Find out about the different types of scholarships available to study in the UK and how to increase your chances of qualifying for them.
- Benefits of studying in the UK
- Conditions for obtaining a scholarship in the United Kingdom
- UK Government Scholarships
- UK Universities Scholarships
- International scholarships to study in the UK
- Undergraduate Scholarships in UK
- Best Tips for Getting a Scholarship in the UK
- IELTS for UK
- Final thoughts
Attending a prestigious university and obtaining a diploma recognized throughout the world is the dream of many people. There is no doubt that this initiative is a good investment that will allow you to ensure a bright future, but it is also a heavy investment, especially if you have to go abroad to study.
Studying in a foreign country is relatively easy, provided of course that everything is well planned in advance. As an international student, there are several financing options available to you to help cover costs.
In this article, find out how to get a scholarship to study in the United Kingdom, one of the most sought-after destinations in the world.
Advantage of studying in the UK
For several centuries, the United Kingdom has remained the benchmark for university education, attracting thousands of students from all corners of the globe. From its internationally renowned universities to its innovative teaching approach and innovative-minded teachers, the United Kingdom offers everything you need to unlock your potential and succeed.
Apart from being a great place to study, the UK is also the ideal place to prepare for a career in your chosen field. Job placement, internship and volunteering services help international students like you learn new skills, make new contacts and apply what they’ve learned in a real-world environment. After successfully completing your training in the UK, you have the option to apply to stay and work, or look for work, for up to two years via the Graduate Route .
Finally, did you know that one in four leaders in the world studied in the UK? Therefore, if you are inherently ambitious, a course in the United Kingdom will greatly help you achieve your dreams, no matter how big they may be!
Conditions for obtaining a scholarship in the United Kingdom
International students have the opportunity to apply for various types of financial aid to finance their studies in the United Kingdom. Some scholarships offer partial funding (for example, they cover a certain percentage of tuition fees), while others cover full expenses, including tuition, living expenses, and airfare.
It is worth remembering here that each scholarship has its own eligibility criteria. That said, here is a non-exhaustive list of common requirements you may have to meet:
- Academic Merit
Certainly, the main condition for awarding a scholarship is proof that the student has always had good academic results, however other types of scholarships also take into account the grades obtained over the years of previous studies.
- Eligible professional experience
To apply for some scholarships, you must have valid work experience, including full-time or part-time employment, volunteer work, or a paid or unpaid internship. In most cases, you will be asked to present your experiences gained during different periods of employment in order to meet the requirements. If you make it to the interview stage, you may be asked to talk in more detail about the positions you mentioned or held when applying for the scholarship.
- Extra-curricular activities
Extracurricular activities, such as participation in sporting activities or various associations, help to know oneself better as an individual. Additionally, these activities provide the perfect opportunity to learn new skills and expand knowledge in different areas. So it’s only natural that many scholarship programs ask for this information, because it helps to get an idea of the type of person you are. Use this to your advantage!
- Future plans/long term goals
Scholarship application forms often ask for details of future plans, usually in the form of an essay. This allows you to show the candidate’s enthusiasm for the chosen field of study, to explain why they deserve the scholarship and to prove that they have set clear objectives for their future.
- English language proficiency requirements
To obtain a scholarship, you will likely need to meet the English language proficiency requirements set by the organization awarding the scholarship. To do this, you usually need to take an international English language test, such asIELTS . In addition to eliminating unqualified candidates, this language test proves that you are ready to begin studying in an English-speaking environment.
UK Government Scholarship
International students who wish to study in the UK have the opportunity to apply for different scholarship programs offered by the UK government. The three main scholarship programs are presented below.
Chevening offers full, fully-funded scholarships (including airfare, accommodation and tuition fees), to study for a master’s degree at a UK university. These scholarships are generally awarded to individuals with proven leadership potential and strong academic background. As well as benefiting from training in the UK, this is also a unique opportunity for the next generation of leaders, influencers and decision-makers to develop lasting positive relationships with the UK. Since its inception in 1983, Chevening has enabled more than 50,000 eminent executives to live and study in the UK, helping them to thrive professionally and academically. If you would like to know more, please visit the official website of bourses Chevening .
