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The ASTAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS) 2024: Apply Now

The ASTAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS) 2024: Apply Now
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The ASTAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS) 2024: Apply Now

The Agency for Science, Technology, and Research (ASTAR) in Singapore offers a prestigious scholarship called the ASTAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS). It is a fully-funded scholarship that supports PhD or EngD studies at any of the autonomous universities in Singapore.

Eligibility

The eligibility criteria for the 2024 A-STAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS) can be broken down into two categories: nationality and academic background.

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Nationality:

The ASTAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS) 2024 is open to international students [anyone not a Singaporean citizen or permanent resident]

Academic Background:

  • Must have completed or be on track to complete a degree at a Singapore autonomous university [these are the six public universities in Singapore].
  • Must be seeking admission to a PhD or EngD program at one of these autonomous universities.
  • Have a strong academic record, with at least a 2nd Upper-Class Honors degree (or equivalent) in a relevant discipline. Students in their final year can apply, but the scholarship will only be awarded if they meet the minimum grade requirement.
  • Demonstrate a strong interest in a research career and have good research potential

Why study at the Agency for Science, Technology, and Research (ASTAR) in Singapore?

Studying at ASTAR in Singapore offers a unique and compelling set of advantages for aspiring researchers:

  • Cutting-Edge Research Environment: ASTAR is at the forefront of scientific discovery and technological innovation in Asia. You’ll be surrounded by world-class researchers tackling critical challenges across various fields. Their research institutes focus on areas aligned with Singapore’s national needs and global trends, ensuring your work has a real-world impact.
  • Bridging the Gap Between Academia and Industry:
    ASTAR fosters collaboration between researchers and industry partners. This means you’ll gain valuable exposure to practical applications of your research, preparing you for a successful career.
  • Scholarships and Funding: ASTAR offers attractive scholarships like the ASTAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS) that fully fund your PhD or EngD studies, providing a monthly stipend and other allowances. This financial support allows you to focus on your research without worrying about tuition fees or living expenses.
  • Global Network and Mobility: ASTAR encourages international collaboration and exchange programs. You’ll have the opportunity to work with researchers from around the world and potentially conduct research attachments overseas. This exposure to diverse perspectives and research cultures will broaden your skillset and enhance your career prospects.
  • Top-Tier Education and Facilities: ASTAR is affiliated with Singapore’s prestigious autonomous universities, ensuring a top-quality education. You’ll have access to state-of-the-art research facilities and cutting-edge technology to support your studies.
  • Attractive Career Opportunities: A degree or research experience at A*STAR positions you well for exciting careers in research institutions, academia, or the private sector in Singapore and beyond. Singapore’s booming economy and focus on innovation create a strong demand for highly skilled researchers.

Overall, studying at A*STAR in Singapore provides an exceptional opportunity to:

  • Conduct impactful research at the forefront of your field.
  • Gain valuable industry experience and connections.
    Pursue your research goals in a well-funded and supportive environment.
  • Become part of a global network of researchers and innovators.
  • Launch a successful career in the exciting world of science and technology.

Benefits of the A*STAR Graduate Scholarship

  • The A*STAR Graduate Scholarship provides full tuition fees for up to four years of study.
  • AGS scholars receive a monthly stipend of S$2,000, which increases to S$2,500 after passing the Qualifying Examination.
  • AGS scholars are also eligible for an annual return airfare grant, a one-time settling-in allowance, and other allowances.
  • AGS scholars have the opportunity to participate in an overseas attachment for up to 12 months during their studies.

Applying for the ASTAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS) in 2024: A Step-by-Step Guide

The A*STAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS) is a competitive program, so ensuring a well-prepared application is crucial. Here’s a detailed breakdown of the application process:

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Step 1: Check Eligibility (Already Covered)

Before diving in, ensure you meet the eligibility criteria:

  • Nationality: Open to international students (not Singaporean citizens or permanent residents).
  • Academic Background: Completed or on track to complete a degree at a Singapore autonomous university.
  • Seeking admission to a PhD or EngD program at one of these universities.
  • Strong academic record with at least a 2nd Upper-Class Honours (or equivalent) in a relevant field.
  • Demonstrated interest in a research career and strong research potential.

Step 2: Research and Identify Potential Supervisors (Optional but Recommended)

While not mandatory, identifying potential supervisors at A*STAR institutes or universities can significantly strengthen your application. Contact professors whose research aligns with your interests to discuss potential PhD projects. A supportive supervisor can provide valuable insights and guidance during your application and future studies.

Step 3: Prepare Application Materials (Start Early!)

