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Commonwealth PhD Scholarships (high income countries)

About the award

Level: PhD
Course: Any PhD
Country: Anguilla, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, British Virgin Islands, Brunei, Canada, Cayman Islands, Cyprus, Gibraltar, Malta, New Zealand, St. Kitts and Nevis, The Falkland Islands, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands
Value: Full tuition fee and living stipend.
No. of awards: Variable
Deadline: July 20th for 2020-21 entry

More information

Commonwealth scholarships logo

Queen Mary is proud to have hosted Commonwealth scholars for many years. 

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

Co-funded by the UK Department for Education (DfE) and QMUL, Commonwealth PhD Scholarships support excellence in UK higher education and sustain the principles of the Commonwealth.


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 for a PhD at Queen Mary University of London. Note, it normally takes 4-6 weeks to recieve a PhD offer after applying. You should ask your supervisor to help speed up the process due to the very tight deadline with this scholarship. 
  • References from at least 2 individuals
  • A supporting statement from a proposed supervisor
  • Provided all supporting documentation in the required format

*When applying for this scholarship you should ensure that your programme has a Janaury 2021 entry option. Some programmes at Queen Mary do not have January entry options. 

Eligible Commonwealth countries

British Virgin Islands
Brunei Darussalam
Cayman Islands
Falkland Islands
New Zealand
St Kitts and Nevis
Trinidad and Tobago
Turks and Caicos Islands

Terms and conditions
Full eligibility criteria and general conditions of award is included in the Commonwealth PhD Scholarships (for high income countries) 2020 terms and conditions.

Please read all sections of the terms and conditions before applying.

How to apply

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.

Application deadline: Your application must be submitted by 17:00 (BST) on 20 July 2020 at the latest.

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).

The CSC will not accept supporting documentation submitted outside the online application system.

You can view a read-only paper of the application form before you access the online application form below.

Apply now

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.

Please note that the CSC does not charge candidates to apply for any of its scholarships or fellowships through its online application system.

Selection process

Eligible applications will be will undergo a first sifting process based on academic merit, from this sift a shortlist will be created and only those who have made the shortlist will be considered; firstly by an academic adviser with expertise in the subject area concerned, and then by the CSC selection committee in competition with other candidates.

Applications will be considered according to the following selection criteria:

  • Academic merit of the candidate
  • Quality of the research proposal
  • Potential of the candidate to lead in the pursuit of global excellence in research and knowledge

For further details, see the Commonwealth PhD Scholarships (for high income countries) 2020 selection criteria.


Global Engagement Office
Postgraduate Recruitment and Sponsor Relations Manager
CB110 Queens' Building
+44(0)207882 6484

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