Frequently Asked Questions

 

I. General

1. What are the Australia Awards?

2. What are Australia Awards Fellowships?

II. Eligibility criteria

3. What are the eligibility criteria for applying for an Australia Awards Scholarship?

4. What are application requirements for an Australia Awards Scholarship?

5. Do I qualify as an Equity of Access Applicant?

6. What is a formal degree?

7. What are the major changes in the Australian Awards Scholarships 2017 selection round/2018 intake?

8. What are the requirements to apply for Masters by research scholarship?

9. Do Masters by research applicants have to have a supervisor to apply? How do I find a supervisor?

10. What are the requirements for an employee of a Central Agency to apply for a scholarship in the 2017 round?

11. Does the category Vietnamese companies include State companies?

12. Are persons employed on Government projects (cán bộ dự án) but not Government employees (công chức/viên chức) eligible to apply for a scholarship?

13. Can employees of international or foreign invested companies apply for a scholarship?

14. Can applicants with a Master apply for a scholarship for a second Master degree?

III. English language requirements

15. What are the English Language requirements for applications for the 2017 selection round/2018 intake?

16. Can IELTS/TOEFL/PTE Academic test certificates be submitted after the scholarship application closes?

17. If applicants have graduated from a university in an English-speaking country or where the language of instruction is English do they need to have an IELTS certificate?

IV. Work experience requirements

18. How will the two-year relevant work experience requirement be calculated?

19. Does the two year work experience have to be with the same employer?

20. What evidence of work experience has to be submitted on application?

V. Application process

21. How are application forms and supporting documentation submitted?

22. What supporting documents are required to be submitted?

23. Who can certify university/college academic transcripts?

24. Who will sign the Employer’s letter of reference if I am not currently employed?

25. How are applications assessed?

26. How can I prepare for the interview if I am short-listed?

27. When will applicants be notified that they have been awarded a scholarship?

VI. Proposed study

28. What is the difference between Masters by coursework and Masters by research?

29. What fields of study are given priority under the 2017 selection round/2018 intake?

30. What split courses are available for the AAS 2017 selection round?

31. Should proposed courses be in the field previously studied?

32. Can courses of study be changed after the application submission?

VII. Vietnamese government regulations

33. As a Government employee, what are the requirements to return to my employer post-study in relation to Vietnamese law and regulations?

 


1. What are the Australia Awards?

The Australia Awards are prestigious international scholarships and fellowships funded by the Australian Government. They offer the next generation of global leaders an opportunity to undertake study, research and professional development in Australia. The Awards strive to develop leadership potential and stimulate lasting change by empowering a global network of talented individuals through high-quality education experiences in Australia and overseas.

Recipients return home with new ideas and knowledge, and the ability to make a significant contribution to their home countries as leaders in their field.

The Australia Awards, funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFAT), consist of the Australia Awards Scholarships, Australia Awards Short Course Awards and the Australia Awards Fellowships.

The Australia Awards Scholarships are a key component of Australia’s bilateral aid program for Vietnam and are awarded each year to meet Vietnam’s priority human resource and development needs and improve links between Australia and Vietnam. For the 2017 selection round/2018 intake, post-graduate Australia Awards Scholarships for Masters studies will be available for Vietnamese applicants who meet selection requirements and criteria in the priority fields of study for Vietnam.

For information on the Australia Awards Fellowships (AAF), please see FAQ 2 below. The Australia Awards Endeavour Scholarships and Fellowships are administered by the Department of Education and Training. For more information go to the following websites:

Australia Awards

Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade – Australia Awards

Department of Education – Australia Awards Endeavour Scholarships and Fellowships

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2. What are Australia Awards Fellowships?

The Australia Awards Fellowships aim to develop current and aspiring leaders working in priority areas to increase institutional capacity of partner countries and to advance key regional policy objectives.

Australia Awards Fellowships are designed to provide short term opportunities for study, research and professional attachment programs in Australia. Applications are submitted by Australian organisations once a year. The host Australian organisations, in-cooperation with partner agencies from eligible countries such as Vietnam, nominate fellows to participate in the program.

The Australia Awards Fellowships are selected through a competitive process.

For more information on the Australia Awards Fellowships go to Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade – Australia Awards Fellowships..

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3. What are the eligibility criteria for applying for an Australia Awards Scholarship?

