Guide to university scholarships

27 Feb 2022

By Evan Jones 3 min read

Getting a leg-up when it comes to university fees is always welcome. We look at what scholarships are, how to find the right ones and what you’ll need to apply.

At Accel iQ, we’re proud to support future STEM graduates with more than just great Chemistry, Physics and Maths tuition. In this blog, we take a look at university scholarships, and how nearly every student can apply for financial assistance. 

For many Australians on the path to university, the financial cost of studying can be a concern. Though we’re privileged to have access to government study loans – called HECS-HELP – the average cost of studying an undergraduate degree in Australia is between $20,000 and $45,000. While there are more immediate costs to consider for high school students – HSC tuition, uniform, textbooks – the transition to tertiary studies will nearly invariably lead to a hefty loan and, eventually, loan repayments. Unless, of course, students receive a scholarship.

Who can get a scholarship?

Potentially, any student could be eligible for a scholarship. There’s a big misconception that scholarships are only for the academically elite – those achieving 99.95 ATAR scores. While advantages provided by maths tuition and other HSC tuition can help with academic scholarship goals, the range of available scholarships is much broader.

In our recent webinar series, Arup water engineer Danika Smith spoke about her experiences as a scholarship recipient. Smith, from Bathurst in country NSW, received a scholarship that was aimed specifically at rural students looking to study engineering. The benefits were significant. 

“For me, it was huge,” says Smith. “I was moving from Bathurst in the country so I was going to have to live out of home. Obviously living in Sydney is expensive. Had I not got the scholarship I’d planned to do a gap year and save up money, but because I got it it meant that it was actually affordable to go to uni.”

There’s scholarships for women getting into engineering, for minority groups, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. There might also be scholarships available if you’re from a rural area – there’s a real push for increasing diversity in STEM across the board.”
Heather Catchpole, Careers with STEM

Types of scholarships

As Heather Catchpole of Careers with STEM suggested in our webinar, there are plenty of scholarships for students beyond those with gigantic ATAR scores. “There’s particularly scholarships for women getting into engineering, for example. There might be scholarships for other minority groups, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, because there’s a real push for increasing diversity in STEM across the board. There might also be scholarships available for if you’re coming from a rural area.”

Scholarships – which can be either partial or full-fee paying – can be provided by the Australian government and not-for-profit (NFP) organisations, universities, and private enterprises. They can cover specific courses or be broadly applicable to many types of study. Below are a few examples.

Government and NFP scholarships:

University-provided scholarships:

How to find and apply for scholarships

When looking at applying for scholarships, it pays to cast a wide net. Resources such as the Good University Guide’s scholarship database is a good place to start. Each university, too, will have a list of available scholarships, like ANU’s Find a Scholarship page. The Australian Government provides scholarship resources for government and institution-funded scholarships with StudyAssist and Study Australia

When applying for scholarships, take note of some key points:

  • How much the scholarship covers financially
  • Any prerequisites (academic performance, socio-economic status etc.)
  • Application requirements including supporting material and deadlines
  • The duration of the scholarships (one year, full course etc.)

How to prepare for scholarship applications and university with Accel iQ HSC tuition

HSC tuition such as Physics, Chemistry and Maths tuition can be an advantageous step when looking to boot academic performance. Though not every scholarship requires academic excellence as a prerequisite, many will stipulate certain minimum study scores or ATARs that can be more readily achieved with tailored HSC tuition.

At Accel iQ, we’re invested in providing more than just Physics, Chemistry and Maths tuition. Accel iQ also provides a wealth of study advice and tips that can help students and parents prepare for the next step, including understanding the world of scholarships. There are resources to help understand career and study paths, advice from graduates like Danika Smith and much more. 

Interested in learning about our Physics, Chemistry and Maths tuition programs? Get in touch with our team today