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Sgoil Cheumnaichean Saidheans Sòisealta na h-Alba

Student-led Internship scheme

The SGSSS supports students to complete an internship with an organisation of your choosing through the Student-Led Internship Scheme.

The Student-Led Internship Scheme is designed to give you the chance to build networks with an organisation that is particularly relevant to your areas of interest or research. The SGSSS supports with the set-up of the Student-Led Internship placements and can provide match-funding to support host organisations.

The Student-Led Internship Scheme is open to any social science PhD researcher in Scotland, regardless of funder. Projects can last for 3 months (full-time), 6 months (part-time). Interns will be paid the equivalent of UKRI doctoral stipend levels and up to £2400 expenses.

Key contact: Dr Anna-Marie Linnell – Knowledge Exchange and Partnerships Manager – You can also find more information in our Internships FAQs.

The SGSSS internships scheme is open to any PhD researcher, regardless of funder, provided that you meet our eligibility criteria below:

  • You must be a PhD student registered at a Scottish university in a social science discipline 
  • You must be in your 2nd or 3rd year of study, with more than 6 months left of your PhD at the start of the internship 
  • You must be eligible to work in the UK 

The Student Led Internship Scheme is designed to support researchers who already have contacts in a non-academic organisation, or who know which organisation they would like to work with. To apply for the scheme, students will be asked to complete an internship proposal form with their non-academic partner and then send this to the SGSSS. The SGSSS will review applications on a rolling basis and support with the logistical set-up and payment for the internship. To request a proposal form, email

Yes. The standard contribution for a host organisation is £5500 per internship. The SGSSS can support host organisations with up to 50% match-funding through the Student-Led Internships Scheme, depending on the need of the organisation. 

The Student-Led Internships Scheme is principally designed to help researchers set up a project with a host organisation that they already know and have contacts with. However, we can try to help you broker relationships with people in an organisation that you would like to work with if you do not have pre-existing contacts there. To request support, contact

The internship has changed my perspective on future career plans. I now understand that there are other environments where you can utilise your research skills outside academia. I’ve really enjoyed working in government and would now definitely consider this as a good option for a future career.​

– PhD Intern with Scottish Government​