To be eligible to apply for an Australia Awards Scholarship, you must:

  • be a Vietnamese citizen residing in and applying for the scholarship from Vietnam
  • not be married to or engaged to/or be de facto of a person who holds, or is eligible to hold, Australia or New Zealand citizenship or permanent residency, at any of the application, selection or mobilisation phases
  • not be a current serving military personnel
  • not be applying for another long-term Australia Award unless they have resided outside of Australia for twice the length of the total time that they were in Australia (for example, a previous awardee who has been on an Australia Awards Scholarship in Australia for two years will not be eligible to apply for another Australia Awards Scholarship until they have been in Vietnam for four years.)
  • have completed a formal (‘chinh quy’) undergraduate degree for Master applicants. (See FAQ 6 or explanation of a formal degree)
  • have at least two years’ relevant recent work experience in Vietnam, except for Disadvantaged Applicants (FAQ5) who are required to have at least one year’s relevant work experience (evidence of work experience must be provided on application)
  • meet the specific requirements of Masters by research studies for which only applicants working as tertiary lecturers or researchers are eligible.
  • not apply for bachelor degree or a second degree at the same level (e.g. if you have a Master degree, you cannot apply for a scholarship for a second Master degree even in a different field of study).
  • commit to return to work in Vietnam for at least two years after you finish your Australian course
  • have a valid IELTS Certificate (or TOEFL iBT or PTE Academic equivalents) except for provincial agency and Equity of Access (Rural Disadvantaged and Persons with Disability) applicants. IELTS Certificates or TOEFL iBT will be valid if the tests have been on or after 1 January 2016. Please note that valid certificates must be submitted with the on-line application by 31 March 2017. IELTS certificates received after 31 March 2017 will not be accepted.

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 4. What are application requirements for an Australia Awards Scholarship?

The application requirements for an Australia Award Scholarship in the 2017 selection round/2018 intake are set out in the following matrix.

Applicant Group

GPA

English language

Work experience

Equity of Access (cross-cutting)

  • Persons with disability
  • Rural disadvantaged

6.0

- No IELTS requirement on application

- IELTS 4.5 (no sub-band below 3.5)

One year relevant work experience

  • Provincial agencies (including mass organisations)

6.5

- No IELTS requirement on application

- IELTS 4.5 (no sub-band below 4.0)

Two years relevant work experience

  • Central agencies (including mass organisations)
  • Regional universities
  • Research institutions
  • Vietnamese NGOs
  • Vietnamese companies

7.0

- Submit IELTS certificate at application

- IELTS 5.5 (no sub-band below 5.0)

Two years relevant work experience (must be continuous with the same employer for Central agencies)

  • Universities from Hanoi, HCM City, Haiphong, Danang, Hue and Can Tho
  • International NGOs

7.0

- Submit IELTS certificate at application

- IELTS 6.5 (no sub-band below 6.0)

Two years relevant work experience

 

5. Do I qualify as an Equity of Access Applicant?

Equity of Access applicants are disadvantaged applicants and are defined as:

  • Persons with disability
  • Disadvantaged Rural applicants

Disadvantaged Rural applicants are persons who were born in OR attended high school in one of the Designated Poor Districts AND are working in those districts or one of the listed provinces (Note: These provinces do not include Hanoi, HCM City, Hai Phong, Thua Thien Hue, Danang and Can Tho) with designated poor districts.

Ethnic minority applicants will be deemed Equity of Access applicants if they meet the criteria for Rural Disadvantaged applicants.

For Equity of Access applicants, the following special requirements across all categories of applicants apply:

  • Minimum GPA 6.0
  • One year’s work experience (instead of two years)
  • No IELTS requirements on application (but IELTS selection test result must meet minimum applicant group requirements – see FAQ 4).

Equity of Access applicants are required to provide evidence at application of their place of birth, high school graduation, location of current employment and/or disability.

Equity of Access Fund

The purpose of the Equity of Access Fund is to reduce barriers to participation for all those applying for, and awarded Australia Awards Scholarships and also for those participating in non-scholarship HRD activities in Vietnam.

The Equity of Access Fund is a key support mechanism for eligible disadvantaged groups (people with disability and those from disadvantaged rural areas), so they have equity of access (i) to apply for the Australia Awards, (ii) be selected and placed, (iii) successfully complete their study in Australia, (iv) be integrated into their workplace and (v) participate in alumni professional development and social networking activities.

More information can be found in Equity of Access Applicants section.

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6. What is a formal degree?

'Bang tai chuc' and 'Bang Chuyen Tu' are not formal degrees and are not eligible for an Australia Awards Scholarship. 'Bang Lien Thong' is considered a formal degree if the applicant has graduated from a 3 year College course.

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7. What are the major changes in the Australian Awards Scholarships 2017 selection round/2018 intake?

There are a number of major changes in application requirements for the 2017 selection round.

