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BSI Medical Elective Grant

The British Society for Immunology is offering financial support to medical students who are planning to undertake a formal immunology-related placement in a selected laboratory for their medical elective. To be considered for support by the BSI, you must be a BSI undergraduate member and the placement must have immunological relevance.

Please note that prior to July 2021, this award was part of the BSI Skills Development Awards.

In addition the BSI runs a joint grant with the Royal College of Pathologists called the Royal College of Pathologists/Specialist Society Medical Elective Small Grant Scheme. This offers funding of up £1,000 for a medical elective placement anywhere in the world. Applications to this scheme are currently closed.  

BSI Medical Elective Grant

Application deadlines  

Applications will be reviewed four times a year. The deadlines for submitting applications are as follow:

  • 1 September
  • 1 December
  • 1 March
  • 1 June

We recommend you apply for the grant with the review deadline at least 4–6 weeks ahead of your placement. Please note the outcomes of the applications will be sent via email within four weeks of the application deadline date. For example, if your placement is taking place on 15 April, we would recommend applying on time for the 1 March review deadline. Your application will be reviewed in the March round and you should hear the outcome by 29 March. Further information is available in the guidelines.


Depending on the location of the placement, the grant is capped at the following amounts:

  • Placement overseas - £1,500
  • UK placement (outside home institution and/or hometown) - £1,000
  • UK placement (at home institution and/or hometown) - £500

How to apply

Applicants will need to complete an application form describing the planned placement and their personal scientific interests and include a letter of support from their current supervisor and their host placement supervisor. You can download an application form from the bottom of this page. Competed applications should be sent to

Terms and conditions

  • Applicants must be medical students 
  • Applicants must be current BSI undergraduate members and have held membership for at least 6 months
  • The placement must have immunological relevance
  • The application process will require the formal support of the applicant’s supervisor/tutor in the form of a supporting letter and a letter of support from your placement supervisor 
  • The placement must begin within a year of receiving the funds
  • The applicant will be required to provide a formal report of their activities for the BSI – this should be written in the style of an online blog within four weeks of completing the placement. Further details will be sent to successful applicants
  • Successful recipients are also asked to acknowledge the BSI for their financial support on any reports generated by the placement
  • The BSI’s decision regarding any individual application shall be final. Incomplete or retrospective applications will not be accepted
  • This grant scheme involves funding travel placements and we expect recipients to adhere all relevant coronavirus guidance both from the UK and/or devolved nations and from the government of the country you are visiting.  This includes the UK and/or devolved nation travel guidance, covering the period of the placement for the country you wish to visit. It also includes adhering to guidance imposed by your host country for the duration of your visit.  We reserve the right not to fund placements to visit countries that are currently on the UK travel red list
  • The BSI will not accept any liability to the grant recipient or to any third party for any costs, claims, damages or losses that are incurred due to the need to quarantine either when arriving in your destination country, during your visit or when arriving back into the UK or any other costs relating to the travel placement.

Further information

Medical electives can provide key experience for budding researchers who wish to acquire cutting-edge skills and develop laboratory experience. Charlotte Grant (University of Warwick) received an award to support her elective at the MRC Unit in The Gambia in 2017. You can read about her experience here. Please note: this member received this grant under its previous title of Summer Placement Grant.

Medical Elective Grant Application.pdf (191 KB)
Medical Elective Grant Application.pdf  (191 KB)
Medical Elective Grant Application.word (111 KB)
Medical Elective Grant Application.word (111 KB)