Nuffield Research Placements

Improving social well-being through education, research and innovation


Nuffield Research Placements allow Year 12 students to undertake a 4 week Science, Technology, Engineering or Maths (STEM) based research placement during the summer holidays, gaining real life experience of the world of research. The programme gives high achieving young people the chance to explore a career in a STEM environment and can particularly benefit young people with no family history of university, or who come from low income families.

Click here to see what Georgina thought about her Nuffield Research Placement.

What are Nuffield Research Placements?

Nuffield Research Placements take place in your summer holidays after Year 12 or S5. You will work on a project that relates to an area of science, quantitative social science, computing, technology, engineering or maths (or a combination of these). Most projects are based in an office, but some include working in a laboratory or fieldwork.

Placements are typically between 4-6 weeks in length and are available in your local area. Your placement might be in a university, research institute, company or voluntary organisation. You will work alongside professional researchers on a project that is an important part of their business.

Your placement will not cost you or your parents/carers anything. We reimburse travel costs for all students, and depending on your family circumstances, you may also be eligible to receive a bursary of £100 for each week of your placement.


Who can apply?

You must:

· Be over 16 years old and in Year 12 (or equivalent).

· Be in full-time, state-funded education in the UK.

· Have at least 5 GCSEs (or equivalent) at Level 6 or above, including Maths, a Science subject and English (or another Humanities subject).

· Be studying one or more A-level, Scottish Higher (or equivalent) in Science, Technology, Engineering, Economics, Geography, Geology, Economics, Psychology, Computing, Statistics or Maths.

· Be able to spend four weeks of your summer holiday working on a research project.


You must also meet at least one of the following criteria:

· Your family has a combined household income of below £30,000 a year.

· You are entitled to free schools meals, either now or at any time in the last six years.

· You live, or have lived, in local authority care.

· You will be the first in your immediate family to participate in higher education (not including any older siblings). This means neither of your parents/carers has participated in higher education, either in the UK or another country. If your siblings have attended higher education, but your parents/carers have not, you are still eligible.



What are the benefits of doing a Nuffield Research Placement? 

Your Nuffield Research Placement will be some of the best weeks of your life so far. You will apply skills and knowledge that you’ve learned at school AND learn so much more from your expert supervisor. The benefits will continue long past the end of the placement.

Nuffield Research Placements are highly valued by universities. UCAS recommends including your Nuffield Research Placement in your personal statement. It doesn’t matter if your project is not directly related to what you want to study – admissions tutors will still recognise it as valuable.

You will get the chance to work alongside researchers and industry professionals and can find out about possible higher education and career paths.

You will write a project report, which you can enter for a Gold CREST Award. You can also enter your project in the Big Bang Competition. On completing your placement you will attend a local celebration event, where you will receive a certificate, and have the opportunity to present a poster of your work to other students, parents/carers and industry professionals.

You are eligible to join Nuffield Research Placement’s Alumni Network once you have completed a placement. Some students may even become a project provider themselves further down the line!

How do I apply? 

Applications are made via an online application process


Get in Touch

Please visit to find out more.