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School of the Humanities and Social Sciences


Referees are kindly requested to submit a reference letter, to assist the University in making a full assessment of each application.

What is the reference for?

The aim of SHARE (Social Science & Humanities Access to Research Experience) is to encourage and facilitate participation in postgraduate studies in the field of humanities and social sciences by talented students from backgrounds that are currently underrepresented, or who have not had the same educational advantages to date as some of their peers, or who would not otherwise have the means to access such research experience.

What should I include in my reference?

Please ensure that the applicant's name is clearly visible in your reference letter. 

We ask referees to comment on the academic ability and general suitability of the applicant for postgraduate research, and provide any other information they may consider relevant (for example any relevant circumstances concerning the eligibility criteria).  

If possible, please include the following in your letter: 

  • the name of the applicant, so that we can attach your reference to the correct application; 

  • the duration and extent of your familiarity with the applicant; 

  • the specific course the applicant is on; 

  • their general aptitude and academic potential; 

  • their academic achievements (including prizes, publications etc); 

  • their relevant skills and experience (for example academic writing, work and/or research experience, laboratory skills, etc); 

  • their suitability for postgraduate study/research; and 

  • their relevant personal characteristics (for example independence, innovation, or determination). 

How do I submit my reference?

If you have been nominated as a referee, you will receive an email containing instructions on how to submit the reference and the deadline for submission. 

Please send your reference by email to as a PDF attachment by midday on Friday 8 March 2024 with the candidate’s name in the subject line. 

To be considered valid, you should send your reference from your professional/institutional email address on headed paper. Where If this is not possible (for example because you have retired), please explain the circumstances in your letter.