Candidates are advised to show these guidelines to their intended supervisor.
Our remit for the 2023 call for 2024 awards
The aim of the charity is to prevent and treat disease and disability by funding vital medical research in hospitals or research institutions across the UK.
The remit focuses on child health to include problems affecting pregnancy, childbirth, babies, children and young people. Within child health, we support a broad spectrum of research.
Please note that our emphasis is on biomedical clinical research or research at the interface between clinical and basic science. We pride ourselves that our research is both innovative and of a high standard as judged by rigorous peer review.
Within the above criteria, we also support research and development of equipment and techniques to improve diagnosis, therapy and assistive technology (including orthoses, prostheses and aids to daily living) and we encourage applications in the field of medical engineering.
Purpose of the award
These prestigious Research Training Fellowships are for training in research techniques and methodology in a subject relevant to the overall aims of the charity. Applications are invited from medical graduates, clinicians, bioengineers, research nurses, physiotherapists and allied health professionals. Applicants are strongly encouraged to independently register for a higher degree such as a PhD.
The scheme aims to train the research leaders of the future in the UK.
This round we hope to award two to three fellowships.
As part of this year’s open competition Research Training Fellowship round, Action Medical Research and the British Paediatric Neurology Association (BPNA) are working together to offer a joint fellowship award. The proposed research must be related to clinical neurology and/or neuroscience, including neurodisability and neurodevelopment. Fellowship applicants for this joint award are expected to be pre-doctoral trainee clinicians and will either already hold a UK or Irish specialist training post in Paediatric Neurology, or be planning to apply for a specialist training post in Paediatric Neurology or Neurodisability after completion of a PhD, applicants can include paediatric neurosurgeons. Fellowship applicants could become members of the BPNA for the duration of the fellowship if they are not one at the moment.
Applicants for the Action BPNA joint fellowship award are strongly encouraged to submit a pre-outline questionnaire as soon as possible to the BPNA and at least three weeks before the outline deadline. See below for further details.
Deadlines and outcomes
Outline application deadline: 14 July 2023.
Successful applicants from the outline stage will be informed of the full application closing date.
Interviews expected: End of February/early March 2024.
Awards: March 2024
Please note, these awards should not be viewed as project grant applications to simply extend current research as candidates will be expected to demonstrate a significant training element to their project. The awards are not perceived as studentships and we cover a salary rather than a stipend. We do not cover higher education fees but we strongly encourage training fellows to independently register for a higher degree such as a PhD.
The scheme is not intended for basic biological scientists.
Postdoctoral researchers can only apply if they are if they are bioengineers and will be receiving significant new training. Please note that these applicants would not be eligible for the joint BPNA fellowship.
Please note that competition for these awards is intense.
Please note that we do not provide:
- grants towards service provision or audit studies
- grants purely for higher education courses, although Research Training Fellows are strongly encouraged to independently register for a PhD
- course fees for degrees or subsistence costs
- grants for medical or dental electives
- grants for work undertaken outside the UK
- any indirect costs such as administrative or other overheads imposed by the University or other Institution
- costs associated with advertising and recruitment of staff
- 'top up' funding for work already supported by other funding bodies
- costs to attend conferences (current Action Medical Research grantholders may apply separately as the need arises during the grant)
- general appeals from other charities. Applications would normally come directly from research teams and projects need to be passed through our scientific peer review system
- grants for research into complementary / alternative medicine
- grants on how best to train clinical staff
- grants on social research, family relationships or socioeconomic research
- grants for very basic research with little likelihood of clinical impact within the short to medium term
- applicants based in core funded units can apply but need to demonstrate added value.
Candidates are expected to have at least some experience of research following their first degree. Medical graduates should have had limited research training but wish to develop a long-term career in academic medicine in the UK. They should not typically be more than 6 years post MRCP (or equivalent).
Two to three years considered. We do not fund one year fellowships.
University departments, teaching hospitals or other recognised research centres within the UK. It is essential that a laboratory or unit appropriate to the research proposed is selected, and the necessary equipment and facilities required for the proposed research must be available to the candidate.
Please note, Action Medical Research is not a research institution itself, and cannot offer research facilities to candidates.
We received 11 outline applications for the 2023 RTF scheme, 7 were invited to submit a full application. Six full applications were received for full external review. The applications and external referee reports were submitted to our Scientific Advisory Panel members and 5 candidates were shortlisted for interview. Two awards were made following the interviews.
We received 18 outline applications for the 2022 RTF scheme, 10 were invited to submit a full application and we received 9 full applications. The applications and external referee reports were then submitted to our Scientific Advisory Panel members and 6 candidates were shortlisted for interview. Three awards were made following the interviews.
We did not run a grant round for RTF awards in 2021.
We received 26 outline applications for the 2020 RTF scheme and 9 full applications were invited and received. The applications and external referee reports were then submitted to our Scientific Advisory Panel members and 6 candidates were shortlisted for interview. Two awards were made following the interviews.
The upper limit a three year fellowship is £275,000. Starting salary will be dependent on qualifications and experience. Consumable research expenses essential for the period of research training will be awarded. Please note that the claims for consumable expenses must be fully justified and will be scrutinised by our reviewers. Items of capital equipment, including computers, cannot be considered.
RTF Financial details
Research costs: The application should not include any indirect costs such as administrative or other overheads (including any depreciation or maintenance costs) imposed by the university or other institution and you should not include percentages of salaries for those already employed in permanent/long term positions such as supervisor time. We would only expect to support the directly incurred costs of research and do not pay indirect or directly allocated costs such as shared equipment and resources based on estimates.
