Being one of the most popular study destinations for international students, there are many scholarships available in the UK offering financial assistance to foreign students wishing to pursue a degree in the UK.
Additionally, since the int’l student numbers in the UK have been increasing in the past decade, it’s fair to say that the competition for the scholarships is also quite high. What this means is that in order to be awarded a scholarship, you must prove to be exceptional. Therefore, in this article, we have listed 8 steps to help you successfully apply for a scholarship.
Here are the essential steps to keep in mind when applying for a scholarship:
1. Start as Early as Possible
If you wish to pursue a qualification abroad in the UK, it is important to start as early as possible, preferably two years before. What this means is that you should become acquainted with your options, figure out what the requirements are and make sure you meet them when the time of application comes. Usually, scholarships are awarded to students who have shown to be exceptional in their previous education, those who have done volunteer work or other extracurricular activities. It depends on the type of scholarship you are interested in.
So whatever the case may be, it is important to know these requirements beforehand so you have time to actually meet them and increase your chances to win the scholarship.
2. Go Through Your Options
Since there are numerous scholarships available in the UK, you must first do your research well and find one which covers your needs and is suitable for you as an individual. To be able to apply for the Chevening Scholarship in the UK, for example, you will need to have a minimum of two years of work experience as well as come from a Chevening-eligible territory or country. If at the time of application, you do not have two years of work experience, the chances of you getting this scholarship are low, since you do not meet one of the main criteria.
Maybe you’re eligible for a scholarship because you’re a foster child, have a disability, are a single parent, or other. So, going through your options and finding a scholarship that is applicable to you and your circumstances will give you an advantage in the selection process.
3. Check the Eligibility Criteria
Always check the eligibility criteria. You do not want to apply for a scholarship you are not eligible for because you will be wasting your time. Some scholarships are only for undergraduate students, others for postgraduate students, and there are scholarships only available to citizens of certain countries or certain universities/subjects. This is why this step and the aforementioned ones are particularly important since they ensure you find a scholarship that is just right for you, and if you can’t find one, you still have time to keep searching if you begin early.
4. Check the Application Deadline
As previously mentioned, scholarships attract a large number of students, so you must not miss the deadline. It is essential that you write down the deadlines of each scholarship you are interested in and even set yourself reminders that ensure you will not miss the submission date.
In case you are submitting numerous applications, make sure to give yourself enough time to complete each application properly. You should be providing the necessary documents in the required manner (online or by post) depending on the scholarship you are applying for.
5. Check the Requirements
Now, different scholarships have different requirements, so go through them carefully and make sure you don’t miss any of them. Some scholarship providers might ask you to submit additional documents the likes of academic transcripts, financial records, cover letter, or some might even ask you to attend an interview. You should always submit the documents in the format that is required, if they ask for certified copies of documents, you should provide certified copies.
Additionally, if you find yourself having questions about the application process, do not give up. Ask someone who has gone through a similar process before or contact the scholarship providers and ask them to clarify the requirements for you.
6. Provide Letters of Reference
Some scholarships ask the applicants to provide letters of reference alongside their application. You should not underestimate this part of the process since it can prove to be a big help in the long run. You should be careful when choosing someone to write you a letter of reference since this person should carefully highlight and emphasize all the skills that are deemed necessary for you to be awarded the scholarship. Let them know when the deadline is and also give them information on the skills you would like highlighted.
7. Triple-Check the Application
Triple-check your application because why not? It is always better to be safe than sorry, so make sure you are submitting all the necessary documents, make sure you have not made any spelling/grammatical mistake or included incorrect information. You do not want to seem unprofessional in front of the selection committee, so triple-check your application or even ask someone you trust to go through it for you.
8. Submit Your Application
And finally, submit your application! Keep in mind that it might take time until you get an answer, so be prepared to wait. Now, go ahead and find the perfect scholarship for yourself!