I N T R O D U C T I O N
Since their inception in 1959, some 26,000 individuals have benefited from the award of Commonwealth Scholarships and Fellowships to pursue advanced academic study in other Commonwealth countries. About two thirds of awards have been tenable in the United Kingdom. The vast majority of award holders have returned to make a significant contribution to their home countries, in many cases at the highest level, making the award scheme one of the largest and most prestigious in the world.
This prospectus describes the Commonwealth Scholarships offered by the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the United Kingdom for citizens of other Commonwealth countries in 2011-2012. Separate programmes and prospectuses exist for the scholarships offered by distance learning and on a shared funding basis, and for short mid-career fellowships, both academic and professional, offered by the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission. Please visit the CSC website at www.cscuk.org.uk for details of these programmes. For information on Commonwealth Scholarships offered by other Commonwealth countries, please visit the Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan (CSFP) website at www.csfp-online.org
The secretariat of the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the United Kingdom is provided by the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU), which is responsible for all matters concerning selection and academic studies. The British Council is responsible for payments to scholars, and for arranging travel, reception and other support services for them.
E L I G I B I L I T Y
To apply for the awards covered in this prospectus, candidates should:
Be Commonwealth citizens, refugees, or British protected persons
Be permanently resident in a Commonwealth country other than the United Kingdom, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man
Be available to commence their academic studies in the United Kingdom by the start of the UK academic year in September/October 2011
Hold, by October 2011, a first degree of upper second class Honours standard (or above); or a second class degree and a relevant postgraduate qualification, which will normally be a Master’s degree AND
In the fields of medicine and dentistry, have qualified as a doctor or dentist between 1 October 2001 and 30 September 2006
The Commission wishes to promote equal opportunity, gender equity and cultural exchange. Applications are welcomed from the many different races and origins that comprise the Commonwealth’s rich variety of cultures, traditions and institutions.
W H A T T Y P E S O F AWA R D A R E A V A I L A B L E A N D H O W C A N I A P P L Y ?
The Commission invites the nomination of candidates for Common – wealth Scholarships from a number of sources. These are described below. Candidates may choose any of these ‘nominating routes’ for any category of award, subject to the exceptions noted. Candidates must, however, apply locally in the first instance. The Commission does not accept direct applications.
For the following categories of award…
12-36 months’ support towards completion of either a full-time taught or a doctoral post graduate qualification at an eligible UK institution. These awards are open to those candidates nominated either by the Vice Chancellor/Executive Head of their employing institution or by the appointed agency in their home country
12 months’ non-degree study in the United Kingdom on a Split-Site basis to aid the completion of a doctoral degree undertaken at a university in the candidate’s home country
6 months’ clinical training in medicine or dentistry (available only to candidates from developing countries). These awards are open to candidates nominated by their Vice Chancellor/ Executive Head or by the appointed agency in the home country
… nominations are invited through the following channels
The candidate’s national Commonwealth Scholarship agency. This is the main route of application and a full list of Commonwealth Scholarship agency addresses can be obtained from the CSC website
The Executive Head of an eligible developing country university on whose staff the applicant serves. (In the case of Bangladesh and India, nominations are made through the University Grants Commission; in Pakistan, through the Higher Education Commission; and in Sri Lanka, through the Secretary, Ministry of Higher Education)
Selected non-governmental organisations, charitable bodies and development partnerships
Please note that candidates from developed Commonwealth countries – Australia, the Bahamas, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Cyprus, Malta, New Zealand and Singapore – can only apply for doctoral or split-site study (not Master’s study) and can only apply to study at a UK institution with whom the Commission has a joint funding agreement. The availability and number of awards to citizens from developed Commonwealth countries will be dependent on any funding approved in 2011. Please note that candidates from developing Commonwealth countries (i.e. all other countries) can apply to study at doctoral (including splitsite) and Master’s level at UK institutions with which the Commission has a part funding agreement. A list of institutions that have agreed to offer joint and part funded scholarships in 2010-2011 is available at www.cscuk.org.uk/apply/ universities.asp. This list indicates where an institution has agreed to offer funding to citizens of developed or developing Commonwealth countries only or, if not specified, to both. The Commission anticipates that these institutions will enter into similar agreements in 2011-2012.
