How to Apply for Stellenbosch University Scholarships 2023

Stellenbosch University Scholarships for Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences is pleased to announce a limited number of full-time scholarships for PhD studies commencing in 2024

The Graduate School coordinates the partly-structured, full-time doctoral scholarship programme and administers the doctoral scholarships.

The Graduate School also coordinates multi- and interdisciplinary research themes within the doctoral programme to help prepare Africa’s next generation of academics and professionals to address critical challenges of the continent with a focus on the eradication of poverty and the promotion of peace and democracy.

Collaborative research, (co)supervision and exchange are encouraged and channelled through PANGeA (Partnership for Africa’s Next Generation of Academics) involving leading universities elsewhere in Africa.

How to Apply for Stellenbosch University Scholarships 2023


  • PhD scholarships: Up to R420 000, over three years.
  • Lower values may be allocated where successful applicants hold other scholarships amounting to less than the maximum value of the Graduate School scholarship.


  • Applicants should have obtained 70% in the final year of the previous completed degree.
  • Applicants are expected to provide a sample of their writing with their application:
    • MA thesis for PhD applicants
    • Any published academic articles related to your application
  • At the date of application, applicants must not be older than 40 years to apply for a PhD scholarship.
  • Applicants must be able to commence studies in January 2024.
  • Applicants must submit an application to study at Stellenbosch University in addition to this scholarship application ( Applicants are not required to be registered or to have a supervisor. They should, however, inform themselves regarding the availability of suitable supervisors in their particular field of research in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, before submitting an application.

Scholarships shall be awarded to eligible candidates taking the following factors into account:

On an individual level:

  • High academic merit and the intellectual capacity to study successfully at the doctoral level.
  • Strong personal motivation to complete the programme.
  • The extent to which the proposed topic of study fits into the research programme of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.
  • Availability of suitable supervisors for the proposed topic of study.
  • Candidates who are below the age of 40. Although applicants over 40 may be considered, preference will given to younger scholars.

On a collective level:

  • Gender equity.
  • To enhance compatibility of university and linguistic backgrounds, preference will be given to applicants from African countries south of the Sahara.
  • Among the South African component of scholarship applicants, CBI (Coloured, Black and Indian) applicants will be given preference, provided that they meet all the other requirements.
  • Among the non-South African component of scholarship applicants, applicants whose nominations are supported by officials of the PANGeA institutions (universities of Botswana, Dar es Salaam, Ghana, Makerere, Malawi, Nairobi and Yaoundé I) will be given preference, provided that they meet all the other requirements.

Applicants are advised that the University may require additional information, over and above information supplied in the application, in order to reach a decision about the suitability of any candidate for the award of a scholarship.

Documents Required for Application

Interested applicants can begin to prepare the following:

  • Official application form;
  • A motivation letter (not longer than 600 words);
  • A pre-proposal (or research idea) of no more than 500 words describing your proposed research question and conceptualization. You should discuss the unique contribution your research will make to the existing body of knowledge in this field of study, the problem statement, the methodology / theoretical framework / philosophical underpinnings you intend to use; and the feasibility of your study.
  • A certified copy of your full academic transcript;
  • A certified copy of your MA degree certificate – or foreign equivalent (if you have completed the qualification but have not yet obtained the certificate, official proof from the institution concerned that the degree will be delivered before February 2024);
  • A certified copy of your South African ID /or passport (for international students).

Method of Application

Please direct any enquiries about the scholarships to Dr Candice Steele at

Download scholarship application form here

PLEASE NOTE: You must apply for entrance to study at Stellenbosch University in addition to this scholarship application. Please visit the Postgraduate Studies website to apply to the University.

Visit the Official Webpage

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