ICA Programme Clinical Lectureships and Senior Clinical Lectureships Applicant Guidance Notes Round 7 2021
Health Education England (HEE) and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) are pleased to announce the launch of the seventh HEE/NIHR Integrated Clinical Academic Programme Clinical Doctoral Research Fellowship Scheme competition. This document describes the means by which applications for HEE/NIHR Clinical Doctoral Research Fellowships must be submitted and will be assessed.
Background to the HEE/NIHR Integrated Clinical Academic Programme
HEE is committed to supporting the delivery of high quality healthcare by ensuring that the workforce has the right skills, values and behaviours, and by ensuring that the right numbers of staff are available at the right time and in the right place. HEE will achieve this by focusing on outcomes, using financial levers and leadership influence to help drive real improvements in workforce planning, education and training.
The Government is committed to building on Britain’s status as a world leader in clinical research and the life sciences, to better understand how diseases are diagnosed and treated, and to revolutionise our approach to treatment to improve health – whilst giving the sector the support it needs to realise ideas and help drive growth in the UK economy.
HEE will contribute to realising the potential of research and innovation in healthcare, and to transforming the NHS, by continuing to develop a workforce that embraces research and innovation and by supporting clinical academic careers for health professionals.
HEE, NIHR and other stakeholders meet regularly to set the strategic direction and landscape for delivery of HEE’s Research and Innovation Strategy and Clinical Academic Careers Framework.
The HEE/NIHR ICA Programme
The ICA Programme comprises five schemes, tailored to support the practitioner academic leaders of the future:
- HEE Internship Scheme
- HEE/NIHR Pre-doctoral Clinical Academic Fellowship (PCAF) Scheme
- HEE/NIHR Clinical Doctoral Research Fellowship (CDRF) Scheme
- HEE/NIHR Clinical Lectureship (CL) Scheme
- HEE/NIHR Senior Clinical Lectureship (SCL) Scheme
Health and care professionals (excluding doctors and dentists) wishing to apply to the HEE/NIHR ICA Programme schemes must hold registration with one of the following regulatory bodies or have plans in place to hold the required registration by the proposed award start date:
HEE/NIHR ICA Programme Eligible Regulatory Bodies
- Academy for Healthcare Science
- General Chiropractic Council
- General Dental Council
- General Medical Council
- General Optical Council
- General Osteopathic Council
- General Pharmaceutical Council
- Health and Care Professions Council
- Nursing and Midwifery Council
- Social Work England
- UK Public Health Register
The ICA Clinical Lectureship and Senior Clinical Lectureship Schemes
The HEE/NIHR Clinical Lectureship (CL) and Senior Clinical Lectureship (SCL) schemes comprise the post-doctoral funding opportunities available through the ICA Programme and provide support to develop a practitioner academic position.
The CL and SCL schemes fund the costs of an approved research project, the costs of a personal training and development programme (which includes professional development), and the award holder’s salary for the time undertaking the academic element of the Lectureship.
Applicants must propose to split their Lectureship time between professional practice and research activities and can propose one of the following professional practice/academic ratios for their Lectureship:
- 60/40 academic/professional practice
- 50/50 academic/professional practice
- 40/60 academic/professional practice
Applicants require support from both a health/care organisation and an academic organisation that will work in partnership to support the practitioner academic career of the award holder over the course of the Lectureship and post award.
The CL and SCL schemes support individuals at different stages of their post-doctoral clinical research career:
i) Clinical Lectureship Applicants
• may have recently submitted a PhD thesis at the point of application
• may have recently been awarded their PhD
• may have several years of post-doctoral research experience but are not yet established as an independent practitioner academic researcher.
ii) Senior Clinical Lectureship Applicants
• may be starting to establish themselves as independent practitioner academic researchers, or
• may already be established as independent practitioner academic researchers but are not yet recognised as a leader in their field.
All applicants must be able to demonstrate, through previous research and professional experience, their commitment to a practitioner academic career and that they have the potential and are on a trajectory to develop as a practitioner academic leader in their field.
Competitive applicants will clearly evidence research output commensurate with previous experience and / or career stage and how the award would impact their practitioner academic leadership trajectory.
The NIHR Academy Remit for Personal Awards
Research supported through an ICA CL or SCL must be within the following NIHR Remit:
1. The overall remit of the NIHR is early translational (experimental medicine), clinical and applied health research, and social care research.
2. For personal doctoral-level awards the proposal:
- must be for clinical and applied health research, or social care research
- must have clear potential for directly benefiting patients/service users, carers and the public (but recognising the training element of the research)
- can involve: patients/service users and/or carers; samples or data from these groups; other people who are not patients/service users and/or carers; populations; health technology assessment; or health or care services research
At doctoral-level, early translational (experimental medicine) research is funded through the NIHR early translational (experimental medicine) infrastructure and particularly the NIHR Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) training programmes.
3. For post-doctoral awards, early translational (experimental medicine) research will be within remit. A clear and plausible path to patient /service user, carer or public benefit must, however, be demonstrable.
4. NIHR does not support basic research or work involving animals or their tissue.
5. If the work involves biomarkers:
- research that tests whether application of new knowledge can improve treatment or patient outcomes, and has obvious direct potential benefit, is within remit; this might include application of known biomarkers, or other prognostic factors, to refine and test novel therapeutic strategies
- research that aims only to elucidate mechanisms underpinning disease, or identify risk factors for disease or prognosis (including search for biomarkers) is out of remit.
6. The NIHR is also prepared to support high quality research into 'medical education' (defined broadly as education for healthcare providers) and methodological research. It is expected that the research will have the potential to have practical application and the potential impact on patients/service users, carers and the public must be made clear.
NHS Long Term Plan
For this round of the ICA Programme, we are keen to see applications which address themes highlighted within the NHS Long Term Plan. This includes
- Making sure everyone gets the best start in life.
- Delivering world-class care for major health problems.
- Supporting people to age well.
As part of this, we would particularly encourage research that focuses on the prevention of illness and tackling health inequalities, and also applications that look to improve NHS services through the use of digital technology and analysis of patient and population data.
The application process for these awards is the same as for a standard HEE/NIHR Lectureship and successful applicants will become members of the NIHR Academy in the same way as successful applicants to a standard award. This is in addition to any additional benefits that come from being funded by the charity partner.
Moorfields Eye Charity
1 Senior Clinical Lectureship
Website: Moorfields Eye Charity
Applying for a Partnership Fellowship
The HEE/NIHR Clinical Lectureship
The HEE/NIHR ICA Clinical Lectureship (CL) scheme supports clinical research capacity building amongst health and social care professionals (excluding doctors and dentists) who are in the early stages of their post-doctoral career and wish to establish themselves as independent practitioner academic researchers over the course of the award.
Clinical Lecturers have the time and support to develop the specific skill sets required to achieve credibility as independent researchers, whilst continuing their professional practice and development. There is also an expectation that ICA Lecturers will help to build research capacity amongst non-medical professions.
Eligibility Requirements for the HEE/NIHR Clinical Lectureship Scheme
1. Applicants must hold registration with one of the regulatory bodies listed in this document (HEE/NIHR ICA Programme Eligible Regulatory Bodies) by the proposed award start date.
2. Applicants must have at least one year’s experience of practice in the health or care profession for which they hold the required registration.
3. Applicants must propose substantive employment by either an English health and/or care provider that is providing publicly funded or third sector funded services, or by a recognised English Higher Education Institution (see “Host Organisation and Partner Organisation”).
4. Applicants must have a relevant PhD (research doctorate) or have submitted their thesis by the application deadline (15 June 2021). Applicants whose doctorate has not yet been awarded must have been awarded their doctorate and have provided official evidence of this to the NIHR Academy, by 15 September 2021 at the latest. Please see “Further Information for applicants not yet awarded a doctorate” for further instructions.
Holders of professional doctorate should also see “Eligibility Criteria for Holders of Professional Doctorates”.
5. Applicants must be proposing a programme of research that is within the NIHR Remit
Following completion of the Clinical Lectureship, individuals will be expected to show evidence of:
- Completion of the research proposed in the application, which should be within the NIHR Remit
- Increased research skills in existing and new areas
- Increased professional experience and influence
- Increased independence as a researcher
- Publications arising from the research programme
- Increased generic skills, for example, management and leadership skills
- A step-change in their trajectory to becoming a practitioner academic leader in their field of research
Evidence of the above will be sought by the NIHR through annual and final report monitoring.
Further information for applicants not yet awarded a doctorate
Applicants who have submitted their thesis at the point of application, must have successfully obtained their doctorate, and provided official evidence of this (in the form of an official award confirmation letter from the awarding body) to the NIHR Academy by 1pm on 15 September 2021. We define an obtained doctorate as the following:
- Thesis submitted
- Viva attended (if applicable)
- Corrections accepted
- Confirmation letter from the awarding body (University etc.) that the doctorate has been awarded.
You do not need to wait for graduation.
If the appropriate notification is not received by the NIHR prior to 15 September 2021, the applicant will automatically lose their eligibility and be withdrawn from the selection process.
The HEE/NIHR Senior Clinical Lectureship
The Senior Clinical Lectureship (SCL) scheme supports clinical research capacity building amongst health and care professionals (excluding doctors and dentists) who are starting to establish themselves as independent practitioner academic researchers, or who are already established as independent practitioner academic researchers but are not yet recognised as leaders in their field.
Senior Clinical Lecturers have the time and support to develop the specific skill sets required to achieve credibility as leaders in their field of research whilst also increasing their influence in their professional practice and its treatment/ care policy.
A Senior Clinical Lectureship is expected to enhance existing career opportunities for both the award holder and others in health and social care related research, and to support the development of collaborative partnerships within and between HEIs and the NHS.
SCL applicants will have a demonstrable track record in the following areas:
- publishing in peer review journals;
- holding grants as principal or co-investigator;
- establishing collaborations at a national/international level;
- research team building and management;
- research capacity building.
Eligibility Requirements for the Senior Clinical Lectureship
- Applicants must hold registration with one of the regulatory bodies listed in this document (HEE/NIHR ICA Programme Eligible Regulatory Bodies) by the proposed award start date.
- Applicants must have at least five years’ experience of practice in the health or care profession for which they hold the required registration.
- Applicants must propose substantive employment by an English health and/or care provider that is providing publicly funded or third sector funded services, or by a recognised English Higher Education Institution (see “Host Organisation and Partner Organisation” below).
- Applicants must have a relevant PhD (research doctorate) at the point of application. Holders of professional doctorate – please see “Eligibility Criteria for Holders of Professional Doctorates”.
- Applicants must not currently hold a Chair (personal or otherwise).
- Applicants must be proposing a programme of research that is within the NIHR Remit.
Following completion of the Senior Clinical Lectureship, individuals will be expected to have:
- Completed the research proposed in the application, which should be within the NIHR remit
- Attracted significant further research funding
- Substantially increased their publications record
- Significantly progressed their practitioner academic career
- Developed their research team
- Made a significant contribution to the development of research capacity
- Developed professional influence at a national level
- Established themselves as a practitioner academic leader in their field of research
Evidence of the above will be sought by the NIHR through annual and final report monitoring. A formal review of the Senior Clinical Lectureship will be undertaken during the third year of the award to confirm funding for years 4 and 5.
