References are an integral part of the selection process. References are required for both the fellowship and scholarship programmes. You must supply the names of two referees at the time of submitting your application.

If you are progressed to the next stage after submission, the Secretariat will request a reference from your referees. The request will generate an email to the referees and they will need to submit the reference by 4 March 2019. This is a different process from last year – please note you are no longer able to upload a reference on behalf of a referee. We will not accept references that are sent directly to the Chevening 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.

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 at the latter stage of 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.

For referees

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 must be submitted as a response to the automated request from the system 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

There will be a short window during which you can submit a reference. This will be between the applicant being longlisted (late January/early February) and 4 March 2019.

The British embassy or high commission in your home country may request that you bring original hard copies of your references with you to interview. You will receive further guidance on this if you are invited to interview.

Applicants for Chevening Scholarships

When you apply for a Chevening Scholarship, you will be required to provide names and contact details for two referees. If you are shortlisted for an award, you will be required to log into the Online Application System and request a reference from your referees. The request will generate an email to the referees and they will need to submit the reference by 12:00 GMT (noon) on 4 March 2019. We recommend that you let your referees know before this time that they may be required to submit a reference for you, to ensure they can submit the reference quickly when it is requested. Any applicant without  two references by the deadline will not be invited to interview.

Applicants for Chevening Fellowships

Applicants for any Chevening Fellowship must submit references at the time of application. If you do not have the option to upload your references before submitting your application, your two referees will be contacted by the Chevening Secretariat and each requested to submit a valid reference to the online application centre.