Please help me find a psychology winter research scholarship overseas :)
May 26, 2012 8:10 PM   Subscribe

I'm an Australian psychology student looking for an undergraduate research program/scholarship overseas (anywhere, but especially UK or USA), any time from October 2012-early 2013. The problem is, my summer is your winter, and I can't seem to find any "winter research programs" via Google.

I complete my Honours year this October, and I will only be officially an undergraduate for another couple of months, so if I undertake one last undergrad research scholarship, it has to be Winter in the Northern Hemisphere, this year!

I am, of course, applying for summer scholarships in Australia, but I thought it would be much more fun to travel somewhere fancy.
posted by KLF to Education (4 answers total)
What I remember from my campus time, fall or autumn refers to the semesters starting in aug/sep, winter/spring in jan. Often Winter also refers to the Xmas/New Year break.

Try Autumn/Fall keywords?
posted by tilde at 8:20 PM on May 26, 2012

I think you might do better by trying to arrange a personal introduction to a professor in the US who could take you on as a research assistant for a time. Do any of your professors have connections they could use? Alternatively, does your institution do any international exchanges - could you do this as a semester abroad or similar existing program?

Some US institutions have short courses during "January term" or "interterm" (the gap between Fall semester Sept-Dec and Spring semester Feb-May). I don't know how likely you are to find funding for a research project that short, but possibly using those search terms might help.

Some US institutions are on a trimester or quarter system, which means they have shorter semesters and could possibly accommodate you. You might be able to find a school with a quarter starting in October.
posted by LobsterMitten at 8:48 PM on May 26, 2012 [1 favorite]

I would first check out the visa situation for both countries. Will what you want to do be covered under a student visa? Will the visa allow you to work/earn money? Do you need a sponsor? How much does it cost just to apply? IANAL, but I suspect the UK will be easier to deal with, because if a student visa doesn't cover you, a working holiday visa might. As an Australian living in the US, I am intimately acquainted with the pain and suffering involved in getting non-tourist visas to this country. I'm not saying you shouldn't come here, just start researching now if you're planning on handling all the applications yourself.
posted by retrograde at 11:40 PM on May 26, 2012

It seems that since I was in your position, the Nuffield Foundation undergraduate research bursaries have changed, while you would be ineligible for a Wellcome Trust biomedical vacation scholarship. That's a shame, as I had great success (and fun[ding]) applying to these bodies in the past.

Anyway, I suspect the simplest route (certainly in the UK) would be to find a tame supervisor and concurrently locate sources of funding (perhaps outgoing from Australia rather than incoming to the UK given the issues mentioned above; other programmes do exist however). Then email the potential supervisor showing you've done some background work.

You say you're quite a senior undergraduate, so you probably want some actual work rather than being fobbed off with holding a postdoc's hand or something. Therefore you want to be careful not to choose someone who has a heavy teaching load during those terms, or you might never see them at all!

I don't think that the fact that you're coming during term time should concern you. On the contrary, it means that seminar series and other interesting things will be in full swing. In my experience, it's a lot less miserable visiting other universities during term time when all the canteens and shops are open.

Some universities have residences for short-term visiting PhD students or researchers and so if you can't get housing on the open market then (as you are a finishing undergrad) you could probably get into one of those.
posted by Talkie Toaster at 2:03 AM on May 27, 2012

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