There are a lot of misconceptions littering the Internet about studying abroad, causing many would-be students to stumble around blindly, and ultimately be unsuccessful in securing a place. Yet others find it all too bewildering, throw up their hands in confusion, and never apply in the first place.


During admission season universities and other educational institutions from all around the globe open their doors to students wishing to study abroad. There are a lot of misconceptions littering the Internet about studying abroad, causing many would-be students to stumble around blindly, and ultimately be unsuccessful in securing a place. Yet others find it all too bewildering, throw up their hands in confusion, and never apply in the first place.

How And Where to Find Scholarships & Need-Based Grants?

When you take currency depreciation into account, the cost of studying abroad has steadily been on the rise. Various governments around the world are aware of this and have made available new scholarships to attract students wanting to study abroad. In 2013 the UK opened 370 scholarships solely to encourage Indian students. In the US, there are 345 (as of 2016) colleges providing educational opportunities in the form of financial aid.

It can be a challenge to find an educational institution which will take you in. Understandably, preference is given to domestic students, with only a handful of places offered to students wishing to study abroad. 
The best strategy for securing placement is through thorough research. Each institution will list their available grants and scholarships and the requirements to gain access to them. Understandably, it can get quite challenging, as each institution offers something different and varies in their requirements for student placement.

Some provide full scholarships, while others will offset only some of the cost. A few may provide substantial financial aid, others may offer only limited amounts, and yet others provide finance on needs only basis.

Need-Based Scholarships and Grants

There are many scholarships and educational grants based on needs, which means the educational institution will pay an outstanding amount that isn’t covered by family contribution, grants, or scholarships.

Students will be required to demonstrate financial need to qualify for a need-based scholarship. To avail the aid, the first part of the need-based process is to fill out the application form. The student will be asked to provide information about family income and assets, outside awards, and unusual or changed financial circumstances. This form provides information on how much you or family will be contributing and determine the level of grants, work-study, and loan amounts for which you will be eligible.

Grants and scholarships are almost identical in function, with the primary difference being that scholarships are awarded based on academic performance, or some other accomplishment such as voluntary work. Unlike student loans, grants and scholarships do not need to be repaid.

Some Scholarships and Grants Resource List for Indian Students

The following list of Scholarship options will point you in the right direction to help you secure a student position for studying in your chosen country.

1. Chevening Scholarships

Chevening is the UK government's global scholarship programme that offers future leaders the unique opportunity to study in the UK. These scholarships are awarded to outstanding professionals from India and beyond to pursue a one-year master’s degree in any subject at any UK university.

Chevening provides fully-funded scholarships, leaving you free to focus on achieving your professional goals and enjoying the experience of a lifetime.

2. Commonwealth Scholarships For Master’s And PhD Study

Commonwealth Scholarships for Master’s and PhD study in the UK are offered for citizens of developing Commonwealth countries. These scholarships are funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), with the aim of contributing to the UK’s international development aims and wider overseas interests, supporting excellence in UK higher education, and sustaining the principles of the Commonwealth.

3. The Asian Women In Business Scholarship Fund

The Scholarship encourages and promotes exceptional Asian female students who have demonstrated scholarship, leadership, community service and/ or entrepreneurship. The AWIB Scholarship Fund awards scholarships to students who have the attributes to be our next generation of leaders.
The number of scholarships awarded is based on individual and corporate philanthropy.

4. Fulbright-Nehru Master’s Fellowships

The Fulbright-Nehru Master's Fellowships are designed for outstanding Indians residing in India to pursue a master's degree program at selected U.S. colleges and universities in the areas of Arts and Culture Management including Heritage Conservation and Museum Studies, Environmental Science/Studies, Higher Education Administration, International Legal Studies, Public Administration, Public Health, Urban and Regional Planning and Women's Studies/Gender Studies.

The fellowship will provide J-1 visa support, round-trip economy class air travel from fellow's home city to the host institution in the U.S., funding for tuition and fees, living and related costs and accident and sickness coverage per U.S. Government guidelines.

Please note, USIEF funding may not cover all costs and the scholar may need to supplement grant benefits with other resources.

5. S N Bose Scholars Program

To nurture future innovators and thought leaders, the Science & Engineering Board (SERB), Department of Science and Technology (DST), Govt. of India, the Indo-U.S. Science and Technology Forum (IUSSTF) and WINStep Forward have partnered to support a dynamic and transformative student exchange program between premier institutions in India and the United States.

