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The Language Centre


Pressland Fund Bursary Scheme

Pressland Fund

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)
    • have a confirmed place to continue their studies at the University of Cambridge in the next academic year

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
    • Successful completion of CULP courses (in the Language Centre) or in the Engineering Language Unit where possible
    • that you will be completing intensive (i.e. minimum 20 hours per week) language training
    • your reason for choosing this particular course

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
** Accommodation costs will only be met for the duration of the language courses

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'.

Successful applicants will be required to submit a project report by 31 October of the year in which the bursary is awarded. Reports will be considered by the Bursary Committee for an additional special award of £150. Previous successful reports can be seen here.

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
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
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
Year Candidate 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
2016 Congratulations to Maximilian N. Günther for his enthusiastic and outstanding report on Cuba after attending an intensive Advanced Spanish Course at the University of Havana. Read his winning report
2015 This year we congratulate two students, Parth Patel (Winning report) and Natasha Watts (Runner up), for their outstanding reports. Congratulations to them both!
  Parth Patel attended an intensive course at La Cooperativa Spanish School in San Pedro La Laguna in Guatemala. Read his winning report
  Natasha Watts attended an intensive Kiswahili course at the Iringa Swahili School, Tanzania, from 6th July to 28th September 2014. Read her runner-up report
2014 Congratulations to Chris Taylor who attended an intensive course in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca in Costa Rica in Aug-Sept 2014. Read his winning 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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