Eligibility Criteria for Holders of Professional Doctorates
Eligibility for the ICA Clinical Lectureship and Senior Clinical Lectureship will be extended to prospective applicants holding Professional Doctorates, providing they can evidence the quality and proportionality of research education, training and experience gained within their Higher Education Institution (HEI).
Candidates holding Professional Doctorates will be assessed for eligibility on an individual basis following receipt of evidence of eligibility from the applicant’s host HEI that they meet the criteria below, and are eligible to be appointed as a Clinical Lecturer or Senior Clinical Lecturer (as applicable), or equivalent role, or above.
Prospective applicants who hold a Professional Doctorate must contact the NIHR Academy for confirmation of eligibility before starting an application. Please send evidence from the host HEI to email@example.com.
In order to claim parity with recognised doctoral level programmes a Professional Doctorate programme should meet the following criteria:
- Commit at least 50% of the programme to the development of a research-based thesis. The other 50% should include research training as appropriate (e.g. taught programmes on research methods, methodologies, statistics and ethics) and also practice and professional development, which should all underpin a practitioner academic profile.
- Include supervision arrangements similar to those required for PhDs but also including as appropriate a clinical/practice based supervisor.
- Normally have a minimum 65,000 word thesis depending on the research approach taken in the study.
- Include other written work, which is formally assessed during the professional doctorate programme, which underpins the individual’s development in their profession and as a researcher.
- Include the same thesis examination format as for PhDs with identical criteria for judging doctoral standards, with the expectation that the thesis demonstrates the individual’s development as a practice-based researcher.
- Be expected to make an ‘original and new contribution to knowledge’ through original research of a quality to satisfy peer review, extend the forefront of the discipline and merit (according to peer reviewers) publication in the established literature; and have at least one full paper for publication based on their doctoral work published or accepted for publication.
- Have no more than 40% of the 360 academic credits awarded at Masters level.
- Have a minimum of 60% credits awarded at doctoral level.
- Include a maximum of three years’ full-time study or five/six years maximum of part-time study, which should include research activities, research training and personal and professional development.
Queries Regarding Eligibility for CL and SCL Awards
Prospective applicants to the Clinical Lectureship or the Senior Clinical Lectureship who are unsure of their eligibility should contact the NIHR at firstname.lastname@example.org before embarking on the application process.
CL and SCL Host Organisation and Partner Organisation
Whilst all applicants will require the support of an English Higher Education Institute (HEI) and an English provider of health or care services, one organisation must be identified as the employing institution that will host the Lectureship – referred to as the ‘Host Organisation’. This may or may not be the applicant’s current employer.
If the Host Organisation is the HEI, the Partner Organisation must be the provider of health or care services.
If the Host Organisation is the provider of health or care services, the Partner Organisation must be the HEI.
Any organisation wishing to host an HEE/NIHR Lectureship must be able to provide the applicant with a contract of employment for the hours and duration of the award and be capable of fulfilling the role of research sponsor as set out in the HRA Research Governance Framework for Health & Care. Further guidance on the roles and responsibilities of a research sponsor can be found on the Health Research Authority’s (HRA) website 'Roles and responsibilities'.
The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) will enter into an award contract with the Host Organisation. Government procurement transparency regulations require the publication of all contracts made with the DHSC to be made available on the DHSC website. Confidential information including research proposals (excluding the Plain English Summary, which will be published), detailed finance information, bank details, and departmental staff names (other than the award holder’s name) will be removed from the published versions.
HEI Supporting Organisation
The HEI supporting a HEE/NIHR ICA Lectureship must be a recognised Higher Education Institution (HEI) based in England.
Health or Care Services Organisation
The health or care services organisation can be an NHS body based in England or any other English provider of health and/or social care services that is providing publicly funded or third sector funded services (for example, a commissioned social enterprise or local authority).
Applicants may wish to take advice regarding which organisation to identify as the Host Organisation before making this decision, which needs to take into account individual circumstances.
Both the HEI and the health or care services provider that are supporting the proposed Lectureship are expected to show a commitment towards the objectives of these schemes. For example, applicants should not be expected to undertake such teaching or administrative duties that would erode the time available to undertake a high-quality research programme. Similarly, the professional practice commitment expected of the applicant must adequately support the professional development proposed.
A commitment is expected from both organisations to work in partnership to support the practitioner academic career of the applicant over the course of the Lectureship and post award. The organisations that will support the Lectureship must provide explicit assurance of their intention to work together to afford the applicant with a funded practitioner academic position post award. Early discussions with all supporting organisations are recommended.
CL and SCL Award Structure
Academic and Professional Practice Commitments during a CL and SCL
The proposed breakdown of professional practice and academic commitments for the duration of the award can be:
- 60/40 academic/professional practice or
- 50/50 academic/professional practice or
- 40/60 academic/professional practice
The professional practice commitments within the Lectureship must be publicly funded health and/or care services.
The Lectureships can be undertaken on a full-time basis, with research constituting between 40-60% of award time, and the remaining award time spent in professional practice practice. Providing the supporting organisations can rationalise the work plan, the Lectureships can also be undertaken on a part-time basis as long as the balance of research and professional practice time is one of the options listed above. For example, an applicant may wish to hold the award for 5 years, with 60% of their time being committed to the Lectureship and a 50/50 academic/ professional practice ratio. The time spent on research for the Lectureship would therefore be 30% of the 5 years as would the time in professional practice.
Full Time and Part-Time Award Uptake Options
- Clinical Lectureships are 3 years in duration if taken up at 1.0 WTE.
Clinical Lectureships may be taken up on a part time basis between 0.5 and 0.95 WTE (over between 72 and 38 months respectively)
- Senior Clinical Lectureships are 5 year awards irrespective of whether they are taken up full or part time. Senior Clinical Lectureships can be taken up on a part-time basis between 0.5 and 0.95 WTE.
Please note - the NIHR is unable to fund awards of any other duration or profile. Employment or activities undertaken in the remaining time outside of the Clinical Lectureship or Senior Clinical Lectureship are at the awardee’s own discretion and are not funded by the award.
CL and SCL Schemes - Start Dates for Round 7
Available start dates for successful applicants are:
- 1st April 2022
- 1st May 2022
- 1st June 2022
- 1st July 2022
- 1st August 2022
- 1st September 2022
Lectureships cannot be deferred without the consent of the NIHR.
Important Areas for Consideration when Developing a CL or SCL Application
Applicants should remain mindful when developing their research proposal that it should be of appropriate scale and scope to ensure completion by the end of the Lectureship. In addition, as a personal training award, the research must predominantly be undertaken by the applicant themselves to provide the awardee with the skills to develop as an academic leader in their field.
Applicants are welcome to propose a single project or a number of discrete studies, which together comprise a cohesive programme of work. Irrespective of this choice, a Lecturer will draw on their work and specialist knowledge to develop further research and grant applications, which will support the continuation of their practitioner academic career.
Irrespective of the methodologies proposed, applicants are required to provide full theory-based justification for the choice of methods, detail their experience with this methodology, any training required in the use of the chosen methodology and identify the relevant experience in their proposed support team in the use of the methodology.
ICA Clinical Lecturers and Senior Clinical Lecturers are expected to use their award to develop and grow their research network and to foster new collaborations. Both are important to the Lecturer’s career progression towards recognition as a practitioner academic leader.
NIHR Portfolio: Research projects undertaken as part of an HEE/NIHR Clinical Lectureship or Senior Clinical Lectureship may be included on the NIHR Portfolio.
NIHR research training applications differ from other NIHR applications, for example to the HTA and RfPB programmes. In NIHR research training applications, the research project proposal does not stand alone, but is part of a package of elements expected to provide an excellent training experience that will allow the successful applicant to take their skills and experiences to a still higher level.
Along with the research proposal, the Selection Committee will assess the abilities, academic trajectory, existing experience, commitment to a career in health and/or social care research, ambition and aspirations of the applicant, the standards in the research training environment, and the plans for explicit training in research methods. The research proposal provides a framework for research experience so has to be of high quality, but a good research proposal will not be supported if other elements are weak.
A key feature of the ICA CL and SCL is that successful applicants are supported, and expected, to develop their professional practice skills as well as research skills.
Applicants must be able to demonstrate how they will develop professionally over the period of the Lectureship. Applicants need to take into account their current skill level and need to propose a professional development plan that is appropriate for their level of professional seniority. If applicants are senior practitioners they may choose to demonstrate in their application ways in which they will maintain, rather than develop, their professional skill levels.
Applicants may wish to consider whether the research activity and research training proposed in their application might be further utilised to develop or maintain professional skills and /or professional development. Applicants must propose how the award will enable them to make a significant contribution to their professional practice and support their development as a potential practitioner academic leader.
It is acknowledged that formal supervision may not be appropriate at a post-doctoral level, however, awardees benefit from research and development mentorship/support. Applicants are required to identify up to 3 individuals (and a minimum of 1 individual) who will have oversight and give direction to the proposed research and support the applicant’s academic development.
The individual(s) identified may or may not be based at the Host Organisation. They should, however, have a clear understanding of the research process, the demands the chosen area of training and development are likely to place on the applicant, and the particular strengths and weaknesses of the applicant.
Applicants are required to identify up to 3 individuals (and a minimum of 1 individual) who will provide professional practice support/mentorship during the Lectureship. As well as supporting the development of the applicant’s relevant skills, it would be advantageous for this individual to be able to support and advise the applicant on broader professional development appropriate to their career stage.
The Research Support and Practice Support roles are referred to in the literature as ‘mentorship’ and there are numerous models to be found that could be employed.
Please note - the individuals described above will specifically provide research mentorship and clinical mentorship and should not be a career mentor such as you may subsequently wish to arrange through the ICA Mentorship Scheme should you be successful in gaining a Lectureship.
Host Organisation Statement of Support
The Heads of Departments of the Host Organisation and the Partner Organisation are required to jointly compose a statement detailing how the organisations will support the applicant in partnership to successfully complete their research and the training and development programme proposed.
The statement should be tailored specifically to the applicant, their research and training needs, and include evidence of how the Lectureship post will function as an integrated practitioner academic role and how the organisations intend to support the applicant to develop their practitioner academic career in the long-term.
The statement should also describe the nature of the partnership between the organisations in relation to the support they will provide to the applicant and how they will facilitate a sustainable wider practitioner academic career infrastructure for non-medical health and care professionals.
The Head of Department for both the Host Organisation and the Partner Organisation should contribute to the statement. This section can only be accessed by the Heads of Department once they have agreed participation and cannot be edited, but can be viewed, by the applicant.
NIHR see the responsibility for training the next generation of research leaders as a joint enterprise with host organisations. Therefore, information should also be provided on the organisations’ track record of supporting early career researchers, such as evidence of bridging or other support provided to fellows upon completion of an award. Applicants and their heads of department are advised to refer to the new Principles and Obligations document for non-medical clinical academics and to ensure that the implementation of these are referenced in the statement of support.