  • Scholarships are not available for PhD studies, only for Master degrees.
  • There are no longer applicant Profiles but of applicant groups.
  • There are changes in the priority fields of study which are listed in FAQ 29. Studies in other fields will be considered on the basis of merit.
  • There are changes in the IELTS and GPA requirements according to applicant group.
  • Applicants from International NGOs, UN agencies and Vietnamese private and State companies are eligible to apply.

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8. What are the requirements to apply for Masters by research scholarship?

You must be a tertiary lecturer or a researcher at a university or research institute. 

Masters by research applicants must:

  • have a valid IELTS Certificate (i.e. IELTS tests must have been on or after 1 January 2016) with an overall score of 5.5 with no sub-band below 5.0 (or TOEFL iBT equivalent) minimum at application
  • submit a summary research proposal on application that includes methodology, timelines and a brief literature review (no template available)
  • have a minimum 7.0 GPA at application
  • have Academic Referee Reports from two academic referees
  • provide a list of relevant publications
  • show evidence of supervisor contact at application (see FAQ 9 below).
  • not already have a Master or PhD degree.

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9. Do Masters by research applicants have to have a supervisor to apply? How do I find a supervisor?

Masters by research applicants should show evidence of supervisor contact at application and should supply evidence of past research and highlight outcomes. Please refer to guidance on how to find a supervisor and how to prepare a research proposal.

Note: Requirements for Disadvantaged Masters by research applicants are listed in FAQ15.

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10. What are the requirements for an employee of a Central Agency to apply for a scholarship in the 2017 round?

You must be a full-time employee of the 34 designated Central Agencies.

You should have two years’ relevant, continuous work experience in your current agency of employment.

You must submit a Letter of Employment signed by your current employer with your application.

You should not submit an application for a Masters by research degree as this would make your application ineligible.

You should not already have a Master degree

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11. Does the category Vietnamese companies include State companies?

Yes, if you are an employee of a State company at the central or provincial level you are eligible to apply.

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12. Are persons employed on Government projects (cán bộ dự án) but not Government employees (công chức/viên chức) eligible to apply for a scholarship?

Yes, if you are working on a Government project at the central or provincial level and are not a Government employee, you are eligible to apply for an Australia Awards Scholarship and meet the requirements of the respective applicant group of Central agency or Provincial agency.

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13. Can employees of international or foreign invested companies apply for a scholarship?

No. Employees of international or foreign invested companies cannot apply and are ineligible.

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14. Can applicants with a Master apply for a scholarship for a second Master degree?  

No. Applicants cannot apply for a scholarship for a second degree at the same level. If you already have a Master Degree or nearing completion of a Master Degree you cannot apply for another Master degree, even in a different field.

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15. What are the English Language requirements for applications for the 2017 selection round/2018 intake?

There are three levels of IELTS requirements

 

Group

English language

Equity of Access (cross-cutting)

  • Persons with disability
  • Rural disadvantaged

- No IELTS requirement on application

- IELTS 4.5 (no sub-band below 3.5)

 
  • Provincial agencies (including mass organisations)

No IELTS requirement on application

- IELTS 4.5 (no sub-band below 4.0)

 
  • Central agencies (including mass organisations)
  • Regional universities
  • Research institutions
  • Vietnamese NGOs
  • Vietnamese companies

- Submit IELTS certificate at application

- IELTS 5.5 (no sub-band below 5.0)

  • Universities from Hanoi, HCM City, Haiphong, Danang, Hue and Can Tho
  • International NGOs, UN agencies, Embassies

- Submit IELTS certificate at application

- IELTS 6.5 (no sub-band below 6.0)

 Validity of IELTS/TOEFL/ PTE Academic Tests

IELTS, TOEFL iBT and PTE Academic test certificates will be valid if the tests have been on or after 1 January 2016. Please note that valid certificates must be submitted with the on-line application by 31 March 2017 and will not be accepted if submitted after that date.

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16. Can IELTS/TOEFL/PTE Academic test certificates be submitted after the scholarship application closes?

No, these test certificates cannot be submitted after the scholarship application closes on 31 March 2017.

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17. If applicants have graduated from a university in an English-speaking country or where the language of instruction is English do they need to have an IELTS certificate?

Yes, they need to have an IELTS certificate. All applicants, whether at application or as a short-listed candidate following the IELTS selection test, must have a valid IELTS (or TOEFL iBT or PTE Academic) certificate that meets the minimum IELTS requirements for designated application groups.

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18. How will the two-year relevant work experience requirement be calculated?

