Category Archives: Scholarships

How to Make an Effective Proposal for Academic Scholarship?

By   January 11, 2016

When students pursue a scholarship in foreign universities, they are supposed to submit a letter of motivation or a statement of purpose. The journey to your PHD studies starts right from that point and that letter of motivation is the first milestone that paves the path to your higher studies. It shows your bent of mind and plays an indispensable role to convince the subject supervisor or academic staff. The proposal shows your bent of mind and draws a picture of the applicant. It does have the potential to induce the supervisor to select you in the presence of hundreds of other applications. If you are already working on the mission of higher studies, writing an effective proposal is not an enormous task because you have a sketch of your topic in your mind.

General advice:

1

Plan ahead. Spend a reasonable time on writing a proposal. Keep a calendar of deadlines for scholarships. Don’t forget that letter of motivation is the most important document in your application. Read all of the application instructions carefully pay attention to the details in the entire scholarship application before you complete it. Read the eligibility requirements carefully and find out whether you fulfill it or not. Know your audience. Make sure the goals you express in your application match the goals of the scholarship program to absolutely convince the reviewers. Don’t give unnecessary details and don’t boost yourself and try to be clear and concise.

Things to do before you write the proposal:

  • Work out what topics are being talked about the most and the least
  • Narrow down your interests to a couple of options.
  • Why would this be interesting to people in my field?
  • Does this work have application of some kind?
  • What do I need to have access to / be able to do before I start?

Structure of the proposal:

Opening paragraph:

The very first problem that strikes you is where to start and what to write in your proposal? What should it contain and how many details should be given?  In fact, opening paragraph serves a very imperative role as it is the first thing that is explored and it immediately makes a picture of the applicant. The introductory paragraph should be strong, clear and precise. It is preferable to use “I” instead of “we”. You should write the sentences in active voice and try to avoid passive sentences as they convey a weak message. The language should be persuasive and dialogue style sentences should be used.

The second important aspect of your proposal is literature review in which you draw a picture of your topic and what have you previously done regarding that in your MA or MPhil or while thesis at any stage. Here, you will explain the hole that is found in the knowledge and how would you fill that. It leaves a good impression if your work is not 3 to 5 years old. You need to illustrate your contribution and what would you do in future to further improve the current position of the knowledge.

Methodology:

2

Thirdly, you need to explain the methodology that you are going to use in your research.  Here, you are going to explain the procedure that you will use to do in your area of research. Don’t use jargon and completely avoid acronyms even if you define them. It will waste the time of reviewers and it may be annoying at times.

That last part of the proposal if closing paragraph. You can call it a summary of your proposal. Students when they reach this point feel fatigued and pay less attention to it. You should do it contrary to the common practice and do it very carefully as it may catch the attention of the reviewer.

The role of your writings or published papers:

If you are writing and getting published by reputed journals or attending conferences to read articles, it can a bonus point to convince the reviewers. The more you are published, the higher chances you have to get selected.

Do’s of writing a proposal:

  • Be aware of how little time a reviewer may spend reading your application.
  • Make sure that the key points about you appear quickly.
  • Use headings and short sections or point form.
  • Get the best possible reference letters you can.
  • Make sure your referees have as much information as possible about you (current CV etc.)
  • Start with a sentence or two that explains your project in the simplest terms.

Don’ts of writing a proposal:

  • Avoid jargon and technical language; write your proposal for a general audience.
  • Avoid colored paper, elaborate fonts or glossy covers.
  • Write clearly. Avoid ambiguities. Check spellings.

The very last and very important way of getting selected is that never be reluctant to reapply. If you are rejected by many reviewers and supervisors, you will be selected by one because failure definitely leads to success and fortune favors the braves. Remember that our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail.

———————————————————————————————————————————————–

Author:

Humera Rahim | Research Scholar in Chemistry and Freelancer Writer

An Introduction to Scholarships in Asian countries

By   December 22, 2015

After completing college education, every student dreams of higher studies in European, American and Australian countries, though, there are many scholarships opportunities available in Asian counties for international students to pursue their higher education in the field of Medical, Engineering, Biological, Business and Management and Social Sciences. These countries have earned a satisfying ranking in the field of research and technology and are perfectly competing with European educational institutes in studies as well. Universities are attaining an international competitive position on the basis of producing research scholars who are exploring new horizons to their economy and astonishing the world with their expertise and accomplishment. Their educational institutes have set the tradition of investigation and analysis and earned a reputable name to attract the students from around the globe. The experience to study in these countries is fascinating and worth having.  Following are the major countries and scholarship programs offered to international students.

1

The Japanese Universities with the collaboration of its Govt. provide various scholarships programs in Japan to international students who are interested to study at Japanese universities as undergraduate and research students under the Japanese Government Scholarship Program. The Japanese Govt. bears allowance, traveling costs, and tuition fees. Those wishing to apply for a scholarship should meet one of the following criteria;

  • Recommended by a Japanese embassy or consulate general (Embassy Recommendation).
  • Recommended by the Japanese university which will accept you (University Recommendation).

 Selected by the Japanese university in which you are currently enrolled if you are a privately-financed student already studying in Japan.