Clinical Lectureship and Senior Clinical Lectureship: Scope of Funding
ICA CLs and SCLs can fund:
- the costs of the approved research project as detailed in the contract
- the cost of a personal training and development programme, which includes professional development
- the award holder’s salary costs for the academic element of the Lectureship
- 60/40 academic/professional practice (up to 60% of the award holder’s salary)
- 50/50 academic/professional practice or (up to 50% of the award holder’s salary)
- 40/60 academic/professional practice (up to 40% of the award holder’s salary)
The rest of the award holder’s salary needs to be met by the partnership of the named health/care organisation and academic organisation. The relative salary contributions made by the health/care and academic organisations are at their discretion and should be agreed prior to, and detailed in, the application.
The costs that will be met by an award differ slightly depending on the type of Host Organisation that is chosen by the applicant (i.e. NHS or HEI). These costs are summarised in the table below.
Costs met for different Host Organisation Type
|Lectureship Costs||Higher Education Institutions||NHS and Other Organisations|
|Travel, subsistence and conference fees||80% (with the exception of conference related costs, which are paid at 100%)||100%|
Patient and Public Involvement
Patent and Legal
Other direct Costs
|Training and Development (but not any travel or subsistence which should appear in “Travel,subsistence and conference fees”)||100%||100%|
|HEI indirect costs||80%||N/A|
|Commerical Indirect Costs||N/A||N/A|
|Other partner organisation indirect costs||N/A||N/A|
Assessment of Applications
Awards will be made following open competition. The selection process and subsequent administration of the Lectureships will be managed by the NIHR.
Following the submission deadline, the NIHR Academy will check applications for completeness and eligibility, and distribute eligible applications to the members of the Selection Committee.
The Selection Committee assess all eligible applications using the Assessment Criteria detailed below.
Applications are assessed for a place on the ‘Shortlist’ for interview subject to external peer review. Applicants whose shortlisted status is confirmed following peer review are invited for interview.
Applicants will be informed of the outcome of their application by email when all required processes are complete. No indication will be given of outcome before that.
Feedback will be sent to all applicants after the funding decisions have been made.
The deadline for submission of applications to the Round 7 competition is Tuesday 15th June 2021 at 1pm.
By this deadline, the application must have been submitted (including all supporting documents) and approved by all the signatories. No additional supporting documents will be accepted after the deadline and signatories will not be able to approve an application once the deadline has passed. Please see ‘The Application Process’ below for further details.
The timetable below details the key dates in the selection process
Competition Opens: 8th April 2021
Competition Closes: 15th June 2021
Deadline for submission of evidence that doctorate has been awarded (CL applicants not awarded doctorate at time of submission only): 15th September 2021
Interviews for shortlisted applicants: 8th and 9th December 2021
Start dates of awards: 1st April, 1st May, 1st June, 1st July, 1st August or 1st September 2022
Please note - only one application to the HEE/NIHR Integrated Clinical Academic Programme is permitted each year. Multiple applications to one scheme or applications to more than one scheme (e.g. CDRF/CL/SCL) will not be accepted.
The NIHR Academy strongly recommends that, in the interests of competitivity, applicants always apply to the most junior scheme for which they are eligible.
Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application via email as soon as the funding decision is finalised. It can take up to 6 weeks following the interviews for application outcomes to be issued. Applicants are advised to take this into account when considering which start date to opt for.
Further guidance for submitting applications via the online application system is available below (“Completing the Application Form”).
Please note - if applicants are successful in being awarded an NIHR or HEE/NIHR Research Training Award while simultaneously holding another NIHR or HEE/NIHR award, they will be asked to decide which award they would like to continue with and will be withdrawn from the other.
Rules on Re-applications
Unsuccessful applicants to the Clinical Lectureship or Senior Clinical Lectureship can apply to the same scheme on one further occasion.
Please note - this does not include applications to any ICA scheme competitions made before 2019.
If you have previously had 2 unsuccessful applications you will normally be able to apply again for the same scheme after a period of 3 years has passed. This is to take account of the fact that both you, in terms of your CV and experience, and the proposed research will have hopefully developed significantly in this timeframe.
Applications deemed fundable but which fall below the funding cut off will not be counted towards the maximum of 2 application attempts.
Clinical Lectureship and Senior Clinical Lectureship Assessment Criteria
Applications are assessed by the Selection Committee using the following criteria:
When assessing the applicant
- The quality and relevance of the applicant’s recent and overall professional experience
- The quality and relevance of the applicant’s research experience, output and funding achievements
- The evidenced commitment and potential of the applicant to develop as a practitioner academic – is this supported by apparent career trajectory?
- Senior Clinical Lectureships only: The ability of the applicant to improve the research capacities and capabilities of others
When assessing the proposed research programme
- The quality of the proposed research and its potential to have an impact on the care of the public and/or patients within five years of its completion
- The proposed balance of professional practice, research and teaching activities
- The potential of the Lectureship to support the development of the applicant’s skills in their health/care profession as well as their skills as an academic
- Quality, scope and relevance of the review of existing evidence
- Appropriateness and level of patient and public involvement
- Quality of plain English summary
When assessing the proposed host site(s), training programme and supervision
- The quality of the proposed training and development programme
- The appropriateness of the proposed academic and professional practice mentorship (research and practice support)
- The quality of the host research group(s), and their appropriateness to the development of non-medical practitioner academic careers.
- The feasibility and appropriateness of the management and support arrangements proposed by the supporting organisations
- Evidence that the hosting organisations (HEI and health/care organisation) have a non-medical practitioner academic career infrastructure in place or have plans to implement one, and are committed to building national research capacity in the non-medical health and care professions.
- The commitment from the hosts to afford the applicant a practitioner academic position beyond the period of the Lectureship.
- Evidence of how the Lectureship post will function as an integrated practitioner academic role
- Evidence of the host organisation(s) commitment to creating and maintaining an inclusive and supportive research culture, including evidence of commitment to the principles of equality, diversity and inclusion and research integrity
Evidence of research output commensurate with previous experience and/or career stage will be sought
In addition to assessing the above, the Selection Committee will also take the appropriateness and value for money of the funds requested into consideration.
The NIHR strongly recommends that you remain mindful of these assessment criteria when developing your application.
The Application Process
All applications must be submitted via the NIHR Academy online Award Management System.
Only one application to the HEE/NIHR ICA Programme is permitted in each round. Multiple applications or applications at more than one level (e.g. CDRF and CL or CL and SCL) will not be accepted.
Unsuccessful applicants will only be able apply to the same scheme on one further occasion. Please see “Rules on Re-applications” above.
The Application Process
The application process for the Clinical Lectureship and Senior Clinical Lectureship competitions uses adapted versions of the NIHR Standard Application Forms (SAF).
The application form must be submitted by Tuesday 15 June 2021 at 1pm.
Before an application can be started, prospective applicants are required to register on the online award management system. Applicants will be asked to supply a valid email address and to complete some basic information. Once this has been submitted, applicants will receive an email confirming their registration and a temporary password. Applicants should follow the instructions in the email to log on to the system.
Once signed into the system, applicants can update various details including their CV and apply for any open competitions.
Applications can be started via selecting ‘My Applications’ and ‘New Application’. The application form for the scheme of interest can then be selected from the list provided.
After answering all of the eligibility questions, applicants will be able to start completing the online form. Applicants must ensure they have read all of the available guidance text including this document as well as any online instructions thoroughly before completing the form.
Completing the Application Form
Applicants are required to complete all of the mandatory sections of the form and to enter under the ‘Participants and Signatories’ section the names and contact details of those individuals fulfilling Participant and Signatory roles (see below).
Once the applicant has completed their sections of the form and the Participants and Signatories have made their contributions, the applicant is required to ‘Submit’ the application to the Signatories for final sign off before the closing date.
Applicants can only ‘Submit’ an application for final sign off by the Signatories when:
- All mandatory sections of the application form are complete
- All Participants and Signatories have agreed to be a part of the application and have completed their relevant sections
- Applicants have completed the declaration information.
It is highly recommended that applicants complete their application well in advance of the deadline to allow the Participants and Signatories enough time to complete the relevant sections and declarations. Participants and Signatories who are required to complete part of the application form can do so at any time once they have agreed to be part of the application.
Participants and Signatories
Applicants are required to supply the names and email addresses (if not already registered on the award management system) of the individuals who will be undertaking Participant and Signatory roles as part of the application. Participants and Signatories must agree to be part of the application before it is submitted.
Participants and Signatories are required to review the declaration for their role before confirming participation. By confirming participation, Participants and Signatories are acknowledging their involvement and input into an application and agree to be involved in it. Applicants must ensure that all Participants and Signatories are happy for their application to be submitted before submitting it on the online system.
Please note it is often the case that one or more of the Participants are also named as Signatories.
- Research Support: Applicants are required to enter details of at least 1 (and up to 3) individuals who will provide research support (mentorship) during the Lectureship. The individual(s) acting as the applicant’s Research Support/ Mentor must confirm that they have read the application and the Applicant Guidance Notes and are willing to act as the applicant’s mentor for research and career development and agree to abide by the conditions under which an award may be granted.
- Practice Support: Applicants are required to enter details of at least 1 (and up to 3) individuals who will provide professional practice Support/ Mentorship during the Lectureship. The individual(s) acting as the applicant’s Practice Support/ Mentor(s) must confirm that they have read the application and the Applicant Guidance Notes and are willing to provide professional and career development support to the applicant and agree to abide by the conditions under which an award may be granted.
Research Contract Officer: A Research Contract Officer at the Host Organisation must confirm that they have read the Applicant Guidance Notes for the relevant NIHR scheme and the standard NIHR contract and confirm that the Host Organisation would be willing to accept an award according to the published terms and conditions of the NIHR standard contract.
Sponsor: If the award includes a clinical trial then an authorised representative of the organisation that will sponsor the clinical trial outlined in this application must confirm that the organisation supports the application and has, where applicable, confirmed with the CTU named in this application that they support this application and the arrangements for managing the trial.
NHS or Partner Facilities: A representative of the NHS or other partner facilities must agree to participate in this application if any NHS support or treatment costs are being incurred as part of the research. The representative of the NHS body incurring any NHS Support and Treatment Costs must confirm that they will ensure that all NHS Support and Treatment Costs in the application are correct and the aforementioned organisation is prepared to meet these costs.
- Heads of Department: Applicants are required to enter the details of the relevant Head of Departments at both the lead health/care organisation and the lead academic organisations (the Host Organisation and the Partner Organisation). In agreeing to participate in this application, the Heads of Department of the Host Organisation and the Partner Organisation in which this award will be based are confirming that they support the application and that, if funded, the research and training will be supported and administrated in the named organisations and that the applicant for whom they are responsible will undertake the work.
The Heads of Department are required to provide a joint statement of support via the ‘Training & Development and Research Support’ section of the application form, which will be accessible to them once they have confirmed participation.
- Host Organisation Administrative Authority or Finance Officer: The Administrative Authority or Finance Officer for the Host Organisation must confirm that they will ensure the accuracy of the financial details of the application and that the Host Organisation is prepared to carry out this research at the stated costs and to administer the award if made.
