We held two Q&A sessions on our Instagram and Facebook channels last week to answer your questions about the Chevening Application process. As we were not able to answer every question in the time that we had (we received over 500!), here is our summary of the most common questions that came up, and our answers to them.

1. When do I apply to Chevening and when do I apply for my UK university courses?

You must apply for a Chevening Scholarship between the 12 September 2023 and 7 November 2023 via our website. On your Chevening Application, you will be asked to select three courses at up to three UK universities that you have already applied to OR plan to apply to.

The date when you apply to your chosen UK university courses will depend on the deadline of those courses. You will find those deadlines on the specific university course webpage.

You must have secured at least one unconditional offer from a UK university by 11 July 2024 in order to be able to take up a Chevening Scholarship.

2. Am I eligible for a Chevening Scholarship if…?

You will find all the eligibility criteria for a Chevening Scholarship on the eligibility page of our website. The most common eligibility criteria questions we received were:

Is there an upper age limit for Chevening Scholarships? No!

Is my country eligible for a Chevening Scholarship? You will find information on all eligible countries on the apply page of our website. This information is updated regularly to reflect any changes to your country’s eligibility. You must be a citizen of a Chevening-eligible country to be considered for a Chevening Scholarship.

Is there an English language requirement? No, Chevening does not have an English language requirement. However, all UK universities will have specific English language requirements. So please check this with the university you are planning on applying to before submitting your application.

Can I apply before I finished my undergraduate degree? No, you must have completed all components of an undergraduate degree that will enable you to gain entry onto a postgraduate programme at a UK university by the time you submit your application. This is typically equivalent to an upper second-class 2:1 honours degree in the UK but may be different depending on your course and university choice. You will be asked to upload either a degree certificate or degree transcript from your undergraduate degree as part of your Chevening Application.

3. Are there restrictions on the types of university courses I can apply for?

Chevening Scholarships are for one-year taught master’s courses only. So, that means no PhDs and no bachelor’s/undergraduate degree programmes.

You can choose from hundreds of courses at hundreds of UK universities – and this can include subjects in the arts and humanities or the sciences. You will find everything you need to know about which courses are eligible on our courses webpage.

On your Chevening Application form, you will need to explain how the three courses you have chosen to study in the UK reflect your current or future career goals. Therefore, the three courses should be similar in content in order to demonstrate your commitment to a specific career goal.

We also recommend applying to three courses at three different universities in order to increase the likelihood that you will gain entry into one of them.

Finally, remember that there is a fee cap applied to MBA programmes that requires you to cover any additional cost concerning tuition fees over £22,000. This fee cap only applies to MBA programmes.

4. Does remote/volunteer/internship work count towards the work experience requirement?

To be eligible for a Chevening Scholarship you must have completed 2,800 hours of work experience. This can include full-time employment, part-time employment, remote work, voluntary work, paid or unpaid internships.

Our work experience page gives you all the information you need to calculate whether you are eligible for this requirement.

5. What types of references do I need?

You must submit the names of two referees when you submit your Chevening Application. Your referees can either be known to you in a professional or academic capacity – they should not be a relative or close personal friend. You can upload either two professional references or two academic references, or one professional reference and one academic reference.

If your application is progressed to the next stage, you will then be required to upload two reference letters to the online application system.

Our references page gives more information on the referencing process and requirements.

6. What are your top tips for the essay questions?

In the essays, we are looking for evidence of your leadership potential and networking skills, an overview of your personal goals and how they will benefit your home country, and a strong understanding of how your Chevening Scholarship and chosen master’s courses in the UK will help you to achieve your goals. The essay questions are what gives us the best first impression of who you are as a person and future leader. They are all equally important and equally weighted.

We also understand that leadership comes in many shapes and forms. You do not need to have had managerial experience in order to prove that you have leadership potential. But you should share examples of how you have successfully led a project, a group or a team, ideally in a professional context.

This blogpost contains feedback from last year’s reading committees on common mistakes applicants made, including in the essay questions.

7. Can I apply again and will this either advantage or disadvantage me?

Yes, you can most certainly apply again. Many of our current scholars applied multiple times before being #ChosenForChevening. Applying again will neither advantage nor disadvantage you, as your application will be assessed by an independent reading committee and they will only look at your latest application.

This means you can submit the same essays again. However, we strongly recommend re-reading your essays to check that they are still the best possible representation of you. You should also check carefully how you can improve the essays to give you a better chance of being successful this time round.

8. Why should I apply to Chevening?

Chevening allows you to choose the course that’s right for you from hundreds of courses at hundreds of universities – this includes some of the most prestigious universities globally. It also gives you access to a lifelong community of leaders from around the world, who you will have the chance to meet and bond with throughout your Chevening year at events and conferences across the UK (we organise more than 60 exclusive events for our scholars every year!).

We know we may be biased though, so we’ll let some of our lovely scholars do the talking instead from here:

‘It is true that Chevening is a really powerful network to have. My time in the UK also really pushed me out of my comfort zone. While I was in the UK I got to explore, be self-sufficient, and learn to be a go-getter’ – Bantu Mabado, 2021 Chevening Scholar, University of Edinburgh


‘The ‘Chevening factor’ has boosted my personal brand in ways I had never imagined as both a prospective employee and in my own capacity as an entrepreneur where it has inspired a potent evolution of thought and outlooks in life.’ – Mzameni Mpanza, 2016 Chevening Scholar, Loughborough University


‘I chose Chevening because it gives me to access to the key factors of success: studying in a world-leading university, learning in an empowering environment, and being part of a prestigious community’ – Nassima Chahboun, 2022 Chevening Scholar, University College London

You can find more answers to common questions on our FAQs page. If you have a specific question that you cannot find the answer to on our website, please use the contact us form.

Stay tuned for more live Q&As to follow on our Facebook and Instagram channels during the applications period!

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