A Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarship is a unique opportunity to study for a two-years Master’s degree in low or middle-income country of the Commonwealth. Aimed at students who are committed to creating change in their communities, the scholarships are a life-changing opportunity to experience a new country and culture, to broaden horizons, and to build a global network that will last a lifetime.
Through cultural exchange and academic collaboration, Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholars help bring about positive change and find solutions to the shared challenges we face – both in their home countries and those that host them. As an active part of the Commonwealth network, scholars will help shape its future.
Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarship Overview
Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarships sponsor Master’s Degrees in a broad range of subject areas. The following countries will be hosting a Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarship:
- Papua New Guinea
- South Africa
- South Pacific
- Sri Lanka
Award recipients receive:
- Fully-funded tuition fess
- Living expenses allowance (stipend) for duration of award
- Return economic flights to their host country
- An arrival allowance
- Research support grant (on request only, subject to approval)
To apply for a Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarship, you must:
- Be a citizen (or those who hold refugee status) in a Commonwealth country
- Apply for a QECS award in a country other than your home country/country of citizenship
- Have already completed your degree and have graduated with an equivalent of a 2:1 at the time of application. As part of the application process you will be asked to provide a copy of your final transcript and degree certificate.
Please note that QECS awards are only hosted by low and middle income countries. Therefore these awards will not be hosted in Canada, the UK or Australia.
For an application to be considered for selection, applicants must ensure that:
- Include full details about marks/grades gained for particular degrees. Applicants are strongly encouraged to ensure that full supporting documentation is provided at the time of application, in the form of an official transcript.
- Their personal statement is written clearly so that a non-specialist can understand what the aims of the research are and how they will be implemented.
- They clearly outline why they are applying to the courses and institutions listed on their application form. You must tailor these answers to each institution – if you write the same answer for each course/institution or copy and paste text from university websites, then your application will not be considered/
- They meet all the eligibility requirements for their chosen university course, including having the necessary work experience.
- Two referees are identified and references are provided. References should be detailed and include the content outlined on the application form. If you are unable to obtain academic references, use professional referees that are able to write you references demonstrating the points outlined on the application form.
Also, make sure that you have the following documentation to upload to your application:
- High school certificate
- Proof of English language ability if English is not your first language
- Scan of passport or national ID card
- Two references – preferably academic
- Undergraduate transcript (and graduation certificate)
How to Apply for Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarship
The application form consists of the following sections:
- Personal Details
- Academic & Employment Record
- Course at host university details
- Upload supporting documents
The statement section is formed of three main statements which applicants need to provide. Guidance for what is required for each statement is shown below as well as on the application form itself.
Statement 1: Plan of study
“Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarships provide unique opportunities to study abroad for a Master’s in leading universities in low and middle-income Commonwealth countries.”
Your statement should answer the following questions:
- Why have you chosen to study this course? What specific features of the course do you find interesting?
- Why do you want to undertake this course at this institution and in this country?
- What have you done to research your chosen university?
- How is this course relevant to your future career plans?
- Explain how your previous studies and experiences make you a suitable candidate for this course.
Statement 2: Development impact and post study outreach
“The Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarships are for students committed to creating change in their communities. Scholars will be supported to develop their knowledge and skills, and learn how to apply them in their career so they can contribute towards solutions to global challenges and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.”
On the first part of this section, your statement should answer the following questions:
- Describe briefly one challenge or problem in your country that you would like to address.
- How will your proposed study help you contribute towards a solution to this challenge?
- What skills do you expect to gain from this scholarship?
- How will you use the knowledge and skills gained on award in your local community when you return home?
For the rest of the section, you have to address the following questions.
- Which of the UN Sustainable Development Goals does the subject you are studying most align to? (you can pick more than one).
- How will your proposed study contribute to this/these Sustainable Development Goal(s)?
Statement 3: Creating networks
“The Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarships provide an opportunity to embrace new cultures, learn different perspectives and enhance collaboration at home and throughout the Commonwealth.”
Your statement should answer the following questions:
- Explain how you have developed networks through academic studies, hobbies, work experience and/or volunteering experience.
- What connections and networks will help you to achieve impact from your scholarship?
- How might you start to develop these connections during your study?
Applications must be submitted online through Online Application System. This system will be used throughout the selection process. Please visit your respective country to apply for the scheme.
- Apply for a QECS in Namibia
- Apply for a QECS in Papua New Guinea
- Apply for a QECS in South Africa
- Apply for a QECS in South Pacific
- Apply for a QECS in Sri Lanka
Unfortunately, you won’t be able to receive feedback if your application is unsuccessful. However, many of the applications received do not pass through to the next stage (and are not eventually selected) due to a few common reasons.
Closing Date of Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarship
Applications are now open and will close 9 July, 4:00 (UTC +1).
If you have questions regarding the Queen Elizabeth Commonwealth Scholarship, please contact the Association of Commonwealth Universities at firstname.lastname@example.org.