In addition to agreeing participation, Signatories are required to sign off the application following submission of the application before the closing date.
Once the application is ready (see list of required steps above), applicants are able to submit the application for final signatory approval. Upon submission by the applicant, the individuals added in the signatory roles will be prompted to sign back into the system and approve the finalised application.
The application will not be complete until all of the required signatories have approved the final version of the form submitted by the applicant. Only when the last signatory presses the ‘Approve’ button will the completed application be submitted to the NIHR.
Annex A illustrates the submission process for the application form in the form of a flow diagram.
Please note all of the steps described here, including signatory approval of the submitted application, must take place before the deadline of 1:00pm on Tuesday 15 June 2021. No extensions will be given and no exceptions will be made to allow for completion of the form.
Should you require assistance in completing the online form, please contact the NIHR:
Tel: 0113 532 8444
Completing the Application Form
Application Summary Information
Please give details of the organisation who will be the contractor if the project is funded.
Please note that we expect the applicant’s proposed host organisation (substantive employer) to act as the contractor.
Please also bear in mind that:
The contractor is expected to respond to annual financial reconciliation exercises, provide the final financial reconciliation statement for the project and to provide responses to ad hoc requests for financial information during the lifetime of the project.
In the same way, the contractor is expected to respond to any queries relating to Intellectual Property, commercialisation and benefit realisation.
If the name of your host organisation does not appear in the pre-populated list please email email@example.com.
Please give details of the partner organisation who will be supporting this application.
If the Host Organisation is the supporting HEI, the Partner Organisation must be the health or care organisation.
If the Host Organisation is the health or care organisation, the Partner Organisation must be the HEI.
Please see “CL and SCL Host Organisation and Partner organisation” above for further guidance.
Please indicate if you are applying for a Partnership Fellowship using the drop down lists available.
Please ensure you have read the relevant guidance above before selecting your responses to these questions.
The project title should state clearly and concisely the proposed research. Any abbreviations should be spelled out in full.
Select the appropriate research type. If you are not sure which category to select, choose the closest match to your project as this can be adjusted later.
NIHR definitions of these terms can be found on the NIHR Glossary.
Proposed Start Date
Possible start dates for the Clinical Lectureship and Senior Clinical Lectureship are:
1st April 2022
1st May 2022
1st June 2022
1st July 2022
1st August 2022
1st September 2022
Please note this should be from the 1st of the month regardless of whether this is a working day or not.
Please be realistic about your possible start date, taking account of the necessary contracting, and staff recruitment prior to starting your Lectureship.
WTE of Award
Awards can only be undertaken at the WTE options given.
The Clinical Lectureship is a 3 year award if undertaken full-time (100%).
Part-time options are available between 50-95% (72 Months to 38 months).
Senior Clinical Lectureships
Senior Clinical Lectureships are 5 year awards whether taken up full time or part-time. The Senior Clinical Lectureships can be undertaken at full time (100%) or part-time between 95% and 50% WTE.
Please note - some of the responses to these questions are automatically pulled through from information entered in the ’Manage My Details’ page.
The ‘Publication Record’ section of the form is automatically populated from publications added into the “My Research Outputs” page of your ARAMIS account.
Please ensure that you have provided details of your current registration to enable confirmation of eligibility.
If an applicant’s professional registration is pending at the time of application, details of the status of their registration and the planned timetable for obtaining registration should be provided in response to the “Research Career to date” question in the “Applicant Research Background” section of the application form.
Degrees and Professional Qualifications
Please provide the full details of any completed higher degree(s) and, where relevant, the full details of any higher degree(s) you are currently undertaking.
Present and Previous Positions
When entering details of your current and previous positions please indicate at what percentage (WTE) in each post you were undertaking research. For example, if you were a Clinical Lecturer and undertook research for 2.5 days a week and clinical work for 2.5 days per week; please enter 50% for that position. If you have worked part time at 60%, and undertook research for half of that time, please enter 30% for that position.
Research Grants Held
Details of all relevant grants obtained in the last five years should be provided, including personal research training awards or fellowships, plus any additional previous grants relevant to this application. Please indicate clearly any co-applicants and provide brief details of the nature and full extent of your involvement (e.g. project design, project management, day to day running, data collection, data analysis, writing papers for publication, etc.).
Please also include in the ‘Role in Research Grant’ box for each entry: registration number and name of registry and the DOI of the main related publication. Where the study is still ongoing or final results have not yet been published, please provide an estimated publication date. This is inline with the NIHR policy on clinical trial registration and disclosure of results.
It is recognised that the outputs in terms of grants and publications will vary depending on your experience, profession and level of award being applied for. Linking to and using the response to the Applicant Research Background section you should highlight the impact of outputs listed under "Research Grants Held" and make the case for why your experience and outputs make you suitable for the award being applied for.
Please note - your research grant record must be completed within the application form and not via the CV section on ARAMIS.
The publication record is automatically populated from the information added to the “Research Outputs” section of your ARAMIS account. To update, please “save and close” your application, return to the “home” screen and select “Research Outputs” from the left-hand menu.
When publications have been added, the Lead Applicant name can be edited to show in bold within application forms via the “Assign Grant Contacts” option.
To ensure publications display correctly, with all of the required information, applicants are strongly advised to use the “import” function and import their publications from Europe PMC.
Please do not include abstracts, conference proceedings or articles in preparation. If relevant, details of these may be included in the ‘Applicant Research Background’ section.
Details of articles which are in press and have been accepted as final by the publisher may be included.
Only publications relevant to your application should be included.
Relevant Prizes, Awards and other Academic Distinctions
Please provide details of any awards or distinctions that would be relevant to your application including details of what the award was for.
The NIHR is an ORCID member and encourages all researchers to obtain this persistent digital identifier that distinguishes you from every other researcher.
You must include an ORCID ID in your application. Without it, your application will not be validated and you will not be able to submit.
For more information and to register please see ORCiD.
Applicant Research Background
Select the one option that best describes your professional group. This will determine any options that appear below for your professional background.
This should be the profession for which you hold registration with one of the ICA Programme Eligible Regulatory Bodies (or will do by the proposed award date).
Please Describe your Research Career to Date
Please use this question to describe your research experience and career to date and how this makes you suitable for this award and to undertake the research being proposed. Please include the following:
Research you have led or made a significant contribution to (making clear what your role was), the research methods you have experience of, and the impact and outputs of the research you have been involved in (linking to details given in your CV).
Any other relevant experience such as supervisory, management, teaching, public engagement and involvement, or leadership experience;
Other skills and experience, which highlights your suitability for the fellowship you are applying for and which demonstrates your potential as a future health research leader.
Impact of Award
Please describe the impact this award will have on your career, noting a Lectureship should provide you with a step change in your career trajectory. You should also provide some justification for the resources and length of funding you have requested in the context of the impact this will provide.
If an applicant’s professional registration with one of the ICA Eligible Regulatory Bodies is pending at the time of application, details of the status of their registration and the planned timetable for obtaining registration should also be provided here.
(Word limit: 1000)
Title of Research Degree / Date Awarded / If not awarded, date of submission (Clinical Lectureship applicants only)
Clinical Lectureship Applicants
Please answer these questions regarding your doctorate. Applicants for Clinical Lectureships must have been awarded a research doctorate (PhD) or a Professional Doctorate in health related research at the time of application OR have submitted their doctoral thesis (leading to the award of a PhD or Professional doctorate) for examination.
Holders of Professional doctorates must have had their eligibility for this scheme confirmed by the NIHR Academy, following receipt of evidence from their host HEI, prior to making an application.
If you have not yet been awarded your doctorate
You are required to submit evidence of the award of your doctorate to the NIHR Academy in the form of an official letter from the awarding body no later than 15 September 2021. Please see ‘Eligibility Requirements for the Clinical Lectureship Scheme’ for further details.
Senior Clinical Lectureship Applicants
Please answer these questions regarding your doctorate. Applicants for HEE/NIHR Senior Clinical Lectureships must have been awarded a research doctorate (PhD) or Professional Doctorate in health related/and or social care related research at the time of application.
Holders of Professional doctorates must have had their eligibility for this scheme confirmed by the NIHR Academy, following receipt of evidence from their host HEI, prior to making an application.
Has this application, or a similar application, previously been submitted to this or any other funding body?
Select ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ to indicate whether this or a similar application has previously been submitted to this or any other funding body. This must include any previous submissions for an NIHR research training award, even if the proposed research has changed. Please detail the title of any previous submission(s), the funding body and scheme, the outcome and the date this is due if a decision is pending. If the application was unsuccessful please indicate why and detail how this application differs from previous submission(s) and how any feedback received has been used to inform this application.
(Word limit: 500)
Please use this question to detail any mitigating factors you wish to make the Selection Committee aware of.
NIHR wants to know about any circumstances so that they may take them into consideration during the assessment of your application.
Mitigating factors may include:
- Career breaks due to parental leave, or periods of illness
- Reduced time spent undertaking research due to a disability or caring responsibilities. This could include any physical or mental difficulty that may have impacted your research career. These are situations that have a significant impact on your ability to undertake research
- Reduced opportunities to career support e.g. mentorship, and limited opportunities to undertake prior research and training.
Please also use this section to detail any other factors that may have impacted your research career not listed in the examples provided. The impact on your career to date will be specific to your particular circumstances but could include such impacts as limited opportunities to obtain grant funding, or fewer publications. In general terms, mitigating factors should be significant, and relevant.
NIHR acknowledges that you may be reluctant, or uncomfortable disclosing relevant information that is sensitive. However, you should bear in mind that that we are unable to take into account factors that you do not disclose. Please be assured that information provided by you is sensitive and will be treated confidentially and in line with General Data and Protection Regulations (GDPR).
Please also use this section to indicate any specific impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on your application.
(Word Limit: 500)
Plain English Summary of Research
The importance of a plain English Summary
A plain English summary is a clear explanation of your research.
Many reviewers use this summary to inform their review of your funding application. They include clinicians and other practitioners, and researchers who do not have specialist knowledge of your field as well as members of the public. If your application for funding is successful, the summary will be used on the NIHR and other websites.
A good quality plain English summary providing an easy to read overview of your whole study will help;
those carrying out the review (reviewers and board and Selection Committee members) to have a better understanding of your research proposal
inform others about your research such as members of the public, health and social care professionals, policy makers and the media
the research funders to publicise the research that they fund.
If it is felt that your plain English summary is not clear and of a good quality then you may be required to amend it prior to final funding approval.
It is helpful to involve patients/carers/service users/practitioners/members of the public in developing a plain English summary.
When writing your summary consider including the following information where appropriate;
aim(s) of the research
background to the research
design and methods used
patient and public involvement
The plain English summary is not the same as a scientific abstract - please do not cut and paste this or other sections of your application form to create the plain English summary.
Further guidance on writing in plain English is available online at NIHR Make it clear.
For further support and advice on writing a plain English summary, please contact your local Research Design Service.
Word Limit: 600
The scientific abstract should be a clear and concise scientific summary of the Detailed Research Plan / Methods.
