Undergraduate Bursary Scheme


Applications for the 2022 Undergraduate Bursary Scheme are now CLOSED


Set in a historic city-centre location, Oxford University Museum of Natural History has been a hub of world-leading research since its foundation in 1860. Our collections are home to a range of priceless zoological and geological artefacts, and our exhibits and events continue to inspire public interest in the natural sciences.


Our undergraduate bursary projects are designed to give hands-on experience of working at the Museum of Natural History. The scheme accepts applications from groups who are under-represented in the museum sector and in the sciences of the natural environment. This includes disabled people; students from Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds; and students from lower income backgrounds.


Each bursary covers a full-time, six-week project at the Museum, supervised by one of the members of our team. You will receive a total stipend of around £2,250 towards your living expenses, and accommodation will be provided free of charge at the Museum lodge. Projects will run at fixed dates between June and September 2022.


These bursaries are kindly supported by the EPA Cephalosporin Fund and the Carey Family.





Our 2022 projects cover three core aspects of Museum operations: research, collections management and public engagement





The bursaries offer a total stipend of £2,250 to cover travel and living expenses.

Students will have the option of staying in accommodation to be provided by the Museum at no additional charge.




We are aiming to make our Undergraduate Bursary Projects accessible to disabled people. If you have particular access needs, please get in touch with Ella to discuss how we can make sure that our projects are accessible to you. Ella's email: eleanor.mckelvey@oum.ox.ac.uk


Oxford University Museum of Natural History general accessibility information.







To be eligible for the bursaries, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a student currently undertaking an undergraduate degree at a UK university.

  • Be in at least the second year of their degree.

  • Not have previously undertaken a substantial period of research (e.g. an integrated Master’s research project).

  • And at least one of the following:

    • Come from a Black, Asian or minority ethnic background.

    • Have a disability.

    • Their highest earning parent or guardian at age 14 was not self-employed, not in senior management, and was employed in one of the following categories:

      • technical and craft occupations (e.g. motor mechanic, plumber, electrician)

      • manual and service occupations (e.g. postal worker, security guard, driver, cleaner)

      • unemployed and seeking work.

How to Apply


Candidates must submit their application to Ella (Internship Coordinator) at eleanor.mckelvey@oum.ox.ac.uk. The following information is required:

  • The name of the project you are applying for
  • A 500-word statement explaining why you are interested in the bursary scheme and how you think it will enhance your career
  • A CV
  • A completed diversity monitoring form


In addition, you will be required to ask a personal tutor or another member of academic staff to send a reference to eleanor.mckelvey@oum.ox.ac.uk.

  • The reference should provide details of the applicants' academic ability and potential, and explain why this opportunity would be beneficial for their career.


Deadline for applications and references: 01 April 2022 at 12:00 noon.


Selection Process


Following the application closing deadline, submitted applications will be read by the relevant project supervisor and a team of two other staff members. A shortlist of applicants will then be decided upon for each project.

Applicants will be shortlisted according to the following criteria:

1. Eligibility (based on diversity monitoring criteria)

2. Understanding of, and enthusiasm for, the outlined project

3. Relevancy of previous experience and achievements (academic, work experience, hobbies and interests)

All applicants will receive an email to confirm whether or not they have been shortlisted.

Shortlisted applicants will then be invited for an interview. This interview will take place either in-person or online, depending on the preference of the applicant. The Museum will cover travel costs for in-person interviews.

Successful applicants will then be decided upon on the basis of their written application and interview.





Drop Ella an email: eleanor.mckelvey@oum.ox.ac.uk