COMMONWEALTH SHARED SCHOLARSHIPS 2022
DEADLINE: 20 DECEMBER 2021
Commonwealth Shared Scholarships are offered in partnership with select UK universities.
Purpose: Funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) 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.
Intended beneficiaries: Commonwealth Shared Scholarships are for candidates from least developed and lower middle income Commonwealth countries, to undertake full-time Master’s study on selected courses at a UK university.
Each participating UK University will conduct its own recruitment process to select a specified number of candidates to be awarded Commonwealth Shared Scholarships. Universities must put forward their selected candidates to the CSC in March 2022. The CSC will then confirm that these candidates meet the eligibility criteria for this scheme. Universities will inform candidates of their results by July 2022.
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
Awards 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. You must take the necessary steps to apply for admission to your preferred universities. Many courses have strict admission deadlines and you should check admission requirements carefully when applying.
Commonwealth 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 the cost of journeys made before your award is confirmed) – arranged by the university; funded by the CSC
Approved tuition fees – funded by the CSC
Stipend (living allowance) at the rate of £1,133 per month, or £1,390 per month for those at universities in the London metropolitan area (rates quoted at 2021-2022 levels) – paid and funded by the university
Warm clothing allowance, where applicable – paid and funded by the university
Thesis grant towards the cost of preparing a thesis or dissertation, where applicable – claimed from and paid by the university; funded by the CSC
Study travel grant towards the cost of study-related travel within the UK or overseas – claimed from and paid by the university; funded by the CSC
Reimbursement of the cost of a 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
If you are widowed, divorced, or a single parent, child allowance of £485 per month for the first child, and £120 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 2021-2022 levels)
If you declare a disability, a full assessment of your needs and eligibility for additional financial support will be offered by the CSC.
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 2022
By September 2022, hold a first degree of at least upper second-class (2:1) honours standard, or a lower second-class degree (2:2) 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 at a UK university without this scholarship
Have provided all supporting documentation in the required format
How to apply
Applications for Commonwealth Shared Scholarships for the academic year 2022/2023 are now open. You must apply for your scholarship to be tenable at one of the following approved courses at a participating UK university.
View full list of approved courses
View details of all participating UK universities
You can apply for more than one course and to more than one university through the Commonwealth Shared Scholarships Scheme, but you may only accept one offer of a Shared Scholarship. Note these awards are only for Master’s courses and not for undergraduate or PhD study.
You must also secure admission to your course in addition to applying for a Shared Scholarship. Please check with your chosen university for their specific advice on when to apply, admission requirements and rules for applying.
You must make your application using the CSC’s online application system, in addition to any other application that you are required to complete by your nominating body. The CSC will not accept any applications that are not submitted via the online application system.
You are advised to complete and submit your application as soon as possible, as the online application system will be very busy in the days leading up to the application deadline.
Your application must include the following supporting documentation by the closing date to be eligible for consideration:
Proof that you are a citizen or have refugee status of an eligible Commonwealth country: a copy of your valid passport (or national ID card) showing your photograph, date of birth, and country of citizenship uploaded to the online application system
Full transcripts detailing all your higher education qualifications including to-date transcripts for any qualifications you are currently studying (with certified translations if not in English) – uploaded to the online application system
The CSC will not accept supporting documentation submitted outside the online application system.
You must also provide the names and contact details three referees who will be contacted in advance of the placement stage, should your application be under consideration for a scholarship.
Please note that the CSC does not charge candidates to apply for any of its scholarships or fellowships through its online application system, and it does not charge organisations to nominate candidates.
Completing application form
Applications must be made using the CSC’s online application system, details of which can be found under the ‘How to apply’ section.
In the application form, prospective candidates will be asked to:
List all undergraduate and postgraduate university qualifications obtained (if applicable)
List up to 10 publications and prizes (if applicable)
Provide details of your employment history and explain how each job is relevant to the programme you wish to undertake in the UK (up to 100 words per employment)
Provide a statement on the relevance of your previous work experience to the proposed Scholarship (up to 300 words)
List names and positions of three referees who are qualified to comment on both your capacity to benefit from your proposed Scholarship in the UK and your ability to deliver development impact afterwards. One of your referees must be your current employer.
Provide a Development Impact statement in 4 parts. In the first part you should explain how your proposed Scholarship relates to:
a. development issues at the global, national, and local level
b. development issues connected to your chosen CSC development theme and the wider sector.
(up to 200 words)
In the second part you should explain how you intend to apply your new skills once your Scholarship ends (up to 100 words).
In the third part you should outline what you expect will change in development terms following your Scholarship, including: a. the outcomes that you aim to achieve b. the timeframe for their implementation c. who the beneficiaries will be (up to 250 words)
In the fourth part you should write about how the impact of your work could be best measured (up to 100 words).
The application form will also ask you to:
Confirm what your award objectives are and how each of them will be met by the Scholarship programme
Confirm what your objectives are for the next two years and how each of them will be met by the Scholarship programme
Confirm what your objectives are in the longer term and how each of them will be met by the Scholarship programme
Provide a personal statement to summarise the ways in which your personal background has encouraged you to want to make an impact in your home country. You should indicate areas in which you have already contributed, such as having overcome any personal or community barriers to your chosen career (up to 500 words).
Summarise the ways in which you have engaged in voluntary activities and the opportunities you have had to demonstrate leadership (up to 500 words).
Provide a scan of your passport or national identity card
Choosing a university/course
You may find the following resources useful when researching your choices of institution and course of study in the UK:
Study UK – British Council website, with guidance for international students and a course and institution search
Steps to Postgraduate Study – a guide to asking the right questions about taught postgraduate study in the UK
Postgrad.com – information for postgraduate students, with a course search
Prospects – information on postgraduate study in the UK
Research Excellent Framework 2014 results – results of a system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions
UCAS Postgraduate – guidance on how to find and apply for a postgraduate course
Unistats – the official website for comparing UK higher education course data
UKCISA (UK Council for International Student Affairs) – advice for international students on choosing a course of study