The following is a list of potential elements/headings that might be included depending on the design of the proposed research, the setting and programme being applied to, and whether it is for primary research or evidence synthesis. It will be for researchers to decide the appropriate elements to be included in the scientific abstract and could include elements outside this list. Applicants may find the guidance on the EQUATOR Network website useful.
Aims and objectives
Timelines for delivery
Anticipated impact and dissemination
Word Limit: 500
Detailed Research Plan
Using all of the headings (in the order presented) and guidance below, please use this section to clearly explain your proposed research. As this is the main part of your application detailing your proposal, which will be considered by the Selection Committee, you should ensure that the information is accurate, succinct and clearly laid out.
The NIHR expects appropriate and relevant involvement of patients/service users, carers and the public and other key stakeholders in the research it supports. It is essential to set out your plans to involve patients and the public in this application. Your patient/service user, carer and public involvement plans will be assessed by the selection committee including patients/service users, carers and public members.
Information and resources to assist you can be found on the INVOLVE website (Involve - a detailed definition of patient and public involvement in research, Involve - briefing notes for researchers on how to involve patients and the public and Involve - involvement cost calculator and budgeting guide).
Guidance for applicants on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion for study participants:
- Gender reassignment
- Marriage and civil partnership
- Pregnancy and maternity
- Ethnicity - link (for example) to the toolkit for increasing participation of BAME groups in health and care research
- Religion or belief
- Sexual orientation
- Geographical location
- Socioeconomic status
- Access to health or social care
If the research you are proposing includes a clinical trial, feasibility study or pilot study, or if your area of research is related to clinical trials, you are strongly encouraged to read the NIHR Clinical Trials Guide before starting an application.
Word limit: 5000
% of Clinical and Academic time
Please begin your response to the “Detailed Research Plan” question with a sentence stating the professional practice/academic ratio you are requesting for the Lectureship. Available ratios:
60/40 academic/professional practice
50/50 academic/professional practice
40/60 academic/professional practice
What is the problem being addressed?
Provide a clear explanation of the health or social care problem to be addressed, the impact on patients/service users, carers, as well as health and care services, and how this research would fill a demonstrable evidence gap.
Why is this research important in terms of improving the health and/or wellbeing of the public and/or to patients and health and care services?
It is essential that you clearly identify the health and care need your research meets or contributes to. Please outline the anticipated value or contribution the study will provide.
Review of existing evidence - how does the existing literature support this proposal?
Explain why this research is needed now, both in terms of time and relevance. We will only fund primary research where the proposed research is informed by a review of the existing evidence.
Doctoral applicants and early career post-doctoral applicants can propose to undertake a systematic review as part of the award, provided it is well justified.
What is the research question / aims and objectives?
Please summarise the research question / key aims and objectives.
Provide an expert description of the project plan of investigation plus any additional points required to support statements made in the previous sections, and include any key references required to justify the points made (e.g. in the use of particular outcome measures or methods of analysis). You should include where applicable; study design, justification of sample size, selection and exclusion criteria, methods of data collection and analysis, and justification for your choice of methodology.
Dissemination, Outputs and anticipated Impact
Please describe what the outputs of the research might be, how these will be disseminated and what impact there might be. Please consider the following questions when completing this section:
What do you intend to produce from your research?
How will you inform and engage patients/service users, carers, NHS, social care and the wider population about your work?
How will your outputs enter our health and care system or society as a whole?
What do you think the impact of your research will be and for whom?
In describing the anticipated impact of the expected outputs on the health and care of patients, the public, and on health and care services, please consider; patient benefit; changes in NHS service (including efficiency savings); and commercial return (which could contribute to economic growth).
Please outline the processes that will be put in place ensure the research described will be well managed. This should complement your research timetable upload (please see the ‘Uploads’ section of the form and the guidance below).
Outline any ethical and/or other regulatory issues, and arrangements for handling them. If there are no plans to obtain ethical review, this must be clearly justified. (Note that work outlined in your application/protocol must adhere to the Research Governance Framework).
Further guidance on the approval process is available from the Health Research Authority (HRA). The MRC and the HRA have designed a tool to help you decide whether you need ethical approval which you can find on the HRA website. However, if you are unsure whether your research requires ethical approval please contact the HRA directly and they will be able to advise.
Please set out the measurements of success you intend to use and also the key risks to delivering this research and what contingencies you will put in place to deal with them. This section should identify appropriate actions that would reduce or eliminate each risk or its impact.
Patient and Public Involvement
Please describe how patients/service users, carers and the public have been involved in developing this proposal
Please describe the ways in which patients/ service users and the public will be actively involved in the proposed research, including any training and support provided
Patients/service users and public can be involved in every stage of a research project, from developing a proposal through to dissemination and evaluation.
In your description you will need to say who will be involved and why.
Explain why your approach to public and patient involvement is appropriate for this proposal
Describe how you will support and enable patient and public involvement in your research (e.g. payments, training).
If it is considered not appropriate and meaningful to actively involve patients/services users, carers and the public in your proposed research, please justify why
Training and Development and Research Support
Proposed Training and Development Programme
Please use this section to detail the training and development you will undertake as part of the award. This should cover both the training you may need to undertake the research being proposed but also training designed to support your development as a future health and/or social care research leader and the professional development activities you will undertake.
Training may include, but is not limited to; formal courses, training in specialist skills and research methodologies, placements with other research groups or centres, leadership skills, conference attendance and overseas research visits. It is important that the training and development programme is tailored to your specific needs and complements the research being proposed as part of the award.
Word limit: 1000
Please enter the details of up to 3 individuals (and a minimum of 1 individual) providing research advice/mentorship.
Although we acknowledge that formal supervision may not be appropriate for Lectureship applicants, we believe that the applicant will benefit from research advice/mentorship. In this context, the research advice/mentorship role will encompass providing you with support throughout your award in both your research endeavours and your overall career development. It is a two-way process that may be challenging for both parties. For this reason, choosing who will provide research advice will require a great deal of thought.
The individuals who provide research advice may or may not be based in your host organisation. They should, however, have a clear understanding of the research process, the demands your chosen area of training and development are likely to place on you, and your particular strengths and weaknesses.
Research advice is referred to in the literature as ‘mentorship’ and there are numerous models to be found that could be employed. Clearly describe how the proposed arrangements will support your overall development and provide an initial assessment of the time that will be allocated to the research advice process.
Funding for research support is available for travel and subsistence only (for the applicant) and does not support any fees the individuals who provide research support or supervision may wish to charge the applicant.
The individuals you list here must also be added in the ‘Participants and Signatories’ section of the application form.
Please note - the individuals identified here will specifically provide research mentorship and should not be a career mentor such as you may subsequently wish to arrange through the ICA Mentorship Scheme should you be successful in gaining a Lectureship.
(Word Limit: 250)
Please enter the details of up to 3 individuals (and a minimum of 1 individual) who will provide you with professional practice advice/mentorship during your Lectureship.
As well as supporting the development of your relevant professional skills, it would be advantageous for this individual to be able to support and advise you on your broader professional development appropriate to your career stage.
The support detailed here is referred to in the literature as ‘mentorship’ and there are numerous models to be found that could be employed.
Please note - funding for professional practice advice/mentorship is available for the lead applicant’s travel and subsistence only and does not support any fees the mentor may wish to charge the applicant.
The individuals you list here must also be added in the 'Participants and Signatories' section of the application form.
Word Limit: 250
Explain what collaborations you intend to establish to support your research and, if applicable, your training and development programme. This may involve short visiting placements (e.g. an Overseas Research Visit), or secondments in new (to the applicant) research environments, e.g. clinical trials units or NIHR Biomedical Research Centres.
The NIHR is particularly keen to enhance the cadre of researchers equipped to work at the university/NHS/industry interface, translating ideas into new treatments and products from which patients can benefit. Therefore, where appropriate, you should consider any industry collaborations you may wish to establish during the course of your award. You should include; the training and development the collaboration will provide; the facilities and expertise you will have access to; and how the collaboration will strengthen links between academia, industry and the NHS.
Word limit: 600
Host Organisations Statement of Support
The statement is completed jointly by the Heads of Department of the Host Organisation and the Partner Organisation and should detail how the organisations are going to support the applicant in partnership to successfully complete their research and the training and development programme.
This statement should be tailored specifically to the applicant, their research and training needs, and include how the organisations intend to support the applicant to develop their research career in the long-term.
NIHR see the responsibility for training the next generation of research leaders as a joint enterprise with host organisations. Therefore information should also be provided on the organisation’s track record of supporting early career researchers, such as evidence of bridging or other support provided to awardees upon completion of an award.
In addition, the statement should also describe the host organisation’s approach to creating and maintaining an inclusive and supportive research culture for all. The statement should provide evidence of how the organisation values and supports equality, diversity and inclusion as well as acknowledging the organisation’s responsibilities with respect to research integrity. Statements may wish to refer to the principles and best practice outlined within relevant Charters and Concordats in these areas, such as the Researcher Development Concordat and Advance HE’s Equality Charters. It should be noted that being a signatory to Concordats or holding bronze/silver status from the Equality Charters isn’t a requirement of funding and evidence can be provided through other means.
Host Organisations are expected to comply with the relevant Principles and Obligations for clinical academic training and it is recommended Host Organisations read these documents, where relevant, before completing the statement of support. See Principlies and Obligations for medics and dentists. See Principles and Obligations for all other professions.
NIHR expects that all commitments made to the applicant within this statement will be honoured for the lifetime of the award.
The statement should also describe the nature of the partnership between the organisations in relation to the support they will provide to the applicant and how they will facilitate a sustainable wider practitioner academic career infrastructure for non-medical health and care professionals.
The Heads of department will be able to access this section of the form once they have confirmed participation. Invitations to participate are sent by the applicant via the 'Participants and Signatories' section of the form.
(Word limit: 1000)
Guidance for the completion of the finance section is available in the next section of the Applicant Guidance Notes.
Management and Governance
Please complete the check boxes as appropriate.
To support your research plan you are able to upload the following documents in the ‘uploads’ section of the form:
A4 page listing all references cited in the application.
1 A4 page of figures/tables may be included to supplement your research plan.
- Research timetable
1 A4 page detailing specific milestone and deliverables.
- CTU letter of support
Where you are working with a CTU please include a supporting letter.
Please upload a completed SoECAT form that has been signed off by an AcoRD Specialist.
The SoECAT form must be uploaded even where there are no excess treatment costs.
There is further Guidance for the completion of the form in these Applicant Guidance Notes.
The SoECAT form can be uploaded in Excel format
Participants and Signatories
A number of participants and signatories are required to be added to your application and, where applicable, to complete sections of it. Details of the required individuals are provided on the online application form along with details of how they should added. The flow diagram in Annex A goes through the actions required of participants, signatories and the applicant.
Acknowledgement, Review and Submit
Please declare any conflicts or potential conflicts of interest that you may have in undertaking this Lectureship, including any relevant, non-personal and commercial interest that could be perceived as a conflict of interest.