GREAT GREAT Scholarships
Jointly funded by the UK Government’s GREAT Britain campaign and the British Council, as well as several UK higher education institutions, the GREAT Scholarships program aims to significantly increase the opportunities available to students from selected countries: Bangladesh, Brunei, China, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Turkey and Vietnam.
In 2021, the program offered 309 scholarships in partnership with 43 higher education institutions across the UK. Recipients benefit from a minimum of £10,000 towards their tuition fees to study a wide range of postgraduate courses over a year. To find out more about GREAT scholarships, visit the GREAT website Study UK .
Bourses du Commonwealth
If you are a citizen or permanent resident of a Commonwealth Member State and cannot afford to study in the UK without financial support, you can apply for Commonwealth Scholarships. This programme, designed to recruit exceptional talent to UK universities, offers a wide choice of scholarships:
- Commonwealth Doctoral Scholarships (for Least Developed Countries and Fragile States)
- Commonwealth Split-site Scholarships (for low- and middle-income countries)
- Commonwealth Masters Scholarships
- Commonwealth Shared Scholarships
- Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarships
- Commonwealth Doctoral Scholarships (for high-income countries)
- Commonwealth Medical Scholarships
- Commonwealth Professional Scholarships
The majority of Commonwealth scholarships are fully funded. So, in addition to covering your tuition fees, you will also benefit from reimbursement of your plane ticket to and from the United Kingdom, and your living expenses for the duration of your stay. To find out how to apply for one of these scholarships, please visit the application page CSC apply page .
The UK government also offers hundreds of scholarships and other financial aid to international students like you. To find out more about the assistance available, visit the website of the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) .
UK Universities Scholarships
Many higher education establishments in the UK have their own scholarship schemes. These scholarships aim not only to attract exceptional talent, but also to provide unique opportunities to students who do not have the financial means to study in the UK.
Universities and colleges in the UK provide scholarships to international students based on different criteria. Here is a general classification to help you better understand:
|Who are the beneficiaries ?
|Scholarships, merit and excellence scholarships
|People who have had an excellent academic career
|Individuals with exceptional abilities in an extracurricular activity (e.g. sports, music, theater, dance, etc.)
|People who wish to take a particular course or train in a particular subject (e.g. law, architecture, biology)
|The “Equal Opportunities” scholarship or scholarships for refugees
|People who have had to flee their country of origin and have found refuge or sought asylum in the United Kingdom.
|Scholarships for people with disabilities
|People with a disability, long-term mental illness, learning difficulties or other special problems.
If you are interested in studying at a particular college or university in the UK, visit the institution’s website to find out more about the financial aid they offer. For example, the official website of theUniversity of Cambridge , presents a list of the different financial aid options available to students: financial aid for international undergraduate students; financial aid for postgraduate students; scholarships awarded by the Cambridge Commonwealth, European & International Trust; Gates Cambridge Fellowships; and financial aid reserved for students with disabilities.
International Scholarships to Study in UK
Some scholarships are exclusively reserved for prospective students from certain countries, while others are more accessible to international students. Here are some international scholarships that will help you get a study grant in the UK:
Wales International Scholarships for Overseas Students
International students wishing to enroll at university in Wales can apply for one of four scholarship programs offered by Global Wales. Currently, only students from North America, India, Vietnam and EU countries can apply.
To find out more, pleaseclick here .
British Council scholarships for women in science, technology and engineering (STEM)
Are you a woman with a degree or doctorate in a STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) specialty and passionate about your discipline? This might be the opportunity you’ve been waiting for! This scholarship program is open to women from the Americas, South Asia, Southeast Asia, Egypt, Turkey and Ukraine.
To find out more, please click here .
AS Hornby Foundation Scholarship
If you are an experienced English teacher looking to upskill, Hornby scholarships can help you obtain a master’s degree in TESOL at the University of Warwick in the UK. Additionally, the scholarship covers all costs of staying in the UK, including a monthly stipend to cover accommodation and living costs, tuition fees, return air tickets, visa fees and language test. The Hornby Trust only accepts applications from countries on the DAC List. This includes more than 130 countries.
