Every year, the SSA funds PhDs in addiction science. Applications are now closed for the 2024 scheme. Please check back in early 2025 for information about how to apply in the next cohort; the window for applying is typically January to March.

About the funding scheme

Our PhD studentship funding is generally provided to full-time students for up to three years and six months, but we also accept applications from part-time and partially-funded students.

We have funded qualitative and quantitative doctoral studies on topics including alcohol and mental health, cannabis, contingency management, domestic abuse, neuropsychological development, oxytocin, relapse, and treatment delivery.

We constantly review our funding, taking into consideration changes to the cost of living. For the academic year 2024–25, the SSA will fund up to two PhD studentships, including:

  • a stipend of £19,237 for people living outside London; £21,237 for people living inside London
  • support for the cost of tuition (indicative annual UK university fees / maximum annual contribution toward fees for international students of £4,786)
  • up to £3,000 over the course of the PhD for research costs

The SSA will make payments directly to your host institution for course fees and for your stipend. Your host institution (usually a university) will then arrange for you to receive stipend payments every month in arrears.

To be eligible to apply:

  • You must be a member or associate of the SSA.
  • You must be a UK resident for the duration of your studies.
  • The institution providing the study must be a UK university.
  • You should already have a first or upper second (2:1) class degree in a relevant subject.

Employees of the alcohol, tobacco, and gambling industries are not eligible for the scheme.

How to apply

The application form will require you to provide some basic details about yourself and your research proposal. The best applications are those that are specific, thorough, and persuasive about the importance of your research. As with any application, make sure your application is free of errors; it’s always worth asking a colleague to proofread your application before submitting it.

We will ask you to provide:

  • a description of the overall objective and purpose of your proposed PhD
  • an explanation of how your work will further the objectives of the SSA
  • an outline of your PhD study plan, including a timetable for your entire PhD (in Gantt chart form)
  • a description of the main outputs from your PhD
  • a letter confirming your suitability to apply for a PhD from your academic supervisor
  • a copy of the letter of confirmation of a PhD place from your university
  • details of your academic supervisor(s)
  • details of two academic referees

Contractual information

Financial support under an SSA PhD studentship is subject to a contract between the SSA and the host institution, although you will be required to acknowledge the SSA’s support clearly throughout your PhD (e.g. by using SSA logos on conference and poster presentations).

The SSA will provide the host institution with a contract setting out these arrangements. The institution providing the tuition will need to put in place governance and supervision structures, and agree to review and report on your progress regularly throughout your studies. Funding will only be provided when the PhD panel is happy with the structures and processes the institution will provide. The terms of this contract will only be amended under exceptional circumstances and the SSA may withdraw any offer or agreement of funding if the contract terms are not agreed by all parties within a reasonable period.

For more information about SSA PhD studentships, click here.