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Start your career in mathematics research with our Pathway to Research scheme

Gain the advanced skills and experience needed to apply for competitive PhD programmes around the UK and overseas.

Have you considered a PhD in mathematics but don't think you have the experience to secure a place on a competitive programme? If so, this scheme could be for you.

Pathway to Research combines a paid 8-week research placement with our MSc Modern Applications of Mathematics course.

It is designed for students whose undergraduate degree may not have provided the advanced skills and experience in mathematics research needed to apply for a competitive PhD programme, such as our highly-regarded EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Statistical Applied Mathematics (SAMBa).

Why join the SAMBa Pathway to Research scheme?

Gain the advanced skills and experience needed to apply for competitive PhD programmes.


The 8-week placement will give you first-hand research experience to ‘top-up’ your undergraduate degree, before you progress on to our MSc Modern Applications of Mathematics course. You'll work in a research environment with academics from SAMBa and our Department of Mathematical Sciences, and will also have opportunities to work with our industry contacts on research or to develop mathematical ideas.

After completing your master’s you’ll be guaranteed an interview for our SAMBa PhD programme or you can choose to apply for a PhD at another university. If you change your mind about studying for a PhD, you could use the skills and experience you've gained during your master's to apply for roles in industry instead.

The scheme is a great way to get started in mathematics research. The summer placement will give you a taster of the research done at Bath, then you can further build your skills and experience through the MSc programme. — Professor Tim Rogers, SAMBa academic

I am thoroughly enjoying my PhD research as part of SAMBa, and really appreciate the inclusive environment. Completing the MSc beforehand, getting some direct experience of research, and getting to know people in the department, really helped me understand what a PhD would be like and gave me the confidence and opportunity to pursue high-level mathematics research. — Shaunagh Downing, PhD student and MSc graduate

July - August 2020


You’ll undertake an 8-week research placement, for which you'll be paid £2000 and will work with an academic from the Department of Mathematical Sciences. Mathematics research students can work on anything from the design of nuclear reactors to predicting the weather.

Staff from our EPSRC Centre for Doctoral Training in Statistical Applied Mathematics at Bath (SAMBa) will help you to find a suitable supervisor.

Students working on a project

September 2020 - September 2021


You’ll study our MSc Modern Applications of Mathematics course, giving you high-level master’s training plus the opportunity to carry out a three-month research project, potentially in collaboration with an industry partner.

You’ll have priority access to SAMBa’s infrastructure throughout the year. This includes the opportunity to take part in our flagship activity, Integrative Think Tanks (ITTs), which provide training in working with industrial partners on collaborative research ideas. You’ll also be assigned a SAMBa student mentor and will receive personal guidance and support from a faculty of academic experts.

Students at an Integrative Think Tank

September 2021 onwards


After completing your master’s you’ll be guaranteed an interview for our SAMBa PhD programme.

Alternatively, you could use the skills and experience you’ve gained to apply for a PhD at another university or take a different route altogether and apply for roles in industry.

Students talking in a group

Entry requirements

You’ll need to register for the MSc before starting the scheme.


To apply for the MSc, you should have a first or strong second-class undergraduate degree in mathematics. See full details of the entry requirements.

The entry requirements for the MSc are the same regardless of whether or not you apply through this scheme. Please note, the MSc does incur fees but there are Government loans to help cover costs.

Contact us to find out more

Email Susie Douglas, SAMBa Co-Director