Diversity Scholarships

The School of Museum Studies is committed to supporting museums and galleries to increase the diversity of their staff. The aim of the Diversity Scholarships is to take positive action to encourage more UK-based individuals from underrepresented backgrounds to consider a museums and galleries sector career and apply for and participate in museum studies training with the School of Museum Studies. It responds to the urgent need to promote entry to the sector for a more diverse workforce. Scholarships are open to those already working museums as well as new entrants and can be used across our full-time and distance learning programmes.

The School of Museum Studies will reserve four scholarships for applicants who meet at least one of our diversity criteria. Applicants must also meet our entry requirements and have been made an offer to study with us. These are each worth £3,000 for students starting any of our taught postgraduate Masters or postgraduate diploma courses (campus or distance learning) in Autumn 2020.

If your application is successful, you will receive the scholarship as a £3,000 deduction from your course fees.

How to apply

All applicants wishing to be considered for a Scholarship will need to submit both their main application (online) and their Diversity Scholarship application form.

All those who submit their diversity scholarship application form by this deadline, and who are holding an offer of a place, will be considered for a scholarship. Those who submit their course application form by this time but who do not yet hold an offer will first have their course application reviewed by the admissions team. If they are made an offer, their application will then be considered for a scholarship.


You can apply for a Diversity Scholarship if you meet all of the following criteria:

  • You are applying for a postgraduate diploma or Masters course with the School of Museum Studies
  • You are domiciled in the UK and not charged international rate fees
  • You are self-funding – applicants who will be funded by employers or other schemes are not eligible (students wishing to take out a loan can apply for a scholarship)
  • You meet at least one of the diversity criteria set out below

Diversity criteria

You are eligible to apply for the diversity scholarship if you meet any of the following criteria:

  • You are from a black and minority ethnic group. For the purposes of this scholarship opportunity, this is defined as Arab; Asian or Asian British; Black or Black British; Chinese; Gypsy or Traveller; Irish Traveller; Mixed White and Asian; Mixed White and Black African; Mixed White and Black Caribbean; Other Asian background; Other Black background; Other Ethnic background; Other Mixed background; and Other White background.
  • You have a disability as defined in the Equality Act 2010
  • You have been in care as a looked-after child for at least 13 weeks since the age of 14
  • You are a carer for an ill or disabled family member
  • You come from one of the most deprived areas of the country as defined by the government's IMD (Indices of Multiple Deprivation) database. If your postcode IMD value is 16,250 or less, you meet this criteria. You can check your postcode using the IMD search tool. Please note this map only covers England and the postcode we will use is that of your home address in your last year of school or college, or your current home postcode if you have been independent from your parents/guardians for at least 3 years.
  • You come from an area where it is unusual for people to go to university. This is defined by the government's classification called Polar 3. To meet this criteria your home address in the last year of school or college, or your current home address if you have been independent from your parents/guardians for at least 3 years, must fall into quintile 1 or 2. Check your address area using the Participation of Local Areas (POLAR) search tool. Please note this information only covers the UK.
  • You were in receipt of a Maintenance Grant as an undergraduate

Selection process

The selection process will be undertaken in two stages.

Stage 1

The Diversity Scholarship application form of all those who are holding offers of a place will be considered by a representative from the School of Museum Studies’ Equalities and Diversities Working Group in consultation, if necessary, with the Widening Participation team and the Equalities Unit at the University of Leicester, to confirm eligibility.

Stage 2

The Diversity Scholarship application forms of all those who are eligible will be considered by a scholarship panel consisting of at least one academic and at least one member of the School’s Diversity and Equality Working Group. Scholarship applicants will be assessed on the overall quality of the statements provided in the Diversity Scholarship application form. The panel will look specifically at how well applicants describe their ambitions in undertaking the programme, and how they link their current responsibilities or future career aspirations to the content and learning outcomes of the programme.

Please note that the decision to award a Diversity Scholarship will only be made using the information on the Diversity Scholarship application form. The panel will not use the online course application form, which is used to assess whether a place on the course can be offered. Preference will given to applicants who are not already qualified at Masters level or above, and those not already holding a scholarship. All those considered for an award will need to have satisfied the course entry requirements before being considered for a Diversity Scholarship. The decision of the panel is discretionary and final.

Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their scholarship application before the end of August 2020.

Please note the scholarship application is a separate process to applying for a course. Explore our courses and apply, before applying for the scholarship. If you have any questions or would like to talk to someone about this scholarship, please contact us.