Australia Awards Scholarships are prestigious international awards offered by the Australian Government to the next generation of global leaders for development. Through study and research, recipients develop the skills and knowledge to drive change and help build enduring people-to-people links with Australia.
Australia’s international development assistance in Sri Lanka aims to develop human resource capacity and leadership skills in identified priority sectors.
Applicants will be assessed for their professional and personal qualities, academic competence and, most importantly, their potential to impact on development challenges in Sri Lanka in these sectors.
Australia Awards Scholarships are open to eligible applicants from all sectors (public, private and corporate sectors including national NGOs and autonomous agencies) and are offered on the basis of merit, transparency and equal access. Applications are strongly encouraged from eligible women, people with disability and people working in Northern, Eastern, Sabaragamuwa, Uwa and Central Provinces.
The fields of study identified each year for Australia Awards Scholarships reflect the development needs of Sri Lanka and priorities agreed between the Australian and the Sri Lankan Governments. They align with Australia’s bilateral aid program and regional objectives.
Australia’s development assistance program in Sri Lanka primarily focuses on education, health and sustainable economic growth.
The priority study areas for Intake 2015 are as follows:
Priority Sector (Development Theme)
Field of Study
Relating to inclusive, quality education at Primary and Secondary levels. Applicants should be involved in overall policy, planning or
management at the national or subnational level.
Relating to Water and Sanitation; and Nutrition. Particularly targeted at addressing root causes of issues in respect of Water and
Sanitation; and Nutrition in vulnerable groups in Northern, Eastern, Sabaragamuwa, Uwa and Central Provinces.
Sustainable economic growth
Relating to Community Forestry; Rural Development and Technical Vocational Education & Training (TVET) - particularly targeting areas
with strong income generation potential in Northern, Eastern, Sabaragamuwa, Uwa and Central Provinces.
Relating to Public Administration, Financial Management and Development Economics in any of the areas of Community Forestry; Rural
Development and TVET.
Scholarships are available only for courses that are listed on the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS), which is the official Australian Government website that lists all Australian education providers that offer courses to people studying in Australia on student visas.
Scholarships are offered only for studies at the Masters level for a maximum of 2 years.
As Australia Awards Scholarships are development scholarships, applicants will be assessed on their potential to impact on development challenges in Sri Lanka in the specified priority areas – in addition to their professional and personal qualities and academic competence.
Therefore courses selected should be focused on addressing development challenges in one of the specified priority areas. . Applicants should seek to justify their course selection by showing how the course content will address a knowledge gap in their work area/environment & in turn contribute to the develop of Sri Lanka in one of the specified priority areas.
The Guideline for selecting a relevant course is available HERE.
You should choose two course preferences. You are encouraged to choose two different institutions rather than two different courses at the same University. If your application for the first choice is unsuccessful, we will forward your application to your second choice.
Applicants are expected to undertake research on the Australian institutions that may provide the most appropriate course of study which meets their needs. Therefore, you are encouraged to consider study programs and universities preferences carefully before applying. You must research information provided on institution websites, and ensure that the course is 104 weeks or less in duration; and that you meet the institution’s English language & other course related requirements. We will not consider requests for changes after applications are submitted.
The “CRICOS code” of your chosen course must be entered in your scholarship application form. You must search for this code on the Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS) at http://cricos.deewr.gov.au
Applicants from Sri Lanka must also meet the following country specific conditions:
They must be employed in the public, private or civil society sector, and the following criteria must be confirmed by an employment letter: (see # in table of supporting documents below)
PUBLIC SECTOR EMPLOYEES must have at least 3 years’ post qualification experience in the public sector with 2 years in a field relevant to the proposed course of study and be confirmed in their current positions.
PRIVATE AND CIVIL SOCIETY SECTOR EMPLOYEES must have at least 3 years’ post qualification experience in a field relevant to the proposed course of study.
They must not have previously received any Sri Lankan or overseas government-funded award (including Australian Government scholarships) for long-term academic studies in a foreign country. Long-term academic studies are defined as one year or longer in duration.
If they have ever previously received an Australian Government scholarship longer than 6 months but less than one year, they must have resided outside of Australia for twice the length of the total time that they were in Australia on that scholarship
They must not be currently studying at a university abroad.
They must have completed a tertiary level qualification at least equivalent to an Australian Bachelor’s degree.
They must have an academic background relevant to their proposed study program.
Applicants from the public sector must obtain necessary approvals from their Ministries if selected for an interview.
Awardees are required to return to Sri Lanka for at least two years after completing their scholarship, to contribute to economic and social development of the country. Failure to do so will incur a debt to the Commonwealth of Australia for the total value of the scholarship.
Awards for studies in 2015 must be taken in that year. They cannot be transferred to a future year except for reasons provided in the Scholarships Policy Handbook
Awardees are required to sign a contract with the Commonwealth of Australia declaring they will comply with the conditions of the scholarship
a minimum IELTS overall score of 6.5 (Academic module) with no band less than 6.0; or
a TOEFL paper-based test score of at least 580, or a TOEFL computer based test score of at least 92, with a minimum of 21 in all subtests; or
a Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE Academic) overall score of 58, with no communicative skill score less than 50.
English proficiency test scores must still be valid on 1 January 2015 and must be submitted with a scholarship application. Applications with no valid IELTS, TOEFL or PTE test results will be deemed ineligible.
Australia Awards Scholarships are offered on the basis of merit, transparency and equal access.
