Indian Government Scholarships for Studying Abroad

Table of Contents

  1. Overview
  2. National Overseas Scholarship Scheme
  3. Agatha Harrison Memorial Fellowship
  4. Fulbright Scholarships & Fellowships
  5. Indian government scholarships vs. education loans to study abroad
  6. Frequently Asked Questions

As per ICEF Monitor, the enrollment of Indian students in overseas studies is anticipated to reach two million by the year 2025. Amidst rising global issues and rumors of inflation in foreign countries, the number of Indians going abroad for education remains high. They are convinced that investing in education abroad is worth it for their career goals and aspirations. 

Indian government scholarships to study abroad support talented individuals to study in top universities, as it will motivate more Indians to gain valuable skills and contribute back to Indian society. Considering the high number of Indians abroad, India has ties with foreign countries such as the US, Canada, Australia, the UK, France, and Italy. 

Read on and explore the top scholarships offered by the Indian government for studying abroad. It includes the National Overseas Scholarship scheme, Agatha Harrison Memorial Fellowship, and Fullbright scholarships and fellowships.


Scholarship Country Supported Fully or Partially Funded 
National Overseas Scholarship Scheme by the Indian Government   US, UK, Australia, France, etc.  Fully funded 
Agatha Harrison Memorial Fellowship UK Fully funded 
Fulbright Scholarships & Fellowships US Fully funded 

National Overseas Scholarship Scheme by the Indian Government  

The National Overseas Scholarship Central Sector Scheme supports economically weaker students from Scheduled Castes, Denotified Nomadic and Semi-Nomadic Tribes, Landless Agricultural Laborers, and Traditional Artisans categories to study abroad for Master’s or Ph.D. programs. The program aims to enhance their economic and social status.  

  • For the 2023-24, there are 125 new awards available, contingent upon fund availability. 
  • 115 awards are designated for Scheduled Castes candidates, 06 for Denotified, Nomadic, and Semi-Nomadic Tribes, and 04 for candidates from Landless Agricultural Labourers and Traditional Artisans backgrounds.  
  • 30% of the awards each year are reserved for women candidates. 

 Eligibility criteria 

  • To be eligible for the scholarship, candidates must have secured at least 60% marks or an equivalent grade in their qualifying examination.  
  • For Ph.D. courses, the qualifying exam is a master’s and, for master’s courses, a bachelor’s degree.  
  • An offer letter from a top 500-ranked foreign institutes or universities according to the latest available QS rankings is mandatory. 
  • Candidates must be under 35 years old as of the first day of April of the election year.  
  • The total family income from all sources should not exceed Rs. 8.00 lakh per annum in the preceding financial year.  

Agatha Harrison Memorial Fellowship

The Indian government offers the Ms. Agatha Harrison Memorial Fellowship every year to one chosen researcher to conduct research at St. Antony College, University of Oxford, London. The fellowship covers all expenses, and the status of the person will be comparable to that of a Junior Research Fellow at the University of Oxford. 

  • The fellowship is valid only for the first year. It is extended to the second year based on the fellow’s performance 
  • The value of the scholarship is as follows: 
Category Allotted Amount 
Stipend Amount 22,063 GBP 
Travel Allowance 890 GBP 
College Lunches 2,407 GBP 
6 High Table Dinner 679 GBP 
Other Administration Charges 3,930 GBP 
Total 29,944 GBP 

Eligibility criteria 

  • 60% scores in Master’s and Ph.D. degrees or published works of equal merit 
  • The age of the fellow must be between 30 to 40 years 
  • The area of study must be History, Economics, or Political Science 
  • A minimum of 3 years of teaching postgraduate students is mandatory

Fulbright Scholarships & Fellowships

The Fullbright Scholarships & Fellowships are sponsored by the United States – India Educational Foundation (USIEF). It allows Indian students to study or research for a short period in the US at select universities.  


The fellowship includes support for a J-1 visa, round-trip economy class air travel from the fellow’s home city to the hosting institution in the U.S., funding for tuition and fees, living and associated expenses, and accident and sickness coverage in accordance with U.S. Government guidelines. 