The scholarship is for Indian citizens currently pursuing a Bachelors or Masters' degree at a recognized institution of higher education and learning in India. This program is open to students of Atmospheric and Earth Sciences, Chemical Sciences, Engineering Sciences, Mathematical and Computational Sciences and Physical Sciences. The Scholarship includes Stipend, Health Insurance and Air-fare.

6. The Charles Wallace India Trust

The Charles Wallace India Trust gives grants to Indians in the early or middle stages of their careers who are living in India and working or studying in the arts, heritage conservation or the humanities.
The grants enable successful applicants to achieve their artistic, academic, or professional ambitions through spending time in the United Kingdom. The categories of grants available include: fully-funded awards, visiting fellowships in agreed subjects at specific institutions, grants for research and professional visits, grants for doctoral study and grants to attend the Scottish Universities Summer School.

7. Lady Meherbai D Tata Education Trust Scholarships

The Lady Meherbai D Tata Education Trust awards scholarships to Indian women graduates of recognized universities to pursue higher education abroad. The Trust accepts applications in the following fields of study:
• Social work
• Social sciences
• Education
• Education and welfare of children with special needs
• Empowerment of women
• Gender studies
• Child health - development and nutrition
• Health policy and health education
• Public health - community health services, reproductive health
• Rural development work (with a focus on women and children)
• Communication for development (with a focus on women’s issues)
• Development studies

8. Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation Scholarship

Scholarships are granted at top American, European and UK institutions, for funding requirements including tuition fees. The Foundation does not give scholarships in the following subjects: Engineering, Computer Science, Business Studies, Medicine, Public Health, Fashion Design, Music, and Film Animation. However, in the case of Imperial College, London, scholarships will be given for Engineering and Computer Science. Further the foundation considers Indian Studies, only if they have contemporary relevance. In the field of Music, only applications for Western Classical singing degrees will be considered.
Candidates must be below 30 years of age on the first of July in the year of application. Candidates who are already studying or have started their program abroad are not eligible.

9. Goa Education Trust Scholarships

The Goa Education Trust (GET) scholarship is offered to few selected Indian students annually for pursuing a one-year Masters in the UK. Initially conceptualized for Goans, the scholarship has now been opened up to all Indian students applying for any Master’s programme in any UK universities. 
Scholarships will fund young Indians to pursue a Masters in the UK and will cover part or full tuition fees.

10. Saltire Scholarships

Scotland’s Saltire Scholarships (SSS) is a substantial programme of scholarships, offered on a matched funding basis between the Scottish Government and Scottish Higher Education Institutions. The scheme offers up to 100 awards, each worth £4000. These are towards the tuition fees, for any one year of full-time study, on an Undergraduate, Masters or PhD course at any of Scotland’s higher education institutions.
The course must be an undergraduate, Masters or PhD level course in one of the following broad subject areas: Science, technology, creative industries, financial services, renewable and clean energy. Courses must be full time and delivered in Scotland. Online, distance learning or courses delivered at a Scottish university campus overseas are not eligible for the scholarship.

11. Aga Khan Foundation International Scholarship Programme

The Aga Khan Foundation provides a limited number of scholarships each year for postgraduate studies to outstanding students from selected developing countries who have no other means of financing their studies, in order to develop effective scholars and leaders and to prepare them for employment, primarily within the AKDN.

Scholarships are awarded on a 50% grant: 50% loan basis through a competitive application process once a year in June or July. Half of the scholarship amount is considered as a loan, which must be reimbursed with an annual service charge of 5%. A guarantor is required to co-sign the loan agreement. The payback period is five years, starting six months after the study period funded by the Aga Khan Foundation.

The Foundation gives priority to requests for Master's level courses but also considers applications for PhD programmes, only in the case of outstanding students who are highly recommended for doctoral studies by their professors and who need a PhD for the fulfilment of their career objectives (academic or research oriented).

Applications for short-term courses are not considered, neither are applications from students who have already started their course of study. Preference is given to students under 30 years of age. Applicants are expected to have some years of work experience in their field of interest.

Your Educational Goals are Possible – Including Study Abroad!

Realizing your dreams of studying abroad will present you with many challenges, but with persistence, determination, and thorough research your educational goals will be within your reach. Studying hard and maintaining high standards in your current educational endeavours will help accelerate you onto the career path you have chosen.

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