Research Experience Placements (REPs)
Research Experience Placement is a summer placement scheme funded by NERC, aimed at undergraduate students to address demographic and diversity-related challenges in the environmental sciences as well as thematic skills gaps (e.g. quantitative skills).
Summer 2021: we have 5 placements available. Please see below details of the scheme, projects on offer and application process. The applications will open as soon as possible, please bear with us. You can prepare your application in the meantime by following the below instructions.
Placement Details, Funding and Reporting
- We have 5 REPs available for the Summer 2021.
- Placements duration is 6 or 7 weeks over the summer vacation period (mid-June to the end of August). They include 4 or 4.5 days of annual leave which will have to be taken in agreement with the project supervisor.
- Placements are paid at the University grade UE03 (£345.38 per week).
- Placements can be undertaken full- or part-time.
- There is no additional cost available for relocation.
- Students will need to be in the UK (no remote placements from abroad).
- The student and the project supervisor at the host organisation will be required to complete a brief online report on the outcome of the placement at the end of the placement (see the previous' years report template below).
Eligibility of students
Students must meet ALL of the following criteria to be eligible to apply for a REP. The students must:
- Be undertaking their first undergraduate degree studies (or integrated Masters) in a UK Higher Education institution in any science discipline - Year 2 onwards;
- Be applying for a placement in a different department to their undergraduate degree;
- Be eligible for subsequent NERC PhD funding, i.e. be either:
- an UK citizen OR
- an EU citizen with pre- or settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme OR
- a non-EU citizen who have obtained the right to remain in the UK - known as ‘indefinite leave to remain’ (ILR) OR
- an International/EU student already studying in the UK and currently under a Tier 4 or Student Route Visa with validity until at least September 2021
Important notes regarding eligibility
- To international applicants with no current UK student visa: REPs do not meet the requirements for a visa request therefore non-UK students who are not currently studying and living in the UK and who don't have a suitable UK visa are NOT eligible to apply.
- To applicants (UK and non-UK) with a valid UK student visa but not currently in the UK: We will accept applications from students who are currently enrolled on a UG degree in a UK Higher Education Institution (and therefore should have a student visa valid until at least September 2021 if they are non-UK) but who are not currently in the UK, on the condition that they have, at the time of their application, arrangements in place to come back to the UK in time for the placement to start. Please check the latest University and Government guidance regarding travelling to the UK (note that the University will need to know you are coming back and why in order to give a formal approval and that quarantines are still in place when entering Scotland from outside the UK) before booking any flights and submitting your application. We will check your situation when reviewing your application.
Applications for the summer REPs 2021 will open as soon as possible (please bear with us) with deadline for application on the 19th of May 2021.
REP scheme repurposing 2021
NERC has repurposed the REP scheme this year to address demographic and diversity-related challenges in the environmental sciences (as well as skills-gap). Therefore, we include a Widening Participation form for candidates who are from an under-represented group to complete and return with their application if they wish to. This WP form will not be passed onto the project supervisor but will be looked at by the REP panel after the supervisor shortlists their preferred candidates. The REP panel might decide to prioritise candidates who are from under-represented groups.
We also include an Equality and Diversity Monitoring form to comply with NERC's reporting processes.
In order to be considered for a placement, please apply via the University job vacancy system (a link will be inserted below when applications open by the end of April), providing the following documents:
- A cover letter detailing your motivation to apply for the REP scheme and stating which project you would like to be considered for and why ( see the available projects below) - You can only apply for one project.
- A recent CV
- A reference from your Personal Tutor
- An interim transcript if available
- The below Equality and Diversity Monitoring form (please see further information on the form itself)
- *OPTIONAL* The below Widening Participation form if you are from an under-represented group and wish to let the REP panel know
Uncomplete applications which do not include the essential documents (n.1 to 5 above) will be rejected.
- Applications are screened for completeness and eligibility for the scheme
- Supervisors are sent the applications (with the exception of the Widening Participation and the EDI form, which are removed) and nominate up to 3 candidates
- The REP panel reviews the applications against the following criteria: marks, fit to project and interest in environmental topics. The panel also looks at the Widening Participation information available for each applicant who has returned the WP form, with the aim of prioritising candidates from under-represented groups, as instructed by NERC.
Successful candidates will be notified by 4 June 2021.
Available Research Projects
There are 8 REP projects on offer for the Summer 2021. Please see below the job descriptions for each project and read carefully before applying (especially the person specifications which are different for each project). You can apply to only one project.
If you have any questions on the projects themselves, please contact the PI directly.
|n.||Project Title||PI (Main supervisor)||School Host|
Data mining the historic record of Scotland’s glacial landscape
|Prof. Linda Kirstein, email@example.com||School of GeoSciences, University of Edinburgh|
|2||Modelling of cricket breeding programmes to increase cricket production||Dr. Gregor Gorjanc, firstname.lastname@example.org||The Roslin Institute, RDSVS, University of Edinburgh|
|3||Interactions through space and time: defining a contact and its implications for disease transmission in a wild rodent population||
Amy B Pedersen, email@example.com
Institute of Evolutionary Biology, School of Biological Sciences, University of Edinburgh
|4||Evaluation of ERA5 near-surface wind speeds (variability and long-term) over Madagascar||Dr Massimo Bollasina, Massimo.Bollasina@ed.ac.uk||
School of Geosciences, University of Edinburgh
|5||Evaluation of snow cover simulations for the Scottish Highlands||
Prof Richard Essery firstname.lastname@example.org
|School of GeoSciences, University of Edinburghh|
|6||How good are small scale organic farms for biodiversity? Using bats to monitor insect biodiversity||Dr Alfred Gathorne-Hardy, email@example.com||School of GeoSciences, University of Edinburgh|
|7||Livestock and global climate change: what should cows eat?||
Prof Dominic Moran, firstname.lastname@example.org
|Global Academy of Agriculture and Food Security, University of Edinburgh|
|8||Bringing Atomic-level insights to Caesium Decontamination by Clay Minerals||Dr Valentina Erastova, email@example.com||School of Chemistry, University of Edinburgh|
REP Job Descriptions - Please read carefully before applying:
At the moment, we expect the projects to be running in person (as much as possible and as regulations allow at the start of the placement). However, all projects include contingency plans in case the placements need to happen remotely.
If you have any questions on the scheme please email firstname.lastname@example.org