Eligibility criteria

  • Be an Indian student enrolled in an Indian institution 
  • Have at least 55% marks in bachelor’s 
  • Have at least 3 years of professional experience 
  • Should demonstrate leadership and community service with proof 

Prominent Fullbright scholarships and fellowships are: 

Fullbright-Nehru Masters Fellowships 

Master’s study in the US in the areas of

  • Arts and Culture Management including Heritage Conservation and Museum Studies 
  • Economics 
  • Environmental Science/Studies 
  • Higher Education Administration 
  • International Affairs 
  • International Legal Studies
  • Journalism and Mass Communication 
  • Public Administration 
  • Public Health 
  • Urban and Regional Planning 
  • Women’s Studies/Gender Studies

Fulbright-Nehru Doctoral Research Fellowships 

Doctoral research in

  • Agricultural Sciences 
  • Anthropology 
  • Bioengineering 
  • Chemistry 
  • Computer Science (including, but not limited to, cyber security, digital economy, quantum computing, artificial intelligence, machine learning and big data analytics) 
  • Earth Sciences 
  • Economics 
  • Education Policy and Planning 
  • Energy Studies 
  • History 
  • Language/Literature/Linguistics
  • Urban and Regional Planning (with emphasis on smart cities and waste management)
  • Visual Arts 
  • Materials Science (with emphasis on environmental applications) 
  • Mathematical Sciences 
  • Neurosciences 
  • Performing Arts  
  • Physics  
  • Political Science (including, but not limited to, International Security and Strategic Studies) 
  • Psychology 
  • Public Health (including, but not limited to, pandemic preparedness and comprehensive surveillance (genomic surveillance, sewage surveillance, Sero-surveillance)) 
  • Public Policy 
  • Sociology 
  • Women’s and Gender Studies

  Fulbright-Kalam Climate Fellowships for Doctoral Research 

Focus areas are

  • Energy Studies 
  • Earth Sciences 
  • Geology 
  • Environmental Science  
  • Renewable Energy 
  • Smart Cities 
  • Agriculture 
  • Public Policy 
  • Environmental Engineering 
  • Disaster Resilient Infrastructure 

Indian government scholarships vs. education loans to study abroad

Securing a government scholarship is a great financial help for global education. But the limited availability of scholarships is a concern for many. Only a few of the applicants are fortunate to win the scholarships offered by the Indian government.  

Education loans come to the rescue when students are stuck in finding funds for higher studies. Compared to scholarships, the chances of securing an education loan are higher, making it a perfect alternative to scholarships. Explore minimal-interest education loans for your abroad needs from a variety of lenders, with or without collateral. Connect with our counselor today for comprehensive guidance and personalized education loan support at zero cost.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I get an Indian government scholarship to study abroad? 

If you get admission to a top university abroad and you belong to the eligible category specified, you can apply for Indian government scholarships for studying abroad.  

Do Indian government scholarships for studying abroad pay 100% of expenses?  

Typically, Indian government scholarships to study abroad cover your major expenses, including the tuition fee and living costs.  

What are the alternatives if I don’t get an Indian government scholarship to study abroad?  

If you don’t get an Indian government-sponsored scholarship to study abroad, you can explore scholarships by other organizations, the country of study abroad, and the university abroad. Apart from scholarships, you can explore minimal-interest education loan options to finance your global education.  

To which countries does the Indian government offer scholarships? 

Indian government scholarships to study abroad are offered to top countries abroad, including the US, Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, France, and Italy. Typically, if your university abroad ranks top, you can study anywhere with a scholarship.  

Am I eligible for the National Overseas Scholarship Scheme by the Indian Government? 

The National Overseas Scholarship Scheme by the Indian Government is provided for students belonging to the SC and other marginalized sections. Applicant’s age must be under 35 years, and the admission must be to a top-500 QS-ranked university abroad. Refer to the complete eligibility criteria mentioned above to check your eligibility.  

Can I reapply for scholarships if my initial application is denied?  

If your initial application is denied, you can reapply for scholarship options if there is a provision for that. All scholarship options do not allow students to reapply.    

Can I apply for multiple scholarships simultaneously? 

 You can apply for multiple scholarship options. However, you might not be allowed to benefit from more than one scholarship.  

Once I am done with my studies using the scholarship then will I be eligible to extend my stay if I secure a job?   

 Getting a job after your studies has nothing to do with your scholarship funding. You will receive funding while you study and not for staying back to explore job opportunities. 

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