Applications from eligible women, members of ethnic communities/traditionally marginalised groups and persons with a disability are strongly encouraged
The objective is that at least 50% of the awards will go to female applicants. Family members can join you, but certain conditions apply- see the Scholarships Policy Handbook. Accommodation is secure. Your children can access free public education in Australia and childcare facilities are available (on payment basis) if required.
Any other document you wish to upload ensuring your eligibility
*Applicants must include both consolidated and year-by-year transcripts.
# the Employment Letter must address the matters detailed under Eligibility Criteria above.
Applicants should request transcripts from universities. If universities refuse to provide transcripts directly to applicants, contact the Australia Awards Office Sri Lanka for a letter of request. Transcripts must be received before the closing date for applications.
Referee reports in different formats cannot be accepted and may make applications ineligible. Contact the Australia Awards Office Sri Lanka to clarify reference requirements.
Research applicants shortlisted for a selection interview must submit a well-developed research proposal by the date of the interview.
Successful applicants will be required to submit a police clearance certificate at the time of visa application. Public sector applicants must also submit the “ERD form 2” once they are selected.
Experience shows that it takes time for supervisors to complete referee reports. Approach supervisors as soon as possible to obtain up-to-date referee reports. If a referee report is not in English, a translation is required. References should come from employers, senior colleagues or academics familiar with the applicant’s academic, professional skills and achievements. Referee reports from family members or spouses are not acceptable.
We strongly advise applicants to apply online and to do so well before the closing date. The online application facility (OASIS) experiences peak usage in the days leading up to the closing date and applicants may experience delays.
An application can be revised until it is submitted. To edit an application after it is submitted, it must be ‘Un-submitted’. This can be done only before the applications closing date.
Scan and upload all required documents. Click here to view instructions on how to scan and upload documents in PDF.
Print a copy of the application before submitting it.
An email acknowledging receipt of your application will be sent after it is submitted.
If it is not possible to lodge an application online, contact the Australia Awards Office Sri Lanka for assistance well in advance of the closing date.
APPLICATION DATES (FOR STUDY COMMENCING IN AUSTRALIA IN 2015)
Opening date: 1 February 2014
Closing date: 30 April 2014, 5pm Sri Lanka time
Applications or supporting documents received after this date will not be considered.
Australia Awards Scholarships are offered for the minimum period necessary for the individual to complete the academic program specified by the Australian education institution, including any preparatory training.
Scholarship recipients will generally receive the following benefits:
Full tuition fees
Economy class airfare to and from Australia, via the most direct route
Medical expenses and visa processing fees related to the Australian Aid Student Visa 576
A one-off establishment allowance on arrival to contribute to costs such as accommodation, books, etc.
A fortnightly contribution to basic living expenses paid at a rate determined by the Australian Government
A compulsory 4-6 week Introductory Academic Program covering life and study in Australia prior to commencing formal studies
Overseas Student Health Cover for the duration of the award to cover an awardee’s basic medical costs. (This is for an awardee only and excludes pre-existing medical conditions)
Subject to requirements and eligibility, awardees may also receive:
Supplementary Academic Support (Tutorial Assistance), if required, to improve a student’s performance to assist with academic success
A reunion airfare for unaccompanied awardees
A once only return economy class airfare via the most direct route may be approved for for fieldwork for awardees undertaking research in Australia or their home country or a third country in exceptional circumstances
Refer to the Scholarships Policy Handbook for details.
The selection process is open and transparent, and consists of the following steps:
Intake opens – 1 February 2014
Submit online applications with necessary supporting documents. Intake closes at 5.00 pm (Sri Lankan time) 30 April 2014
Eligibility checks, independent assessments and ranking
Short listing& interview *– July 2014
Recommendation of applicants and offer of scholarships – August 2014
Sri Lankan Australia Awards team seeks university placement
Immigration/visa and health clearances – October 2014
Pre-departure briefing and mobilization to Australia– December 2014 / January 2015
*The interview takes into account applicants’ professional and personal leadership attributes, academic competence and potential outcomes of their proposed study program including contribution to development outcomes in Sri Lanka in the specified priority sectors.
Only short-listed candidates are contacted for interview.
What actions should I start now?
Applicants must first check if they are eligible to apply for an Australia Awards Scholarship. Eligibility criteria are detailed above and can be found in the Australia Awards Scholarships Policy Handbook.
Applicants must carefully research universities and courses, especially the areas detailed in the section, CRICOS and researching courses, below. It is the responsibility of applicants to understand all aspects of study programs at their preferred university before submitting their applications. Applicants must include two preferred universities in their application.
Applicants must ensure they:
apply for two study programs related to one of the priority areas and fields of study detailed above
satisfy all enrolment requirements specified by a university, including English language proficiency requirements
identify a supervisor if they wish to undertake a Master by Research. Applicants must provide a statement from a supervisor giving in-principle support to a research proposal. The statements must be included with their applications.
Note: Applicants are not required to obtain admissions or get offer letters from the universities.
CRICOS and researching courses
The Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS) has information on all Australian universities with courses available to international students.
It is important for applicants to investigate options in the courses of study they hope to pursue. The CRICOS website and websites of individual universities are the best places to do this. They can clarify:
if a course is available to international students
details of course content to compare course components
English language requirements for selected courses
other specific course requirements
how closely course content links with one of the priority areas detailed above.
Read the information on CRICOS carefully because not all courses are available to international students. Each course has a unique code: a six digit number and check letter. This number is an important identifier for selected courses. It must be accurate when typed into an application.
Information sessions for potential applicants will be scheduled during the application period. For more details click here
The Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS) has information on all Australian universities with courses available to international students: www.cricos.deewr.gov.au
The Guideline for selecting a relevant course will be available for download soon