Clinician scientist fellowship
The MRC’s Clinician Scientist Fellowships aim to develop outstanding medically and other clinically qualified professionals who have gained a PhD/DPhil to establish themselves as independent researchers. Applicants will demonstrate a rigorous and insightful approach to research, and the ability to relate their research to clinical medicine and to the improvement of health. They will have a clear sense of how they wish to develop their careers as clinicians and scientists and show the potential to become research and/or clinical leaders in the future. Applicants may submit research projects that fit anywhere within MRC’s remit, however, it is expected that applicants’ clinical work helps to inform and strengthen their research work.
- The award
- Who can apply?
- What funding is provided?
- Other grant support
- Tenure of award
- Deadlines and submission details
- Completion of specialist clinical training
- Other work responsibilities
- Applications for further fellowship support
- Guidance for applicants
The MRC Clinician Scientist Fellowship is a post-doctoral clinical fellowship providing up to four years' support. There is also a patient-oriented version of the scheme that provides up to five years' support, which is intended for research which requires up to 40 per cent of the fellow's time to be spent in clinical work. At least 50 per cent of this clinical work should be of direct relevance to the research project.
The MRC and the Academy of Medical Sciences Tenure-Track Clinician Scientist Fellowship is designed to support career development and promote recruitment into clinical academic medicine. The award provides up to five years' support. Applicants must demonstrate a tenure-track commitment from the host institution, and obtain an agreement to fund one year’s personal salary from the Regional Postgraduate Medical Dean. A mentor, provided by the academy, will be available to the fellow for the tenure of the award.
MRC/MND Association Lady Edith Wolfson Fellowships
This scheme aims to support clinicians wishing to pursue research into the pathogenesis and treatment of motor neuron disease. Awards under this scheme are available for clinical research training fellowships (CRTF), senior clinical fellowships (SCF) and clinician scientists fellowships (CSF). If you have any queries about the fellowship or your proposed research area, please contact Dr Brian Dickie or visit the MND Association website for further information.
Contact: Dr Brian Dickie
Each of the above awards provide the opportunity to spend time in an overseas research centre, UK industry, or a second research centre, to receive training that cannot be achieved as effectively within the academic host institution.
The MRC clinician scientist and patient-oriented clinician scientist fellowships are open to hospital doctors, dentists, general practitioners, nurses, midwives and members of the allied health professions. Applicants may not have held a clinician scientist fellowship (from any organisation) previously. The MRC and Academy of Medical Sciences Tenure-track clinician scientist fellowship is open only to hospital doctors, dentists and general practitioners.
Medical or dental graduates should be of specialty registrar (StR) or consultant status or be at the equivalent level in general practice. Nurses, midwives and other allied health professionals must have completed their professional training.
All applicants must have obtained a PhD, DPhil or MD in a basic science or clinical research project, or expect to have done so by the time they take up the award. Applications from existing MRC fellows are particularly welcome.
There are no residence eligibility restrictions for these fellowships.
As part of the MRC’s equal opportunities policy, consideration will be given to applicants who are returning to science following a career break. There are no age limits for any of our schemes and all fellowships may be held part-time to fit in with domestic responsibilities.
The fellowships provide personal salary costs, together with research support staff, research consumables expenses, travel costs and capital equipment appropriate for the research project under full economic costs. The award also provides the opportunity for fellows to undertake research training outside the UK, for which overseas living costs are available.
The MRC clinician scientist fellowship also provides the opportunity to spend up to one year in an overseas research centre, a second UK research centre or UK industrial centre. The aim is to provide a concentrated period of training that could not be achieved as effectively within the academic host institution. We would normally expect this training component to be a single visit lasting up to 12 months. However, the assessment panel may agree to requests for visits to more than one centre, if this can be justified on the grounds of training needs. These should not be simply collaborative visits. You should be prepared at interview to discuss in detail any proposed period overseas or in industry.
Clinician scientist fellowship holders are encouraged to apply as a principle investigator or co-investigator for grant support via an MRC research grant or collaboration grant, or grants from other funding organisations, subject to written approval from the MRC fellowship section. Fellows seeking this further support should ensure that the additional work can be carried out within the six hours per week allowed for other duties as stipulated under ‘Other work responsibilities’ below and in the fellowship terms and conditions (part FA19).
In certain cases consideration will be given to allowing the fellow to apply for grant funding which exceeds these limits.
The MRC clinician scientist fellowship provides four years' support. The MRC patient-oriented clinician scientist fellowship and the MRC/Academy of Medical Sciences Tenure-track clinician scientist fellowship provides five year's support.
Please apply for the Clinician Scientist Fellowship using the RCUK Je-S application system. Your proposal must be submitted through the MRC Je-S system by 4pm on the relevant Fellowship Application deadline date.
If you are medically and dentally qualified and have not already completed your specialist or vocational training, you should have a clear idea of your plans for doing so at the time of application. Applicants wishing to pursue specialist or vocational training must consult their Postgraduate Medical Dean, Regional Advisor in General Practice, and Royal College prior to submitting an application, to find out if the research may be acceptable as training towards the Certificate of Completion of Specialist Training. Enquiries and subsequent applications to the relevant body should be made in consultation with the prospective head of department.
Full details of the arrangements for specialist training are available in “A Guide to Specialist Registrar Training” available from
Department of Health
PO Box 777
London SE1 6XH
Fax: 01623 724524
Non-UK clinicians who are still working towards accreditation through their own national systems should consider carefully whether training in the UK will count towards their accreditation.
The MRC recognises the challenges faced by clinicians in combining research training with the demands of a clinical career. We therefore try to operate the scheme as flexibly as possible, with the extent of the fellow’s clinical commitment negotiable depending on the specialty and the needs of the research. Clinician scientist fellows may normally:
- Spend up to two sessions a week (three for surgeons) on NHS clinical sessions, with their sponsors' approval.
- Place their awards into abeyance for up to 12 months to undertake clinical training over a concentrated period, although awards should not be put into abeyance within year one.
- Patient-oriented clinician scientist fellows may spend up to 40 per cent of their time in clinical and professional development.
MRC clinician scientist fellows, and research support staff funded through full-time fellowships, may undertake up to six hours a week on other responsibilities such as teaching or demonstrating. Payment for this work may be retained in full if this is the host institution’s normal policy.
Existing MRC clinician scientist fellows who wish to continue developing their research careers and who do not have an established position are eligible to compete for an MRC senior clinical fellowship.
- Current scientific priority areas
- Deadlines for applications
- Fellowship Application Guidance
- Assessment criteria
- Fellowship terms and conditions
- Residence eligibility requirements
For further information please refer to our contacts page.