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Pressland Fund Bursary Scheme

Pressland Fund


  • Please note that, successful applications for a bursary to undertake a project in summer 2023 cannot be carried over to summer 2024, in the event of travel to undertake the course not being possible. 

Are you a student of sciences (including maths, engineering and medicine)?

Are you intending to continue in the University next year?

Are you already learning a language and would you like to build on that learning by taking a short course abroad?

If so, the AJ Pressland bursary could help you achieve this.

The application period is from early December to early February annually.

Please go to our work and study abroad Moodle for further information on choosing a short language course abroad.


Applications must be received by the advertised deadline in order to be considered. If you would like to apply but, for any reason, cannot meet the deadline, please contact us as soon as possible in advance of the deadline as it may be possible to seek a limited extension in exceptional circumstances.

In order to be eligible for a bursary, applicants must:

    • be current students of the University of Cambridge;  visiting students are not eligible
    • be studying within one of the Schools of the Physical Sciences, the Biological Sciences, Technology or Clinical Medicine (see for details)
    • either: have a confirmed place to continue their studies at the University of Cambridge in the next academic year (students who are currently intermitting, on a year abroad or applying to convert their MPhil to a PhD are all counted as having a confirmed place for this purpose)
    • or: have an application pending for a new programme of study in the next academic year NB - you must be returning to study within one of the Schools mentioned above

NB - you must be returning to study within one of the Schools mentioned above

Students taking the Clinical Medicine Tripos, who are temporarily studying in another Faculty or Department as provided for by the regulations governing the Clinical Medicine Tripos, are eligible to apply and should enter their 'home' course name and Faculty / Department.

Bursaries are intended for the benefit of the applicant only and are not transferable. Bursaries are for use during the long vacation in the year the award is made only and are not transferable: if successful applicants are not able to complete the course in the specified year, the bursary must be repaid in full and a new application submitted in the following year.

Eligible projects must:

    • enable the applicant to study a foreign language overseas
    • take place over the long vacation at the end of the current academic year
    • last at least one week and not more than four weeks
    • be supported by a recommendation from your Tutor or Supervisor

Applicants should demonstrate that the following criteria are met:

    • successful prior language learning (in the language needed where possible)
    • demonstrable benefit to your studies, research and/or future career aspirations
    • where possible, successful completion of CULP course or courses (in the Language Centre) or in the Centre for Languages and Inter-Communication in the Department of Engineering; if you are studying your first CULP or CLIC course at the time of application, please note this on your application form. Please note that it is NOT essential to have completed a CULP or CLIC course in order to apply for a bursary
    • that you will be completing intensive (i.e. minimum 18 hours per week) language training
    • your reason for choosing this particular course
    • a strong case for your choice of destination. For example, if wishing to take a course in Latin America rather than Spain, the reasoning should be provided and/or comparative costs of the project including course fees, accommodation and flights should be considered. Consideration should also be given to the added carbon footprint of long-haul travel.

Please note that previous successful applicants are unlikely to be supported for a second time.

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Applications can be made for:

    • course fees
    • travel costs *
    • accommodation **

* travel costs will only be met where language study is the main or only reason for your trip, and only covers travel to and from your destination country
** accommodation costs will only be met for the duration of the language courses

Applications should be submitted via the online system, which can be accessed here:

Applications open at 00:01 on Monday 4 December 2023 and must be submitted before 17:00 on Monday 5 February 2024.

If your ability to pay for your chosen course, travel costs and accommodation is dependent on the outcome of your application then please supply cost information to the best of your ability.

Bursaries will be paid to successful applicants in two instalments: one on acceptance of the award, the other on submission of a project report. Only project reports received by 31 October of the year in which the bursary is awarded will be considered by the Bursary Committee for an additional special award of £150. Previous successful reports can be seen here.

Further information is available from the Pressland Fund Administrator.

For additional advice on finding suitable language courses overseas, you may wish to make an appointment for one of the Language Centre Advising Sessions or our workshop: 'Choosing a short language course abroad'.

Winning Reports

All students who are awarded a Bursary from the A.J. Pressland Fund are required to produce a report following attendance at their courses abroad. Each year, the Bursary Committee select what they consider to be the best report and make an additional award of £150 to the winner.

Year Candidate Report
2021/ 2022 This year we congratulate three students, Jesse Anthony was the overall winner, with two runners up: Molly Patterson and Kenza Tazi.
Congratulations to the three of them!
  Jesse Anthony took a two-week intensive Spanish course at Camino Barcelona Spanish Language School followed by five weeks working in Hospital Universitari General de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain. Read his winning report
  Molly Patterson completed a two-week super intensive course at France Langue Paris Notre Dame school in Paris, France. Read her runner-up report
  Kenza Tazi undertook a ten-week Online Korean language course at Seoul National University in Seoul, South Korea. Read her runner-up report
2020/ 2021 This year we congratulate four students, Jonathon Turnbull was the overall winner, with three runners up: Alice Millington, Carolyn Smith and Sayeed Ahmed.
Congratulations to the four of them!
  Jonathon Turnbull took a year Ukrainian Language Course at Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, Ukraine. The course started as a group face-to-face course, followed by a one-to-one face-to-face course and ending as an online course. Read his winning report
  Alice Millington virtually attended the eight-week intensive Summer Program for Nepali language at the Rangjung Yeshe Institute (RYI) in Kathmandu, Nepal. Read her runner-up report
  Carolyn Smith undertook an intensive three-week Spanish language course at FU International Academy, in Puerto de la Cruz, Tenerife. Read her runner-up report
  Sayeed Ahmed took an intensive Arabic course at Al Baher Language Centre in Amman, Jordan. Read his runner-up report
2019 This year we congratulate three students, Ana-Maria Marcu (Winning report), Julia Yan (Runner up) and Christina Okafor (Runner up) for their outstanding reports.
Congratulations to the three of them!
  Ana-Maria Marcu took a four-weeks Chinese Learning programme at the Chinese Language Institute in Guilin, China. Read her winning report
  Julia Yan attended a two-weeks French language course in Aix-en-Provence, France. Read her runner-up report
  Christina Okafor attended a four-weeks French course at Institut Linguistique Adenet (ILA) in Montpellier, France. Read her runner-up report
Year Candidate Report
2018 This year we congratulate two students, Adam Searle (Winning report) and Sarah Fox (Runner up) for their outstanding reports. Congratulations to both of them!
  Adam Searle completed an 80-hour advanced Spanish course at Universitat de Barcelona in the mornings and also took a 30-hour basic Catalan course in the evenings which was offered by the Catalan government and was absolutely free! Read his winning report
  Sarah Fox completed 2 weeks of a 20-hour intensive course in Elefun Spanish School in Medellín in Columbia and attended a week of individual language coaching at Elefun Spanish School. Read her winning report
2017 This year we congratulate three students, Jane Grant (Winning report), Abigail Magrill (Runner up) and Raghul Parthipan (Runner up) for their outstanding reports. Congratulations to the three of them!
  Jane Grant attended an intensive course at France Langue Notre Dame School in Paris. Read her winning report
  Abigail Magrill attended an intensive Hebrew course at Ulpan Or in Jerusalem. Read her runner-up report
  Raghul Parthipan attended an intensive Chinese course at Peking University in Beijing. Read his runner-up report

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Application Guidance

The following form can be downloaded here:


The following form can be downloaded here:

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Choosing a Short Language Course Abroad

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