Finding Funding For Masters Degrees

I have been writing this blog for a little over 2 months now. In that time I have veered fairly wildly between various different subjects from journalism to social media to celebrities to aid work and a variety of other things besides. To date, my most popular post has been one on the issue of picking the right Masters course for aspiring global development do-gooders. It very quickly spawned several comments and has been receiving substantial numbers of hits (in proportion to the other posts on this blog) fairly consistently since it was published.

The related discussion I started on LinkedIn has also been quite active, attracting 33 comments from 13 different profiles. Take a while to peruse the full discussion, there’s some really interesting observations on there – I am planning on doing a full follow up to that post some time soon. For now, I’m going to jump ahead a little.

Assuming you’ve now decided what you want to study, you take a little browse of the ‘fees & admissions’ section of the website/prospectus. After the inevitable cold sweats, shaking, vomiting and prodigious weeping you’ll come out of your haze, unfurl from your safe foetal position on the bathroom floor and start to scheme about ways to get money.

At this point, I should point out that there are various different ways of getting enough capital to invest in a Masters but I’m only really interested in the one that most appeals to me: grants and scholarships. This appeals to me most because a) it involves the least amount of repayments and b) it’s much quicker than earning the money yourself. Personally, I want to get into my graduate studies as quickly as possible so I can start getting out into the world and earn money doing something actually enjoy (yes, I know there is no guarantee of this).

With this in mind, today I started pulling together a list of scholarships and grants that a reasonably low-level do-gooder might be able to win. These things tend to filter people out geographically or in terms of education/work experience. I found this out after trawling through seemingly purposefully convoluted websites to pull out the salient information – eligibility, how much, how long, what etc. Irritatingly, not all of them apply to me. Rather than simply throwing away this research I was reminded of Patrick Meier and stopped myself.

At the end of November, I came across Mr Meier through a crowdsourcing project of his:

Verifying Crowdsourced Social Media Reports for Live Crisis Mapping: An Introduction to Information Forensics

Take a look at the link here.

This paper (in draft form) allows anyone to give feedback via comments on the paper. It is, to some extent, a crowdsourced paper about crowdsouring, which is pretty incredible usage of the internet! It’s a remarkable idea and a very interesting way of highlighting the interactivity of the internet, particularly in this social media dominated world – note the ‘social’. As I once heard someone say at a conference: “If you aren’t exchanging information, if you aren’t conversing with people, you’re using the internet wrong.”

Here is my version.

It’s pretty low on content at the moment (I work full time!) but I will be updating it as and when I get a chance. I’m hoping to build it into a really useful resource – it will become a major part of the currently developing ‘Resources’ page I hope to add to the site in the next few months.

What I want you to do

  • Check my research: if you don’t think my facts and figures are right, call me up on it.
  • Alert me to other scholarships/grants: send me a link on Twitter or just put it in a comment on the page
  • Approve my framework: is there other info that you want on these items? What else do you need to know? I can add new columns if you give me a good reason to.

Hopefully this will become a really useful little document. If anyone is particularly interested in contributing to it leave me a comment/email/tweet (my contact details are in the ‘Submissions’ page).


2 thoughts on “Finding Funding For Masters Degrees

  1. As soon as I discovered this website I went on reddit to share some of the love with them.

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