Word limit: 300
Agreement to Terms and Conditions
Please click the check box to confirm that you agree to the Terms and Conditions of submission as detailed on the application form.
Checklist of information to include when submitting a NIHR research application
Applicants should use the list below to check that they have included the necessary information prior to submitting their application:
A good quality Plain English Summary (See Involve - make it clear)
A clear explanation of the problem being addressed
A clear demonstration of the need and importance of the research
A review of existing literature (primary research)
A clear research question / aim(s) and objectives
A clear project plan summarising the study design and methods
Appropriate and relevant involvement of patients and the public (See NIHR Involve website)
A clear, appropriate and relevant plan for dissemination
A single A4 page of references (document upload)
Justification of Costs
- Please provide a breakdown of the costs associated with undertaking the Lectureship and provide justification for the resources requested. This should include the following costs: staff costs, travel and subsistence, dissemination costs, equipment (including lease versus purchase costs), consumables, patient and public involvement (PPI) and any other direct costs. For help with estimating PPI costs please see the Involve Cost Calculator.
- When justifying staff costs you should also provide the % amount of time input of each member of staff and link this to the specific area/work package of the proposed study where this input will be taking place.
- You should indicate here how this research will potentially benefit the NHS, social care and/ or public health. For example, where appropriate, describe the likely cost savings or benefits in terms of numbers of patients/service users/carers supported or treated, treatment times etc.
- You should describe the value for money of the conduct of the proposed research
- Please provide a breakdown of the NHS costs associated with undertaking the research and provide justification for the resources required. If there are no NHS Support or Excess Treatment Costs associated with the research, you must explain why you think this is the case.
- Please provide a breakdown of any non-NHS intervention costs and provide justification for the resources required. Non-NHS intervention costs should include costs incurred in delivering the intervention that would continue to be incurred after the trial, should the intervention become standard care.
- NIHR Personal awards are not project or programme grants; therefore, extensions to the duration of awards to allow for completion of research and/or training and development are not permitted. This does not affect suspensions of awards to allow for periods of maternity, paternity, adoption or sickness leave.
Detailed Budget Breakdown
The finance section should provide a breakdown of costs associated with undertaking the Lectureship as described in the proposal.
- The information entered in this section should provide an analysis of the total funds requested to undertake the Lectureship and should be based on current prices. These costs will be used to assess value for money.
- It is in the best interest to undertake a thorough, realistic and accurate costing. Where an outline/stage 1 application has been produced and this is the full stage (2) application, the Selection Committee will pay close attention to any material increase in costs. You must provide a clear and full justification for all costs including NHS costs. You must also ensure that you include all costs including those required to secure good research management.
- Costs must be provided at current prices. An adjustment for inflation will be made annually thereafter at rates set by the Department of Health and Social care. Whilst allowances for incremental increases should be included on the form, nationally or locally agreed pay increases should be excluded.
- Years should be calculated starting from the anticipated start date of the proposed Lectureship. For example, if your Lectureship is expected to start on 01 June 2020 then its second year starts 01 June 2021.
- Further itemisation of costs and methods of calculation may be requested to support the application at a later date.
- Payments will be made to the contracted organisation only and the contracted organisation will be responsible for passing on any money due to their partner organisation(s).
- Appropriate sub-contracts must be put in place for any element of the Lectureship that is to be paid to another organisation.
- NHS Support Costs are funded via Clinical Research Networks. Researchers should contact their local NHS R&D Department initially and, if they are unable to help directly or if there is no local NHS R&D Department, contact their Local Clinical Research Network. Further details about CRN contacts are available on the NIHR Clinical Research Network page.
- All applications are expected to have appropriate NHS, HEI, commercial and other partner organisation input into the finance section of the application form.
- There is no need to individually itemise costs where the total is below £1,000
INFORMATION ON DIFFERENT TYPES OF ORGANISATIONS
Higher Education Institutions (HEIs)
Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) should determine the Full Economic Cost (FEC) of their research using the Transparent Approach to Costing (TRAC) methodology. For HEIs, up to 80% of FEC will be paid, provided that TRAC methodology has been used.
NHS bodies and other providers of NHS services in England
For applications where the contractor is an NHS body or provider of NHS services in England, up to 100% of direct costs will be paid.
If you are a commercial organisation/consultancy, please fill in direct costs and commercial indirect costs. Indirect costs should be charged in proportion to the amount of research staff effort requested on the funding application form. Up to 100% of costs will be paid.
Other Partner Organisations
If you are another partner organisation (e.g. charity or NGO), please fill in direct costs and other partner organisations indirect costs. Indirect costs should be charged in proportion to the amount of research staff effort requested on the funding application form. Up to 100% of costs will be paid.
These are costs that are specific to the Lectureship, which will be charged as the amount actually spent and can be supported by an audit record. They should comprise:
1) Details of Posts and Salaries
This section presents an overview of salary costs for the applicant and other support/shared staff contributing to the research, including normal salary increments broken down individually.
Please state the proposed salary point and scale at the start of the Lectureship. Please note immediate promotion to a higher grade as a result of securing a Lectureship will not be funded. Please do not include any Clinical Excellence or Discretion/Merit awards or discretionary points. NIHR agrees to fund consultant salaries at a full-time rate equivalent to 10 Programmed Activities per week.
Support staff (research assistants) can be requested as part of a Lectureship application. This is usually limited to the equivalent of 1 member of staff for a period of 3 years. Typically this post will be taken by a research assistant who may be undertaking a PhD supervised by the Lead Applicant. Any requests for support staff over this limit will need to be extremely well justified. There is also an expectation that the Host Organisation will match any requests for support staff over and above the usual limit.
Please include all members of staff working on the Lectureship by clicking ‘add staff details’ or editing a current one. Where applicants are already receiving salaries funded by NIHR, these should be declared in the application.
Please note: Due to a systems issue, “Support Staff” cannot be selected from the drop down of “other type” of staff. Please select “shared staff” but state in the “justification” box that this is a “Support Staff” request.
The Apprenticeship Levy can be included in the salary costs from 1st April 2017 where relevant.
2. Salary costs
This section specifies the annual costs of the applicant and other staff contributing to the Lectureship. You should now allocate the individual staff member costs to each year of the Lectureship, allowing for increments. Use current rates of pay, and build in any known annual increments (again at current rates). You will not be able to claim for pay awards retrospectively, once your research is underway.
Please note the salary figures need to be calculated using the current annual costs, %WTE and number of months. If the Lectureship lasts for several years and an individual’s involvement varies over the course, it may be necessary to explain fully in the justification of costs section the %WTE and months per year for an individual staff member.
It is important to double check that the %WTE, total months and yearly costs information are consistent with the information presented in ‘Details of Posts and Salaries’ (‘Details of Posts and Salaries’ should show the full current staff costs independent of % WTE etc., whereas the yearly costs in ‘Salary Costs’ depend on % WTE etc.).
Please ensure that you check the ‘Type of Cost’ box that describes the employing organisation for a member of staff as this impacts on the level of funding provided. Staff employed by a Higher Education Institution (HEI) are funded at 80% of cost and staff employed by NHS, commercial or other partner organisation at up to 100% of cost.
Please note that this section also includes ‘Shared Staff Costs’, which is located under directly allocated costs in some other funders’ applications. These are costs of an institution’s research resources that can be charged to the research on the basis of estimated use, rather than actual costs. These may include: IT technicians, laboratory staff, and costs of pooled staff efforts. HEI indirect costs cannot be claimed on these shared costs.
The NIHR reserves the right to question any costs deemed excessive, and will not fund:
- Contributions for individuals providing research support (previously referred to as mentors), supervisors and/or other collaborators involved in the research
- Administrative or secretarial support
- Whole or significant percentages of support posts over and above those permitted by the scheme
- Technical or research support staff whose costs are funded through institutional indirect costs (HEIs only)
3) Travel, Subsistence and Dissemination costs
This section includes journey costs, subsistence and dissemination costs, including conference fees and open access publication costs. Where applicable, you will need to include the travel and subsistence costs of your Project Advisory Group, Steering Committee and/or Data Monitoring & Ethics Committee. Travel and subsistence costs relating to dissemination should also be included here, as should costs relating to overseas travel. Where applicable, you will need to include the travel and subsistence costs relating to meetings with individuals providing research support. Please note that mentors’ (including supervisors and individuals named as providing research support) expenses will not be funded.
If a cost relates to travel, subsistence or fees for a conference please select ‘conference’. Costs relating to conference attendance will be funded at up to 100% for all employing/host organisation types. Conference costs do not need to be individually itemised for each conference. The justification box should detail the conferences the costs will cover.
Enter the total cost of transport for all journeys for destination/purpose. If travel is by car, apply your institution’s mileage rates (however, this should not exceed HMRC approved mileage allowance payments, which is 45p per mile for the first 10,000 miles and 25p thereafter).
Travel by the most economic means possible is encouraged. NIHR programmes do not usually fund first class travel.
Travel costs incurred as an ICA Programme Mentee
Should your application be successful, you will be entitled to career mentorship through the ICA Mentorship Scheme. If you wish to take advantage of this opportunity, please include the cost of attending mentorship sessions.
Subsistence covers accommodation (if necessary) and meals associated with the travel, excluding any alcoholic beverages.
There is a limit on the amount that can be spent on conference related costs (including all related travel and subsistence as well as conference fees) depending on the level you are applying for. These are as follows:
Clinical Lectureships: up to £4,000
Senior Clinical Lectureships: up to £6,000
Dissemination costs (in addition to conference costs)
Any large costs should be further detailed with a breakdown of constituent parts or a timescale profile of the costs. Meetings to share best practice, training events and events to disseminate research findings must be run at the lowest possible cost with minimal catering. ‘Conferences’ which are described as such are not eligible for funding.
Essential items of equipment plus maintenance and related costs not included as part of estates should be input in this section. These can be lease or purchase costs. The purchase cost of pieces of equipment, valued up to £5,000 excluding VAT, will be considered.
Pieces of equipment costing more than £5,000 to purchase will usually need to be leased. Where applicants are leasing equipment with a purchase price of more than £5,000, a comparison of leasing verses purchasing costs must be provided in the ‘Justification of Costs’ section.
Items of equipment valued at £250 or more must be itemised separately; however grouping same type equipment is permitted. Costs of computers are normally restricted to a maximum of £1000 each excluding VAT and a statement of justification must be included, in the relevant ‘Justification of Costs’ section for any purchase above this limit.
Equipment must exclude VAT, but if your organisation is unable to reclaim/recover the VAT on a piece of equipment, you should check the box ‘VAT cannot be reclaimed’.
You will need to seek expert advice from the organisation purchasing the equipment regarding its VAT status. If you check the ‘VAT cannot be reclaimed’ column, VAT at 20% will automatically be calculated into the overall cost of that item.
This section includes non-reusable items specific to the research. Please itemise and describe the requirements fully (e.g. postage, stationery, photocopying). These items should be research specific, not just general office costs, which should be covered by indirect costs.
6) Patient and Public Involvement
Please itemise and describe fully the costs associated with Patient and Public Involvement. These are likely to include out of pocket expenses, payment for time and any relevant training and support costs. Costs related to study participants should not be itemised here.
