The Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan (CSFP) is one of the largest and most prestigious international scholarship schemes in the world. Since it was established in 1959, 35,000 individuals have held a Commonwealth Scholarship or Fellowship – 27,000 of them were funded by the UK government, through the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the United Kingdom (CSC).
The CSC awards over 800 scholarships and fellowships for postgraduate study and professional development to Commonwealth citizens each year. The CSC’s Secretariat is provided by the Association of Commonwealth Universities, based in London; overseas services are provided by the British Council.
Commonwealth Shared Scholarships are for candidates from least developed and lower-middle-income Commonwealth countries, for full-time Master’s study on selected courses, jointly supported by UK universities.
Funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), Commonwealth Shared Scholarships enable talented and motivated individuals to gain the knowledge and skills required for sustainable development, and are aimed at those who could not otherwise afford to study in the UK. These scholarships are offered under six themes:
- Science and technology for development
- Strengthening health systems and capacity
- Promoting global prosperity
- Strengthening global peace, security, and governance
- Strengthening resilience and response to crises
- Access, inclusion, and opportunity
Shared Scholarships are jointly funded by the CSC and participating UK universities. Each scholarship provides:
- Approved airfare from your home country to the UK and return at the end of your award (the CSC will not reimburse the cost of fares for dependants, nor usually the cost of journeys made before your award is finally confirmed) – arranged by the university; funded by the CSC
- Approved tuition and examination fees – funded by the CSC
- Stipend (living allowance) at the rate of £1,065 per month, or £1,306 per month for those studying at universities in the London metropolitan area (rates quoted at 2017-2018 levels) – paid and funded by the university
- Warm clothing allowance, where applicable – paid and funded by the university
- Study travel grant towards the costs of study-related travel within the UK or overseas – claimed from and paid by the university; funded by the CSC
- Excess baggage allowance, up to an annual approved limit, when returning home – claimed from and paid by the university; funded by the CSC
- Reimbursement of the cost of mandatory tuberculosis (TB) test, where required for a visa application (receipts must be supplied) – claimed from and paid by the university; funded by the CSC
- Additional allowances for spouses or other dependants are not usually available.
- A Commonwealth Shared Scholarship covers fees, fares, and personal maintenance. Other scholarships, awards, or bursaries that cover the same costs may not be held concurrently.
To apply for these scholarships, you must:
- Be a citizen of or have been granted refugee status by an eligible Commonwealth country, or be a British Protected Person
- Be permanently resident in an eligible Commonwealth country
- Be available to start your academic studies in the UK by the start of the UK academic year in September/October 2018
- By October 2018, hold a first degree of at least upper second class (2:1) standard, or a second class degree and a relevant postgraduate qualification (usually a Master’s degree)
- Not have studied or worked for one (academic) year or more in a high-income country
- Be unable to afford to study in the UK without this scholarship
- The CSC aims to identify talented individuals who have the potential to make a change. They are committed to a policy of equal opportunity and non-discrimination and encourage applications from a diverse range of candidates. For further information on the support available to candidates with a disability, see the CSC disability support statement.
- All applications must be made through your chosen university. You must check with your chosen university for their specific advice, admission requirements, and rules for applying. Some universities may require you to complete their own admissions application form as well, which may have a separate closing date. You must take the necessary steps to secure admission to your course at the same time as applying for a Shared Scholarship. View a full list of university contact details on the official website.
- You must make your application using the CSC’s Electronic Application System (EAS), in addition to any other application that you are required to complete by your chosen university. View full information on how to use the EAS, including detailed guides on the official website.
- You can apply for more than one course and/or to more than one university, but you may only accept one offer of a Shared Scholarship.
- All applications must be submitted by 23.59 (BST) on 17 April 2018 at the latest. Each university has its own closing date for applications, and most are before this date. Any applications submitted after a university closing date will not be considered; please ensure you apply via the EAS before your university closing date. View a full list of university closing dates on the official website.
- The CSC will not accept any applications that are not submitted via the EAS to your UK university, or any applications directly from individuals; such applications will not be acknowledged.
- The EAS is now open for Shared Scholarship applications.
Application Deadline: April 17, 2018Application ClosedOfficial link