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AHRC funding: am I eligible after working/studying abroad for Masters? watch

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    Hi all,

    New on here and in search of answers to this particular question, so would really appreciate any advice!

    I'm from the UK, but currently in the USA in the 3rd year of a 3-year Masters. I'm thinking of applying to PhDs back in the UK for 2016 or 2017. According to the AHRC eligibility guidelines applicants need to have "been ‘ordinarily resident’ in the UK for 3 years prior to the start of the studentship...apart from temporary or occasional absences."

    1. Do you think my time abroad spent studying for a Masters can be said to constitute a temporary absence? I'd love to hear of anyone who's been in this situation and had to make a similar case to them.

    2. My university here regularly recruits graduating students to year-long lectureships. Am I right in thinking this would definitely make me ineligible for AHRC funding, since I would then have been here for more than three years, and not purely to study but to work?

    Ideally I would love to work here for a year, save some money, and then return to the UK; however, if (1) is doable but (2) isn't, then I feel like I risk turning in an application that isn't thoroughly ready, just to avoid delaying till 2017.

    Thanks for any advice! The AHRC told me to contact the individual institutions, but I didn't manage to get any straight answers out of the unis I phoned...
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    Its complicated.

    'Ordinarily resident' is about more than you where you are living and why. Normally 'education' overseas is considered a temporary absence, but you would have to show that you had always intended it to be temporary. You should have evidence that you maintained a UK base - ie. still had somewhere to live/family here, had maintained all other bureaucratic links such as a UK bank account, registration with a Dr throughout that 3 years and had returned regularly during those 3 years.

    If you are still dependant on your parents (ie. who was paying for this study in the US...) it would also depend on where they were living/paying tax. Were you also working in the US? if so, on what sort of visa? Etc etc.

    Most Unis will not do a full fee assessment until you actually apply (this means they don't waste hours working out fee statuses for those who never apply) - hence their vagueness on the phone. So you will have to apply and keep your fingers crossed. Each Uni does this process separately and individually - so be prepared to send lots of certified documents etc to each Uni once you have applied.
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    Hi,

    My situation was similar to yours. I had done a 2-year masters in the U.S. (while also employed as a TA), returned to the UK for 1 year and worked then left again to do a 3-year masters. I extended my visa on OPT to work for a year. Applied to my PhD program as a home student and went through the AHRC process (proposal deemed fundable). Ultimately I was funded by my department as a home student.

    Based on my experiences, I doubt you'll have any issues.

    Best of luck!
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    Oops, should've mentioned, I worked during my 3-year masters, too. :-)
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    Many thanks for the replies. hopefulscribbler, I'm particularly glad to hear of your positive experience of applying after doing OPT. Update: Edinburgh, Glasgow, St Andrews and Newcastle say either definitely yes or probably yes to eligibility.
 
 
 
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