Postgraduate (Research)

Postgraduate (Research)

Scholarships & Grants » SoMS PG Travel Grant

SOMS Postgraduate Student Travel Awards

Guidelines S2 2017



These grants are funded by an allocation from the School of Medical Sciences (SoMS).  The School recognises that presenting research results at National and International conferences is an important part of development as research scientists.  This scheme provides eligible postgraduate research students with the opportunity to apply for funding to assist in presenting their research at national and international conferences or scientific meetings. These funds are intended as a contribution towards expenses. The funds allocated towards this scheme are not sufficient to support all student conference travel, and are hence allocated competitively based on the guidelines and criteria described below.  There are two application rounds per calendar year.



Funding may be used to support conference expenses including registration, air-fares and/or other travel expenses, and accommodation. Eligible candidates may apply for a maximum amount of $1,800 for international travel and $700 for domestic (outside Sydney) travel. The actual amounts awarded will depend on the number of eligible applications received each travel round, the destination and careful consideration of the budget submitted. As a guide to the number of travel grants available, it is envisaged that up to 5 international awards and 8 domestic awards may be offered in each round, pending budget funding. 

Please note that there has been a substantial increase in SoMS travel award applications. Students will therefore have to present evidence in the application form that they have actively sought funding from alternative sources to support their conference travel (e.g. PRSS, professional societies (TCRN) or travel grants available through the target conferences, etc), and application for these is mandatory. The SoMS travel awards will supplement funds obtained from these other sources (e.g. PRSS, TCRN, Australian Neuroscience Society student travel award) to cover the actual conference costs (registration, accommodation, travel). In case there is any surplus SoMS travel award funds, this will need to be returned so that the RSC can continue to support conference attendance of as many SoMS students as possible.



Dates of Travel

(start date)

Deadline for application

Award Announced

1st January-30th June, 2017

Round 1.  5pm, 15 March

3 April

1st July – 31st Dec, 2017

Round 2. 5 pm, 10 July  

24 July


Late applications will not be considered.


Eligibility Criteria

1. PhD or Masters by Research candidates who are currently enrolled in the School of Medical Sciences, provided their candidature is on track for completion (total EFTSL no greater than 3.5 for a PhD and no greater than 2 for a Masters by Research at time of application).

2. Candidates presenting at international conferences must apply for funding through:

- Postgraduate Research Student Support (PRSS) Scheme, which provides funding to assist in presenting at conferences outside of Australia.

- Other funding sources such as through Professional Societies or travel awards provided by the target conferences if available. Students will have to present evidence in the application form that they sought and applied for alternative travel funding.

The SoMS Travel award will supplement the difference between conference costs (registration, accommodation, travel) and the costs covered by the PRSS scheme and/or other travel awards. A travel budget will need to be provided, and in case there is surplus SoMS travel award funds, this will need to be returned to the RSC.

3. Applicants will only be considered if the candidate has demonstrated satisfactory progress at their latest Annual Progress Review.

4. Funding will only be awarded where the primary purpose of the travel is to attend a conference or major scientific meeting and present a paper, poster or exhibition on the candidate’s research work. Students who attend a conference without presenting, or presenting a paper or poster of which the student is not the author, are not eligible to apply. The number of personal days should not exceed 40% of the total days away. Note that if you do not know whether your conference paper has been accepted prior to the SOMS travel grant application deadline, you may submit an application but funding will be conditional on evidence of acceptance of your abstract.

5. Students may receive a maximum of one grant per annum and a maximum of two SOMS Travel Grants over the period of his/her postgraduate degree candidacy.  A student may receive up to 1 International award during their candidature, and this is typically in 2nd half of their degree*

6.SoMS Travel Grants will only supplement funds obtained from other sources (e.g. PRSS, TCRN, Australian Neuroscience Society student travel award) if justified by the submitted budget. Funds will only be allocated to meet budgeted expenses beyond those supported by other schemes. Students will have to present evidence in the application form that they sought and applied for alternative travel funding, and such applications are mandatory. Any surplus SoMS travel funds will have to be returned to the RSC after travel, so that the RSC can support conference attendance of as many SoMS students as possible.

7. The start and end dates of the conference must be between 1 July and 31 December 2017. Candidates may apply for funds retrospectively or in advance of the conference.  Candidates cannot apply for funds to attend a conference that is being held while they are on leave, which takes place after they have submitted their thesis, or which takes place outside of the calendar year of the relevant funding round. The conference must occur while the student is enrolled.


Application Process and Selection Criteria

1. Provide electronic copies of the application form to the research support committee administrative officer (

2. Applications will be assessed by the Research Support Committee and award recommendations made to Head of School.

3. Successful applicants will be notified by email with the details of how to claim payment of the grant (which is via an ER1 expense re-imbursement form or a journal transfer to the grant account of the applicant’s supervisor if they paid for the conference).

4. The Research Support Committee will consider the following when adjudicating on awards. Other circumstances may be taken into account by the Research Support Committee.

·      Preference for senior students, particularly for International travel awards

·      Preference to support students to attend a National conference in their 2nd year and then an International conference in their final year.

·      Preference for PhD students when applying for a 2nd travel award

·      Evidence of receipt of funds from external sources to support the current or previous conference will be positively considered

·      Previous National and International travel. The scheme aims to give opportunities for all students to gain exposure to the research community

·      Opportunities for research support available through the laboratory / research group and component covered by personnel expenses

·      Evidence of research progress and excellence as judged by awards, abstracts & publications, prizes and postgraduate review comments

·      Fair distribution of awards to applicants from different Schools & Institutes to aligning broadly to the proportion of SOMS students from these different research clusters.



1. Student travel must comply, or have complied, with UNSW’s Travel Policy and Travel Procedures. Note that this includes a completed and signed TR1 travel approval form prior to travel, and a TR5 (travel diary) if travel is for longer than 6 nights away.

2. The conference presentation must comply, or have complied, with UNSW branding guideline templates – see myUNSW - for any posters or PowerPoint presentations and must include the School of Medical Sciences affiliation. Any enquiries regarding branding guidelines can be directed to  An A4 pdf colour copy of the poster presentation or the title slide for an oral presentation must be submitted to the RSC either at the time of application, or before the travel funds can be claimed.

3. Payments must be claimed and expended by the 20th of November each year, due to closure of the School’s financial calendar


Enquiries should be directed to your Research Support Committee postgraduate student student representative, or to the RSC administrative officer ( or to the RSC chair (