Commonwealth Shared Scholarships – UK universities

Commonwealth Shared Scholarships are for candidates from least developed and lower middle income Commonwealth countries, for full-time Master’s study on selected courses, jointly supported by UK universities.

Funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), Commonwealth Shared Scholarships enable talented and motivated individuals to gain the knowledge and skills required for sustainable development, and are aimed at those who could not otherwise afford to study in the UK. These scholarships are offered under six development themes:

  1. Science and technology for development
  2. Strengthening health systems and capacity
  3. Promoting global prosperity
  4. Strengthening global peace, security and governance
  5. Strengthening resilience and response to crises
  6. Access, inclusion and opportunity

Purpose: To contribute to development needs of Commonwealth countries by providing training for skilled and qualified professionals and academics who would not otherwise have been able to study in the UK.

Intended beneficiaries: High-quality postgraduate students who have not studied extensively overseas before, who would not otherwise have the opportunity to study in the UK, and who have the potential to enhance the development of their home countries with the knowledge and leadership skills they acquire.

The CSC is committed to supporting outreach activities and providing additional investment for scholarships for people with disabilities and in subject areas related to the rights of people with disabilities. Institutions are strongly encouraged to put courses forward in the 2019 bidding round that will support this commitment.

UK universities are invited to bid for up to ten Commonwealth Shared Scholarships to be offered in the 2019-2020 academic year. Invitations have been sent to all university vice-chancellors and existing contacts.

Terms and conditions

In this programme, the university is responsible for:

  • Recruiting and nominating candidates
  • Ensuring that nominated candidates meet the eligibility criteria as set out in the bidding guidance
  • Paying a stipend to Commonwealth Shared Scholars at UK government-set rates
  • Looking after the welfare of Commonwealth Shared Scholars while they are on award

The CSC is responsible for:

  • Paying tuition fees (at full overseas level, to a maximum of £22,500)
  • Paying for return flights to the UK
  • Paying a study grant

For full terms and conditions, see the Commonwealth Shared Scholarships 2018 university bidding guidance

How to bid

All bids must be made using the CSC’s application system.

You must register as a nominator before completing the form with a university email address. Once submitted you will be required to insert a key number. To obtain this information you must contact the CSC Secretariat by email at

The deadline for bids is now closed.

Late bids cannot be accepted. Bidding results should be available in December 2018.


Enquiries from UK universities only about Commonwealth Shared Scholarships should be sent to

General enquiries about applying for Commonwealth Scholarships or Fellowships sent to this email address will not be answered; please use the Contact us form instead.

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

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