Salary costs: Costs can include a salary for the Research Training Fellow. Please state salary scales known at the time of application and include an additional sum to cover estimates of future nationally agreed pay awards to cover cost of living increases only. Please include employer’s costs, pension and national insurance and London weighting where appropriate.
Consumables: You can include research expenses such as consumables directly incurred by the project. Equipment costs are not covered on Research Training Fellowship applications. VAT on consumables should not be included in the application. Schedule 5, Group 16 of the Value Added Tax Act 1983 zero rates the supply of medical and scientific equipment and consumables purchased with charitable funds when they are donated to designated non-profit making institutions, provided the supply is used for medical research, diagnosis or treatment. If you have specific queries with regards to VAT please contact the university or hospital tax accountant.
Travel, patient and public involvement and publication costs: Costs of travel may be included in an application provided they form a necessary and integral part of the research proposed. The application should not include an allowance for attendance at meetings and conferences. These must be the subject of a separate and individual application in writing to the charity as the need arises and funds are limited. Patient and public involvement (PPI) costs can be applied for up to a maximum of £1,000 per grant. Publication costs are limited to £3,000 per grant.
All applicants must comply with Home Office requirements and, where appropriate, hold a valid work permit to cover the period of the Research Training Fellowship. Preference will be given to candidates resident in the UK.
Applicants have an opportunity to undertake a period of research training which will be relevant to their future careers. Applicants should demonstrate that they have the necessary ability, enthusiasm and commitment to follow through any training and should provide evidence that they will be given guidance/training in appropriate research techniques and methodology (which may include experimental design, statistics, computing, writing scientific papers/grant applications). This should be summarised in the form of a timetable drawn up in conjunction with their supervisor. It is expected that applicants will be involved in oral presentations of their work and that they join journal clubs etc. as available.
It is a condition of any award that yearly reports are provided by the applicant and endorsed by their supervisor. Research Training Fellows are treated as all grantholders within the Charity and are expected to speak on their work at fundraising events or scientific meetings if required.
Fellowships must be taken up within one year of the award.
As these are personal awards and shortlisted candidates will be interviewed, it is expected that the application form is completed by the Research Training Fellowship applicant and NOT their supervisor.
Supervisors should discuss the basis of the application with the applicant thoroughly to ensure that a sensible programme of training is pursued and to advise on additional experience which may be needed (for example, by way of design, statistics, computing and writing scientific papers/grant applications). Applicants should be provided with an adequate and specific work area for both research and writing, and given an opportunity for oral presentations of their work, and the encouragement to join journal clubs etc. as available.
Mentors: We recommend that awardees arrange to have a mentor. The mentor should be someone different to their supervisors, be able to offer a different perspective and help with personal and professional development.
How the application will be judged
The Research Training Fellowship Scheme is run on the basis of an open competition and peer review. Consideration is given to the worthiness of the candidate, the value of the training proposed in relation to the ability of the candidate and their chosen career path, and the reputation of the host institute. The scientific merits of the project are assessed in terms of the project itself and the basis on which suitable training can be provided. Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview. The final selection will be made on the advice of the interviewing panel drawn from the relevant scientific and medical advisers of the Charity.
Joint Research Training Fellowships for 2024 awards
As part of this year’s open competition Research Training Fellowship round, Action Medical Research and the British Paediatric Neurology Association (BPNA) are working together to offer a joint fellowship award. The proposed research must be related to clinical neurology and/or neuroscience, including neurodisability and neurodevelopment.
Fellowship applicants for this joint award are expected to be pre-doctoral trainee clinicians and will either already hold a UK or Irish specialist training post in Paediatric Neurology, or be planning to apply for a specialist training post in Paediatric Neurology or Neurodisability after completion of a PhD, applicants can include paediatric neurosurgeons. Fellowship applicants could become members of the BPNA for the duration of the fellowship if they are not one at the moment.
Both the proposed application and fellowship applicant must meet the BPNA charitable aims. Applications for this joint award will be considered in open competition through the Action Medical Research peer review system as part of its response mode Research Training Fellowship round considering applications across conditions affecting pregnancy, babies, children and young people.
Applications may be made for up to three years’ full-time funding to £275,000 per award through the normal Action Medical Research application forms.
In addition, to help support applicants before submitting their outlines in July, prospective Research Training Fellows for the joint call with the BPNA are strongly encouraged to complete a pre-outline questionnaire and send this to the BPNA at email@example.com
The pre-outline questionnaire should be submitted as soon as possible and at least three weeks before the outline deadline to allow enough time for any feedback.
Action Medical Research will continue to consider applications across the breadth of its remit. Applications that are not eligible for joint funding but meet the remit of Action Medical Research alone will also be considered as part of this round.
Questions regarding the grant round should be directed to Action Medical Research by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org
The above set of GUIDELINES is aimed to help applicants and is in no way a comprehensive set of rules and regulations
How to apply
Please ensure that you have thoroughly read the remit and guidelines before submitting your application.
The purpose of the outline proposal is to establish that your proposed work clearly falls within our remit.
If the outline proposal is acceptable, you will be invited to complete a full application form online, and you will be advised of the timetable.
If your work is considered peripheral to our aims and in cases where demand on our funds is exceptionally high, we may be unable to pursue an application from you.
Please contact us on 01403 327407 if you have not received an acknowledgement email within 7 days to confirm the application has been received