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UKCISA Grants Scheme 2017-18

UKCISA Grants Scheme - Apply now!

One of UKCISA's key aims is to support members in providing the highest quality institutional support for international students and ensure international students in the UK have the best possible experience.  The aims of this scheme are twofold:

  • Research. To enhance our understanding of the needs and/or experience of international students studying in the UK
  • Pilot Projects. To encourage innovation, and develop and disseminate examples of best practice in international student support

‘With this fantastic UKCISA Grants Scheme, I was offered the opportunity to conduct a study on international students’ experiences and expectations. The scheme comes with clear guidelines on the required timeline and reporting formats and it also encourages communicating the findings in the annual UKCISA conference. It has been a very positive experience’.
Khawla Badwan, Manchester Metropolitan University (grant awardee 2016-17)

‘The UKCISA grant scheme is a wonderful idea.   It has enabled the RNCM to develop a project which has enriched the study experience of our international students in a direct and meaningful way. Thank you UKCISA!’ 
Jean Ammar, Royal Northern College of Music (grant awardee 2016-17)

With special thanks to the Scottish Government who again are contributing £10,000 to support Scottish institutions' projects and research.

Criteria for Pilot Project grants

Applications will be judged against the following criteria:

  • The extent to which the project improves the experience of international students, through new and innovative services, approaches or delivery methods.  Is your project addressing something which international students most want or are concerned by or find most important about their student experience?
  • The extent to which other institutions or the sector as a whole can adopt similar models.  Will your project include products or outcomes which can be implemented elsewhere?
  • The extent to which your project has measurable and lasting outcomes for the institution and sector as a whole.  Does your proposed project include a method of measuring its own success and provide clear evidence that its outcomes are sustainable and of lasting value?

Criteria for Research grants

Applications will be judged against the following criteria:

  • The extent to which the research enhances members’ understanding of the experience of international students in the UK. Does it build on findings of recent research? Will it impact on the current international student agenda?
  • The extent to which the research examines a current, major area of interest and addresses concerns shared across the sector as a whole.
  • The extent of the research impact.  Will it inform enhancements to professional practice in supporting international students?  How easily can the research findings be applied?

For both categories of grant, priority will be given to applicants whose projects cover aspects which were not addressed in previous schemes.

2018 – UKCISA’s 50th anniversary year

As grant awardees will be reporting in 2018, we are particularly interested in projects and research which draw on the theme of 50 years of international students in the UK and 50 years of international student support in the UK.  We are keen to see projects or research which demonstrate the ways in which you support international students and celebrate the contribution they make to UK institutions and local communities.


Applicants must be educational institutions or students’ unions which are members of UKCISA.


It is anticipated that 15 grants of £2,000 each will be awarded for Pilot Projects and two or three grants of £5,000 for Research Projects - with £10,000 of the funding, as a result of additional support from the Scottish Government, reserved for Scottish institutions.

Condition of funding

We require evidence of institutional support for your proposal.  This may take the form of additional funding or approval for the allocation of dedicated time to ensure the successful completion of the project or research.

Reporting requirements

Funding will be paid on receipt of signed acceptance of the scheme terms and conditions and an invoice from the institution awarded the grant. Awardees must provide an update by 5 March 2018 indicating progress against stated milestones.

Awardees must provide their final submission by 9 July 2018. Projects must give an account of the project, its outcomes and an evaluation of its strengths and weaknesses. Research must give an account of the research findings, its impact and plans for dissemination.
A separate financial statement indicating how the funds were spent must also be submitted by 9 July 2018.


For Pilot projects dissemination outcomes should, where applicable, also include a guide of how to recreate the activity elsewhere including, for example, checklists, model documents, and “do’s and don’ts”.

All completed projects or research findings must be suitable for storage on a dedicated resource section on the UKCISA website.Awardees will be encouraged to present at relevant events including the UKCISA Annual conference.

How to apply

Download an application form and send to dps@ukcisa.org.uk . The deadline for applications is 5pm on Tuesday 1 August 2017. 


Applications will be assessed by a panel including UKCISA staff and external specialists and all projects will be considered for the 2018 Paul Webley Award for Innovation in International Education.

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