2Chinese Government offers various Scholarship opportunities on Bilateral Program basis which covers all the expenses  during studies. These scholarships are offered on mutual students exchange agreement or Memorandum of Understandings between Chinese government and governments of other countries, institutions, universities and international research organizations. Such scholarships programs provide opportunities for study in undergraduate programs, master programs and doctoral programs. For further information about these scholarship visit: http://www.csc.edu.cn/studyinchina/scholarshipdetailen.aspx?cid=97&id=3055

3Taiwan Government through its Ministry of Education provides scholarship opportunities for international students in Bachelors, Masters, and PhD programs. These scholarships programs cover tuition fee, monthly allowances and residence facilities. For further guidance and information regarding scholarship visit http://www.scholars4dev.com/3103/taiwan-government-scholarships-for-international-students/

4The Korean Government Scholarship Program is designed to provide international students with an opportunity to conduct advanced studies at higher educational institutions in Korea and to develop global leaders and strengthen Korea-friendly networks worldwide.  The scholarships cover tuition fee, allowance, travel, airfare, medical insurance, etc. For further information please visit http://www.niied.go.kr/eng/contents.do?contentsNo=78&menuNo=349

5The Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme offers outstanding research opportunities to international students to pursue their PhD degree programs in the institutes of Hong Kong’. These schemes cover tuition fee, residence charges and monthly stipend for three years. For information of theses universities and guideline please visit https://cerg1.ugc.edu.hk/hkpfs/index.html

6Singapore International Graduate Award offers higher education opportunities to the international students who have excellent academics record at undergraduate and master level in the field of engineering, medical and have strong interest in research. This awards covers financial support upto four years of PhD studies including all tuition fee, stipend, residence charges and travel grants. For further guidance and information please visit https://www.a-star.edu.sg/singa-award/

7The Govt. of Malaysia has started the Malaysian International Scholarship (MIS) for International Students in order to invite best professionals from the world to pursue higher education and research in reputable Malaysian universities. This Scholarship also provides career opportunities in order to attract and retain professionals in the fields of medical. This scholarship covers full tuition fee, travel grants, residence charges and monthly stipend. For further guidance please visit Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia https://biasiswa.mohe.gov.my/INTER/

8Turkey Scholarships Postgraduate programs supports full tuition fee, monthly stipend up to $ 400 for pursuing higher studies. To get this scholarship the Proficiency in Turkish language is mandatory.   For information about Turkish higher institutions and scholarship criteria please follow link http://www.edu-active.com/master/2015/feb/05/2015-turkiye-scholarships-international-students-t.html

9Aga Khan Foundation International Scholarships offers higher studies opportunities to the outstanding and poor students of developing counties like Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. This scholarship does not covers full grants and supports 50% tuition fee, residence charges and travel grants. Visit following website for further guidance http://www.akdn.org/akf_scholarships.asp

To Win Scholarships in Japanese Korean and Chinese Scholarships for Doctoral Degree Programs, the required minimum criteria must meet the following points.

  • Learn Japanese, Korean, Chinese or Turkish Language
  • Learn some Japanese Korean or Chinese history
  • Intercultural sharing
  • Share a personal story
  • Be Excited
  • Include a video or keep a blog
  • Practice for interview.
  • Wear something nice and exhibit proficient communication skills

————————————————————————————————————————————-

Author: Humaira Rahim | Research Scholar in Chemistry and Freelancer Writer

Ideas – How to win a Scholarship?

By   November 4, 2015

Developing innovative ideas to win a scholarship:

1

Studying abroad is typically related to an enormous amount of money that a student needs to pay. This notion stops many bright students from pursuing their higher studies and they get busy in their professional and practical life. The academic scenario has changed a lot and the lack of money rarely stops a student from studying abroad. Hundreds of scholarships are available that can convert the cost of your program. The problem is that most of the students don’t apply for a scholarship because they think that can never win it. They believe that it is a waste of time and they can do something better than applying for scholarships.

Every year, thousands of applicants apply for research grants and higher studies in the world’s most reputable universities and research organizations. These organizations scrutinize applications on the basis of their requirements and innovative, search-able ideas. How to make an idea or proposal viable and attainable is the immensely important question that occupies the mind of every student because it ushers the doors of opportunities to them and grants an exposure to the professional and outer world which everyone wants to traverse. Writing a winning scholarship application is not a difficult task. There are some fruitful secrets that can improve your chance of winning a scholarship. Following considerations should be taken into account in this regard.

Set Your Goals by aligning them with Strategic Goals of Sponsors:

2First set your personal goals and which must  be aligned with donors strategic plan is the very elemental step to knock at the door of the scholarship donor.  Which  sector or field  is your interest and what specialty you want to join and work on after obtaining your degree.. How your acquired skills, expertise and knowledge would  intend  to  contribute  to  the development of the society, political improvements and technology enhancement of  the country. Your objectives should be clear, explicit and supported and justified with some solid facts  and  figures.

How degree program will help you to achieve your objectives:

3How a degree program and courses offered within selected programs will be beneficial in achieving your goals. For the purpose you should read all courses offered, scheme of studies in a degree program. This is possible after setting goals clearly and obtaining knowledge about offered programs through detailed studies.

Why you are Best for Scholarships:

4Why the organization selects you for the program, in order to declare yourself the best candidate reflect your strength in terms of your degree programs, courses studied, research skills, other acquired skills, command on experimental work, instruments and laboratory equipment. What you learned from your studied programs, how you gathered professional and technical experience, for instance, if you are a member of any professional society, association mentioned in the proposal and provide their proof. Present your personality as a leader, good team member, your attitude towards accepting challenges, work in stress. Be realistic and always define your strong points in the STAR approach (What was Situation, What were your  Targets, What you Attain and What were Results.)

Conclusion:

After articulation of ideas, ask above question and find best appropriate answers of above mentioned questions. Discuss with friends, field experts and reflect all of them in your proposal and avoid assumptions.  Provide facts and justify ideas with evidences.

—————————————————————————————————————————–

Authored by Humaira Raheem, Research Scholar in Chemistry