Creating your 2021 Scholarship Checklist

A new year. A new opportunity to advance in your career by pursuing a Masters or PhD program. And yes, a new opportunity to apply for a scholarship to cover the cost of your studies.

Don’t know where to start? We have 7 special tips for you! Read ahead:

  1. Decide what and where you want to study. What do you want to do your Masters in? Or do you want to pursue a phd? Deciding on your graduate program is the first important step you need to compete before you go on to other steps. Hopefully, you already know what you are interested in and how that aligns with your career goals. If not, speak with mentors or colleagues in your profession and find out what graduate programs are best suited to you.
  1. Find a degree program. Now that you know what you want to study, the next step is to find the school that offers your desired degree, and hopefully, what scholarships might be available (see tip #3 below). Some programs will have different names but essentially offer the same training. For example “Masters in International Development” might be the same as “Masters in Development Studies.” A PhD is the same as a DPhil. You can always browse the course syllabi available or contact the department to understand the degree content.
  1. Look out for scholarships. To ensure that you secure funding easily, it’s always best to apply for a degree program that already offers options for scholarships. Don’t apply for a program and be left stranded looking for money after you receive admission. There are many websites that aggregate scholarship opportunities. Follow these websites and see whether you can find a scholarship and degree program that matches your interest.
  1. Pay attention to application deadlines. Track down the deadlines of each scholarship you are interested in. Get a notebook, make an Excel spreadsheet, or a create simple calendar reminder. Then work backwards and make sure you get all your materials ready way before the deadline. Don’t leave things to the last minute!
  1. Complete any required assessment tests. Some scholarships and programs might require that you do an English language test such as TOEFL or IELTS. Scholarship programs in countries such as France or Germany might require you to have some level of proficiency in German or French. Graduate programs in the US will usually require some form of assessment test such as GRE or GMAT. Find out early whether this is the case for you. If so, prepare for the tests! Find resources online, or visit Text Book Centre to buy test preparation books.
  1. Apply for a passport if you don’t have one already. It’s easy to forget about having a passport, so don’t wait to be frazzled looking for a passport when you can easily apply for one now!
  1. Follow Higher Ed Prep for tips on your application process. Read our blog for tips on graduate scholarship and program applications. Attend one of our workshops. Follow us on Instagram. Email or DM us for an individual appointment. We are excited to walk with you in your journey. You got this!

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