Department of Mathematical Sciences

EPSRC logoOur programme

Studentship Opportunities

Apply for a fully funded position in SAMBa

  • Enquiries from independently funded applicants welcome
  • For a PhD within a specific research group, please see our PhD pages
  • For more information contact us

Students of SAMBa are expected to cultivate a strong sense of independence in preparing themselves as mathematicians and, more broadly, as scientists. The SAMBa programme provides a strong grounding in high-level mathematical methods and world-class research. Students develop the subjects of their own theses, through working with academics, industrialists and each other, understanding not only the problems that need solving but how to formulate a project to solve those problems.

During the first year of study, SAMBa students complete an MRes qualification. This consists of taught material, short research projects, and participation in Integrative Think Tanks  During this time, students explore and scope their future three year research programme, in collaboration with academic staff. This research can be in collaboration with industry or other academic departments and leads to a PhD qualification.

We welcome applications from UK and EU graduates in mathematical sciences who share our vision of the breadth of mathematics and its applications. In exceptional circumstances, it may be possible to find funding for excellent students from outside of the EU.

Programme structure

SAMBa programme structure

First year

Taught units

Students must take 6 units across a cross-disciplinary syllabus with two units from each of the following streams in each semester: Statistics and Data Science, Applied and Probabilistic Analysis and Modelling, and Computation and Numerical Mathematics. The exact choice of units will depend on the background and experience of the students when they enter SAMBa. 

Inter-disciplinary Research Projects

Students will work in small groups on Inter-disciplinary Research Projects, which will bring together elements of the core streams into a short research project. These projects will last for one semester, with the potential to be renewed for a further semester.

"SAMBa brings a completely new mindset into the training of the next generation of mathematicians."
Professor Paul Milewski, Co-Director, SAMBa


The student-led symposium runs continuously through the students’ first year and involves students, with guidance from SAMBa leaders and the SAMBa cohort, deciding on topics and reading group activities, as well as inviting speakers to give seminars or short courses from a self-managed budget. Topics will relate to upcoming ITTs. A goal of these symposia is to foster research independence.

Integrative Think Tanks (ITTs)

programmeITTs are ‘big events’, focal points in the calendar of SAMBa activity, and central to its goals. ITTs are facilitated workshops in which academic, industrial, and other external partners present problems requiring research solutions, with lectures on relevant background given by experts. Students are expected to define routes to the solution of these problems, identifying the new research that will be necessary to make this possible.

Thesis formulation

The three-month summer period consists of a structured and mentored process in which students determine the subject of their PhD thesis research, and work with their chosen supervisor to prepare a Thesis Formulation Report, outlining motivation, objectives and methodology for the proposed PhD.

Students use the experience they have gained through symposia, peer-group and ITTs to do this.

Second year

Students start work on their PhD thesis whilst also undertaking a number of taught units. They attend at least one ITT and act as cofactors and mentors to the new SAMBa students.

"Our Centre for Doctoral Training in Statistical Applied Mathematics is creating a new culture within the UK, driving exciting new research which combines big data with complex mathematical modelling motivated by real industrial problems"
Professor Andreas Kyprianou, Co-Director, SAMBa

Third and fourth year

Students have research, and the preparation of a thesis, as their main focus. A PhD thesis must be submitted within four years of joining SAMBa. Students continue to be involved in student-led symposia throughout their four years at SAMBa and present developing research to first-year students, including open research problems for discussion. They also participate in at least one more ITT.

Other programme elements

Placements and Internships

Students are strongly encouraged to undertake an academic or industrial placement during the PhD research phase. These placements build cross-disciplinary links and train students in other disciplines’ research language.

Current students have spent time at industrial and academic organisations, such as ; BT, Cummins, Cytel, DNV GL, Met Office, Novatis, Roche, WHO, Wood, Alan Turing Institute, Bath Pharmacy and Pharmacology, Bath Computer Science, Bath Mechanical Engineering, CIMAT (Mexico), Japanese National Informatics Institute (Tokyo), MIT (USA).  

More information about your student experience can be found on the joining SAMBa page.