How to prepare your Chevening application

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Follow these five steps between now and when applications open to put yourself in the best position to write a first-class application for Chevening. 

1. Make sure you meet each of the eligibility criteria

Did you know that last year we received over 10,000 ineligible applications? And that of those, 70% were ineligible because applicants did not meet Chevening’s 2-year work experience requirement?

Make sure that you don’t make the same mistake! Chevening applicants must:

  • Be a citizen of one of 160+ Chevening-eligible countries or territories.
  • Have completed an undergraduate degree that will enable you to apply for a postgraduate course at a UK university.
  • Have at least two years of work experience. This page helps you to calculate whether you meet this requirement.
  • Not have previously studied in the UK through a UK Government funded scholarship.
  • Demonstrate outstanding future leadership potential.

Read the full list of Chevening eligibility requirements.

2. Build up your leadership portfolio

During the written application and interview stage, you will be asked to demonstrate how you have shown the potential to be a leader in your life and career to date. Start building a bank of examples now. When have you had to lead a team or a project? How did you succeed in that situation? What did you learn? How did you demonstrate your influencing skills?

These are the types of questions you should be asking yourself for every example that you come up with. Then choose the most robust examples that you think give the best impression of your leadership potential to write about in your application.

‘Describing in detail [one or two] examples will generally have a better impact than listing down everything without too much substance. In a nutshell, less is more.’ – Roshini Menon, 2020 Chevening Scholar, King’s College London

3. Think about where you want to be in 2, 5, and 10 years time 

Develop a realistic plan for achieving your goals to create positive change in your home country. We know life doesn’t always go to plan, but we want to know that you have big ideas for creating a positive impact in your country and that you’ve put some serious thought into how you’re going to make your dreams a reality.

‘It’s not about putting the most beautiful words on the application; it’s about communicating what it is you really want to achieve in your life.’ – Syed Farradino Omar, 2018 Chevening Scholar, Royal Holloway, University of London

‘It’s helpful to sit down and really think about what logical steps you will need to take to achieve your goals in the future.’ – Roshini Menon

Show us how determined you are to get to where you want to be!

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4. Start researching which UK university courses you want to apply for

You will have the opportunity to choose three courses at up to three UK universities on your Chevening Scholarship application. Start browsing the Chevening course finder now to find the course and university that will help you to achieve your career goals.

This article on choosing the right UK university for you may also help to slim down your options.

Please note that you will need to apply separately for your chosen courses via the universities that run those courses. Your Chevening application does not constitute an application to your chosen courses.

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5. Develop a clear sense of how a Chevening Scholarship could help you achieve your goals

Why are you applying to Chevening? What could you achieve by joining our global community? Why do you want to study your chosen courses in the UK?

We don’t only need to see why you are right for Chevening, we also need to see why Chevening is right for you.

Watch YouTube Video on How to Apply

Asking yourself these big questions now, and discussing them with your friends and colleagues, will put you in a good position to write a first-class Chevening application when applications open this year.

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