To be eligible for a Chevening Award you must:
- Be a citizen of a Chevening-eligible country
- Return to your country of citizenship for a minimum of two years after your award has ended
- Have an undergraduate degree that will enable you to gain entry to a postgraduate programme at a UK university. This is typically equivalent to an upper second-class 2:1 honours degree in the UK.
- Have at least two years’ work experience (this may be up to five years for fellowship programmes, please refer to your country page for further details)
- Apply to three different eligible UK university courses and have received an unconditional offer from one of these choices by 13 July 2017
- Meet the Chevening English language requirement by 13 July 2017
You are not eligible for a Chevening Award if you:
- Hold British or dual British citizenship (unless you are a citizen of a British Overseas Territory or hold BN(O) and are applying from Hong Kong)
- Are an employee, a relative of an employee, or a former employee (since July 2015) of Her Majesty’s Government (including British Embassies/High Commissions, the Department for International Development, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, UK Trade and Investment, the Ministry of Defence and the Home Office), the British Council, a partner, a sponsoring UK university, or a staff member of the Association of Commonwealth Universities
- Have previously studied in the UK with funding from a UK Government-funded scholarship. Chevening Alumni are not eligible to apply for a further scholarship but may be eligible to apply for a fellowship five years after completion of the first award.
Once submitted, your application will be reviewed against the Chevening eligibility criteria. If you failed to meet the work experience requirement, or have entered something in your declaration that makes you ineligible, you will be given one opportunity to review and amend your entries for these two sections.
You will receive instructions on how to review these sections via email and you will have until 48 hours prior to the application deadline to amend your answers. For scholarships, this is 1200 GMT on 6 November 2016. Failure to amend your answers will mean your application will not be considered for an award.
You are free to take tests more than once in order to meet the Chevening English language requirement. Please note that Chevening does not pay for costs associated with English language testing. You are responsible for booking and paying for costs associated with these tests.
Chevening accepts English language tests from five providers:
- Academic IELTS
- Pearson PTE Academic
- TOEFL iBT
- Cambridge English: Advanced (CEA)
- Trinity ISE II (B2)
The English language test must be taken from one of these providers on or after 1 October 2015. If you do not already have an existing eligible test certificate, it is your responsibility to ensure that you have booked a test date so that you can obtain the required results.
Applicants are not permitted to take pre-sessional courses to fulfil the English language requirement. You will be required to take one of the approved English language tests unless you meet one of the exempt categories.
For more information about language criteria visit the Site English Language Requirement
References are an integral part of the selection process. References are required for both the fellowship and scholarship programmes. The reference letters must be written by your chosen referees and sent to you to upload to your online application.
We will not accept references that are sent directly to the Secretariat or to your local British Embassy/High Commission.
Who can be a referee?
Please select your referees carefully; they should be people who can comment on your general suitability to receive a Chevening Award. Referees should be known to you, either in an academic or professional capacity. They should not be a relative or close personal friend.
References must be:
- Written in English. Your application will not be considered for an award if your references are not written in English.
- Provided in a letter format, preferably typed, and addressed to the British Embassy or High Commission (the mailing address of the diplomatic mission is not required)
- Uploaded to your application form in PDF format. The file must be no larger than 5MB.
When approaching your referees please direct them to the guidance section below on what they should include in their reference.
What should referees include in their reference?
References are an important part of the Chevening application process and they are considered alongside the application form throughout the selection process. They will be reviewed by the British Embassy/High Commission so it is important that you provide as much relevant detail as possible to support the applicant.
If you have been asked to provide a reference to support a Chevening application please read below for further details on what to include:
Your reference should be provided in a letter format and it must be in English. References that are not written in English will mean that the applicant will not be considered for a Chevening Award.
Your reference should cover the following:
1) How long have you known the applicant?
2) In what capacity do you know the applicant? (e.g. professional, educational, supervisory, voluntary, religious)
3) When you last had regular contact with the applicant?
4) A brief overall endorsement of the applicant, including their:
- Skills in leadership and networking
- Personal, intellectual, and interpersonal qualities
- Ability to complete a demanding academic programme in the UK
When to upload your references
If you are invited to interview you will be required to upload two valid references to the online application centre prior to attending your interview. We recommend that you obtain your two references in good time to ensure they are ready and available to upload should you be invited to attend an interview.
