Research Scholarships

Biochemical Engineering: Fully Funded KESS II PhD Scholarship: Functional coatings for next generation diagnostics

Closing date: 22 February 2019

Key Information

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*This scholarships is part funded by the Welsh Government’s European Social Fund (ESF) programme for East Wales.*

The proposed PhD studentship is on development of next generation diagnostics platform which will unite diagnostic and microneedles in a single device, allowing extraction of skin interstitial fluid and multi-analyte monitoring. This will allow development of effective tools to address problems related to resistance to chemotherapy and facilitate better management of cancer. Resistance to chemotherapy is a major challenge towards cancer treatment and management. Next generation diagnostics will disrupt these approaches and offer a safe route to delivering personal medicine.

The PhD studentship will develop devices comprising of microneedles coated with functional materials for tissue fluid sampling as novel diagnostics paradigm. Microneedles offer a minimally invasive route to sampling and this coupled to a microfluidic system will offer an effective route for multiple analysis of biomarkers. The combination of smart MN diagnostic and microfluidics is highly novel.

Scholarships are collaborative awards with external partners including SMEs and micro companies, as well as public and third sector organisations. The scholarship provides 3 years of funding with a 6 month period to complete the thesis. The achievement of a postgraduate skills development award, PSDA, is compulsory for each KESS II scholar and is based on a 60 credit award.


Candidates should have a 2.1 or above in their undergraduate degree in an Engineering /Physical Sciences discipline or a related subject. They should also be eligible for UK/EU Fees (see for more information).

We would normally expect the academic and English Language requirements to be met by point of application.

For details on the University’s English Language entry requirements, please visit –

For this scholarship students must also have:

  • a home address in East Wales (details below)* at the time of registration and enrolment
  • the right to take up paid work in the East Wales Area* on completion of the scholarship

*East Wales area covers: Vale of Glamorgan, Cardiff, Newport, Monmouthshire, Powys, Wrexham and Flintshire

For more information on eligibility criteria please refer to section C of the KESS II Participant Proposal Form.

Any queries relating to Section C – Eligibility, please contact


The studentship covers the full cost of UK/EU tuition fees, plus a stipend. The bursary will be limited to a maximum of £14,483 p.a. dependent upon the applicants financial circumstances assessed in section C point 4 in the KESS II participant proposal form. 

There will also be additional funds available for research expenses.

How to Apply

Applicants are strongly advised to contact Professor Owen Guy/ Dr Sanjiv Sharma regarding information on the area of research, via email ( /

To apply:

  1. Complete the KESS EAST Participant Proposal Form Swansea 2018-19
  2. Complete the KESS EAST Supplementary Form
  3. You will also need to provide copies of the following documentation:
  • Degree certificates
  • References
  • CV
  • English language certificate (if required)
  • All supporting documentation as detailed in Section C of the KESS II Participant Proposal Form
  • KESS EAST Equal Opportunities Form

Please return both application forms and supporting documentation to the KESS Office at the address stated on the KESS II Participant Proposal Form (original ink signatures only).

For any queries please refer to the  KESS EAST Guidance Notes or contact

The deadline for applications is 4pm 22 February 2019.