If voluntary, charity, or community groups are supporting the research via activities such as facilitating contact with potential participants, hosting research activities, or providing advice, an adequate budget must be included to compensate for their time and resources.
INVOLVE have produced a number of useful payment-related resources that can be found on Involve - Payment and recognition for public involvement
7) Other Direct Costs
These are costs, not identified elsewhere, that are specifically attributed to the Lectureship. For example, costs associated with the use of research facilities, external consultancy costs, costs associated with inclusivity (which may include, but are not limited to justified translation of research participant material into other relevant languages), computer licensing, recruitment and advertising costs. Please note that for organisations claiming indirect/overhead costs, costs such as recruitment of staff, and general training (e.g. in common IT packages) are costs that should be covered by the indirect costs element of the award being sought and should not appear in this section.
If external consultancy costs are included in this section, they must be fully justified in the ‘Justification of Costs’ section. Please specify the hourly rate and the number of hours and note that consultants must not be people who are already employed by the applicant’s institution. If they are, any costs should be entered as direct costs in the ‘Details of Posts and Salaries’ and ‘Annual Costs of Posts’ sections.
- Open Access Costs
During the course of your project and throughout review and publishing phase you may choose to submit an article based on your research to an Open Access publication. Depending on the publication you may be subject to an article processing charge (APC). APC rates vary but are usually within the range of £300 and £3000. Open Access publications usually list their APC rates on their websites.
Where possible you should include an estimate for any APC in your funding application, since NIHR expects that APCs will be covered by the funding award.
Note on CTU costs in Personal Training Awards
Costs claimed should be for the additional support from the CTU for the necessary expertise that the trainee cannot provide themselves. For example, part time support from a trial manager, database manager, and statistician are all costs that could potentially be included. The level of support and input from the CTU will likely vary depending on the level of award and experience of the applicant. For example, doctoral applicants will be expected to be undertaking the majority of the day-to-day tasks involved in running a trial, with oversight from a more senior member of CTU staff (though specialist input in database programming may be needed). For more senior post-doctoral awards it may be more appropriate for other members of staff to be undertaking some of the day-to-day tasks. This also very much depends on the experience and expertise of the applicant and the applicant’s training needs and should be agreed with the CTU before submitting an application. These costs should all be agreed with the CTU and budgeted for.
Staff costs should be detailed under the ‘other direct costs’ section. Staff costs should include basic salary and on-costs for each member of staff involved and it should be made clear within the justification section what role each member of staff has within the context of the personal award application and the time they will spend on the award.
Please note that because HEE/NIHR ICA Lectureships and other research training awards are personal awards and not project or programme grants, we can’t fund whole or significant portions of posts other than that of the applicant themselves and their support staff member (where applicable).
We would not normally expect the time commitment of any individual costed into the application other than the applicant or member of support staff to exceed 0.3 WTE. In total we wouldn’t normally expect the total WTE of all staff costed into the application to support clinical trial activities to exceed 1 WTE (excluding the applicant and support staff member) for more junior awards (doctoral and early post-doctoral level awards, including ICA Clinical Lectureships) and 2 WTEs for more senior awards including the ICA Senior Clinical Lectureship (this includes any shared staff also costed into the application).
The level of additional staff input will obviously depend on the type and scope of the trial and the experience of the applicant. Full justification should be provided for all staff costs requested. Overheads (estates and indirect costs) can be included for CTU staff costed into the application. The justification section should split out the overheads from the salary costs and overheads shouldn’t exceed 40% of the total CTU staff cost.
Any costs must be realistic in order to deliver the trial but must also represent value for money. Applicants can also include non-staff costs for the CTU for example; randomisation service, and license fees for l data management software.
8) Training and Development
All costs in this section will be funded at up to 100% for HEI, NHS and Commercial/Other Partner organisations. Please itemise and describe fully the costs associated with training and development. Please provide estimates if exact costs are not available at the time of application. Any travel and subsistence associated with training and development including overseas research visits should not be included here and should be included in the travel section of the form.
Training programme, short courses and workshops
These are costs relating to the applicant’s training and development programme
Overseas Research Visits
Please provide costs for any overseas research visits that the applicant wishes to undertake during the course of the award. NIHR Academy will consider overseas research visits on an individual basis and reserves the right to limit expenditure. Overseas visits (excluding conference attendance) are normally restricted to one visit per Lectureship and a maximum duration of 3 months.
HEI Indirect Costs
Total HEI indirect costs must be fully justified. HEIs are permitted to claim estate and other indirect costs. These costs are calculated on the basis of TRAC methodology. Proposals from other types of institutions/organisations should leave this section blank.
HEI indirect costs are based on the number of full-time equivalent research staff working on the research and the indirect/estates charges set by an institution. Please note HEI indirect costs cannot be claimed on shared staff costs. Where staff from more than one HEI are working on the research there may be different indirect/estates charges for each one. Please list each institution on a separate line.
The applicant(s) should consult their HEI Finance Departments for the appropriate figures to include in the estate charges and other indirect cost sections.
Commercial/Other Partner Organisation Indirect Costs
Commercial/Other Partner Organisations can claim indirect costs which are the costs of resources used by the research that are shared by other activities. Please seek advice from your finance department about the appropriate cost for this section.
Total Commercial/Other Partner Organisation indirect costs must be fully justified.
- Indirect Costs
Indirect costs will be charged in proportion to the amount of research staff effort requested on the award. Commercial/Other Partner Organisations should calculate them, using their own cost rates.
- General office and basic laboratory consumables
- Premises costs
- Library services/learning resources
- Finance, personnel, public relations and departmental services
- Usage costs of major research facilities
- Central and distributed computing
- Charge out rates for shared equipment
- Cost of capital employed
NHS SUPPORT AND TREATMENT COSTS (incl. Excess Treatment Costs/Savings)
The finance section includes a section that asks researchers to provide an estimate of the patient care costs associated with the research (if applicable). An explanation of why these costs are being incurred and the basis on which the estimations have been made should be fully detailed under the relevant ‘Justification of Costs’ section.
The Selection Committee will take NHS Support and Treatment Costs into account when considering the value for money of the research. It is important that you consider these costs and discuss them with the NHS bodies or providers of NHS services involved in order to avoid any delay in commencing the research.
Please be aware that the research award does NOT include NHS Support and/or Treatment Costs. NHS Support Costs will be funded via the Clinical Research Networks. NHS Treatment Costs, including any Excess Treatment Costs/Savings, will be met by the NHS through normal patient care commissioning arrangements.
A representative of the NHS body or provider of NHS services - incurring any NHS Support and Treatment Costs - must sign off the application. The ‘Declarations and Signatures’ page is intended to ensure that the aforementioned organisation is satisfied that all NHS Support and Treatment Costs in the application are correct and is prepared to meet these costs.
Please note - as part of the work to address the issues surrounding the way in which Excess Treatment Costs are funded, new arrangements are now being implemented as part of a pilot. To underpin the new arrangements, a cost attribution tool has been created by the Health Research Authority (HRA) in partnership with charity funders and research sponsors. This tool provides a standardised approach across England, ensuring that the attribution of study activities complies with the Department of Health and Social Care Guidance on Attributing the Costs of Health and Social Care Research and Development (AcoRD). As part of their funding applications, researchers are required to complete this new tool, known as a Schedule of Events Cost Attribution Tool (SoECAT) for clinical research, which has been developed from the current HRA Schedule of Events. This tool is designed to capture the different costs associated with clinical research and attribute them accordingly. The totals for excess treatment costs and NHS support costs calculated by using the SoECAT can be entered directly into the application form.
Researchers and/ or their study teams and Research Sponsor/ Lead NHS Provider (e.g. R&D office/ Clinical Trial Unit) are supported by AcoRD Specialists in the Local CRN to verify the accuracy of the SoECAT. For more information, please see NIHR SoECAT guidance.
Under the new arrangements, sign off via the LCRN AcoRD Specialist is required to confirm the study attribution complies with the Department of Health and Social Care AcoRD guidance. This early attribution support will underpin the excess treatment cost management process by providing formal sign off, supporting the role of the research sponsor and lead R&D office or Clinical Trial Unit. Completion of the Schedule of Events Cost Attribution Tool will be required for studies eligible for the NIHR portfolio and the support this provides, which will include access to excess treatment cost payments under the new arrangements. This ETC value, alongside recruitment activity in the NIHR Central Portfolio Management System, will then be utilised to inform the payments to NHS providers.
A completed Schedule of Events Cost Attribution Tool (SoECAT) is now required to be uploaded and submitted as part of the application submission for all applications. The SoECAT must be signed off by an AcoRD Specialist even where there are no excess treatment costs.
More information can be found on the Run your study in the NHS page of the NIHR website.
You can also download Guidance for Completing the Schedule of Events Cost Attribution Tool (SoECAT)
i. NHS Support Costs
These are the additional patient care costs associated with the research, which would end once the R&D activity in question has stopped, even if the patient care service involved continues to be provided. These might cover items such as extra patient tests, extra in-patient days and extra nursing attention. Applicants should contact their local NHS R&D Department initially and, if they are unable to help
directly or if there is no local NHS R&D Department, contact their Local Clinical Research Network (LCRN) for advice on NHS Support Costs. Further details about LCRN contacts are available at NIHR Local Clinical Research Network Funding Allocations 2020/21.
ii. NHS Treatment Costs
Please read the following guidance on the funding of excess treatment costs prior to completing your application NHS - Excess treatment costs webpage
These are the patient care costs that would continue to be incurred if the patient care service in question continued to be provided after the R&D activity has stopped. In determining NHS Treatment costs, you must assume that the patient care service being assessed will continue even though there may be no plans for it to do so. Where patient care is being provided which differs from the normal, standard, treatment for that condition (either an experimental treatment or a service in a different location from where it would normally be given), the difference between the total Treatment Costs and the costs of the “usual standard care" (if any) constitutes Excess Treatment Cost/Saving, but is nonetheless part of the Treatment Cost, not an NHS Support or Research Cost. These costs should be determined in conjunction with your NHS body or provider of NHS services and their commissioners.
Please note if the patient care intervention under investigation is in addition to usual care there is no need to complete the ‘Usual Treatment Costs’ section however this will need to be justified in the relevant ‘Justification of Costs’ section. If the patient care intervention under investigation either wholly or partially replaces usual care, the ‘Usual Treatment Costs’ section must be completed.
For further information, please see:
Attributing the costs of health and social care research and development (AcoRD) on Gov.uk website
Please note: social care studies are eligible for Clinical Research Network (CRN) support, it does not just apply to NHS-based research, and researchers should speak to the CRN and include support costs where relevant. For the purposes of social care studies ‘treatment costs’ should be interpreted as ‘intervention costs’ and should be included in the proposal when needed. Further information can be found on the Excess Treatment Costs page of the NIHR website.
Summary of Costs
- NIHR programmes currently fund HEIs at a maximum of 80% of full economic cost, NHS bodies and other providers of NHS services in England at 100% and commercial/other partner organisations at 100%.
