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Vertically Integrated Projects

Vertically Integrated Projects (VIPs) are innovative research-based projects that enable students and staff to collaborate on long-term real-world issues.

Since 2019/20, the University of Bath have been developing Vertically Integrated Projects (VIPs), which are innovative research and applied learning projects that enable inter-disciplinary, multi-level teams of students to work with a member of academic staff on long-term real-world projects. The University of Bath is the first University in England to develop VIPs.

VIPs are an attempt to create sustainable, research-engaged communities of staff and students - both undergraduate and postgraduate - who work collaboratively on live projects. Our students come from a range disciplines or fields and from across year groups, enabling more experienced students to support other student team members, and allowing everyone involved to work closely with researchers or senior staff.

VIP teams are led by one or more academic directors.

The VIP concept was created by Professor Ed Coyle at Georgia Tech, but has since extended to around 70 HE institutions all over the world. The University of Bath is the first university in England to develop its own VIP programme.

In 2020/21, 150 students took part in VIPs at the University of Bath. Our ten project teams were led by 13 academic members of staff.

VIPS are currently extra curricular but some departments are including credit bearing VIPs in their curriculum through curriculum transformation.

About our VIP Projects

'I enjoyed meeting like-minded people and it gives me hope that the University will meet climate targets.' — VIP student, 2020/21

VIP students have an opportunity to make a difference to the world around them. VIP teams at the University of Bath work proactively on issues related to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at global and local community levels.

Find out more about projects which are currently running.

Information for students

Our VIPs are open to all undergraduate, postgraduate and doctoral students from across all courses.

Getting involved in a VIP is particularly beneficial for those students not undertaking a work placement year. VIPs offer an opportunity to gain applied learning experiences and professional skills. Please note that priority will be given to those students not undertaking a work placement year.

VIP projects offer students the opportunity to:

  • Make a difference or make an impact
  • Demonstrate their enthusiasm for your subject and its application
  • Develop skills prioritised by employers, e.g. collaboration, negotiation and creativity
  • Develop ideas for a project and improve research skills
  • Innovate and use their imagination to create change

Applications are currently closed for 2021/22, please take a look back here soon for information on how to join several of our existing and new VIPs in the 2022/23 academic year. .

Interested in finding out more before you apply?You can view a recent information session held for students for further information on 8th December 2021 for further information.

If you have any questions about VIPs, or about making an application, please email the VIP Team.

Please note: priority will be given to those students not undertaking a work placement year, as a means of providing other students with applied learning experiences and professional skills.  

Take a look at our student blogs to read more about students’ experiences of working in a VIP team or our VIP@Bath FAQs.

Information for staff

We are seeking to develop more VIPs to meet growing student demand. Please do get in touch if you would like to find out about what’s involved and how you can participate in the initiative.

Please contact Stephanie Kamffer or Jo Hatt for more information.

You may find it useful to watch our latest VIP Information Session for Staff (April, 2021) to find out more about VIPs here at the University of Bath.

Watch our VIP Student Presentations (December 2021) to find out more about some of our existing projects.

External organisations

There may be the opportunity for external organisations to contribute to existing or new VIPs. Please contact Emily Richards if you would like to find out more.

Beyond Bath: the VIP experience

Find out about the University of Strathclyde VIP experience. Take a look at a presentation by Professor Ed Coyle.

Get in touch

If you have any questions about Vertically Integrated Projects at the University of Bath, please contact the VIP Team by email.