Credit: Wikimedia Commons via Creative Commons

UKRI funding for international postgraduate students in the UK available from next year

By Silas Pease

In a move that will hopefully encourage more international students to study in the UK, the UKRI will grant successful applicants the full award.

United Kingdom Research and Innovation (UKRI) has recently announced that all of their student funding awards for postgraduate programmes will be expanded to also cover international students from the beginning of the 2021/22 academic year.

International students will be eligible for these awards in full, meaning funding should cover both tuition and research costs, as well as living expenses. This does not, however, apply to international students currently enrolled in their course. 

It is hoped that this update will potentially attract more PhD students to study in the UK. In its statement on this development, the UKRI stressed the importance of international PhD students, stating that they “play a valuable part in the UK’s research system”.

International fees set independently by the universities themselves will not be covered by this scheme, though the UKRI has stated that enough leeway will be given to allow students to seek additional financial support from other sources to help combat these costs. 

Despite this, the UKRI has stated that the number of international students applying for the award specifically on a doctoral training programme will be limited to only 30% of all total accepted applicants.

This development comes after the UK government announced earlier this year that from the 2021/22 academic year onwards, EU, EEA, or Swiss students looking to study in England, Scotland, or Wales would no longer qualify for home status when applying for student funding. Students from these states who have already begun their studies will still be eligible for the duration of their course. 

UKRI is a non-departmental public body that operates with organisations such as universities, research centres, and businesses across the UK. Its main goal is to advance research and innovation in a variety of fields, both scientific and otherwise, in the UK. This is primarily done through investment and support efforts, including funding for students.

More information on this update will be given later in the year, meanwhile, the full statement from the UKRI can be found here.


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