To find out more, please click here .
The Scottish Saltire Stock Exchanges
This scholarship program is coordinated by the Scottish Government in collaboration with Scottish universities and colleges. It’s the perfect solution for anyone looking to study a postgraduate master’s program at one of Scotland’s higher education institutions. The program offers up to 50 scholarships, worth £8,000 each, to cover the tuition fees of one year of study completed full-time. It is accessible to students from Canada, China (including Hong Kong), India, Japan, Pakistan and the United States.
To find out more, please click here .
Undergraduate Scholarships in UK
Certainly, scholarships for undergraduates in the UK are fewer than those for postgraduates. However, this does not mean that they are difficult to obtain; you just need to know where to look.
If you want to study in the UK and need financial help to do so, your best chance is to look into one of the two categories of scholarships below: those offered by higher education institutions British and those offered by third parties, such as the government or an organization, in your country of origin. To identify scholarships offered by British organizations, start by consulting the official website ofUniversities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) UK.
Best Tips for Getting a Scholarship in the UK
Getting a scholarship is not rocket science, however, you must be willing to put in the time and effort. Follow the following tips to increase your chances of getting a scholarship in the UK.
- Do your research
It is unlikely that you will find all the information you need about UK scholarships in one source. So do enough research to identify all the financing options you can benefit from as an international student. It is advisable to do extensive research online: check the website of your nearest British Council, the websites of organizations in your home country that offer scholarships and the websites of universities and colleges. higher education in the United Kingdom. Cast a wide net in your quest for funding to study abroad.
- Carefully study the eligibility criteria
Before you decide to apply, it is important that you carefully study the eligibility criteria offered by each scholarship in order to confirm that you are compatible with the profile sought. Before you decide to apply, it is important that you carefully review the eligibility criteria of each scholarship to ensure that you meet the profile sought.
- Adapt your application
Typically, no two scholarship applications are the same – you will have to answer different questions and different requirements each time. Naturally, you will want to avoid copying and pasting information at all costs. Instead, make a real effort to tailor each of your scholarship applications so that it fully meets the requirements set by the awarding body. Be honest about your reasons for wanting to take a specific course at a particular institution. Of course, it will take you a lot of time, but no one ever said that searching for scholarships was an easy task!
- Meet deadlines
Being a foreign student inevitably involves meeting a certain number of deadlines. Whether applying for scholarships, the language level test or applying for a visa, make sure you respect the deadlines. Keep in mind that just forgetting to meet a deadline can put an end to your dream of studying in the UK. The key is to be organized.
- Ask for help
Consider having your scholarship application reviewed by another person before submitting it. This could be a friend, sibling, or former guardian – anyone competent enough to review the application and give an objective opinion should do. If you don’t have anyone to help you, go to social media and contact current or former scholarship recipients at the universities you’re applying to. You’d be surprised how many of them would be happy to help you!
IELTS for UK
For scholarship, university or visa applications, you may be required to prove your ability to speak English by taking an online English language test (SELT). THE IELTS for UKVI Academic test is recommended if you wish to support your visa application to study in the UK. As well as being approved by higher education institutions in the UK, it is also the test of choice for organizations providing scholarships to international students.
When you register for IELTS for UKVI with the British Council, you will receive comprehensive support to prepare for the exam. This includes free access to GEL IELTS Prep , our brand new IELTS preparation pack for UKVI.
Living and studying in the UK is an exciting project that will require you to invest a considerable amount of money. So, if you are hesitant to get started, remember that this enriching experience will certainly improve your employability and offer you unique opportunities in the future. Training in the UK is excellent value for money, especially considering that average costs there are lower compared to countries such as the USA and Australia.
Landing a scholarship, whether full or not, should give you the confidence to embark on this life-changing adventure. Remember, you will never know if you can get a scholarship if you don’t give it a try, so go for it. Good luck !