2020 Commonwealth PhD Scholarships for High Income Countries

Deadline: July 20, 2020.

Commonwealth PhD Scholarships are for candidates from high income Commonwealth countries, for full-time doctoral study at a UK university.

These scholarships are funded by the UK Department for Education in conjunction with UK universities to support world class research and to contribute to UK higher education and research to help sustain international recognition of the UK higher education system and for the benefit of wider society. The CSC does not offer scholarships to candidates from high income Commonwealth countries who have already started their PhD study in the UK.


To apply for these fellowships, you must:

  • Be a citizen of or have been granted refugee status by an eligible Commonwealth country
  • Show evidence that you are permanently resident in an eligible Commonwealth country. You must have lived in an eligible Commonwealth country for a continuous period of five years within the last ten years. If the CSC is unable to determine this from your application, you will be contacted to provide further evidence.
  • Be available to start your academic studies in the UK between January/February 2021 (to be agreed by the CSC)
  • Hold a first degree of at least upper second class (2:1) honours standard, or a second-class degree and a relevant postgraduate qualification (usually a Master’s degree) by the time of submitting your scholarship application
  • Not be registered for a PhD, or an MPhil leading to a PhD, at a UK university before January 2021
  • Not have commenced and be currently registered for a PhD, or an MPhil leading to a PhD, in your home country or elsewhere
  • Hold an unconditional offer from your chosen university/universities listed on your CSC online application, at the point of being notified that you have been provisionally selected for an award by the CSC*
  • References from at least 2 individuals
  • A supporting statement from a proposed supervisor at one or more of the UK universities
  • Provided all supporting documentation in the required format


Anguilla, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Cayman Islands, Cyprus, Falkland Islands,
Gibraltar, Malta, New Zealand, Seychelles, St Kitts and Nevis, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands


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 dependents, nor usually the cost of journeys made before your award is finally confirmed)
• Approved tuition fees
• Stipend (living allowance) at the rate of £1,110 per month, or £1,362 per month for those at universities in the London metropolitan area (rates quoted at 2019-2020 levels)
• Thesis grant towards the cost of preparing a thesis or dissertation, where applicable
• Warm clothing allowance, where applicable
• Study travel grant towards the cost of study-related travel within the UK or overseas
• Provision towards the cost of fieldwork undertaken overseas (usually the cost of one economy class return airfare to your fieldwork location), where approved
• Paid mid-term visit (airfare) to your home country (unless you have claimed (or intend to claim) spouse and/or child allowances during your scholarship, or have received a return airfare to your home country for fieldwork


You must make your application directly to the CSC using the CSC’s online application system. The CSC will not accept any applications that are not submitted via the online application system. You are not required to apply via a nominating body for these scholarships.

Only one application per applicant for these scholarships will be accepted.

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.

Supporting documentation: Your application must include the following supporting documentation by 17:00 (BST) on 10 August 2020

  • Proof that you are a citizen 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 listed on your online application form (with certified translations if not in English). All transcripts must be up to date at the time of submitting your application, including any transcripts to date for qualifications for which you are currently reading – uploaded to the online application system
  • References from at least two individuals – submitted directly by the referee to the online application system (referees will be sent an email request).
  • A supporting statement from a proposed supervisor at one or more of the UK universities named on your application form – submitted directly by your supervisor to the online application system (supervisors will be sent an email request).

OFFICIAL LINK: http://cscuk.dfid.gov.uk/apply/phd-scholarships-high-income-countries/

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