CoR Doctoral Fellowship Grant

A doctoral fellowship grant funded by The College of Radiographers and CoRIPS is available for Society members wishing to undertake doctoral level research. 

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Doctoral fellowship grant

There are two fellowship grants of up to £25,000 for candidates in the following research topics: 

  • Accuracy and safety
  • Technological innovations
  • Public and patient experience
  • Service and workforce transformation
  • Education and training

This exciting opportunity to undertake paid doctoral research will not only have a direct benefit for patients and their families, but will also result in a published article in the College’s peer-review journal, Radiography, and a public address at one of the CoR’s conferences.

To apply for the fellowship, applicants must be full members of the SoR and be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) or appropriate voluntary register.

Applicants should also be in receipt of a full or conditional offer for doctoral studies at a UK university within one of the five research areas mentioned above and provide at least one submission to Radiography.  

In addition, applicants must provide evidence of support from their employer if remaining in part-time employment, as research will require time out from normal work duties.

NB Unfortunately, we are unable to fund applicants who have previously received Doctoral Fellowship funding.

The deadline for submissions will be 5pm on the first Monday of April each year.

Application forms and guidance

Review our tips for preparing your application

Case study: Carolyn Costigan

“I am very grateful for the scholarship and proud to be raising the profile of research radiographers, nationally and internationally.”

  • Carolyn Costigan: Principal research radiographer, Medical Physics & Clinical Engineering, Nottingham University Hospitals
  • Research project: MRI assessment in newly diagnosed coeliac disease and following gluten-free diet treatment
  • Award: £24,000

Carolyn qualified in the pre-degree era, first doing a diploma of the College of Radiographers (DCR) as it was and as radiography moved towards a graduate profession, she decided to upgrade her qualification to an MSc. In 2015, Carolyn was awarded the inaugural College of Radiographers CoRIPS Doctoral Fellowship Grant for her study, MRI assessment in newly diagnosed coeliac disease and following gluten-free diet treatment.

“I had embarked on my PhD at the University of Nottingham’s School of Medicine the previous year, intending to complete it part time over six years, whilst working as a Band 8a principle research radiographer at Nottingham University Hospitals.

“The £24,000 award allowed me to buy out some of my NHS time and spend a focused year on my studies, and also to attend an international meeting in Singapore in 2016.“

The research
One in 100 people suffers from coeliac disease (CD). CD is an autoimmune disease affecting primarily the small bowel mucosa, with malabsorption of nutrients, increased fluid load in the bowel, dysmotility and gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms such as pain, bloating and diarrhoea. Despite a long-term and strict adherence to a gluten-free diet, some coeliac patients have persistent symptoms despite reversal of coeliac enteropathy. Further work is required to understand mechanisms of symptoms in CD.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) offers a unique tool to study GI fluid volumes, organ volumes and gut transit. This study in 36 CD patients and a parallel group of 36 healthy volunteers aims to test the main hypotheses that: 1) before treatment, the water content of the small bowel will be increased compared to the control population. 2) After 12 months on a gluten-free diet the small bowel water content will revert to normal values. 3) The study will also explore association between the MRI parameters and GI symptoms and clinical phenotype.

“As well as the financial support, support from the CoRIPS Doctoral Fellowship Grant was an immense confidence boost and I have now finished the clinical trial and am analysing the data and writing up my PHD dissertation. I have already presented some preliminary results at ISMRM in Paris in 2018.

“I am very grateful for the scholarship and for the support of my supervisors and manager, and proud to be raising the profile of research radiographers, nationally and internationally.“


Case study: Simon Goldsworthy

“The College of Radiographers doctoral fellowship has provided me with financial support to dedicate time to my PhD research programme, pay PhD fees, and support my patient research partners. This fellowship has made my research to develop a comfort intervention for patients receiving radiotherapy, a reality”.

  • Simon Goldsworthy: Research radiographer, Musgrove Park Hospital, Taunton
  • Research project: Improving comfort for cancer patients receiving radiotherapy: integrating an acceptability study (COMFORT study)
  • Award: £24,000

Patients undergoing radiotherapy are positioned to restrict motion to ensure treatment reproducibility and accuracy. Immobilisation can be uncomfortable and research suggests that patient discomfort is associated with reduced treatment accuracy. Treatment times are increasing for stereotactic ablative radiotherapy, presenting further challenges for positioning. Radiographers are responsible for managing patient comfort, yet there is little evidence to guide practice.

Simon’s project aims to develop and test a comfort intervention for cancer patients undergoing radiotherapy with extended treatment times. The findings will provide an in-depth understanding of patient comfort and develop a comfort intervention to improve the care and treatment of cancer patients. This comfort intervention will be tested in a feasibility RCT.

NIHR Clinical Research Network

The Society and College of Radiographers is a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) non-commercial Partner. This means the studies that we fund may be eligible to access NIHR Clinical Research Network (CRN) support.

The NIHR Clinical Research Network (CRN) has extended support into health and social care research taking place in non-NHS settings.

The change to the policy (from 1 January 2018) means the CRN can support research conducted outside of NHS settings, such as studies running in care homes or in hospices, which will answer important questions for those patient populations. The CRN will also be able to better support research into public health, for example in schools and other community settings. This change is a way in which the NIHR is addressing the evolving health and care landscape and the changing needs of people and patients.

Read the full Eligibility Criteria for NIHR Clinical Research Network Support policy

In partnership with your local R&D office, we encourage you to involve your local CRN team in discussions as early as possible when planning your study to fully benefit from the support the NIHR CRN offers as outlined in their Study Support Service. 

To find out more about how you can apply for this additional support to help deliver your study, please visit the NIHR Study Support Service

If your study involves NHS sites in England you will need to apply for Health Research Authority Approval (HRA) in order to qualify for NIHR CRN support. For guidance on submitting an application please visit the HRA planning and improving resesarch webpages