Steps to apply for a scholarship

Apply for scholarships to fund your university study in a few easy steps.

Step 1. Find out what is on offer

Get to know the full range of scholarships available to you so you don’t miss out on anything. Start by searching UC’s scholarship database.

Select the search criteria, area and level of study relevant to you to the scholarships you are eligible for. Sometimes competition for scholarships is very strong. You can increase your chances of receiving one by applying for all of the scholarships you qualify for.

Step 2. Check you qualify

Many scholarships are designed especially for people who:

  • Are a specific gender, age, or ethnicity
  • Belong to a particular indigenous, location specific or other special group
  • Have achieved academic or sporting excellence
  • Intend to study in a certain field or at a certain level

Read through the scholarship information carefully to make sure you meet the criteria. Make a list of the scholarships you are qualified to apply for. Get as much information about the scholarship as possible.

Contact the provider of the scholarship if you need more details of the application procedures and what is expected of the successful applicant.

If the scholarship entails a particular project, find out the full objectives and intended methodology of the project.

If the scholarship is being funded by a private enterprise, find out as much information as you can about the company, such as its philosophy and goals.

Most UC scholarships require that you have admission into the University. Find out more about this in Apply and enrol.

You also need to check to make sure that you meet any eligibility restrictions, like gender, age, nationality, indigenous or other special group. You should only apply if you definitely match the eligibility criteria.

International students may apply unless the regulations specifically restrict the scholarship to NZ citizens or holders of NZ residence class visas.

 

Step 3.Check scholarship application deadlines

Application deadlines vary broadly, particularly if you are applying for a scholarship offered by an external organisation. Check the opening and closing dates for each scholarship you intend to apply for.

Applications are due at 5pm on the closing date. If the date falls on a weekend or public holiday, the application will be due at 5pm on the next working day.

When are scholarships open?

Applications for scholarships open approximately eight weeks before the closing dates.

Undergraduate

  • Most of the undergraduate scholarships offered or administered by the University close for applications on 31 March.
  • Scholarships offered by external organisations close throughout the year.
  • Scholarship information and application forms are generally available approximately two months prior to the closing date.

Doctoral Applications

  • There are two rounds of University of Canterbury Doctoral Scholarships each year, closing on 15 May and 15 October.
  • For applications that close on 15 May, offers will be made in July, with funding able to commence from 1 July.
  • For applications that close on 15 October, offers will be made in December, with funding able to commence from 1 January.

Master's Applications

  • There are two rounds of University of Canterbury Master's Scholarships each year, closing on 15 May and 15 October.
  • For applications that close on 15 May, offers will be made during the last week of July, with funding able to commence from 1 August.
  • For applications that close on 15 October, offers will be made in December, with funding able to commence from 1 January.
  • All students are notified of the outcome of their applications.
  • Students who are offered a scholarship must accept in writing by the specified date.

Overseas Study

  • Major awards close for applications in August, October or November, for study commencing in the second half of the following year (northern hemisphere). Others close throughout the year.
  • Scholarship information and application forms are generally available approximately two months prior to the closing date.

Step 4. Gather your Information

To apply for most scholarships, you will need to fill out forms and supply documents to support your application. You might also be asked to attend an interview with the selection panel. Some things you may be asked to provide with your application are:

  • Proof of citizenship or residency status (e.g. birth certificate, passport)
  • Evidence of community involvement, financial hardship or ethnic background
  • Letter of approval from your school or university
  • List of referees
  • Transcripts or records of learning
  • Bank details and IRD number

You need to collect, make copies of, and certify all the necessary documents. To certify your documents, take the original and a photocopy to an authorised person. They will check both documents and sign the copy to show it is a true reproduction of the original.

An authorised person could be a teacher, kaumātua, minister of religion, police officer, registered medical professional, solicitor or Justice of the Peace. This may depend on the individual scholarship, so it is best to check.

Your referees are very important. Make sure they know which scholarships you have listed them as a referee in. Make sure they can provide the kind of information about you that the selection committee will need to know.

For example, if they need to know about your research capabilities make sure the referee you provide has supervised your research work before or has some other knowledge of your capabilities.

Also be sure to provide your referee with some background on what you are applying for.

If necessary arrange any academic or language tests required.

Step 5. Complete your application

Remember that you are trying to prove you are worthy of financial support. The selection panel needs to see that you have something special to offer. Remember these tips when completing your applicaiton:

  • Be tidy by writing or typing your application neatly. Check your spelling.
  • Make sure you have provided everything that is asked for and attach the documents in the order they are requested. Paperclip everything together so they are easy to detach and read.  Do not use staples or binding.
  • Only provide a CV if it is specifically requested.
  • Sign and date the privacy provisions.
  • If you can, find out about the organisation that is awarding the scholarship and try to tailor your application according to their vision and goals.
  • Submit your application well before or by the closing date. The selection panel receives many applications and can often be ruthless in the elimination process. They will be looking for any reason to reject an application, and lateness may be one of the very first criteria.
  • Provide accurate and current contact details – sometimes successful scholarships are lost because candidates do not respond to the offer letter in sufficient time because their address is wrong or they are on holiday and the scholarship is then offered to another candidate.
  • Apply for each scholarship separately. Do not use the same application to apply for two separate scholarships. Each scholarship will have its own particular requirements and if you use a previous application, you may miss addressing vital and particular criteria of the new scholarship.
  • Ensure that all the information requested is provided by the closing date. You may need to supply a birth certificate, school results, financial information and/or references. Where a University of Canterbury closing date is listed, applications must be received at the Scholarships Office by 5.00 pm, on that day. If a University of Canterbury closing date falls on a weekend or a public holiday, applications will be accepted until 5.00 pm on the next business day.

Referees' reports

Referees' reports are a written statement about your abilities from a person(s) you select. Academic referees do not need to be from the University of Canterbury, but may be any academic individual that you feel is appropriate.

Make sure that your referee writes the name of the scholarship(s) that you are applying for on the form. It is also beneficial to provide your referees with the regulations for the scholarship for which you are applying.

It's your responsibility to ensure that referees' reports are in by the due date. The Scholarships Office will not follow up referees' reports that are incomplete or absent.

Step 6. Selection process

Most scholarships are selected on the basis of your written application and referees' reports. Some however, will require interviews, particularly postgraduate scholarships. If an interview is required the Scholarships Office will notify you.

Selection Committees vary according to the scholarship. The selection process typically takes six to eight weeks but may take longer. You will receive notification of the outcome in writing once the selection is final.

More information

Scholarships Office
Phone  +64 3 369 3458; +64 3 369 3460; +64 3 369 3394
Email scholarships@canterbury.ac.nz

Location
Level 2, Matariki