The Student Room Group

Accepted to Oxford DPhil without funding - should I still go?

Edit: Looks like I was worried about nothing! Thank you all for the helpful responses and insights.

Edit 2: For anyone in the future who might find themselves in this situation check the decision timeline for scholarships. Getting the FDF without funding listed != no funding: https://www.ox.ac.uk/admissions/graduate/fees-and-funding/fees-funding-and-scholarship-search/scholarships-a-z-listing?wssl=1
(edited 3 months ago)
When you already have a scholarship then why are you looking for funding ?
Reply 2
Original post by buwerbwebo
Hey everyone,
I got into Oxford for a DPhil (PhD) in STEM (vague for anonymity), but they didn't offer me any funding. I have an external scholarship that would cover the entire program, including living costs. I mentioned this during the interview, and now I'm kicking myself for it.
From what I've read here and in other places, it seems like I should take this as a polite rejection. Basically, they didn't think my application was good enough to fund me, and I'd be treated as a second-class citizen compared to the funded students.
I'm curious what you all think - is it still a bad idea to accept the offer, even with my external scholarship? I don't want to be at a disadvantage or feel like I'm not a priority.
Any insights or experiences you can share would be much appreciated!
Most people would kill to be in your situation. You would be crazy to turn it down since you have funding. It doesn't matter where the funding is from. You won't be a second class citizen, there will be people there with funding from all sorts of different sources.
Reply 3
Original post by JHK101
Most people would kill to be in your situation. You would be crazy to turn it down since you have funding. It doesn't matter where the funding is from. You won't be a second class citizen, there will be people there with funding from all sorts of different sources.
Thank you! I had a prof here in the US mention it could be an issue and read a bit online that made me concerned. But it looks like it’s different in the UK :smile:
What Do you mean by "external scholarship"? If that is code for "my family is paying for it" then that may or may not be a problem depending what you want to do after the doctorate.

If its competitively awarded funding from a third party or from an industrial partner- that's as good as funding from the EPSRC as far as anything is concerned (some funding bodies like Fullbright/Marshall scholarships and similar might be considered more notable even).

As I understand it, it doesn't matter whether Oxford or the EPSRC fund you, it matters if SOME funding body or industrial partner funds you - as you have then demonstrated to future academic posts you are able to apply for and win funding for academic purposes. I think it's less of a big deal if you are aiming to go into industry after either way although an industrial partner sponsoring you could be a good route into a job with them obviously.

It's only really if you're self funding (including family paying for you) where there can be stigma attached to it. Which is also mainly in academia I gather.

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