Cambridge Scholarship

Gates Cambridge Scholarship – 2020-2021 is now open for applications from international students who want to pursue a graduate degree at Cambridge University in the UK.

The scholarships are a prestigious, highly competitive full-cost financial aid grants awarded to outstanding applicants from countries outside the UK to pursue a full-time postgraduate degree in any subject available at the University of Cambridge.  

Up to 40 Gates Cambridge Scholarships are awarded to US students and up to 55 scholarships are awarded to international students.

Worth of Award

A Gates Cambridge Scholarship covers the full cost of studying at Cambridge. It also provides additional, discretionary funding.

Core components
  • the University Composition Fee at the appropriate rate*
  • a maintenance allowance for a single student (£14,900 for 12 months at the 2020-2021 rate; pro rata for courses shorter than 12 months)
  • one economy single airfare at both the beginning and end of the course
  • inbound visa costs & the cost of the Immigration Health Surcharge
Discretionary components
The Trust also considers applications for several types of additional funding on a discretionary basis:
  • Academic development funding – from £500 to £2,000, dependent on the length of your course, to attend conferences and courses.
  • Family allowance – up to £10,120 for a first child and up to £4,320 for a second child 2020-2021rate). No funding is provided for a partner.
  • Fieldwork – you may apply to keep up to your normal maintenance allowance while on fieldwork as part of your PhD (the Trust does not fund other fieldwork costs as these should be funded by the University Composition Fee).
  • Hardship funding – for unforeseen difficulties
  • Maternity/Paternity funding – should you require it, you may apply to intermit your studies for up to 6 months and continue to receive your maintenance allowance during this time
  • Some fourth year funding for PhD Scholars may be provided (Cambridge PhD programmes usually last for three years).

You can apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship if you are:

  • a citizen of any country outside the United Kingdom
  • applying to pursue one of the following full-time residential courses of study at the University of Cambridge:
    • PhD (three year research-only degree)
    • MSc or MLitt (two year research-only degree)
    • One year postgraduate course (e.g. MPhil, LLM, MASt, Diploma, MBA etc.)
  • Courses Not eligible
    • BA (undergraduate)
    • BA affiliated (a second BA)
    • MBBChir Clinical Studies
    • MD Doctor of Medicine degree (6 years, part-time)
    • Part-time degrees
    • Non-degree courses
  • Current student at Cambridge? If you are applying for a new postgraduate course you can apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship. Current recipients can also apply they are apply for a new course.
  • However, if you have already started a course you cannot apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship to fund the remainder of it.
Selection Criteria:

Each Scholar is different and brings something unique to the programme. But they are looking for four key criteria:

  • Academic excellence
  • Leadership potential
  • A commitment to improving the lives of others
  • A good academic fit with Cambridge
How to Apply

Please read this very carefully

  • First, decide what course you want to study at Cambridge and apply to using their online application form (see link below). You must submit all supporting documents for admission in order to be considered for both admission and a Gates Scholarship.
  • Second, while completing the online form, there is a specific Gates Cambridge section which asks applicants to submit the following:
    • A 3,000 character (500 word) statement about your fit with the Gates Cambridge programme.
    • A (non-academic) reference about their fit with Gates Cambridge. Referees may paste/type up to 4,000 characters into the on-line reference or upload a separate letter; they are also asked some specific questions about how they rate the applicant for the scholarship.
    • The Gates Cambridge reference is in addition to the two academic references required by the University for admission.
    • An up to date CV/resume.
    • You would also be required to upload a copy of your relevant transcript(s).
    • For PhD applicant only: a research proposal is also required – if it has not already submitted as part of the application for the course. Where there is specific guidance from the department about word length and format for the research proposal applicants should follow this.

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