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University Grants Commission - Sri Lanka

Guidelines for Postgraduate Grants Scheme –UGC

Part I
1. Purpose of the Scheme:

The purpose of the Postgraduate Grant Scheme is to strengthen the research capacity of state universities under the University Grants Commission by way of financially supporting academics in all disciplines to acquire required postgraduate qualifications for their career advancement.

2. General Requirements
2.1

The applicant shall be a permanent member of the academic staff of a Higher Educational Institution (HIE) operating under the University Grants Commission.

2.2

The maximum age limits of applicants for this grants scheme to the closing date of the application is as follows.

Grants for PhD/MPhil leading to PhD  45Yrs
Grants for Masters 32Yrs
2.3

Grants shall be available only for local/foreign PhDs, and MPhils leading to PhDs and    equivalents. In exceptional circumstances grants shall be available for foreign Masters provided there is a strong justification from the Head of Department endorsed by the Dean of the Faculty and approved by Vice Chancellor of the University/Head of the HEI.

2.4

Grants are not awarded for applicants who register at the same University where they are employed presently to avoid inbreeding. However, this condition may be exempted when there are no other universities/institutions that conduct required postgraduate programs within the country in the specific discipline or with the submission of strong justification from the Head of Department endorsed by the Dean of the Faculty and approved by Vice Chancellor /Head of the HEIs; justification as to why the candidate has to register his/her postgraduate studies at the same university/ institute.  Justification should be acceptable to the University Grants Commission.

2.5

No applicant is eligible for funding from UGC for his or her postgraduate studies if he receives financial support from the postgraduate funding scheme operated by the NCAS, a Government project (i.e. World Bank, Asian Development Bank sponsored projects) or a recipient of foreign/local scholarship through the Government or a related institution for the same purpose. However, a candidate who has received partial funding support for his/her PhD/MPhil from any other source less than the maximum permissible level of funding per candidate under the UGC grant scheme can seek additional funding support from the UGC for the same study. All applicants need to declare any form of foreign and local funding (scholarships, tuition waivers, partial funding, research support, and living stipend etc.) available for his or her intended postgraduate studies with the application for funding. If such funding is available the amount/s has/have to be disclosed with the source/s.   

Applicants shall also be required to declare any subsequent funding from other sources that would be available for his or her postgraduate studies after the UGC has decided to grant an award to support his or her postgraduate studies.

2.6

All applicants for UGC grants for postgraduate studies are required to achieve the following minimum overall score of IELTS in order to qualify for a grant under this scheme.

Overall Score
The applicants following the respective degrees in English Medium 7.0
The applicants following the respective degrees in any other language            6.0

** Application can be submitted pending submission of ILETS results

2.7

All applicants for UGC grants are expected to register in reputed universities for their postgraduate studies. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the applicant to check the credentials of the intuitions and the prospective supervisor/s prior to registration for the intended postgraduate programme. The UGC may request the candidate to provide the credentials of prospective supervisor in terms of his/her qualifications and research publications.

2.8

All the applicants are required to submit a copy of the letter of registration or the letter of acceptance for the intended postgraduate programme issued by the HEI at which he/she intends to start or has already started his/her postgraduate studies.

2.9

The UGC Grant Scheme provides a maximum of only o3 years funding for PhD/Doctoral studies and 2 years funding for MPhil/Masters. A candidate applied for the UGC funding after registration for his or her postgraduate studies might not eligible for funding for the full period as indicated below.

i. A candidate applied within six months of registration could be considered for funding for full period of his or her studies subject a maximum of o3 years for PhD and equivalent and 02 years for MPhil/Master's.
ii. A candidate applied within second six months of registration could be considered for funding for 2 years and 6 months or 1 year and 6 months of his or her PhD or Master’s respectively
iii. A candidate applied within third six months of registration could be considered for funding for 2 years or 1 year funding for his or her PhD or MPhil/Master’s respectively.
iv. A candidate applied within forth six months of registration could be considered for funding for 1 year and 6 months of his or her PhD.
v. A candidate applied within fifth six months of registration could be considered for funding for 1 year of his or her PhD.
vi. In case of PhD/Doctoral studies, a candidate applied within sixth six months of registration or after could not be considered for funding under the UGC grant scheme. Similarly, in case of MPhil/Master’s, a candidate applied within forth six months of registration or after could not be considered for funding under the UGC grant scheme
2.10

