Commonwealth Scholarships – United Kingdom Awards

Commonwealth Scholarship – United Kingdom Awards 2015 is now open. At the time of publication of this scholarship, we are not sure whether this scholarship is also open to those who are taking university degrees online and distance learning programs. We will keep you posted if we got some news about it. Interested candidates please read on for further information about this scholarship awards.

Since their inception in 1959, some 26,500 individuals have benefited from the award of Commonwealth Scholarships and Fellowships to pursue advanced academic study in other Commonwealth countries. About two thirds of awards have been tenable in the United Kingdom. The vast majority of award holders have returned to make a significant contribution to their home countries, in many cases at the highest level, making the award scheme one of the largest and most prestigious in the world.

This prospectus describes the Commonwealth Scholarships offered by the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the United Kingdom for citizens of other Commonwealth countries in 2012-2013. Separate programmes and prospectuses exist for the scholarships offered by distance learning and on a shared funding basis, and for short mid-career fellowships, both academic and professional, offered.

To apply for a Commonwealth Shared Scholarship, candidates must:

a. Be Commonwealth citizens, refugees, or British protected persons
b. Be permanently resident in a developing Commonwealth country (a full list is available on page 4)
c. Be available to commence their academic studies in the UK by the start of the UK academic year in September/October 2015
d. Hold, by October 2015, a first degree of at least upper second class Honours standard
e. Not have undertaken studies lasting one year or more in a developed country
f. Be unable themselves, or through their families, to pay to study in the UK

What Type of Award?
The Commission invites the nomination of candidates for Commonwealth Scholarships from a number of sources. These are described below.

Candidates may choose any of these ‘nominating routes’ for any category of award, subject to the exceptions noted. Candidates must, however, apply locally in the first instance. The Commission does not acceptdirect applications.

For the following categories of award:
* 12-36 months’ support towards completion of either a full-time taught or a doctoral post graduate qualification at an eligible UK institution. These awards are open to those candidates nominated either by the Vice Chancellor/Executive Head of their employing institution or by the appointed agency in their home country
* 12 months’ non-degree study in the United Kingdom on a Split-Site basis to aid the completion of a doctoral degree undertaken at a university in the candidate’s home country
* 6 months’ clinical training in medicine or dentistry (available only to candidates from developing countries). These awards are open to candidates nominated by their Vice Chancellor/ Executive Head or by the appointed agency in the home country

Nominations are invited through the following channels
* The candidate’s national Commonwealth Scholarship agency. This is the main route of application and a full list of Commonwealth Scholarship agency addresses can be obtained from the CSC website
* The Executive Head of an eligible developing country university on whose staff the applicant serves. (In the case of Bangladesh and India, nominations are made through the University Grants Commission; in Pakistan, through the Higher Education Commission; and in Sri Lanka, through the Secretary, Ministry of Higher Education)
* Selected non-governmental organisations, charitable bodies and development partnerships

Please note that candidates from developed Commonwealth countries – Australia, the Bahamas, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Cyprus, Malta, New Zealand and Singapore – can only apply for doctoral or split-site study (not Master’s study) and can only apply to study at a UK institution with whom the Commission has a joint funding agreement.

Please note that candidates from developing Commonwealth countries (i.e. all other countries) can apply to study at doctoral (including splitsite) and Master’s level at UK institutions with which the Commission has a part funding agreement.

A list of institutions that have agreed to offer joint and part funded scholarships in 2012-2013 is available at

This list indicates where an institution has agreed to offer funding to citizens of developed or developing Commonwealth countries only or, if not specified, to both. Agreement to joint and/or part funded scholarships is at the discretion of individual institutions.

Value of Awards

Each Scholarship provides:
* Student concessionary or other approved airfare to the United Kingdom and return on expiry of the Scholarship (the cost of journeys made before final award confirmation will not normally be reimbursed, nor can fares be paid for a Scholar’s dependants)

Approved tuition and examination fees
* A personal maintenance allowance at the rate of £882 per month (£1091 per month for those studying at institutions in the London Metropolitan area)
* A grant towards the expenses of preparing a thesis or dissertation, where applicable
* An initial arrival allowance, incorporating an initial clothing grant for Scholars from tropical countries
* A grant for expenses for approved travel within the United Kingdom or overseas
* A grant towards fieldwork costs for those Scholars undertaking doctoral studies for whom a case has been made for fieldwork outside the United Kingdom. This shall not normally exceed one economy class return airfare to the fieldwork location
* A paid mid-term fare to their home country for Scholars on three year doctoral awards. Scholars for whom fieldwork fares are provided to their home country shall not be entitled to a mid-term fare home, nor Scholars who have claimed (or intend to claim) spouse or child allowances for more than 12 months during their award.
* For married Scholars selected by the Commission for awards exceeding 18 months, a marriage allowance of £220 per month is payable provided that the husband and wife (or civil partners) are residing together at the same address in the United Kingdom. It is not paid when a husband or wife (or civil partner) of the Scholar is also in receipt of an award. For such married couples accompanied by their children, a child allow ance is payable at the rate of £138 per month for the first child, and £108 per month for the second and third child under the age of 16, provided they are residing with their parents. The Commission’s spouse and family allowances represent only a contribution towards the costs of family maintenance in the UK and Scholars should expect and be able to supplement these allowances to support family members who choose to come to the UK. Irrespective of the length of the award, a Scholar who is widowed, divorced or a lone parent will receive an allowance in respect of the first accompanying child and child allowances for the second and third accompanying children.

Closing Date
16th April 2015

How to Apply
All applications must be made through your host UK university. You must check with them in the first instance for specific advice on how to make an application and for their own closing date.

All Commonwealth Shared Scholarship candidates must be selected and put forward to the CSC by their host UK university, and must submit their application to the CSC using our Electronic Application System (EAS).

Candidates must apply for a Commonwealth Shared Scholarship using one of two methods, as instructed by the university:

1. Via university: Applying to the university in the first instance using the university’s own application form. If selected, candidates will then be asked to submit an application to the CSC using the EAS. Any applications made via the EAS only and not directly to the university first will not be considered.
2. EAS only: Applying to both the university and the CSC at the same time using the EAS.

For more details
Commonwealth Scholarship Commission. Please visit the CSC website at for details of these programmes. For information on Commonwealth Scholarships offered by other Commonwealth countries, please visit the Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan (CSFP) website at The secretariat of the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the United Kingdom is provided by the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU), which is responsible for all matters concerning selection and academic studies. The British Council is responsible for payments to scholars, and for arranging travel, reception and other support services for them.