The Health Education England (HEE) / National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Integrated Clinical Academic (ICA) Programme provides research training awards for health and care professionals, excluding doctors and dentists, who wish to develop careers that combine research and research leadership with continued practice and professional development in one of the ICA Eligible professions.
The programme offers five awards at pre-doctoral, doctoral and post-doctoral levels, which together support the development of a career pathway for practitioner academics. All awards require the support of an English health or social care provider and a university, which form a partnership to further the career aspirations of the awardee.
The programme also offers short duration Bridging Awards, which support ICA eligible professionals to build on their previous academic training and develop a proposal for a doctoral or post-doctoral award.
Doctoral and post-doctoral award holders can also access funded career mentorship through the ICA Programme’s bespoke Mentorship Scheme.
Call: 0113 532 8401
Email: Academyfirstname.lastname@example.org, and detail which programme you are enquiring about in the subject area.
Internships are short duration awards for individuals with little or no research experience. They deliver a range of taught and academically supervised components that engage and expose the award holder to a clinical academic research environment. Interns develop the practical skills required to undertake a research project or to develop a project idea, supported by an expert supervisor.
The award covers salary costs for the days undertaking the Internship away from clinical practice.
ICA Internships are managed by local HEE teams. Further details of the scheme and contact details for your local team are available from the HEE-NIHR Clinical Academic Career web pages.
The Clinical Doctoral Research Fellowship (CDRF) scheme funds registered healthcare professionals to undertake a PhD by research and, concurrently, to undertake further professional development and clinical practice.
The CDRF is a three year award (up to six years part time), approximately 80% of which you will spend working academically over the course of the fellowship. The remaining 20% of fellowship hours will be spent devoted to clinical practice and professional development.
We require that you have a clinical and academic host, and a contract of employment with one of these for the hours and duration of the fellowship.
Our personal research training award offers funding to cover your salary costs, PhD tuition fees, the costs of an appropriate research project, and the costs of tailored clinical and academic training programmes.
Available from the CDRF Applicant Guidance Notes:
Please read these guidance notes in full before you start an application or contact the NIHR Academy.
Funding competitions open annually in March each year and full scheme details are available in career development funding opportunities.
The HEE/NIHR ICA Lectureships schemes support post-doctoral ICA eligible professionals to develop the specific skill sets required to achieve credibility as an independent researcher, whilst continuing professional practice and development.
Clinical Lectureships - support those in the early stages of their post-doctoral career who wish to establish themselves as independent clinical academic researchers over the course of the award.
Senior Clinical Lectureships - support those established as independent clinical researchers but are not yet recognised as leaders in their field.
Award holders split their Lectureship time between their role in one of the ICA eligible professions and research activities at a ratio of:
Available from the ICA CL and SCL Applicant Guidance Notes:
Funding competitions open annually in March each year.
The ICA Bridging schemes support non-medical clinical academics to build on their previous academic training and to develop proposals for a pre or post-doctoral award, and take the next step in their clinical academic career.
ICA Bridging awards are managed by local HEE teams. Further details of the scheme and contact details for your local team are available from the HEE Clinical Academic Career web pages.
The ICA Mentorship Scheme offers individuals holding doctoral or post-doctoral ICA awards the opportunity for free one-to-one clinical academic career mentorship by an appropriate mentor.
The scheme is positively received, and recognised as providing a crucial layer of support to our aspirant clinical academic awardees. As a result, and following agreements between HEE, NIHR and Versus Arthritis (a merger of Arthritis Care and Arthritis Research UK) mentorship through the scheme is also available to approved NIHR Fellowship awardees and nominated Versus Arthritis fellows.
The ICA Mentorship Scheme is administered by Birmingham Health Partners, an overarching partnership organisation that brings together a collaborative network of healthcare and education providers in order to create an ideal environment to stimulate and support the growth of research active clinicians.
Mentoring is uniquely valuable to aspiring non-medical clinical academics and is afforded by the scheme through formalised and funded contact time with the most qualified individuals available.
Mentorship goes beyond the guidance afforded by a supervisor and acts to support the awardee through the challenges encountered during the development of a clinical academic career.
The scheme’s mentors are recognised senior healthcare researchers and professional leaders. As such, they bring essential and unique sector knowledge, as well as an understanding of the leadership challenges that face clinical academic researchers from the non-medical healthcare professions.
The scheme administers:
All ICA CDRF, CL and SCL awardees, and ICA eligible professionals in receipt of Doctoral and Post-Doctoral NIHR Fellowship Programme awards are welcome to access mentorship through the scheme. Interested individuals should submit a preliminary matching request to our providers using this expression of interest form for mentees.
Individuals, including current ICA SCLs, interested in joining the scheme as a mentor can register their interest by submitting this expression of interest form for mentors.
Prospective mentors or mentees requiring further information should contact:
The PCAF prepares eligible healthcare professionals for doctoral-level clinical research.
Selection committee members for ICA PCAF.
A report from the chair of the PCAF selection committee for round 3 of the scheme.
Details of what support the Research Design Service can offer.
Information for NIHR public contributors on new Standard Application Form (SAF) changes
Please find a copy of the Chairs' report for round 5, including their observations, and recommendations.