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Australian Development Scholarships (ADS) 2011/2012 for African Students

Published on Apr 28 2011 // Masters, Oceania, Scholarships in Australia

Australian Government’s Funded Australian Development Scholarships (ADS) for African Students 2011/2012

Study Subject: Courses offered by Australian Universities
Employer: Australian Government
Level: Master’s

The 2012 Intake of the Australia Scholarship Awards for Africa is open for application! The Australia Awards for Africa is an initiative of the Australian Government aimed to maximise the benefit of the Australian Government’s extensive scholarship programs, and to support enduring ties between Australia and neighbouring Countries. Australian Development Scholarships (ADS) are available for full-time Postgraduate Diploma or Master degree studies at Australian universities. The Australia Awards initiative brings the Australian Government’s scholarship programs together under the one Australia Awards brand. Please refer to the country pages to the left in ADS website for specific country-based scholarship information and submission deadlines for the 2012 Intake. Sectors of focus for ADS are agreed with each participating Partner Government. The country specific information for applicants’ home country will indicate what those priority sectors are.

Eligible African Countries : Algeria, Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroun, Cape Verde, Comoros, Congo(Republic of), Djibouti, Egypt, Ethiopia, The Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Malawi, Mali, Mauritius, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome & Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia


You are only eligible for an Australian Development Scholarship (ADS) if:

  • you are a citizen of one of the participating African countries, if you are presently resident in your home country and if you meet any relevant country specific criteria set out below;
  • you are not older than 50 years of age at the date of application;
  • you satisfy Australian Government requirements for international student entry to Australia (such as health and character required by the Department of Immigration and Citizenship);
  • you do not hold another scholarship that would give overlapping benefits;
  • you satisfy the admission requirements of the Australian institution in which the course is to be undertaken – applicants must have submitted their completed application form via the ADS Africa office and then have received a firm offer of placement in their course of study before the scholarship can be confirmed;
  • you are applying to commence a new course of study and are not seeking support through ADS for a course already commenced in Australia;
  • you are not transferring from another Australian training scholarship to an ADS during the same course of study, and
  • you will be able to take up the scholarship in the calendar year for which the scholarship is offered. Scholarship offers are automatically withdrawn if an applicant has not commenced study prior to the end of the year.

Scholarship Application Deadline: Various

Scholarships provided through the Australia Awards program play an important role in fostering and sustaining friendship and cooperation between Australia and developing countries. These awards are a central part of the Australian Government’s development cooperation program in Africa. By providing people with the knowledge and the skills to promote development in their home country, the program aims to contribute to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals in Africa while promoting Australia as an active partner in African development.
To find out more about Australia Awards in Africa, consult the website:

Application Process

The application process for Australian Development Scholarships (ADS) under the Australia Awards program in Africa has five major stages:

Advertising and Submission of Preliminary Application Forms (PAFs). ADS are advertised either in the national press or through the relevant Nominating Authority which requests targeted government departments and organisations to nominate candidates. Adverts and notifications include details of the EOI and supporting documents which must be submitted by prospective candidates. EOIs must be submitted to the address supplied in the relevant country webpages on this website and in any relevant advert.

Paper Selection. The paper selection stage examines the EOIs received and compares them to the eligibility criteria (click here to see an example of the eligibility criteria for Public Category scholarships). Applications are categorised as Compliant or Non-Compliant. The Compliant applications are considered by an independent selection panel appointed by the Australian Government, and a shortlist of approximately three candidates per award is drawn up. Where necessary, applicants may be required to sit an English language exam (e.g. the IELTS).

Selection Interviews. The shortlisted candidates then attend a face-to-face interview by an independent selection panel appointed by the Australian Government. After these interviews, a final list of successful (Priority) and Reserve candidates is drawn up and candidates are advised of the outcome. Priority candidates are those selected for immediate processing of an ADS. Reserve candidates are held in case any Priority candidates cannot take up their ADS. Priority candidates who do not have an IELTS of 6.5 will be offered a three-month English language training award. Succesful completion of this award and achievement of 6.5 in the IELTS is required before an ADS is offered.

ADS / University Application Process. Once candidates are informed that they are Priority or Reserve candidates, they begin researching their universities and courses and filling in their full ADS Application forms. For the ADS/University Application, candidates must:

  • complete three identical application forms – AusAID retains one and the other two are sent to the selected universities;
  • include with each application a passport-size photo of the applicant (photos should not be permanently affixed to the applications);
  • indicate the level and field of study required;
  • attach to each application form an original or certified copy of each document necessary to substantiate their educational qualifications;
  • attach to each application form reports from three referees, of which two must be by academic supervisors and one from their employer;
  • ensure Section 11 of the application form has been signed and stamped by their employer and the Nominating Authority; and
  • ensure all the relevant documents listed on the final page of the application form have been included.

Visa Application Process. The visa application process begins at the same time as the ADS / University application process. Priority and Reserve candidates will receive a briefing from a GRM-ADS staff member on filling in the visa form, as well as an explanation of the supporting documents required. For the visa application, awardees must submit:

  • a completed visa form 157A, with a passport valid for more than six months after the end of the proposed scholarship (i.e. the passport must be valid for the full life of the scholarship plus six months), and 6 passport photos (please note that these photographs are additional to the photographs required by the ADS/University application process);
  • a signed Contract between AusAID and the awardee (this is usually available only around September or October);
  • certified copies of qualifications (and translations where these are not in English) and a CV;
  • proof of medical examination conducted by a Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC)-registered Panel Doctor, complete with HIV test;
  • certified copies of the awardee’s birth certificate (or original affidavit of birth); the spouse’s birth certificate; children’s birth certificates; marriage certificate or evidence of defacto relationship; and in the case of divorce or the death of a partner, a certified copy of the divorce decree or death certificate;
  • consent letters from the other parent if a child or children will be travelling with only one parent, or a court order granting the travelling parent full legal responsibility for the child/ren;
  • evidence of sufficient funds to support dependant family members, regardless of whether they are accompanying the awardee or remaining in the home country.

AusAID has contracted GRM International, an independent Managing Contractor (MC), to provide administrative and logistical services to the ADS program in Africa. All communications or queries should be sent either to the details given in the advert or notification, or to GRM’s contact details which can be found at the following webpage:


Study in Australia is subject to the successful applicant being issued with a visa by the Australian Development of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC). As part of the visa application process, immigration authorities require candidates to undergo a full medical examination including a chest X-ray and an HIV/AIDS test. This is also to ensure that candidates are physically capable of travelling and pursuing long term study in Australia.

Only persons up to 50 years of age at the time of making the application may apply.

Applicants are required to return to their country of citizenship after the completion of their award to contribute to the development of the identified priority sector in their country.


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