Commonwealth Scholarships for developing Commonwealth Country Citizens

Commonwealth Scholarships for students from developing Commonwealth countries for Master’s, PhD, and split-site (PhD) study in the UK. These scholarships are funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID).

There is a nominating agency for Commonwealth Scholarships in each Commonwealth country. In addition, universities and university bodies in a number of developing Commonwealth countries are invited to nominate candidates to the CSC.

Each year, the CSC invites each nominating agency/university/university body to forward a specific number of nominations. Each nominating agency/university/university body is responsible for its own selection process, and in most cases they will set a closing date in the months preceding the CSC’s deadline for nominations (21 December 2011).

Approximately 200-230 scholarships are awarded each year. The CSC invites around three times more nominations than scholarships available – therefore, nominated candidates are not guaranteed to get a scholarship. There are no quotas for scholarships for any individual country. Candidates nominated by national nominating agencies are in competition with those nominated by universities/university bodies, and the same standards will be applied to applications made through either channel.

Terms and conditions and eligibility

Applications are considered according to the following selection criteria:

  • Academic merit of the candidate
  • Quality of the proposal
  • Likely impact of the work on the development of the candidate’s home country

For more information, see Selection Criteria 2012 (available in early August 2011).

Courses of study

You can apply for a Commonwealth Scholarship for the following levels of study:

  • Master’s
  • PhD
  • Split-site, where the CSC supports one year’s study at a UK university as part of a PhD being undertaken in your home country

All subject areas are eligible, although the CSC’s selection criteria give priority to those applications that demonstrate strong relevance to development.

You are requested to apply for a course of study at a UK university which has agreed to offer a tuition fee contribution.


This scholarship given every year.Deadline for 2012 is 7 December,2011.

How to apply

All applications must be made through your nominating agency (or university/university body, if applicable) in your home country. You must check with them in the first instance for specific advice on how to make an application and for their own closing dates. The CSC cannot accept any applications direct from candidates.

The CSC expects all candidates being considered for a Commonwealth Scholarship to be nominated by an approved nominating agency/university/university body, and to have completed an application form using our Electronic Application System (EAS).

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