Institute for Mathematical Innovation

IMI helps students gain research experience to get ahead

Tuesday 5 July 2016


This summer, eighteen students from across campus are spending the holiday period gaining valuable research experience and getting a feel for what a career in science has to offer. 

IMI Undergraduate Research Interns 2016Participating in the Institute for Mathematical Innovation’s (IMI) Undergraduate Research Internship programme, the students will spend up to 10 weeks working on a research project supervised by academic staff at Bath.

Bridging undergraduate and PhD study

The programme fills an important gap between undergraduate and PhD study where students must be able to work independently. Importantly, it is also an opportunity for students to research a specific topic and establish a closer relationship with faculty members, who they can use as referees when applying for future jobs.

As Ludi Wang, one of this year’s interns and winner of the 2016 Chancellor’s Prize for best final year undergraduate student explained: "Doing a research internship is a great opportunity for me to explore a topic which is considered too risky for coursework. Not only am I gaining first-hand experience of doing research in a topic that is related to my Economics studies, but I can also fit the work in around the other things I am doing this summer, as the programme is flexible.”

Another intern, Anvar Atayev, added: “I am learning how to use mathematics to solve a real-world problem and research the literature on my own, which is giving me more confidence in terms of doing a PhD. The internship will also help me decide what Master’s degree programme I want to study”.

Alongside their research, this year’s undergraduate students will receive training in academic report writing and referencing, and how to typeset mathematics using LaTeX. They will also meet SAMBa PhD students from the Department of Mathematical Sciences for a chat about what it is like starting out in research. Students can also join a journal club to learn how to analyse and interpret mathematical research papers.

Attracting participants from across campus   

Although all projects have to have a significant mathematical component, the IMI undergraduate research internship programme is very much interdisciplinary, with students and supervisors coming from a total of five different departments this year. The program is organised in collaboration with SAMBa, who alongside LMS and BBSRC, have helped fund the maximum £2000 stipend each student receives for the research work they do over the summer period.

Commenting on the year-on-year growth in the programme, Professor Jonathan Dawes, Director of the IMI said: “We have had an excellent response to our call for proposals for undergraduate research internships, both from academic staff colleagues and from students. I’m particularly pleased that several funding sources have contributed to the scheme enabling us to offer more internships and enhance the student experience. The scheme is an important part of our activity linking undergraduates into research programmes, and I hope that the students, and equally supervisors, will have a productive and enjoyable summer.” 

Interested in doing an undergraduate research internship?

Students and supervisors from across campus are encouraged to apply to take part in the 2017 summer internship programme. Applications will open in November 2016. To express your interest in applying for a research internship next year, please email Catrin Yeomans at, and we will let you know how to apply once applications reopen.

Find out more about undergraduate research internships

Collaborate with IMI

We support a wide range of cross-campus research activities and welcome collaboration inquiries from all departments at the University of Bath.

Contact us to find out more.