Awards and Prizes

Bithell Prizes

Jethro Bithell and Alice Emily Bithell Prizes

All Colleges of the University offering degree courses incorporating a German component are eligible to enter students for the Jethro Bithell and Alice Emily Bithell Prizes. In respect of the prizes for the internal BA degree only final year students should be nominated although work completed by the nominees before the final year may be taken into consideration.

The Jethro Bithell Prize (£200) is offered for the best performance in an MA of the University of London. Any taught MA with a minimum of three content papers in German or a German component, however distributed among different papers, which in total constitutes 50% of the overall assessment for the MA will be eligible.

The Alice Emily Bithell Prize (£150) is offered for the best performance in modern literature papers at BA level. Any BA course with a minimum German component of 50% will be eligible.


Naish Lecture

Sylvia Naish Research Student Lecture

The Sylvia Naish Lectures were launched in memory of Sylvia Naish, an accomplished linguist, translator, Friend of Germanic Studies, and benefactor of the former Institute of Germanic Studies.

Each year, research students registered for higher degrees in the field of Germanic studies at Universities in the United Kingdom are invited to submit proposals for the next lecture. The event forms part of the Institute’s programme of activities, which are open to the public. The theme of the lecture should be related to the student’s topic of research; the lecture itself should appeal to an audience of non-specialists and aim to convey both the excitement and the importance of the research topic. The winning entry carries a prize of £300, plus modest travel and/or accommodation expenses as appropriate, which are covered by the Sylvia Naish Bequest. The lecture is published in abridged form in the next issue of the Newsletter, the annual magazine of the Friends of Germanic Studies.

The 2021 Sylvia Naish Lecture will be given by Laura Lux (King's College London) on Monday, 24 May 2021 (online). Her lecture is entitled 'Science and the Cinematic Machine: Harun Farocki's NICHTlöschbares Feuer and the 1968 'Technologie-Kampagne'. Attendance is free, but advance online registration is essential at Booking closes 23 May 2021. 


Robson-Scott Scholarship

William Robson-Scott Travelling Scholarship

Established in memory of Professor W.D. Robson-Scott, Honorary Director of the former Institute of Germanic Studies from 1968 to 1973, the scholarship is awarded by the Institute in the spring of each year.

The award is designed to assist research students registered for an MPhil/PhD or equivalent degree at a University in the United Kingdom to travel abroad to carry out research bearing on the languages and literatures of the German-speaking countries, of the Netherlands, or of Scandinavia. The award, currently £450, is not available for attendance or participation at conferences, and must be taken up before submission of thesis. Applications cannot be considered for journeys which will have taken place, or which will commence, before 1 July.

Method of application: Application form which should be sent by email to reach by 30 April 2021. Applicants can expect to be notified of the outcome of the competition by the beginning of June.

Application form [PDF]

The application form is available in Word format from