Gates Cambridge Scholarships Programme 2017 for Study at the University of Cambridge, UK (Fully Funded)

Application Deadline: December 7th 2016

The Gates Cambridge Scholarships are one of the most prestigious international scholarships in the world.  The Gates Cambridge Scholarship programme was established in October 2000 by a donation of US$210m from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to the University of Cambridge; this is the largest ever single donation to a UK university.

Scholarships are awarded to outstanding applicants from countries outside the UK to pursue a full-time postgraduate degree in any subject available at the University of Cambridge. The selection criteria are:

  • outstanding intellectual ability
  • leadership potential
  • a commitment to improving the lives of others
  • a good fit between the applicant’s qualifications and aspirations and the postgraduate programme at Cambridge for which they are applying

Eligibility Requirements:

Scholarships are available for a postgraduate degree in any subject at Cambridge for applicants who are ordinarily resident outside the United Kingdom

You can apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship if you are:

  • a citizen of any country outside the United Kingdom
  • applying to pursue one of the following full-time residential courses of study at the University of Cambridge:
    • PhD (three year research-only degree)
    • MSc or MLitt (two year research-only degree)
    • One year postgraduate course (e.g. MPhil, LLM, MASt, Diploma, MBA etc.)

Scholarship Worth:

A Gates Cambridge Scholarship covers the full cost of studying at Cambridge. It also provides additional, discretionary funding.

The Gates Cambridge Scholarship is one of the most generous international scholarships available. It covers the following costs:

Core components

  • the University Composition Fee at the appropriate rate*
  • a maintenance allowance for a single student (£14,600 for 12 months at the 2016-17 rate; pro rata for courses shorter than 12 months)
  • one economy single airfare at both the beginning and end of the course
  • inbound visa costs & associated NHS surcharge costs

Discretionary components

The Trust also considers applications for several types of additional funding on a discretionary basis:

  • Academic development funding – from £500 to £1,500, dependent on the length of your course, to attend conferences and courses.
  • Family allowance – up to £10,120 for a first child and up to £4,320 for a second child (2016-17 rate). No funding is provided for a partner.
  • Fieldwork – you may apply to keep up to your normal maintenance allowance while on fieldwork as part of your PhD.
  • Hardship funding – for unforeseen difficulties
  • Maternity/Paternity funding – should you require it, you may apply to intermit your studies for up to 6 months and continue to receive your maintenance allowance during this time
  • Some fourth year funding for PhD Scholars may be provided

How to Apply:

Applicants apply on a single form for admission to a course and a College and for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship.

Standard applications (via the Graduate Admissions Office)

Applicants apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship and admission to their chosen postgraduate course at the University of Cambridge and a Cambridge College via the Graduate Admissions Office, using the Graduate Application Form and supporting documents.

It is not possible to apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship without applying to the University of Cambridge. You must apply for admission as a postgraduate student to the University of Cambridge and a Gates Cambridge Scholarship at the same time, using the one application pack.

[If you are applying for admission to the MBA or Master of Finance programme you apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship via the Judge Business School (see below)]

To be considered for postgraduate admission and a Gates Cambridge Scholarship all applicants must submit the following documents to the Graduate Admissions Office by the relevant deadline:-

  • Graduate Application Form (which includes a Gates Cambridge section)
  • Academic transcripts
  • 2 academic references
  • 1 personal reference (for the Gates Cambridge Scholarship)

Although not specifically required for the Gates Cambridge application, the Graduate Admissions Office or academic department may require some applicants to submit the following for admission to the University:

  • English language test scores (if English is not your first language)
  • A research proposal, an example of your written work, a GRE/GMAT score, etc. Not all applicants will be required to submit such documents – you will find details of what you need to submit in the Graduate Studies Prospectus and department website.


Deadlines for October 2017 entry: 12 October 2016 (US round) and 7 December 2016 (International round). Check which one applies to you.

The two application rounds:

  • Round 1: US citizens normally resident in the USA
  • Round 2: citizens of all countries other than the USA (except the United Kingdom) and US citizens normally resident outside the USA

Key dates for each round for October 2017 entry are given below.

What stage? Round 1 Round 2
Applications open 5 September 2016 5 September 2016
Application deadline 12 October 2016* 7 December 2016*
Supporting documents deadline 7 days after submitting application 7 days after submitting application
References deadline 7 days after submitting application 7 days after submitting application
Departmental ranking October – November December – February
Trust shortlisting Mid-December Early March
Shortlisted candidates invited to interview Late December Early March
Interviews 27 & 28 January 2017 (USA) 28 & 29 March 2017 (Cambridge, UK)
Scholarships offered Early February Late March

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Gates Cambridge Scholarships Programme 2017 for Study at the University of Cambridge, UK (Fully Funded)


  1. hi

    i would like to apply for the bursary from the Gates foundation. i really need to further my studies and knowledge so that i can do more for my community and country at large as there are challenges and opportunity to contribute towards the growth and development of our country and its citizens at large. i will really appreciate your support and consideration as this will enable me to accomplish my long time plan and dreams.

  2. I take this opportunity to express my great appreciation to all the donors who make it possible, year in and year out, for needy student’s around the world to get funding for the course of their dreams. It is a self-less act which is not taken for granted. I would like to apply for a LLM masters degree in Human rights and Women law field in order to improve the lives of our our womenfolk in my home in Kenya.

  3. This is really a selfless act, and it deserves to be appreciated to the fullest, « kudos to the donors ». I will like to apply for Msc in computer science, so that the digital konwledge can be decoded properly to my people here in Nigeria, which will make thousands of youths to be self-employed. Please keep me posted if any one have any necessary information that is needed of me to know. Thanks.

  4. this is indeed a true service to humanity, we the Africans are really grateful to donors of this scholarship. May God continue to water them like the garden of Eden. Please keep me abreast with all the necessary information as regard to the scholarship. Thanks.

  5. hello i am more than grateful for this opportunities given to us. i pray the Almighty God continue to bless you all for your generosity and good hearts. i wish to do an LLM in environmental law, or international human rights law or human resource management. Please any vacancies for me? my email:[email protected] from Cameroon.

  6. Hi
    Percy from Ghana, currently a degree holder. This is a real opportunity as it help enhance and also achieve our goals. Thanks for the good opportunity.

  7. Hello,
    I am William Jimmy from LIberia,currently I have a first degree in Economics.I will be too happy if you grant me that opportunity to study at that great institution in order to enhance my education Thanks for that great opportunity.

  8. Hi,
    Its a great opportunity indeed for us and I am hoping the selection criteria is not only skewed towards past academic performances, practical experience and professional qualifications should equally be a factor too. I would greatly appreciate this scholarship as it would enhance the degree of benefits I could share and contribute to my community and country where am not only an accountant in the Pubic office but a part time lecturer, and an active member of The Wild life Conservation Society of Zambia

  9. Hello, I am Mbock Judith Elfrida Ngonchina from Cameroon, i have an ordinary level in Economics B grade. I will be very glad if you grant me that opportunity to study at that great institution inorder to enhance my education and i could help my community in one way or the other with the wonderful knowledge i will gain in your beautiful institution.


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