Vice-Chancellor's International Scholarship for Research Excellence

Our Vice-Chancellor’s International Scholarships for Research Excellence offer seven international, self-funding applicants the opportunity to join our postgraduate researcher community on a full-time basis.

Our 2018 awards are now closed. Applications for the 2019 award will be open in December 2018.

The Scholarship includes tuition fees, an annual stipend (in line with RCUK rates and updated annually (currently £14,553 for 2017/18) for three years, and your academic School will also contribute towards research costs. The first quarterly stipend payment will be made available shortly after your course commences.

Awards will be made to the highest quality candidates with the potential to become outstanding researchers. This will be demonstrated through their academic achievements, research preparedness and a clear understanding of the significance of their research area.

We are currently seeking applicants who plan to commence their PhD in the 2019-20 academic year – preferably with an October 2019 start. Applications are not yet open, however details will be published here before December 2018.

How to apply

There is no separate scholarship application form. Eligible applicants should apply for their chosen PhD programme via the University's online application form by the 15 January 2018. Applicants may apply with a research proposal that has been advertised by the supervisory team or their own proposal. It is advisable that applicants make contact with their potential School and supervisory team.

To be considered for the scholarship, applicants should ensure they complete the Cardiff University application form and:

  • attach an academic CV (guidance on creating an effective CV)
  • ensure their Personal Statement gives a strong statement of their research interest, preparation and understanding of the research context and significance (guidance on writing a statement of academic research interest)
  • select “I will be applying for a scholarship/grant” when asked “How do you plan to fund your studies?”
  • include the sentence “I wish to be considered for a Vice-Chancellor’s International Scholarship for Research Excellence” when asked “Please give the name of the individual or organisation to whom you are applying”.

If you have already submitted an application to Cardiff University, please contact your School’s postgraduate administrator/admission team, to let them know you wish to be considered for the Vice-Chancellor’s International Scholarship for Research Excellence.


To be eligible for the scholarship applicants must be nationals of (or permanently domiciled in) a country in the lower middle income and below on the 2014 OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) list or Namibia, (as part of Cardiff University’s continued engagement and education partnership activities in Namibia) and:

  • be liable to pay overseas tuition fees
  • should not have been awarded another scholarship covering both tuition-fees and stipend.

The awards are available to support applicants to our full-time PhD programmes (excluding clinical courses). They cannot be awarded to students undertaking research on a part-time or distance-learning basis and are not available for any other types of research degree. Continued eligibility for the Scholarship is dependent on satisfactory academic progress.

Selection process

After the deadline, each of our academic Schools will nominate up to two applicants to a University panel. The School and University Panel will review nominees based on:

  1. their academic qualifications and achievements
  2. their level of preparedness for the research programme, which may include their technical and/or research skills, their research and/or professional experience
  3. their understanding of the research context for, and the significance of, the proposed or advertised project.

The panel will assess the School nomination form, the academic CV and personal statement. For eligibility purposes, nominees will be made an ‘offer to study’ (conditional or unconditional) at Cardiff University - this does not mean an ‘offer of funding’ has been made.

Candidates demonstrating the highest research potential will be selected for a Scholarship, and all applicants will be informed of the outcome by 30 March 2018.

Further information and contacts

For more information about our Vice-Chancellor’s International Scholarships for Research Excellence please contact:

Doctoral Academy enquiries