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The agency-nominated Master’s programme is one of three Master’s programmes offered by the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission. Funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO), Commonwealth Master’s 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.

The Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the UK (CSC) provides the UK government scholarship scheme led by international development objectives. By attracting individuals with outstanding talent and identifiable potential from all backgrounds and supporting them to become leaders and innovators on returning to their home countries, the CSC’s work combines sustainable development with the UK national interest and provides opportunities for international partnerships and collaboration.


Applications will be considered according to the following selection criteria:

  • Academic merit of the candidate

  • Quality of the plan of study

  • Potential impact on the development of the candidate’s home country

Scholarships are tenable at any approved UK university or higher education institution with which the CSC has a part funding agreement for a specific programme of study. Scholarships are to obtain one degree; funding will not be extended to enable candidates to complete a qualification in addition to or higher than that for which the selection was made. Scholarships are made in respect of full-time study only and no other course of study may be undertaken at the same time. The CSC funds one-year taught Master’s programmes only and does not fund MBAs.

Each scholarship provides:

  • Approved airfare from your home country to the UK and return at the end of your award

  • Approved tuition fees

  • Stipend at the rate of £1,236 per month, or £1,516 per month for those at universities in the London metropolitan area (rates quoted at current levels)

  • Warm clothing allowance, where applicable

  • Thesis grant towards the cost of preparing a thesis or dissertation, where applicable

  • Study travel grant towards the cost of study-related travel within the UK or overseas

  • If you have children and are widowed, divorced, or a single parent, child allowance of £529 per month for the first child, and £131 per month for the second and third child under the age of 16, if you are accompanied by your children and they are living with you at the same address in the UK (rates quoted at current levels)

  • If you share that you have a disability, a full assessment of your needs and eligibility for additional financial support will be offered by the CSC


Applications must be made using the CSC’s online application system. Candidates must apply to one of the below nominating agencies as well as to the CSC. Nominating agencies will then put forward candidates to the CSC. The CSC does not accept direct applications for these scholarships.

  1. National Nominating Agencies

Ms Senza Bhembe

Under Secretary - Human Resource Development

Office 211, Second Floor, Finance Building

Department of Human Resource Development

Ministry of Public Service

Tel: +268 2404 3521/5


  1. NGO Nominating Agencies:

    1. The Knowledge Institute (through HALI): this is ONLY for students who have previously volunteered with TKI or completed one of our programs

    2. Cannon Collins Education

    3. Commonwealth Disabled Peoples Forum: this application route is for disabled candidates only. Candidates must also be able to demonstrate how their studies will lead to an improvement in the position of disabled people in their country.

    4. Forum for African Women Educationalists: this is for female candidates only


To apply for these scholarships, candidates 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 academic studies in the UK by the start of the UK academic year in September 2024

  • By September 2024, hold a first degree of at least upper second class (2:1) honours standard, or a second class degree (2:2) and a relevant postgraduate qualification (usually a Master’s degree)*. The CSC would not normally fund a second UK Master’s degree. If you are applying for a second UK Master’s degree, you will need to provide justification as to why you wish to undertake this study

  • Be unable to afford to study in the UK without this scholarship

  • Have provided all supporting documentation in the required format

The CSC does not require any candidates to take an IELTS (English language) test. You should note, however, that, as a further condition of your scholarship, you may be required by your university to provide evidence of a particular level of English language proficiency.


Applications must be made using the CSC’s online application system.

In the application form, candidates will be asked to:

  • List all undergraduate and postgraduate university qualifications obtained

  • List up to 10 publications and prizes

  • Provide details of employment history and explain how each job is relevant to the programme to be undertaken in the UK

  • Provide a statement on the relevance of previous work experience to the proposed Scholarship

  • List names and positions of three referees who are qualified to comment on both capacity to benefit from the proposed Scholarship in the UK and the candidate’s ability to deliver development impact afterwards. One of your referees must be a current employer (if applicable)

  • Provide a Development Impact statement in 4 parts:

    • In the first past, development issues at the global, national, and local level, and development issues connected to your chosen CSC development theme and the wider sector.

    • In the second part you should explain how you intend to apply your new skills once your Scholarship ends

    • In the third part you should outline what you expect will change in development terms following your Scholarship

    • In the fourth part you should write about how the impact of your work could be best measured

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