Bilateral Education Agreement – Federal Government Scholarship

Under the Federal Scholarship Board, the Bilateral Education Agreement Division oversees the implementation of scholarships between the Federal Government of Nigeria and the governments of countries with which the Bilateral Education Agreement has been signed.

In the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Education, the Federal Scholarship Board is headed by its Director, the Secretary of the Board. Despite its name and nomenclature, the Federal Scholarship Board has no designated governing board.

Nigeria has an agreement with several countries under this scholarship scheme:

  • Algeria
  • China
  • Cuba
  • Egypt
  • Hungary
  • Japan
  • Mexico
  • Morocco
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • Serbia
  • South Korea
  • Tunisia
  • Turkey
  • Ukraine 

The scholarship awardees must study in the languages of the countries above. All the countries do not speak English other than Hungary.

There are several top universities from the best countries that are popular among Nigerian applicants, but they are not participating universities under this scheme.

Who is eligible to apply for the Bilateral Education Agreement Scholarship?

The Bilateral Education Agreement Federal Government Scholarship is awarded to undergraduate, Master’s, and PhD applicants in Nigeria who intend to study abroad.

Other eligibility criteria for the Bilateral Education Agreement Scholarship

Postgraduate Scholarship Applicants

All PhD applicants should hold a Master’s Degree, while all Master’s Degree applicants should hold a First Degree with First Class (1st Class) or at least Second Class Upper (2:1), respectively.

Suppose you have previously been awarded a foreign scholarship to study abroad. In that case, you will need to have completed at least two (2) years post-study in an employment capacity in Nigeria and have completed your Nigerian Youth Service Corps (N.Y.S.C.) or obtained an official Exemption Certificate where applicable.

The Age limit for this scholarship is 35 years. Your degree certificate must not be more than 5 years old from when you were awarded. You may require proof of the willingness of your employer to release you from employment.

Undergraduate Scholarship Applicants

To apply for an undergraduate degree programme abroad, for this scholarship, you must possess at the bare minimum, five (5) As or Bs in your West African Examination Council (WAEC) including English Language and Mathematics at one seating, including subjects relevant to your intended field of study.

The WAEC certificate should not be more than one (1) year if you are applying to an African country. If applying to other countries, your certificate should not be two (2) years old. Under this undergraduate scholarship category, your age should be between 18 to 20 years old.

How much is awarded to the Bilateral Education Agreement scholars?

The Federal Government is committed to providing a stipend of $6,000 per annum for both postgraduates and undergraduates awardees to supplement feeding, local transport, maintenance, and equipment/books expenditure.

In addition, the following is also provided to awardees:

i. Warm clothing allowances for awardees at $250 per annum;

ii. Health Insurance for awardees at $200 per annum;

iii. Travel grant from Nigeria for all postgraduate awardees before departure;

iv. Travel grant from Nigeria for all undergraduate awardees before departure;

v. Postgraduates’ research grant of $1,000 per annum;

vi. Medical allowance of $500 per annum for scholars of General Medicine; and

vii. One-way ticket to the country of study and the sum of $2,500 paid to the graduating scholars at the end of the course by the Nigerian Mission in the host country for the return air ticket and other incidentals for a smooth transition back to Nigeria.

viii. Donor countries commit to cover the cost of tuition fees and accommodation for each awardee.

Which subjects can I study under the Bilateral Education Agreement scholarship?

You can apply for this scholarship to study Natural Sciences, Engineering, Information Technology, Medicine and Medicine related courses, Environmental Science, Geology, Petroleum related courses, Social sciences, Law, International Relations, and Languages.

How do I apply for the Bilateral Education Agreement scholarship?

A computer-based test is the mode of assessment for all suitable candidates. Extensive publicity is done in advance of the Computer Based Test (CBT) through print and social media, TV, and national daily newspapers, posters, and flyers.

The CBT questions are set by the Joint Admissions and Matriculations Board (JAMB).

The Federal Ministry of Education and Federal Scholarship Board website will be available to the public on the last week of December or early January every year for registrations and applications by interested applicants. The website remains open for six (6) weeks for registration through the scholarship portal.

On a rotational basis, the CBT is conducted simultaneously in designated testing centres in one state each, in each of Nigeria’s six (6) geo-political zones. The results are processed, and the scores are ranked on merit from highest to lowest by JAMB for all candidates in Nigeria.

An Inter-Ministerial Nomination Committee Meeting is convened each year soon after the CBT, to consider the results from JAMB to obtain a data bank of prospective candidates for consideration by the Federal Scholarship Board in response to the Call for Nominations usually received from awarding countries. 

The various embassies of donor countries may also conduct oral interviews to select candidates for the awards.

The Board organises pre-departure briefings for each batch of awardees before they depart for their countries of study to inform and prepare the parents and awardees about the expectations and challenges they might face abroad.

Past beneficiaries are also invited to share their first-hand experiences and explain the significance of the awards to the new awardees. At these briefings, recipients receive their awards letters and all necessary documentation is arranged.

Ministerial delegations go on ‘Verification Exercises’ in overseas destinations to check on academic progress, welfare, and account records of Bilateral Education Agreement awardees, especially those with unresolved matters concerning their scholarships.

Counselling and support are also provided during these visits. The scholarship implementation process in Nigeria is further enhanced by consulting with relevant partners in the donor countries visited and obtaining all necessary documents.

Can I find other scholarship opportunities to study abroad?

You can also apply for the TETFUND Scholarship. You may be eligible for this scholarship if you seek to further your postgraduate studies and teach at a Nigerian university. You may also be interested in the PTDF Scholarship.

Further, our website offers hundreds of scholarships for Nigerian students.

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