  • Your referees should be someone who can comment on your academic work as well as your PhD potential. If you are studying an undergraduate degree or a Masters, then your tutor can act as a referee.
  • If you are currently a PhD student at the University of Leicester, one of your referees should be your supervisor.
  • If you are not currently studying, then an employer reference can be accepted.


  • You must have applied for your PhD and your AHRC funding by noon on 14th January 2019
  • You must provide your two AHRC references by noon on 14th January 2019.
  • Please note that you are responsible for ensuring that your AHRC referees submit their references by the closing date

Next steps

All shortlisted applicants will be interviewed by their departments in January.

Selected applications will be put forward to the Midlands4Cities Doctoral Training Partnership in February. They will assess all funding applications from the six universities in the scheme and will decide which students will receive awards.

All successful applicants will be notified in early April 2019.

If you are unsuccessful

We hope that you will be successful in your application for funding, however your PhD offer from Leicester is not dependant on you receiving an AHRC award. You can fund your studies yourself or seek other forms of support including:


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