UK Department for International Development (DFID) is now accepting applications for its 2020/2021 Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarships from least developed and lower middle income Commonwealth countries. The deadline for submission of applications for the Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarships is 4th May, 2020.
The Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarships are offered for citizens of certain developing Commonwealth countries. The purpose of the scholarships are to contribute to development needs of Commonwealth countries by providing training for skilled and qualified professionals in key development areas.
These scholarships are funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), with the aim of contributing to the UK’s international development aims and wider overseas interests, supporting excellence in UK higher education, and sustaining the principles of the Commonwealth.
These scholarships are offered under six themes:
- Science and technology for development
- Strengthening health systems and capacity
- Promoting global prosperity
- Strengthening global peace, security and governance
- Strengthening resilience and response to crises
- Access, inclusion and opportunity
Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarships Benefits.
- Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarships provide full tuition fees and all other compulsory costs of studying a UK Master’s course by distance learning. This includes the full cost of any residential components of a course.
Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarships Eligibility.
To be eligible for a Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarship, candidates should:
- 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 a developing Commonwealth country
- Hold a first degree of at least upper second class (2:1) standard. A lower qualification and sufficient relevant experience may be considered in certain cases.
- Be unable to afford to study the programme without this scholarship.
The CSC aims to identify talented individuals who have the potential to make change. We are committed to a policy of equal opportunity and non-discrimination, and encourage applications from a diverse range of candidates. For further information on the support available to candidates with a disability, see the CSC disability support statement.
The CSC is committed to administering and managing its scholarships and fellowships in a fair and transparent manner. For further information, see the CSC anti-fraud policy and the DFID guidance on reporting fraud.
Eligible Commonwealth countries
- The Gambia
- Papua New Guinea
- Sierra Leone
- Solomon Islands
- Sri Lanka
Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarships Selection Process.
Each participating UK University will conduct its own recruitment process to select a specified number of candidates for Distance Learning Scholarships. Universities must put forward their selected candidates to the CSC by 22 May 2020. The CSC will then confirm that these candidates meet the eligibility criteria for this scheme. Universities will inform candidates of their results by July 2020.
Selection criteria include:
- Academic merit of the candidate
- Potential impact of the work on the development of the candidate’s home country
How to Apply for Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarships.
You must apply to study an eligible Master’s course at a UK university that is participating in the Distance Learning scheme. See list of participating universities and eligible courses.
You must also secure admission to your course in addition to applying for a Distance Learning Scholarship. You must 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 chosen university. The CSC will not accept any applications that are not submitted via the online application system.
You can apply for more than one course and/or to more than one university, but you may only accept one offer of a Distance Learning Scholarship.
All applications must be submitted by 16.00 (GMT) on 13 April 2020 at the latest.
Your application must include the following supporting documentation by 16:00 (GMT) on 04 May 2020 in order for your application to be eligible for consideration:
- At least one reference– submitted directly by the referee to the online application system (referees will be sent an email request)
- An offer letter to start their chosen course of study in the 2020-2021 academic year – uploaded to the online application system
- Full transcripts detailing all your higher education qualifications (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.
Supporting documentation uploaded to the online application system must be uploaded as files that are no more than 5 MB in size and must be in one of the following formats: PDF, .doc, .docx, .odt, .jpg, .jpeg. Files submitted in any other format (including Zip files and PDF Portfolios) will NOT be accepted.
Applicants are responsible for seeking permission from their referees in advance of submitting their application; for ensuring that their referees are available to complete the reference by the deadline and have received the reference request email from the online application system.