Postgraduate research

Chinese Scholarship Council and University of Leicester joint PhD scholarships

Qualification: PhD

Application deadline: Closed for 2024 entry. Applications for 2025/26 will open later this year. More information is available on the China Scholarship Council website


The Chinese Scholarship Council (CSC), in partnership with the University of Leicester, has up to 25 full scholarships per annum available for outstanding Chinese students to undertake full-time PhD study at the University of Leicester.

The CSC and University of Leicester will support the following prioritised areas of study:

  • Human Health
  • Earth and Environment
  • Heritage and Culture
  • Social Equality
  • Molecules and Materials
  • Astrophysics and Planetary Science
  • Clean Energy and Sustainability
  • AI, Data Science and Modelling

Other subjects may be considered subject to the availability of relevant research expertise at the University of Leicester. Please refer to our research subjects to find out more about research at the University of Leicester and look at the supervisor's research interests sections for potential supervisors.

Entry criteria

  1. Candidates should be citizens of the People’s Republic of China. Overseas Chinese students may be eligible for application subject to CSC policy at the time.
  2. Candidates must hold an unconditional offer letter from the University of Leicester before applying to the CSC. Therefore, they should fulfil the relevant academic entry requirements set by the University of Leicester, including a high level of English language proficiency. (See entry requirements below)*  Browse entry requirement information for different schools/departments.
  3. Candidates should satisfy other application criteria set out by China Scholarship Council (CSC) 
  4. Successful candidates acknowledge that they should return to China upon completion of their studies.

Application timetable

Download and complete your Research Proposal FormFollow the advice in the How to Apply section below.

  • 7 January 2024: Deadline for applicants submit applications to the University.
  • February 2024: The University makes offer decisions and issues conditional offer letters, and provides a nomination list to the CSC.
  • March 2024: Successful applicants submit applications to the CSC (normally the application window is open from 10 March to 30 March 2024)
  • May 2024: CSC complete the qualification review and the expert panel review on shortlisted candidates. The CSC confirms eligible candidates and provide a shortlist to the University
  • June 2024: The University confirms the list and updates successful candidates.
  • 23 September 2024: PhD start date.

Closed for 2024 entry. 

Applications for 2025/26 will open later this year. More information is available on the China Scholarship Council website.



The CSC will provide each scholarship recipient with a living stipend (including. medical insurance) as prescribed by the Chinese Government and an international roundtrip airfare of economy class between China and the United Kingdom.

The University of Leicester will provide each scholarship recipient with a tuition fee waiver and cover bench fees for laboratory based subjects (where relevant) up to £5,000 per annum.

The above joint funding for each scholarship recipient will be up to 48 months.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

Applicants are required to hold/or expect to obtain a UK Bachelor Degree 2:1 or better in a relevant subject or overseas equivalent. Some subjects may also require a Master's degree in a relevant subject. Please refer to the subject pages for specific entry requirements.

The University of Leicester English language requirements apply. Refer to the relevant subject for English requirements.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.0 or equivalent tests/qualifications

  • Engineering
  • Computer Science
  • Geology
  • Chemistry
  • Mathematics
  • Physics

IELTS 7.0 or equivalent tests/qualifications

  • Education
  • English
  • Law
  • Population Health Sciences

IELTS 6.5 or equivalent tests/qualifications

  • All other subjects not listed above

Informal enquiries

Informal enquiries

Please contact for application advice.

How to apply

How to apply

To submit your application, please use the apply button at the bottom of the page and select September 2024 dropdown menu.

Refer to our research supervisors and identify potential supervisors for your chosen research.

Include with your application:

  • CV
  • covering letter explaining why you want to study for a PhD at Leicester
  • Download and complete the Research proposal form outlining the area you want to research. Upload the completed proposal form to your online application.
  • Include the names/s of the proposed PhD supervisor/s, Subject/Department and your project title in the space provided on the proposal page.
  • Degree certificates and transcripts of study already completed and if possible transcript to date of study currently being undertaken.
  • Evidence of English language proficiency if applicable.
  • In the reference section please upload letters of reference (on signed headed paper) if already available or enter the contact details of your two academic referees in the text boxes provided and we will request references direct to your referees.
  • In the funding section please specify CSC Scholarship

Incomplete applications or applications with no research proposal form will not be considered



Candidates should be citizens of the People’s Republic of China.

Overseas Chinese students may be eligible for application subject to CSC policy at the time.

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