Applicants must ensure they meet the minimum work experience requirement for the award that they are applying to before submitting their Chevening application:
- Chevening Scholarships – two years’ work experience
- Chevening Fellowships – either five or seven years’ work experience depending on the fellowship. Please check your country page for eligibility details relating to the specific fellowship you are applying to.
If you do not already have the required level of work experience, you will be unable to submit your application.
Eligible types of work experience
Applicants must meet the minimum work experience requirement before they submit their application for a Chevening Award. The types of work experience that are eligible for Chevening can include:
- Full-time employment
- Part-time employment
- Voluntary work
- Paid or unpaid internships
- Work experience can be completed before, during, or after graduating from your undergraduate studies.
Employment undertaken as part of your undergraduate or postgraduate course are not eligible.
You do not need to meet the work experience requirement in one period of employment nor do you have been working in your current role for the minimum requirement in order to be eligible to apply. Applicants can submit up to ten different employment periods in order to meet the requirement. If you have held more than ten positions then please enter the periods which make up the greatest number of hours worked.
If you are in current employment, it is not a requirement of Chevening that you resign from your position. You are advised to discuss your application with your employer and it is your responsibility to ensure that they will release you if you are selected for a Chevening Award. The British Embassy/High Commission or the Chevening Secretariat cannot intervene in this.
How to calculate your work experience
The minimum requirement for work experience is calculated by multiplying the number of hours worked by the average number of weeks worked per year. For Chevening Awards it is assumed that applicants in full-time employment work on average 40 weeks per year and 35 hours per week.
The minimum number of hours an applicant must have before applying does vary depending on the Chevening Award to which you are applying:
- Chevening Scholarships – two years’ work experience = 2,800 hours
- Chevening Fellowships – five years’ work experience = 7,200 hours
- Chevening Fellowships – seven years’ work experience = 9,800 hours
If you have worked part-time, the minimum requirement will have been accumulated over a longer period.
For more information visit the website of Work experience
Below are some tips and advice for applicants when using the online application system.
Online Application System
1. Remember your username and password
This saves time when you want to log back in to the Application Centre.
2. Save as you go!
There is no automatic save function on the system and each session will close after 60 minutes even if you are still actively editing the form. Any unsaved entries will be lost so applicants are encouraged to save regularly to avoid disappointment!
3. You do not have to complete the form in one session
Remember to always save your work. Use the ‘Logout’ button (top right corner of the page) and keep a note of your username and password so that you can come back and finish off your application later. When you are satisfied with your application, click the ‘Submit’ button to send us your form. Please note that once you have done this, you may not modify your application except for the contact details section.
4. You can preview all sections of the application form at the start of your session and before you start to complete it so to familiarise yourself with what is required.
5.Check the size and format of the files you intend to upload and ensure they meet the requirement. The online system will only accept PDF documents no larger than 5 MB.
6. Application questions have word counts
In the application form there is a set of questions an applicant is required to answer. There is a minimum word count of 50 words per answer so please ensure you meet this minimum requirement. Answers that are less than 50 words will not be considered.
7. Enter information as accurately as possible, especially your contact details
Please ensure that you enter a valid email address. If it changes after you have submitted, please ensure you update it in your application otherwise you may miss receipt of important updates from the Chevening Secretariat. If you are providing a second email address, please check that it is valid and different from your first.
8. When completing your application form you should work in a full size window, as this will make the application form easier to read in its original format.
9. Consider preparing your answers offline
The application form may take some time to complete so you may wish to prepare your answers to the application questions offline and then paste your answers into the online form where appropriate. This is particularly relevant if you’re using a public computer, like in an internet cafe.
10. Do not plagiarise
If content from other sources is used to answer the application questions, they will be marked down by the reading committee, the independent body that undertakes a first review of all eligible applications received. This will affect your overall score and may result in your application being withdrawn.
11. Please apply in English
Applicants must complete the application form in English. If the application form is not completed in English it is deemed ineligible.
12. Don’t use your browser’s ‘back’ and ‘forward’ buttons
This will take you out of the system and you will lose all unsaved work. By using the provided menu links you can navigate to each page of the application form.
13. Don’t submit your application unless you are completely satisfied with it and you have answered all the relevant questions as fully as you can.