Gates Cambridge Scholarships for International Students

Gates Cambridge Scholarships for International Students

This is a postgraduate scholarship at the University of Cambridge, and it works hand-in-hand with the University’s mission, which is to contribute to society through learning, fantastic teaching, and outstanding research. The Gates Cambridge Scholarships for International Students attracts excellent students from all over the world who go out to the world to develop innovative solutions for some of the world’s greatest problems.

No of countries 111 Countries
No of recipients 80
The amount awarded since inception $210 million
Providers Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation


Gates Cambridge Scholarship 2023 Overview

The Gates Cambridge Scholarship program was established in October 2000 by a donation of US$210m from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to the University of Cambridge; this is the largest ever single donation to a UK university. The first class of scholars came into residence in October 2001.

Each year Gates Cambridge offers 80 full-cost scholarships to outstanding applicants from countries outside the UK to pursue a postgraduate degree in any subject available at the University of Cambridge. Approximately two-thirds of these awards will be offered to Ph.D. students, with approximately 25 awards in the US round and 55 in the International round.

Applications for 2023 entry opened on 15 September 2022.

Scholarship Worth

The Gates Cambridge Scholarship is a fully-funded scholarship and the entire cost of studying is covered by the Foundation for students accepted to study at the University of Cambridge. Here is a breakdown of the things covered in this scholarship.

  • University Tuition Fees
  • One-Side Airfare 
  • Visa Costs
  • Immigration Health Surcharge
  • Maintenance allowance for a single student (£17,848 for 12 months for PhD scholars the award is for up to 4 years
  • Academic funding – from up to £500 to up to £2,000, depending on the duration, of the course, to attend conferences and courses.
  • Family allowance for children only – up to £10,120 for one child and up to £14,440 for two or more children (2021-22 rate). The family allowance doesn’t cover partners. 
  • Fieldwork
  • Maternity/Paternity funding
  • Hardship funding – for unforeseen difficulties
  • The Foundation can reduce the allowance for candidates who are recipients of a salary or scholarship. All other financial assistance must be disclosed.

Gates Cambridge Scholarship Acceptance Rate

The Gates Cambridge Scholarship for International Students is very competitive, their acceptance rate is 0.3%, which means only 3 out of 1000 applicants receive this scholarship.


To be eligible for Gates Cambridge Scholarships for International Students, you need to be;

  • A citizen of any country outside the United Kingdom
  • Applying to pursue one of the following courses at the University of Cambridge:
    • Ph.D. (full-time or part-time*)
    • MLitt (full-time)
    • One-year postgraduate course (full-time), with some exceptions – see below
  • Applicants must show evidence of academic excellence (through their transcripts, references, experience and the potential to succeed on the chosen course).
  • If you are currently studying at Cambridge and wish to apply for a new postgraduate course you can apply for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship
  • Current Gates Cambridge Scholars may also apply for a second scholarship if they are applying for a new degree. 
  • All current Cambridge students will be considered the second, international round.

For October 2023 entry, Gates Cambridge is piloting a scheme which allows applicants to apply for funding for a part-time doctoral degree

Gates Cambridge Scholarship Application

To apply for Gates Cambridge Scholarships for International Students;

  • Applicants need to submit their application for admission and funding via the University’s Graduate Application Portal.
  • To be considered for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship you must complete the section to apply for admission to a course and a College place and the Gates Cambridge part of the funding section. Gates Cambridge has access to the full application for admission and funding when reviewing applications.
  • Gates Cambridge requires Ph.D. applicants only to submit a research proposal as part of their application for funding.
  • In addition to two academic references for admission, Gates Cambridge applicants must arrange for someone to submit a reference setting out how they meet the scholarship’s criteria.
    • You should ask someone of appropriate standing who is able to answer the question with authority and who understands the criteria and highly competitive nature of the Gates Cambridge program and academic standards at the University of Cambridge.

Courses Not Considered at the Gates Cambridge Scholarship

  • Any Undergraduate degree, such as BA (undergraduate) or BA affiliated (a second BA)
  • Business Doctorate (BusD)
  • Master of Business (MBA)
  • Master of Finance (MFin)
  • MASt courses
  • PGCE
  • MBBChir Clinical Studies
  • MD Doctor of Medicine degree (6 years, part-time, Home students only)
  • Graduate Course in Medicine (A101)
  • Part-time degrees other than the Ph.D.
  • Non-degree courses

Provider Information
Provider Name
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
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