In addition, the Commission offers:
Support for study towards an undergraduate degree in the United Kingdom for citizens of the Falkland Islands, Maldives, St Helena and the Seychelles. Nomination is through the national Common – wealth Scholarship agency
A full list of universities and other organisations invited to nominate can be found on the CSC website. Those wishing to be considered for inclusion in the list of universities and other organisations invited should contact the Executive Secretary of the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission (c/o The Association of Commonwealth Universities, Woburn House, 20-24 Tavistock Square, London WC1H 9HF).
Applications must be submitted using the Commission’s Electronic Application System (EAS), which is available on our website by following the appropriate links at www.cscuk.org.uk/apply/postgraduate_study.asp. All applications must be submitted to and endorsed by one of the approved nominating bodies detailed previously. Please note that all Scholarship candidates must complete their application using the EAS by 7 December 2010.
Awards made by the Commission are subject to the ongoing endorse – ment of the nominating body. The Commission regrets that it is unable to accept nominations from other organisations or applications directly from individuals, and that these cannot be acknowledged.
T E N U R E A N D P L A C E M E N T
Awards are tenable at any approved UK university or higher education institution with whom the Commission has a joint and/or part funding agreement (i.e. those on the list mentioned previously) for a specific programme of study or research and are not restricted to particular subject areas. Awards are to obtain one degree and funding will not be extended to enable candidates to complete an additional or higher qualification than that for which the selection was made. Scholarships are made in respect of full time study only and no other courses of study may be undertaken at the same time.
It is important that candidates make clear at the point of application the qualification for which they are applying, especially if they wish to be considered for a Scholarship intended to lead to a doctoral degree. This will enable the Commission to consider the application in the correct category. The final decision on institution of study will be made by the Comm – ission, which reserves the right to overrule any preferences expressed by the candidate at the application stage. The Commission will consider the suitability of the course and its value for money when considering any overrule. Applicants are, however, expected to identify up to three institutions and courses (or supervisors for research degree applicants) that they consider most appropriate on the application form, and explain the reasons for their selection. This is important since the Commission will not change the institution or course for which the candidate has been provisionally selected after the Commission’s selection committee has met, unless exceptional information becomes available that could not have been foreseen at the time of application. Many courses have strict admission deadlines (particularly at the Universities of Oxford, Cambridge and London) and candidates must take the necessary steps to secure admission to their preferred institutions in advance of any Scholarship application to the Commission. Candidates in business, management, economics and other related fields should note that a number of univ – ersity depart ments will require a candidate to demonstrate a valid GMAT or GRE score before an offer of admission can be made. Candidates should check admission requirements carefully at the time of application.
Applications for 12 months’ study in the United Kingdom on a Split-Site basis must be made in the context of a departmental/institutional link with a UK university already in operation or currently under negotiation and must include a letter of invitation from the proposed UK host dep – artment. Candidates will have the option of one full 12 month period of study or two six month periods with a period not greater than 12 months elapsing between each term. Those candidates who have not yet comm – enced their home PhD at the time of application will be eligible to spend a maximum of six months in the UK in the first year of their studies.
Please note that where the Commission selects a candidate who will have already started their PhD study by the time of their selection, their Scholarship will commence at the start of the next academic year (i.e. in September/October following the selection) and will end after the Scholar has been registered for their PhD for 36 months, in line with the Commission’s policy on PhD length.
T H E S E L E C T I O N P R O C E S S
Nominations for 2011 Commonwealth Scholarships tenable in the United Kingdom are required to arrive with the Commission no later than 21 December 2010 in electronic format. All nominating authorities will have organised their own competitions in advance of this, with earlier deadlines and local rules for application, that you are strongly advised to check.
In order to ensure a competitive process in the United Kingdom, the Commission normally seeks approximately three times more nomin – ations than there are Scholarships available. Following this deadline, each nomination is first considered by a member of the Commission’s panel of advisers with expertise in the subject area concerned and then by the Commission’s selection committee in competition with other applicants.