In case of candidates registering with foreign university/HEIs for his postgraduate studies, the amount of grant will be determined based on the academic fees payable to the respective university/HIEs by the candidate and the country specific living allowance determined by the UGC subject to a maximum ceiling determined by the UGC from time to time. However, living stipend could be proportionately reduced for the period that the candidate lives in Sri Lanka within his of study period.  

2.11

In case of candidates registering with local HEIs for his postgraduate studies, the amount of grant will be determined based on the academic fees payable to the respective HIE by the candidate and research expenses for the intended study.

2.12

All candidates who qualified to receive financial support under this scheme shall report periodic progress of his/her studies once in every six months to the UGC through his supervisor.

2.13

The candidates those who register with foreign University/HEIs are supposed to fully spend his intended period of studies in respective foreign countries. If they wish to visit Sri Lanka during the intended period of studies they shall inform the UGC of such visits with justifications and the dates of travel

3. Decision of the Grant

The final decision of the grant with regard to each applicant will be taken by the Commission of the UGC based on the recommendation of the panel appointed by it.  The panel will peruse all the documents submitted by each including research proposals and will call the candidate for an interview before making its recommendation.

4. Documents to be submitted with the Application
i. Registration letter /Placement letter for the intended postgraduate programme. In case of an applicant intend to register with a foreign university/HEI, acceptable level of communication with the university/HEI is sufficient at the application stage.
ii. A well written research proposal. (approximately 2500 words)
iii. A letter issued by the University/HEI where the applicant is employed at certifying the availability of study leave.
iv. Each applicant will need to provide the details of two referees as specified in the application who can provide academic references written in English.
v. Candidates applying after six months of his registration shall submit a progress report of his or her studies through his or her supervisor.
vi. Documentary evidence for the relevant course fees payable to the intended postgraduate programme.
vii. A declaration of other sources of funding available for the intended study programme by way of scholarships partial funding, tuition waivers, living stipend etc. by the applicant. ( any subsequent funding secured by the candidate should be declared to the UGC immediately by the candidate)
viii. A record of research and publication by the candidate.
ix. Certified copies of IELTS results sheet.
x. The total budget of the research expenses certified by the supervisor (only for the locally registered candidates)
xi. Credential of his/her prospective supervisors in terms of qualifications and research Publications. Locally registered candidates should provide a letter from the Registrar of the university certifying the name of the supervisor appointed by the Senate with his/her institutional affiliation.
xii. A copy of the National Identity Card
5. Documents to be submitted prior to the release of first installment of the grant
i. An applicant can request further time to submit documents mentioned under item ix to xi of the section for 4 above at the time of interview if those documents are not ready. Such candidates are supposed to submit them prior to the release of first installment of the grant.
ii. A certificate from the Vice Chancellor of the university or head of the HEI where the applicant is currently employed whether the applicant has secured any funding in the form of scholarships, tuition waivers, partial funding, research support, and living stipend etc. from the university/HIE at which applicant is employed or any other local or foreign organization. If such funding is available the amount/s has/have to be disclosed with the source/s.
iii. Every candidate shall submit an intended plan of activities in relation to his or her study programme including date of commencement and the intended date of completion. In this plan, intended activities shall be divided into six monthly periods from the date of commencement. In case of a candidate who is going to start or already started their postgraduate studies in foreign universities, and intend to spend a part of the study period locally, should indicate the period/s planned to spend locally within his intended study programme with justifications.
iv. A personal health report endorsed by the University Medical Officer of the University at which the applicant is employed.
v. A certified copy of the surety bond and the agreement with University/HEI including the breakdown of the bond.
vi. A letter certifying the approval of the study leave for the intended postgraduate studies by the university/HEI at which the applicant is employed.
April 2016
 

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