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Scholarships, awards and prizes

The Royal College of Ophthalmologists offers a range of scholarships, awards and prizes every year to undergraduates, researchers and clinicians. Interested? Find out more here.

Each year, the RCOphth offers a generous number of scholarships, travel awards and clinical/research fellowships in partnership with other organisations. These cover a wide variety of areas, from specialist research, to help with funding electives for undergraduates.

We ask all our reward recipients to submit a written report within three months of completing their fellowship/research, using this report format guidance. The report is circulated to the RCOphth Education Committee and the awarding body.

Open Awards

Glaucoma UK and The Royal College of Ophthalmologists Research Award 2023 (£100,000)

• The closing date for applications is 11 April 2023.
• A postgraduate research award to facilitate research into glaucoma.
• Up to £100,000.
The charity Glaucoma UK and The Royal College of Ophthalmologists are working in partnership to run this prestigious award which has previously funded a range of research topics from prospective stem cell treatments to the use of big data in patient risk stratification.

This is a postgraduate research award up to the value of £100,000 to facilitate research into glaucoma. Applicants may be trainees seeking support for a fellowship or senior researchers seeking a grant for a project. Applications are invited from departments and individuals based in the UK and Ireland, but the research studies may be carried out elsewhere.

Glaucoma UK encourages patient orientated research and research directly concerned with the improvement of the management of glaucoma. This award is funded by Glaucoma UK. The application process is administered by The Royal College of Ophthalmologists so any queries should be directed to [email protected] .

The application form can be found here.


Upcoming Awards

An award grant is a great way to enhance continued professional development and contribute to research, service development and audit for the benefit of eye care services in the UK.

2023 Travel and Research Awards will be coming soon. Please watch out for announcements in EyeMail and on College social media platforms.

Please direct any travel Awards & Scholarship enquiries to [email protected].

The Ulverscroft David Owen Award 2023

The Royal College of Ophthalmologists is delighted to announce the continuation of the Ulverscroft David Owen Awards.
The Ulverscroft Foundation gives financial help to Universities which carry out research into the causes of eye diseases; funds eye clinics, hospitals, schools, libraries and other organisations which help visually impaired people.
Since 2007 it has supported the Ulverscroft Vision Research Group (UVRG) at the Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health UCL, funding PhD studentships, clinical research training fellowships and academic posts in key disciplines including ophthalmic statistics, to build a hub for academic paediatric ophthalmology and visual sciences.
In memory of David Owen who chaired the Foundation during this period and shaped its relationship with the UVRG, the Foundation is offering in partnership with The Royal College of Ophthalmologists, an annual prize of £500 in recognition of high-quality research in paediatric ophthalmology and visual sciences to promote academic paediatric ophthalmology. The award recognises the team undertaking the research and is accepted on the team’s behalf by the first author.
2022 Dr Sohaib Riyaz Rufai and colleagues at The University of Leicester Ulverscroft Eye Unit
2021 Lucinda Teoh and the British Childhood Visual Impairment and Blindness Study Interest Group
2020  Amy Gerrish and her co-authors from Birmingham Women’s and Children’s NHS Foundation Trust
2019 Lola Solebo and her colleagues including the British Congenital Cataract Interest Group
The 2023 award will be presented at the RCOphth Congress, Monday 22 to Thursday 25 May 2023, in Birmingham. A representative of the awarded team will present a talk to explain the impact of the research and how it has contributed to change.

Application criteria:

Timetable for 2023 award:
  • Applications open: 17 October 2022
  • Applications close: 6 January 2023
  • Announcement of winner: 4 February 2023
  • Award made at Congress 2023 Awards Ceremony in Birmingham
Judging panel:
Subgroup of the Academic Sub-committee and the Paediatric Sub-committee
Applications to be submitted to Laurelle Bygraves email:  [email protected] 

Awards & Prizes Reports

Read the reports from previous successful applicants and hear what they achieved with their awards and prizes.

Read more