Studying abroad has always been an attractive option for students wishing to obtain higher education from one of the world's best universities, but one aspect that has remained a barrier is the high education cost abroad.

Scholarships and education loans are major sources of help for most students who want to pursue their higher education abroad. However, there are various myths and misconceptions about scholarships and education loans, as a result of which students do not apply for the financial aid for which they are eligible.

We've already busted 13 common myths about abroad education loans, so in this article, we'll debunk some of the scholarship myths.

What are Scholarships?

For colleges and universities, scholarships are financial aid awards designed to help students pay for their education. These awards differ from student loans in that they don’t have to be repaid. Students might receive the money directly as a check in their name. In other cases, the money is given to the student’s university directly. 
A Scholarship to study abroad can be broadly divided into three major categories which are:
  • Need-based scholarships
  • Merit-based scholarships
  • Special scholarships 

Read More: 10 Fully Funded Scholarships

Read More: Scholarships for Indian Students: How to Apply & Get a Scholarship?

Common myths about international scholarships

Now with that basic introduction to scholarships, let us move on to some of the common myths about international scholarships.

1. Scholarships are only meant for the very best and most gifted students

Although it is often assumed that in order to receive a scholarship, a student must have great academic results, this is only partially true. While students with excellent grades are more likely to get a scholarship, not all awards are based on academic achievement.

Many different selection criteria are used, from need-based to the ones relying on extracurricular achievements scholarships and awards have a wide range. So carefully check the criteria used before dismissing an interesting funding opportunity as unattainable. 

2. Most scholarships are reserved for minority students

Major universities throughout the world maintain a pool of scholarships and financial aid for students from certain minority backgrounds in order to foster diversity and give equal opportunity.

Even though a lot of effort has gone towards leveling the playing field throughout the years, the journey is far from complete. Contrary to what people presume, Only 29% of students from minority backgrounds obtain higher education scholarships.

3. I must be in financial need to get a scholarship

Some scholarships are indeed for students from economically weaker backgrounds, which is why this widespread misperception exists, preventing many students from applying for scholarships at all. In reality, however, the criteria used for selection differ widely. Some schemes are targeted not at financial need but, for example, at building expertise in a particular profession or helping students from a certain region. 

4. Scholarships are partially funded in nature

Yes, most scholarships will partially cover your total expense abroad, however, there are many scholarship providers from which you can win a fully-funded scholarship as well. 

5. All scholarships require you to write an essay

Writing essays is in fact an integral part of most scholarship processes since many scholarship providers want to understand your motivation for applying for a scholarship and determine if you are deserving of a financial scholarship.

However, this is not true for all scholarship providers. Some scholarships do not need an essay and instead are based entirely on variables such as your GPA, test results, extracurricular activities, or financial need. If you feel like an essay is holding you back from applying, look for scholarships that don’t have this requirement.

Read More: 10 Tips for Writing a Winning Scholarship Essay

6. Scholarships cover only living expenses

In addition to grants for living expenses, There are many scholarships that pay a wide range of costs, including tuition, travel, equipment, books, and even printing. Many of the costs associated with studying can be covered by scholarships.

7. Applying for one scholarship is enough

Wouldn't that be great if this were true? Students assume they may apply for a single major scholarship that will cover their entire tuition fee. While this may be true for a small number of people, it is not the case for the vast majority.

Most of the time, you'll have to rely on a number of scholarships to considerably lower your education fees. If scholarships aren't enough to meet your needs, you may need to look into additional options, such as grants or student loans.

8. There are hardly any scholarships available

The largest organizations that give scholarships whose names are well-known are always the ones that attract the most attention. This gives the false impression that there are only a few scholarships available and that getting one must be difficult with so many applicants. Nothing could be further from the truth.

A large number of scholarship providers (Government, Universities, Corporates, Trusts and foundations, Individual donors/ philanthropists, etc) strive toward the shared goal of providing access to education to underprivileged and meritorious students.

Read More: Full Bright Scholarship

9. With so many applications, my chances are too small

Many of the most well-known and well-publicized scholarships receive a large number of applicants, on the other hand, many smaller, less well-known groups don’t even receive enough applications. Using the results of your search, you may quickly find organizations where the competition will be less fierce. Keep in mind that all scholarship programs are paid in the same currency!

Read More: Proper way to apply for Scholarship 

10. Searching and applying for scholarships is a very difficult process

Many students give up on applying for scholarships because they believe the procedure is tedious and time-consuming. Scholarships are not simple to come by, and they demand some work. However, when compared to the potential scholarship rewards, the amount of work required is little.

Many students waste time because they do not use the available scholarship database and believe that obtaining a scholarship is extremely tough. is one such site where you can find the number of scholarships. There are more than 26,000 scholarships listed from all different sources for all different countries and universities.

WeMakeScholars has extended the funding options by launching education loan assistance to those who are not eligible to apply for scholarships or miss out on one. WeMakeScholars is funded and supported by the Ministry of IT, Government of India for their initiative. We are associated with 10+ banks and NBFCs to provide support to students by helping them get the best education loan deal suited to their profile. As this is a Government-funded initiative, the service we provide is completely free of cost.

Hope you are better prepared to plan your finances for university now, but instead of believing myths that are misleading, do thorough research and check on credible sources or call out to trusted specialists for guidance.