Applications are considered according to the following selection criteria:
Academic merit of the candidate
The quality of the proposal
For those candidates from developed Commonwealth countries (see list on previous page), the potential of the candidate to lead in the pursuit of global excellence in research and knowledge
For those candidates from developing Commonwealth countries (i.e. all others), the likely impact of the work on the development of the candidate’s home country
V A L U E O F AWA R D S
Each Scholarship provides:
Student concessionary or other approved airfare to the United Kingdom and return on expiry of the Scholarship (the cost of jour – neys made before final award confirmation will not normally be reimbursed, nor can fares be paid for a Scholar’s dependants)
Approved tuition and examination fees
A personal maintenance allowance at the rate of £844 per month (£1044 per month for those studying at institutions in the London Metropolitan area)
A grant towards the expenses of preparing a thesis or dissertation, where applicable
An initial arrival allowance, incorporating an initial clothing grant for Scholars from tropical countries
A grant for expenses for approved travel within the United Kingdom or overseas
A grant towards fieldwork costs for those Scholars undertaking doctoral studies for whom a case has been made for fieldwork outside the United Kingdom. This shall not normally exceed one economy class return airfare to the fieldwork location
A paid mid-term fare to their home country for Scholars on three year doctoral awards. Scholars for whom fieldwork fares are provided to their home country shall not be entitled to a mid-term fare home, nor Scholars who have claimed (or intend to claim) spouse or child allowances for more than 12 months during their award.
For married Scholars selected by the Commission for awards exceed – ing 18 months, a marriage allowance of £220 per month is payable provided that the husband and wife (or civil partners) are residing together at the same address in the United Kingdom. It is not paid when a husband or wife (or civil partner) of the Scholar is also in receipt of an award. For such married couples accompanied by their children, a child allow ance is payable at the rate of £138 per month for the first child, and £108 per month for the second and third child under the age of 16, provided they are residing with their parents. The Commission’s spouse and family allowances represent only a contribution towards the costs of family maintenance in the UK and Scholars should expect and be able to supplement these allow – ances to support family members who choose to come to the UK. Irrespective of the length of the award, a Scholar who is widowed, divorced or a lone parent will receive an allowance in respect of the first accompanying child and child allowances for the second and third accompanying children.
More information can be found about the terms and conditions of the Scholarships in the Handbook for Commonwealth Scholars and Fellows, available on the CSC website.
G E N E R A L C O N D I T I O N S O F AWA R D
Applicants should be aware of the following general conditions:
The Commission reserves the right to publish the names of candidates provisionally selected for awards on the CSC website. By applying for an award, the candidate gives consent for such publication in the event that his/her application is successful
Candidates will be notified of their provisional selection by the Commission: that is, selection for award subject to the Commission agreeing the terms of admission to the university/institution
Candidates will be given a formal Notification of Award – the offer of a Scholarship – as soon as terms of admission to the university/ institution have been agreed
Formal confirmation of the award will be issued when all conditions of the Notification of Award have been met
Scholars will be expected to take up the award from the date stated by the Commission in its Notification of Award
A Commonwealth Scholarship covers fees, fares and personal maintenance. Similar awards may not be held concurrently
Scholars will be expected to reside in the United Kingdom through – out their award, and to seek prior approval for any proposed visits abroad
Scholars may not undertake paid employment during their award without prior consent
The Commission will require a medical report before an award can be confirmed
Scholars will be required to sign an undertaking to return to their home country as soon as their award comes to an end
The Commission will only consider requests to extend leave to remain in the UK post-award for those wishing to move from Master’s to PhD study. Strict conditions will apply
The Commission will therefore be unable to provide any letter of support which might be required by an award holder to stay on to work in the UK
A D D I T I O N A L R E Q U I R E M E N T S
The Commission may require candidates to undertake the academic IELTS English language test as a condition of eligibility. It is the candidate’s responsibility to check with their nominating agency whether this requirement applies to them and to note that an IELTS test will only be considered valid if taken after 1 October 2010 and before 6 March 2011. As a further condition of award, the Commission, or a host institution in the United Kingdom, may require a candidate to take particular English tests and/or training in English.
Applicants in medicine and dentistry whose programme requires them to practise clinically, or to work in a laboratory department reporting on samples from patients, must state how the skills acquired by the training programme will be put into practice post-award. Such applicants can be considered only if they are eligible for registration with the General Medical Council or the General Dental Council. Information about current conditions for registration can be obtained from the GMC and GDC websites: www.gmc-uk.org and www.gdc-uk.org. Please note that the GMC currently requires applicants for their registration to obtain an overall score of 7.0 in the academic IELTS test, with minimum scores of 7.0 in speaking and 6.0 in listening, reading and writing.
Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the United Kingdom
c/o The Association of Commonwealth Universities
Woburn House, 20-24 Tavistock Square, London WC1H 9HF
I N T R O D U C T I O N