Tuesday, March 28, 2023
HomeGuidelines4 Main Scholarship Tips

4 Main Scholarship Tips

- Advertisement -

Scholarship Tip 1: Look into Scholarships in Any Field of Study and Any Country

Although it is always best to start your search by looking for scholarships specially dedicated to your specific field of study or scholarships specifically intended for study in the university/country of your choice, it is also beneficial to look into scholarships in any field of study and any country. This gives you added flexibility and more choices. 4 Main Scholarship Tips

- Advertisement -

It is important to remember though that by “scholarships in any field of study”, we refer to scholarships in any field of study offered by the University/scholarship provider and not literally all fields of study. By “scholarships in any university/country” we basically refer to scholarships that can be conducted in any country or any university in any country as specified by the scholarship provider.  You should remember that this categorization is not absolute, you should expect limitations and  exceptions in some cases.

IMPORTANT REMINDER: When viewing the scholarship profile, you should always remember to see the section “Fields of Study”.  In this section, you will find a list of eligible programmes or a link to a list of eligible programmes under the scholarship.  4 Main Scholarship Tips

In some cases, the University or scholarship provider will not fund certain fields of study or will not allow study in certain countries while in some instances, the scholarship provider specifies only a set of programmes or countries that can be eligible under the scholarship program.  Thus, before you apply, you should always confirm first if the field of study you are interested in or the country you intend to study in, is approved under the scholarship program.

Scholarship Tip 2: Don’t Apply to Every Scholarship

This advice follows the Pareto Principle or the 80/20 Rule. Applying this principle in scholarship application, it is wise to apply only to 20% of available  scholarships that would give you 80% chance of success.

Let’s try to put this into example.


You are an African, particularly, a Nigerian looking for a scholarship in Masters in Development Studies in Germany. After your search, you were able to find 10 scholarships that are available for Africans for study in Germany.

Following the advice above, you will try to focus on applying to 2-3 scholarships that gives you higher chances of success.  The question now is, how do you pick the scholarships you should apply to?

This question can be answered by considering the following criteria:

1. Which among the 10 scholarships you found are specifically targeted to Nigerians?

2. Which among the 10 scholarships are aligned to your qualifications?

3. Which among the 10 scholarships prioritize the study programme you are applying for?

The ideal scholarship you are looking for is a scholarship program that is targeted specifically to Nigerians, whose eligibility requirements matches your qualifications, and if possible, whose priority programs include Masters in Development Studies or related programs.

Applying to a scholarship that is matched to your citizenship, qualifications, and interests generally gives you better chances. As well, applying only to a few scholarships gives you more time to make a great scholarship application letter, complete all your application requirements, and submit your application on time.

This advice is not meant to be a rule; you are always free to apply to more scholarships as you wish if you would think it would increase your chances. The general advice is to make sure you are applying for scholarships that are matched to you and not just any scholarship that presents itself.

Browse through our categories to find scholarships that are best matched to you!

Scholarship Tip 3: Discover school-specific scholarships

As you browse scholars4dev.com, you will notice that there are a lot of scholarship programs offered by major international organizations and universities. But did you know that there are other numerous scholarships offered by specific schools of a university that are not listed? Read more to find out about school-specific scholarships. 4 Main Scholarship Tips 

School-specific scholarships are scholarships offered by a particular school under a University.  For example, the Institute of Education – a school/college under University of London offers school-specific scholarships  such as Centenary Masters Scholarships for International Students.

School-specific scholarships are good scholarships to apply to because they are targeted to your field of study. As well, fewer people know about these scholarships because they are not as easy to find as university-wide scholarships and not as known as popular scholarships. Generally, because of these reasons, there is lesser competition in applying for school-specific scholarships compared to university-wide scholarships and popular scholarships. 4 Main Scholarship Tips

Sometimes the official scholarship page of the University lists school-specific scholarships while sometimes the University has their own scholarship database that contains the school-specific scholarships but most often than not, school-specific scholarships are buried in the college/school’s own scholarship page. 4 Main Scholarship Tips

Start your search of school-specific scholarships by visiting the website of the specific school of a University that offers the course your are interested in. Browse through their ‘scholarship’ page or ‘fees and funding’ page. You could also inquire directly with the school about the scholarships they offer. 4 Main Scholarship Tips

To help jumpstart your search for school-specific scholarships, use the following lists to arrive at the university scholarship page. From there, you can follow the advice above:

Scholarship Tip 4: Take note of Annual Scholarship Programs

If you missed the scholarship deadline or your scholarship application has been rejected the first time, don’t worry, there’s always another chance. This statement is true if you are applying for annual scholarships. 

Offered yearly, most annual scholarship programs are well-funded scholarships meaning they have enough funds to sustain the program for a long time and they have ample number of scholarship available.  Thus, it is wise to take note of annual scholarship programs.

Popular scholarship programs such as Fulbright ScholarshipsCommonwealth ScholarshipsDAAD ScholarshipsErasmus Mundus Scholarships, and Australian Development Scholarships are examples of annual scholarship programs. 4 Main Scholarship Tips

Scholarship Tip 5: Improve your Chances in Winning a Scholarship

Winning a scholarship is not a simple thing to do considering there are a LOT of scholarship seekers and there are only a FEW scholarship awards out there.  In numbers, we are talking about  millions of students vying for only thousands of available scholarships.  How then can you improve your chances in winning a scholarship? 4 Main Scholarship Tips

Find scholarships that only few know about

Sometimes, knowledge is key in winning a scholarship.  In your months of searching, you must have come across popular worldwide scholarships and flagship scholarships of popular universities.  These scholarships are great to apply to but extremely competitive to get. 4 Main Scholarship Tips

There is one type of scholarships that you might have better chances of winning: school-specific or department-specific scholarships. School-specific scholarships are good scholarships to apply to because they are targeted to your field of study and more importantly, fewer people know about these scholarships because they are not as easy to find as university-wide scholarships and not as known as popular scholarships. Generally, there is lesser competition in applying for these scholarships, thereby increasing your chances. 4 Main Scholarship Tips


Apply only for scholarships that are best matched to you

This advice involves finding out which scholarships are best matched to you. In an ideal situation, you would want to apply to a scholarship program that is targeted to your country of origin, whose eligibility requirements matches your qualifications, and if possible, whose priority fields of study are related to your degree/research/experience. 4 Main Scholarship Tips


Stand out in your scholarship application

Since scholarship application is quite competitive, your application must stand out above the rest. This means you must not only meet the scholarship criteria set by the scholarship provider but exceed it. The key here is to know the specific criteria set by the scholarship provider and make it work to your advantage. Once you know their criteria, you can find creative ways to to highlight the strengths of your scholarship application. 4 Main Scholarship Tips

For example, if you don’t have very good academic grades, you can highlight relevant extra-curricular activities in your personal motivation letter.  In another example, you can do a little extra research about the current areas of focus of the scholarship provider because sometimes,  students are chosen based on their chosen field of study or research – if it aligns with the scholarship provider’s core mission/themes.  It is also useful to know the profiles of previous scholarship recipients; it will give you an idea of the kind of student that the scholarship providers are looking for.

- Advertisement -


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Most Popular