ScARF Student Bursaries

It is important for aspiring researchers to be able to see where they and their research fit in the wider archaeological picture. Conferences and events are often a great way to meet people doing similar or complementary work but can often be expensive for students to attend. As part of our commitment to fostering new research, ScARF has a number of bursaries available each year that are designed to help students and ECR’s with the costs of attending workshops and conferences.

We can help fund attendance at events where they are either directly relevant to an aspect of Scottish archaeological research, or the student should be presenting some aspect of their research into Scottish archaeology at a broader themed conference.

In return for ScARF covering the conference fee/stipend towards travel, bursary recipients are usually expected to write a short report on their experience of the conference. The full series of ScARF supported student reports can be found here.

To apply, please send an email with details of the conference you would like to attend, along with a short supporting statement explaining why it would benefit your studies and how it relates to Scottish archaeological research questions. We may also ask for a short letter written by a referee to support your application.

Latest ScARF bursaries

2024 Conferences

We are happy to offer bursaries to cover registration, travel and accommodation costs for conferences taking place this year in Scotland, including the upcoming Scottish Student’s Archaeology Society Conference (SSASC) in Glasgow this February.

If you’d like to attend SSASC, or another conference, and need help to cover the costs, please get in touch with us!

SIRFA Symposium, Orkney

As part of our dedication to supporting students and Early Career Researchers in Scottish Archaeology, we were happy to offer 10 bursaries for the SIRFA Symposium in Orkney. The 10 recipients were offered travel and accommodation fees for the event, as well as the opportunity to undertake the crucial role of documenting the discussion sessions and feeding their overall findings back to the 130 delegates at the end of each day.

Their detailed notes, recordings and summaries will be utilised in the final stages of the SIRFA project, and will allow for a deeper understanding of the key archaeological research questions and gaps identified in the history of Scotland’s islands.

9 people stand together in front of a church hall building
Our ECR bursary recipients at the 2023 SIRFA Symposium in Kirkwall, Orkney © ScARF

COVID-19 bursaries:

Our ScARF student bursaries are normally only available to help travel and attendance at conferences or workshops. However, in light of COVID-19 and that there will unlikely be many conferences and networking events taking place for the foreseeable future, we are keen to support Student/ECR research into Scottish archaeology in other ways.

We are therefore pleased to offer a small number of bursaries to help support student and ECR research activities in the coming months.

We are initially asking for applications for support where COVID-19 has affected student and ECR research plans and there may be additional costs which cannot be covered in another way. For example, we could help fund extra costs for access to research material digital resources, or maybe cover costs where new software or online training is required. Are there online conferences where you need to pay fees or membership costs to attend? Please get in touch with us to discuss your application and to see if your project would be suitable. The main criteria that your research being undertaken should be into some aspect of Scottish archaeology. We will consider retrospective applications – i.e. where the cost has already been incurred – but we will require receipts/proof of the additional expense. The maximum that can be applied for is £200.

To apply please send us an email with a short summary of your research, how COVID-19 has affected it and a clear breakdown of the costs involved (c. 300 words), along with a short letter written by a referee to support your application. 

Please sign up to our e-newsletter to keep in touch and be alerted when new bursaries are available.

Previous bursaries awarded:

  • Theoretical Archaeology Group (TAG44), Norwich 2023
  • Computer Applications in Archaeology UK (CAA), Edinburgh 2023
  • Edinburgh, Lothians and Borders Archaeology Conference, Edinburgh 2023
  • Tayside and Fife Archaeology Conference, Dundee 2023
  • Scottish Student’s Archaeology Society Conference, Aberdeen 2023
  • Theoretical Archaeology Group (TAG43), Edinburgh 2022
  • Association of Environmental Archaeologists, Glasgow 2022
  • 19th Viking Congress, 2022
  • Society of Medieval Archaeologists‘ Student colloquium, Exeter 2019
  • Scotland’s Island Research Framework for Archaeology (SIRFA) Symposium, Shetland 20th – 23rd September 2019
  • Perth and Kinross Archaeological Research Framework (PKARF) ‘Priorities in Progress’ Conference, 30th August 2019
  • PAGES Landcover 6k Workshop: “Land-use and land-cover for Climate Modelling” Hemmenhofen, Germany, 28th-30th January 2019
  • Scotland’s Island Research Framework for Archaeology (SIRFA) Symposium, Western Isles 7th – 11th January 2019
  • Association of Environmental Archaeologists Conference 2017
  • 7th Developing International Geoarchaeology conference, University of Newcastle, Newcastle, 4th -7th September 2017
  • Rural settlement: relating buildings, landscape, and people in the European Iron Age conference at the University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, June 19th to 21st 2017
  • Europa 2016: Dynamics of Art, design and Vision in Iron Age EuropeEdinburgh
  • Nordic Research Network conference 2016 ‘Bridges Between: Norse and Insular Worlds’Glasgow
  • 8th International Symposium on 14C & Archaeology, Edinburgh
  • The 19th Iron Age Research Student Symposium (IARSS), Leicester
  • Archaeomalacology Working Group Meeting at AEA2016Orkney
  • Association of Environmental Archaeologists Conference 2016, Kirkwall, Orkney
  • Archaeology of Argyll symposium, Kilmartin. November 2015
  • Cramond Roman Fort: 60 Years of Excavation and Research conference, Edinburgh. October 2015 (notes can be viewed here).






“As part of our commitment to fostering new research, ScARF has a number of bursaries available each year that are designed to help students and ECR’s with the costs of attending workshops and conferences”

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