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Aaron Sims Scholarship: For Cultures and Languages PhD Students

Please note that the content on this page is under review following a restructure into new faculties and schools. We will update this page shortly with the latest information.

Instituted under the will of Dr Aaron Sims, a former student of Birkbeck, University of London, the Aaron Sims MPhil/PhD Scholarship is a bursary covering full-time (three years) or part-time (five years) tuition fees up to the equivalent of UK Home enrolment fees, even if the actual fee payable is higher.

The bursary is open to applicants and eligible current students on the following part-time or full-time MPhil programmes:

  • MPhil Comparative Literature
  • MPhil French
  • MPhil German
  • MPhil Iberian and Latin American Studies  
  • MPhil Japanese 
In line with the criteria for the original bequest, preference may be given to candidates whose project relates to French, German, Dutch or Portuguese language subjects.



  • Funding covers tuition fees up to the equivalent of UK Home enrolment fees (students who are not eligible for home fees will need to pay the difference), for either full time (three years) or part time (five years). 
  • The overall length of the student's PhD may be up to four years (full time) or seven years (part time). 
  • The bursary is paid directly into the awardee's fee account after they have enrolled each autumn.
  • All payments are subject to confirmation of satisfactory attendance and progress and will be up to the equivalent of UK Home enrolment fees even if the actual fee payable is higher.


  • The preferred start date is October 2023.


  • Applicants must be Home/EU or International students.
  • Applicants should either:
  • Applicants will also need to demonstrate academic excellence (at least a 2:1 or equivalent in an undergraduate degree) and ensure they have made sufficient financial provision to meet the remaining costs associated with their studies.

Application deadline

  • 4 September 2023 by 2pm.


References/supervisor statement

  • New applicants
    • Referees will be automatically prompted to upload their references when you submit your programme application.
    • Please note that all references must be uploaded by 11 September 2023. We strongly encourage you to contact referees as early as possible to ensure they are prepared to upload their reference following submission of your application.
    • Closing date for applications: 4 September 2023, 2pm
    • Deadline for references: 11 September 2023, 2pm
  • Current students
    • Alongside your application, we require a supporting statement from your supervisor. This should be no more than 500 words and speak to your project, progress and development since registration.
    • Supporting statements should be  with the following subject line:
      • Your full name and student number 
      • The name of the award that the supporting statement relates to
    • Closing date for applications: 4 September 2023, 2pm
    • Deadline for supervisor supporting statement: 11 September 2023, 2pm