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Student Application Guidance

Choose a project that interests you

Please take a look at the list of topics that have been pre-approved for the scheme on the Available Projects page. Ensure that the project you wish to apply for is appropriate to your interests and your ability before deciding to pursue an application.

Submit an expression of interest

Once you have selected a project, please send us:

  • A copy of your CV
  • A completed application form. It should include…
  • Your name and contact details
  • The name of the degree scheme that you are studying and the university at which you are studying it
  • The name and email address of the academic who is likely to supervise your project, or those of your course director
  • The title of the project that you are interested in
  • A short covering letter explaining why you are interested in the project and why you are an appropriate candidate, and also highlight any relevant skills which you may have. The letter should not be more than 500 words long and it could also consider how you would approach the project.

Before submitting your application please send your CV by email to projects@cdrc.ac.uk with the subject heading: “CDRC Masters – < your name >”.

We will acknowledge your application within one week, and, if suitable, will forward it to the industry partner.

Interview with the project partner

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to discuss the project with their proposed industry partner. At interview you will be expected to demonstrate that you have:

  • Academic skills and experience relevant to the research proposal
  • Enthusiasm to work with the business, and motivation to deliver a successful project
  • A good understanding of the research topic
  • The aptitude to engage with the challenges posed by the research project
  • Practical problem-solving and communications skills.

Work with your industry partner

Once you are accepted on to the scheme, you will agree a schedule of meetings with your industry partner to discuss the project and the data requirements that underpin it.

During the preparation of your dissertation, advice will also be available if required from the Consumer Data Research Centre (CDRC), as well as your normal university supervisor.

Present your results to an industry and academic audience

You will be required to email a PDF version of your dissertation to your industry partner and to the CDRC. A panel of academic and business experts will read the dissertations and judge the prizes.

You will be invited to attend an academic conference in London, and to provide a poster display of your project. The prizes will be awarded during the conference and the day is a great opportunity to share your findings with others working in the Industry. Reasonable travel costs will be paid, as will conference registration.

You will also be invited to produce a short report to summarise your key findings, it will be published on the CDRC website.

In addition, students may also be invited to feed into related ESRC and CDRC activities.

Funding available

Most (but not necessarily all) of the businesses will pay students out-of-pocket travel expenses plus a bursary of £500 upon successful completion of the project. Students will also have the chance of winning one of three prizes (£500, £250, and £250) which will be awarded to the three best dissertations, as decided by a panel of expert judges.

Any award will be in recognition of:

  • The competence and originality of the research that you have conducted
  • Your ability to balance the demands of academic and industry supervisors
  • The quality of your dissertation


If you have any queries please contact projects@cdrc.ac.uk

Applications should be sent to projects@cdrc.ac.uk with the subject heading “CDRC Masters – < your name >”.