IGNITE: Undergraduate Research Scholarship Scheme

A highlights video of the URSS conference 2018

Your research project

Our IGNITE: Undergraduate Research Scholarship Scheme (URSS) gives our second-year students the chance to take part in a fully funded and supported research project.

It is your opportunity to develop new knowledge and skills and to focus in depth on an area of personal research interest. You can also work more directly with academic staff and get involved with established research projects. Successful project proposals receive fully funded bursary support of £2,000 per project.


Submissions for the 2019 scheme are now closed.

On Tuesday 27 November, the Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching (CELT) launched the 2019 IGNITE: URSS scheme with a briefing in HEAP Lecture Theatre, 12.30 - 1.00 pm. The IGNITE: URSS Launch 2019 Presentation is available for review and the key dates for 2019 are as follows:

The research-outcome posters for the 2018 scheme are available to view. The posters from 2016 and 2017 also illustrate the excellent research undertaken in previous years.

Conference 2018

On the 4 October 2018, the first Undergraduate Research Scholarship Scheme (URSS) conference (#URSS2018) was hosted at our Kedleston Road campus.

Over 70 student researchers, academic supervisors and delegates attended to share the excellent research facilitated by the scheme this year. A wide range of topics and disciplines were represented including pioneering research on virtual reality, sustainable agriculture, mental health, religion / interfaith relations, smart vehicles, textiles, legal studies and many more areas.

The conference featured an Atrium display showcasing posters from each of the 40 projects supported by the scheme. The core of the day was in OL1 with Fiona Shelton (Head of the Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching) and Tamsin Bowers-Brown (Learning, Teaching and Student Experience Lead) welcoming our delegates.

Jo Drummond-Child and Simon Nadeem provided academic and post-graduate researcher keynotes respectively, followed by presentations delivered by 13 of our students giving an overview of research findings from a range of disciplines.

The conference concluded with prizes awarded for poster presentation, as judged by the CELT Associate Professors in Learning and Teaching. The prize winners were:

In addition all students who delivered presentations were awarded ‘Success Award’ badges in recognition of their superb contribution to the conference.

Our URSS scheme was established in 2014 and has been identified by the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) as an institutional feature of good practice “which enables participating students to strengthen their academic, personal and professional skills” (Higher Education Review of the University of Derby, April 2016).

One of our student researchers posted on social media that he “Had a great day today… definitely gained some new skills and honed some others. Going back into education with @DerbyUni changed my life”. The scheme demonstrates that with the right support and challenge our students can produce excellent research findings which will expand into the wider curriculum when not already present.

To date 243 students have benefited from the scheme, producing 179 projects. The URSS is open to all 2nd year undergraduate students and provides a bursary of £2,000 per project to fund research supported by their academic supervisors. Applications can be either student or staff led and up to three students per project may share the bursary.

Any queries or questions regarding the URSS can be sent to urss@derby.ac.uk