China Scholarship Council
2023 CSC-St Andrews PhD Scholarships
Applications to the 2023 CSC St Andrews Scholarships are now closed.
The University of St Andrews has a collaborative agreement with the China Scholarship Council to develop research collaborations between the UK and Chinese universities and research institutions.
Funding is available through the China Scholarship Council – University of St Andrews Scholarships (PhD programmes) to full and visiting PhD students who have been offered a place to study a PhD at the University of St Andrews. Please see the CSC flyer for 2023 entry (PDF) for more information about the programme.
Before applying for the China Scholarship Council and University of St Andrews Scholarship, please read the China Scholarship Council’s terms and conditions. During the scholarship application process, you will be asked to confirm that you have read and agree to these terms and conditions. Please visit the CSC website for more information.
There are two types of postgraduate programmes available to you at St Andrews:
Up to four years in St Andrews. On successful completion, students will graduate with a PhD from the University of St Andrews.
Visiting PhD students
One year in St Andrews (up to 24 months by agreement). Students will be supervised throughout their visit by supervisors at St Andrews. Students will return to China to defend their dissertation and, if successful, their PhD title will be conferred by their home institution in China.
We offer PhD programmes in all areas of Arts, Humanities and Sciences. Further information can be found in the Postgraduate Prospectus 2023 (PDF).
Up to 30 scholarships will be supported for full PhD students entering the University in 2023-2043. Up to 10 scholarships will be supported for visiting PhD students.
The University of St Andrews will cover the full tuition fee and local research costs for the duration of the programme (in respect of any period covered by CSC funding).
The China Scholarship Council will provide a living allowance to support accommodation and subsistence. The China Scholarship Council will also cover a return international air fare to the UK, together with passport and visa application fees.
More information on funding and the eligibility criteria can be found on the China Scholarship Council website.
You must meet the normal requirements for entry into a PhD programme at the University of St Andrews. This is usually a Bachelor's degree from a prestigious university with a mark of 80% and above for a Chinese university or a upper second-class honours or better for a UK university, or a Master's degree. The degree of MD (Medicine) requires a medical qualification that is recognised by the UK General Council.
You must be a national and ordinarily resident of mainland China (not including Hong Kong, Macau or Taiwan). You must also be intending to return to China once your course is completed.
Candidates should also satisfy the selection criteria set out by CSC.
English language ability
All applicants must meet the required English Language requirements before being made an unconditional offer.
The minimum requirements for any postgraduate research student can be found in Profile 7-D (Direct entry). However, individual Schools can reserve the right to request higher test scores than this, and will normally require the same English language test scores as those stated for their postgraduate taught programmes.
Candidates should view the research subject areas offered by the University in the first instance. Candidates are then encourage to identify and contact a potential supervisor that they would like to work with in their intended research area before applying.
The application is a two-stage process: applicants apply first to the University of St Andrews and, on receipt of a course offer and nomination, are then invited to apply to CSC. Full details about how to apply are available at China Scholarship Council - University of St Andrews Scholarship.
9 January 2023
12 January 2023
Stage 1: PhD application deadline. Applicants must submit an application for a PhD programme by 23.59 on Monday, 10 January 2022.
Stage 1: Scholarship application deadline. Applicants must submit their scholarship application in FUND by 23:59 on Thursday, 12 January 2023.
10-31 March 2023
Stage 2: Online CSC application system opens; nominated applicants will be expected to complete their submission before the deadline.
CSC will notify all applicants about the outcome of their application.
The University is delighted to welcome CSC students to St Andrews. Many of our students have shared their experiences of studying at St Andrews through the CSC collaboration; below are just a few of their statements.
'The University of St Andrews is an absolutely excellent institution to pursue your PhD study. It lives up to its long-held reputation as the top University for students’ satisfaction in the UK. Located in the beautiful countryside of Scotland and surrounded by the North Sea, you can have the most scenic view for taking a breath after a well-concentrated time of PhD research. The University is led by a community of world-leading academics and the most responsible and warm-hearted administrative team. A PhD journey is not easy, but St Andrews helps to turn it into such a beautiful and community-based life experience. From here, you meet the world. You will interact with amazing students and colleagues coming from all over the world with diverse cultural and religious backgrounds. The University of St Andrews has not only brought me to the fascinating research world of international relations but also effectively nourished me to become a global citizen.'
Ruoxi Wang, CSC-St Andrews PhD student, School of International Relations
'The University of St Andrews is know as a prestigious university around the world. It is also one of the world’s top 150 universities in the China Post-doctoral Science Foundation rankings. Here we can join world-leading research teams and establish worldwide research connections. In addition, the University staff are very helpful – they provide the highest quality support in any areas you can think of, such as funding applications, career development, mental health and international student advice. Without their help, my PhD life wouldn’t be as easy as it has been. Staying in St Andrews gives you the opportunity of living far away from noisy cities and enjoying the tranquil atmosphere. In addition to the breath-taking Scottish scenery, you may also have the chance to see the Aurora Borealis here! St Andrews is absolutely a great place to study and live.'
Dr Ying Cheng, former CSC-St Andrews PhD student, School of Psychology and Neuroscience
'St Andrews is an excellent place for work and life. The University is well facilitated with modern infrastructures; the staff members are incredibly friendly and supportive, which is really helpful for students' studies and daily life. Therefore, the University was named top in the UK for student satisfaction. The four-year PhD programme not only equipped me with the knowledge and skills for my future career, but it also left me with the most precious experience and unforgettable memories in my life. The world-leading research carried out here motivates us to pursue higher academic achievements. The peaceful town, historical sites and beautiful environment brings us joy and ease after work. Choosing to study in St Andrews is one of the best decisions I have made.'
Dr Wenbo Li, former CSC-St Andrews PhD student, School of Physics and Astronomy
We have welcomed over 100 talented Chinese students on this scholarship. They each receive a unique four-week online induction course run by our International Education Institute (IE), to help them integrate into the St Andrews community and prepare them for academic study. This course is non-compulsory, but CSC students are strongly encouraged to complete it before starting their course.
The aim of the induction course is to help CSC students make the transition to doctoral research at the University, and is divided into three main strands:
- an introduction to doctoral-level study
- an induction to the University
- research and communication skills.
As a doctoral student at the University of St Andrews you will be part of a growing, vibrant, and intellectually stimulating postgraduate community. St Andrews is one of the leading research-intensive universities in the world and offers a postgraduate experience of remarkable richness.
St Leonard’s Postgraduate College is at the heart of the postgraduate community of St Andrews. The College supports all postgraduates and aims to provide opportunities for postgraduates to come together, socially and intellectually, and make new connections.
St Leonard’s College works closely with the Postgraduate Society which is one of the most active societies within the Students’ Association. All doctoral students are automatically welcomed into the Postgraduate Society when they join the University.
In addition to the research training that doctoral students complete in their home School, doctoral students at St Andrews have access to GRADskills – a free, comprehensive training programme to support their academic, professional, and personal development.
Watch this video about postgraduate study at St Andrews to find out more about student life here.