- Please note that whilst these percentages will be used to calculate the maximum grant payable, the programme reserves the right to award a grant for less than this maximum where it is considered appropriate.
Additional Supporting Information
Plagiarism in NIHR funding applications
NIHR expects all content within applications for funding to be original material of the applicant's own work, with the exception of sections that other participants are required to complete. Whilst we anticipate and expect that applicants will get help and advice from various sources when putting together an application, including on occasion input from those previously awarded funding, care must be taken to ensure this does not lead to plagiarism of either published work or other previous applications. If an allegation of plagiarism is raised against an application this will be investigated in accordance with the NIHR Academy’s policy on plagiarism, a copy of which is available on request from firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our purpose for collecting information is to communicate with you about your application and have the necessary information to evaluate you for a grant. The data we collect here is collected in the public interest. Information provided here may be subject to Freedom of Information requests.
The NIHR Academy is part of the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC), National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The contracting agent for the NIHR Academy is the Leeds Teaching Hospital Trust (LTHT). The DHSC is the Data Controller and LTHT is the Data Processor under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) EC 2016/679. DHSC NIHR respects the privacy of individuals who share their data and processes it in a manner that meets the requirements of GDPR. The DHSC Data Protection Officer can be contacted by email at: email@example.com
This notice is under constant review and will be updated and / or revised based on that review as appropriate.
Equality and Diversity Monitoring Information
International Standard Registered Clinical/soCial sTudy Number (ISRCTN)
All primary research studies need to be assigned an ISRCTN. You can view the ISRCTN website. Please note that the remit of this database has been widened to include all primary research projects, even those that are not randomised controlled trials.
There is no registration fee for NIHR funded trials.
Requirements for systematic reviews to be registered with PROSPERO
Applicants undertaking systematic reviews should note the commitment of NIHR to publication in the database. PROSPERO was developed by the NIHR’s Centre for Reviews and Dissemination (CRD), and is the first online facility to register systematic reviews for research about health and social care from all around the world. Access is completely free and open to the public. PROSPERO registration is a condition of NIHR funding for eligible systematic reviews. View the PROSPERO website for further information.
UK Biobank is a major national health resource, and a registered charity in its own right, with the aim of improving the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of a wide range of serious and life-threatening illnesses – including cancer, heart diseases, stroke, diabetes, arthritis, osteoporosis, eye disorders, depression and forms of dementia. UK Biobank recruited 500,000 people aged between 40-69 years in 2006-2010 from across the country to take part in this project. They have undergone measures, provided blood, urine and saliva samples for future analysis as well as detailed information about themselves. The health of members of this large cohort will be followed over the coming years and the participants have consented to be approached about health research.
Applicants are encouraged to consider whether Biobank may be able to provide suitable data for their study. We do not want to discourage establishment of new collections of participants and their data where this is necessary to address the research questions under consideration, our aim is to avoid applications for funding to set up Biobank-like cohorts where the use of Biobank would prevent wasteful duplication of Biobank-like activities.
NIHR Carbon Reduction Guidelines
Researchers applying for NIHR funding are asked to consider the carbon footprint of their research and take steps to reduce carbon emissions where appropriate. Advice on how to do this can be obtained from the NIHR Carbon Reducation Guidelines.
In line with the government’s transparency agenda, any contract resulting from this tender may be published in its entirety to the general public. Further information on the transparency agenda is at the Gov.uk website.
Clinical Trials Unit (CTU) support
Applicants thinking of including a clinical trial, feasibility or pilot study as part of their application, or are undertaking a research and/or training related to clinical trials are encouraged to consider working with a CTU where appropriate. Further guidance for awardees and applicants is available in the NIHR Clinical Trials Guide for Trainees. This includes guidance on how to go about approaching a suitable CTU to support your application.
MRC Complex Intervention Guidance
Where appropriate applicants are encouraged to read the MRC complex interventions guidance.
NIHR Research Design Service
The NIHR Research Design Service (RDS) supports prospective applicants to make high quality applications for research funding from the NIHR and from other national research funders. Assistance is primarily focused around refinement of research questions, research design and methodological support, complementing the advice applicants receive from supervisors and/or mentors. The RDS also assists prospective applicants to understand the scope of the NIHR’s various funding streams and to develop patient and public involvement (PPI) strategies. The RDS may be able to support applicants with small grants to work up PPI plans with, for example, patient groups.
The RDS has regional offices and links with local networks. Further information regarding support that the RDS can provide and contact information for each regional office is available via the Research Design Service webpage on the NIHR website.
INVOLVE is funded by the National Institute for Health Research, to support active public involvement in NHS, public health and social care research.
As a national advisory group, its role is to bring together expertise, insight and experience in the field of public involvement in research, with the aim of advancing it as an essential part of the process by which research is identified, prioritised, designed, conducted and disseminated.
INVOLVE can support prospective applicants and existing awardees to incorporate effective patient and public involvement into their work. Support includes; help with calculating appropriate costs for involving patients and the public, help with developing potential strategies for involvement, case studies of involvement activities including the impact they have had, and help with writing plain English summaries.
Full details of the support INVOLVE can provide and contact information is available via the INVOLVE website.
The NIHR Clinical Research Network (CRN) supports researchers and the life sciences industry in planning, setting up and delivering high quality research to the agreed timelines and study recruitment target, for the benefit of the NHS and its patients in England.
In partnership with your local R&D office, we encourage you to involve your local CRN team in discussions as early as possible when planning your study to fully benefit from the support the NIHR CRN offers as outlined in their Study Support Service. To find out more about how you can apply for this additional support to help deliver your study, please visit the NIHR Study Support Service.
Ethics / Regulatory Approvals
Guidance on the application process for ethical and other approvals can be found on the HRA website. Please note that if your study is led from England and involves the NHS in England you should apply for HRA approval.
If you are using patient information from an existing database, you should check whether the patients have given their consent for their data to be included in that database for research purposes, or if not whether the database is exempt under Section 251 of the NHS Act 2006. Where exemptions are not already in place, approval to use confidential patient information without consent must be requested from the HRA who make decisions with advice from the Confidentiality Advisory Group (CAG).
NOTE: NIHR is interested in taking advantage of the growing utility of routine data (such as HES, GP records etc.), and would like investigators, where appropriate, to ask study participants to consent to long term follow up (e.g. beyond the outcomes to be collected in the funded trial) using routinely collected data, and appropriate linkage to allow this data to be best used.
Financial support under an HEE/NIHR ICA Programme award is subject to a contract between Health Education Engalnd (HEE) and the host organisation.
Once funding for a Lectureship has been discussed and agreed, NIHR will confirm the financial arrangements with the host organisation. NIHR will provide the host organisation with a contract setting out the details of these arrangements.
The host organisation will be expected to issue the individual with an employment contract commensurate with their experience and seniority.
Government procurement transparency regulations require publication of details of all contracts made with the DHSC on their Website. Confidential information including research proposals (Plain English Summaries will be published), detailed finance information, bank details, and departmental staff names (other than the award holder’s name) will be removed from the published versions.
Freedom of Information Act
The NIHR Academy manages the HEE/NIHR ICA Programme on behalf of the DHSC. As such, the findings of researchers funded by the programme are incorporated in to the Department of Health and Social Care Freedom of Information Publication Scheme available on the Gov.uk website
Guidance and Advice
Please read these Applicant Guidance Notes carefully. If you require any further information, advice or guidance please contact:
Phone: 0113 532 8444
Annex A: ICA and SCL Application Form Submission Flow Diagram
This flow diagram shows the steps for submitting an application. The applicant starts the application and adds participant and signatory details. The participants and signatories can then log in and confirm their participation and signatories can complete the relevant sections of the form while the applicant continues entering data and completes all relevant sections of the form (step 3). The applicant then ‘Validates’ and presses the ‘Submit’ button. Once the applicant submits, signatories will receive automated emails to approve the application. However, automated ‘out of office’ replies to these emails will not be relayed to the applicant. Signatories must log in and approve the application - rejection of the application by any individual at this stage will return the application to step 3. Once approved the application is then fully submitted to NIHR for consideration.
Annex B: NIHR Remit frequently asked questions (FAQs)
The following FAQs are designed to help applicants decide whether the research they are proposing as part of a Fellowship or other research training application falls within the remit of the NIHR.
If you are proposing a programme of work as part of an application (particularly relevant for more senior awards), it may be that certain elements of the programme would be outside the remit of NIHR if considered in isolation. If this is the case it is important that you make clear in your application that the research overall fits within the remit of NIHR and also why any elements which could be considered out of remit are necessary to include. It is also important to note that any elements of the research which are considered out of remit will not be funded by NIHR should your application be successful. This includes any work involving animals or their tissue, which NIHR does not fund under any circumstances. Applications that include a programme of work where the majority of the work is out of remit but with a small study within NIHR remit added on, will not be considered.
If you have queries over whether the research you are proposing as part of a research training application falls within the NIHR remit, you are strongly advised to speak to a Senior Programme Manager for the award you are applying for before submitting an application.
Do you fund the evaluation of education and/or training schemes?
Yes. Proposed studies should be within the overall remit of the NIHR and outcomes measured should be health and/or social care related, or there should be good evidence for a link between the outcome measured and a health/ social care outcome.
Do you fund the development and/or evaluation of decision aids for patients?
The development or updating of a decision aid will be considered as part of a larger project or programme.
Do you fund the development of interventions, devices, technologies or services?
The development or adaptation of interventions can be considered as part of a larger project or programme of work. We will not fund standalone developmental studies.
Do you fund the development and/or evaluation of outcome measures, questionnaires or surveys (e.g. Patient Reported Experience/Outcome Measures)?
The development, adaptation or updating of outcome measures questionnaires or surveys can be considered as part of a larger project or programme of work.
Do you fund the development, evaluation and/or validation of models (e.g. risk factor models, health economic models etc.)?
Yes – we will consider funding the development of models where there is a case for service need or patient/public benefit. There should also be an evaluation or validation aspect to the study.
Do you fund research requiring observational/applied epidemiological methods?
We fund research according to the potential for patient/public benefit rather than according to specific methodologies. We therefore fund research using a wide range of study designs including observational and applied epidemiological methods. Any study that uses observational and applied epidemiological methods should be an evaluation of an intervention itself, or have a clear, credible and articulated trajectory to further research within NIHR remits. An applied epidemiological component can also be considered as part of a larger project or programme of work.
Do you fund research into workforce?
Yes. Proposed studies should be within the overall remit of the NIHR and should concern the impact on health and well-being, whether of patients, the public, or of the workforce itself.
Do you fund research into patient and public involvement in research?
Yes. Proposed studies would need to demonstrate the potential for practical application and make clear the potential impact on patients and/or the public.
How does NIHR define the early translational (experimental medicine) research that it is interested in funding?
NIHR is interested in funding translational research that involves investigation undertaken in humans which can show a trajectory to benefiting patients. Proposals must show a clear link to improving disease outcomes and/or improvements in health. This could include proof of concept studies in humans and phase 1 clinical trials. Research that is aimed only at furthering understanding of the underlying biology and physiology of disease, including research into disease mechanisms is not within remit.