Gather the required documents well in advance of the application deadline (typically December to March). These may include:

  • A scanned copy of your passport or identification document.
  • Recent passport-sized photo (digital format).
  • Certified copies of academic transcripts and degree certificates for all qualifications.
  • Standardized test scores (if applicable, e.g., GRE, GMAT).
  • Curriculum vitae (CV) highlighting your academic background, research experience, skills, and achievements.
  • A strong personal statement (typically 500-1000 words) outlining your research interests, career goals, and reasons for pursuing a PhD or EngD at ASTAR.
  • Research proposal (optional, but highly recommended) outlining your proposed research project, its significance, and methodology (consult your potential supervisor for guidance, if applicable).
  • Two letters of recommendation: one academic and one professional (from professors or employers familiar with your research capabilities).

Step 4: Apply Online

  • During the application window, visit the ASTAR Scholarships website and access the AGS application portal.
  • Create an account and carefully follow the online instructions to complete the application form.
  • Upload all required documents in the designated formats.
  • Ensure all information is accurate and proofread your application thoroughly before submission.

Step 5: Submit Your Application and Follow Up

Submit your complete application before the deadline. You may receive a confirmation email upon successful submission. Keep copies of your application materials for reference.

Step 6: Interview Stage (For Shortlisted Candidates Only)

Shortlisted applicants will be invited for interviews, typically in two rounds. Interviews may involve A*STAR representatives, potential supervisors, and faculty members. Prepare well to discuss your research interests, proposed project, and suitability for the AGS program.

Step 7: Await Notification

The ASTAR selection committee will evaluate all applications and interviews. Successful candidates will be notified by email, usually within a few months after the application deadline.

Additional Tips:

Start planning early and gather required documents well in advance. Tailor your application materials to the specific A*STAR research area and chosen university. Highlight your research experience, skills, and achievements in your CV and personal statement. Craft a compelling research proposal showcasing your critical thinking and research abilities (if applicable). Seek guidance from professors or advisors familiar with the ASTAR application process. Meet deadlines and follow all application instructions carefully. Remember, a well-prepared application that demonstrates your research passion, strong academic background, and suitability for the AGS program will increase your chances of success.

ASTAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS) Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Eligibility:
Who can apply?

  • The AGS scholarship is open to international students (not Singaporean citizens or permanent residents).

What are the academic requirements?

  • Applicants must have completed or be on track to complete a degree at a Singapore-autonomous university. They must be seeking admission to a PhD or EngD program at one of these universities and have a strong academic record with at least a 2nd Upper-Class Honours (or equivalent) in a relevant field. Demonstrated interest in a research career and strong research potential are also essential.

Application Process:

  • When is the application deadline? The application period is typically from December to March each year. However, it’s best to check the official ASTAR Scholarships website for the latest deadlines.

Do I need to secure a place at a university before applying?

  • No, you can apply for the AGS scholarship even if you haven’t secured admission to a university yet. But, you should only accept a university offer after obtaining ASTAR’s approval for your choice of university and course of study.

What documents do I need to submit?

  • Required documents typically include scanned copies of your passport, academic transcripts and certificates, standardized test scores (if applicable), CV, personal statement, research proposal (optional but recommended), and letters of recommendation.

How are applications evaluated?

  • ASTAR considers your academic background, research experience, research proposal (if submitted), letters of recommendation, and interview performance during the selection process.

Benefits:
Does the AGS scholarship cover full tuition fees?

  • Yes, the AGS scholarship provides full tuition fee coverage for up to four years of your PhD or EngD studies.

What other financial support is offered?

  • AGS scholars receive a monthly stipend, an annual return airfare grant, a settling-in allowance, and other allowances (e.g., book allowance, computer allowance, conference allowance, and thesis allowance).

Are there opportunities for overseas research experience?

  • Yes, AGS scholars have the chance to participate in an overseas research attachment for up to 12 months during their studies.

Additional Tips:

  • Start planning and gathering application materials well before the deadline.
  • Tailor your application to the specific ASTAR research area and chosen university.
  • Highlight your research experience, skills, and achievements.
  • Consider seeking guidance from advisors familiar with the AGS program.

Conclusion

The ASTAR Graduate Scholarship (AGS) offers a compelling opportunity for international students seeking a world-class research experience in Singapore. With its generous funding, focus on cutting-edge research and emphasis on practical applications, the AGS program can propel your research career to new heights. If you’re a highly motivated student with a strong academic background and a passion for research, the AGS scholarship is definitely worth considering. Remember, careful planning, a well-prepared application, and a strong research proposal can significantly increase your chances of success.

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