Category: Universities

PhD Studentship award at University of York

Call for application for PhD studentship

STIRF has awarded a 3-year PhD studentship under the supervision of Professor Amanda J. Mason-Jones at the Department of Global Health, Department of Health Sciences, Faculty of Science, University of York, UK.


“HPV vaccination for preventing cervical and other HPV-associated cancers: Comparing the knowledge and understanding of factors influencing initiation and completion of the UK and Ugandian school-based vaccination programme”.

Suitable applicants should apply at the following site:

PhD studentship application


STIRF invites applicants for PhD Studentship

The Sexually Transmitted Infection Research Foundation (STIRF) is a local charity which supports research relating to all aspects of sexual health including clinical practice, public health, microbiology, health economics and behavioural science.

STIRF wishes to fund a PhD Studentship up to a maximum of £60 000 over 3-4 years and is inviting applications with a closing date of July 31, 2018.

Applications would only be considered from universities in the following UK health regions:

West Midlands, Trent, Yorkshire, Northern and North West regions

For details of how to apply go to:

Applications for part funding of PhD in sexual health and related topics


Risks for pelvic inflammatory disease in students

In the latest issue of the Sexually Transmitted Infections, Phillip Hay and colleagues in the UK report on a prospective study of female students attending 11 universities and 9 further education colleges in London.

At the start, the students were asked to fill a questionnaire and provide a self taken vaginal sample for infection screening. After 12 months, they were assessed for pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), a condition that can lead to infertility and other complications.

PID was found in 1.6% of the particpants. Unsurprisingly the strongest predictor of PID was the presence of Chlamydia trachomatis at the first visit (relative risk (RR) 5.7).

However, adjusting for this, the authors reported that significant predictors of PID were ≥2 sexual partners (RR 4.0) or a new sexual partner during follow-up (RR 2.8), and age <20 years (RR 3.3). Somewhat surprisingly recruitment from a further education college rather than a university also increased the relative risk of PID 2.6 fold, perhaps reflecting different health protection behaviors (eg condom use) between the two groups.

The study concluded that in addition to known risk factors such as multiple or new partners in the last 12 months and younger age, attending a further education college rather than a university were risk factors for PID.

They recommended that sexual health education and screening programs could be targeted at these high-risk groups.

Invitation to apply for research funds

We have entered a new round of invitation to apply for research funds. We are particularly interested in providing initial funding in projects that may allow young researchers to obtain preliminary results as a prelude to acquire further funds from larger funding bodies.

We invite applications from researchers in the East and West Midland, the North East and North West Regions on projects relating to sexually transmitted diseases and HIV. All projects will be initially screened by the Scientific Committee of STIRF and those considered suitable will be sent for peer review by experts in the field. We encourage applications for

The following fields of research will be considerd in relation to STIs and HIV

  • Epidemiology of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases
  • Health care delivery including views of clients
  • Issues relating to deprived or marginalised communities.
  • Pathophysiology of diseases and syndromes
  • Inter-relationship between diseases
  • Treatment modalities
  • Complications of treatment and co-morbidities

Applications should not exceed £50,000 in the first year. Depending on satisfactory reports a further £25,000 may be available for the second year. Joint funding with other grant giving bodies will be considered.

Further information and guidance on how to apply can be found on

How to Apply for Research funds


Universities under attack: a warning by former president of the British Academy

Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford and former President of the British Academy, Sir Keith Thomas and Professor Michael Wood who teaches English at Princeton spoke at the Universities Under Attack a conference sposored by the London Review on November 26, 2011 at King’s College London. In his talk Keith Thomas pointed out that ‘confronted by the philistinism on the scale of the Browne report and the goverment’s White Paper’ we can look to neither the present government, committed as it is to the university system as a market, not the labour in power or in opposition, nor Hefce, or the research councils, or the law courts, the vice-chancelors, or even the academic profession as a whole to come up with a solution.

Thomas then goes on to suggest some alternative ways forward on tuition fees and the Resarch Excellence Framework (REF) formerly the RAE, and called on the universities to collecively and publicy repudiate the ‘repugnant phiosophy underlying the Browne report and the White Paper by reaffirming what they stand for the correct reletinhip tp students on ghe one hand and the governmemt on the other.’

Wood gave the view from the other side of the pond that those who think that the ‘supposedly unpractical side of higher education (such as, say, the teaching of Sanscrit) are a luxury for which the state has no responsibility are right in a quite wretched way. They won’t have to pay for them. But their children will, and so will ours – and not with money.’