The two year work experience is calculated from the day of course completion shown on the university transcript to the scholarship application closing date, which should be backed up by a work contract or official recruitment decision for government employees.

All applicants, except Equity of Access applicants, must have two years’ recent relevant work experience in Vietnam at the time of application.

For Central agency applicants the work experience should be continuous in their current agency of employment. Any probation period will be included as part of the two year calculation. Work experience undertaken during studies will not be taken into account.

Equity of Access applicants are not required to be employed for a full 2 year period but they should have at least one year’s relevant work experience.

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19. Does the two year work experience have to be with the same employer?

Except for applicants from Central agencies who must have 2 years continuous work experience with the same agency, work experience does not have to be continuous or with the same employer but should be relevant to your proposed field of study.

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20. What evidence of work experience has to be submitted on application?

All applicants must submit with their application certified copies of work contracts or official recruitment decision, if they are government employees, to prove they have the required period of relevant work experience. These documents do not have to be translated into English.

All applicants are also required to submit with their application a Letter of Employment from their current (or previous employer, if applicants are currently not employed).

For Central agency applicants, the contracts and the Letter of Employment must show that they have been continuously employed with the same agency for two years.

Equity of Access applicants (FAQ5) must show evidence of at least one year’s relevant work experience in their work contracts and Letter of Employment.

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21. How are application forms and supporting documentation submitted?

All applicants MUST submit their application on-line through the OASIS system together with supporting documentation by 31 March 2017.

Hard copy applications will not be accepted and will be deemed ineligible.

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22. What supporting documents are required to be submitted?

The following list of supporting documents must be uploaded with the on-line Application Form. Failure to provide all required documents may make an application ineligible.

  • A certified copy of original formal degree
  • A certified translation copy of formal degree (if not in English)
  • A certified copy of original formal transcript
  • A certified translation copy of formal transcript (if not in English)
  • A certified copy of citizenship document (Passport OR National ID)
  • A certified copy of original birth certificate
  • A certified translation copy of birth certificate (if not in English)
  • A certified copy of work contract(s), or an official recruitment decision if a government employee, that prove the required work experience
  • A CV with passport photo stamped by current or previous employer, using the Curriculum Vitae template
  • A letter of reference with stamp from current or previous employer, using the Letter of Employment template
  • One (1) academic referee report for all Masters by coursework applicants, using the Academic Referee Report template
  • Two (2) academic referee reports for Masters by research applicants, using the Academic Referee Report template
  • A list of relevant publications for Masters by research applicants
  • English proficiency certificate (IELTS, TOEFL iBT or PTE Academic test equivalent) with a valid test on or after 1 January 2016 for all applicants, except Equity of Access applicants. Please note that provincial agency applicants and Equity of Access applicants across all applicant groups do not need to submit a certificate at application. (However if shortlisted for an interview provincial agency and Equity of Access applicants must sit for an IELTS selection test, which is paid by DFAT and meet the minimum IELTS requirement for the relevant applicant group).
  • Summary Research proposal for Masters by research applicants (no template available)
  • For Masters by research applicants evidence of supervisor contact
  • Certificates of awards/prizes at international and national levels or at university graduation only (if available)
  • If an Equity of Access applicant with a disability, certified evidence of disability
  • If a Disadvantaged Rural applicant, evidence of disadvantaged status if not available in above supporting documentation, e.g. high school transcript.

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23. Who can certify university/college academic transcripts?

University academic transcripts can be certified by the Rector, Deputy Rector, the Head of the Training Department or Deputy Head of the Training Department of the university/college or by a Public Notary.

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24. Who will sign the Employer’s letter of reference if I am not currently employed?

This situation should only apply to applicants who are not government employees. In this case the Employer letter of reference should be signed by the last employer of the applicant and have the employer’s official stamp.

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25. How are applications assessed?

A Joint Selection Committee (JSC) comprising representatives from the Australian Embassy and the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET) decides the recipients of Australia Awards Scholarships. The selection process includes an interview in English for all short-listed candidates. Applicants are assessed on the basis of merit, transparency and equal access based on the following factors:

  • Academic competence
  • Professional and personal qualities
  • Relevance of proposed studies to current work and/or career objectives
  • Potential contribution to your organisation and Vietnam’s development
  • Leadership potential.

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 26. How can I prepare for the interview if I am short-listed?

You should be prepared to answer the questions in English.

You should first of all review your application form to ensure that you remember clearly what you wrote in the application, especially in the supporting statement.

You should be clear in your mind why you chose the particular courses and be able to explain your choice in terms of your current or future job duties and/or your career aspirations.

You should be able to explain clearly how you intend to apply the knowledge and skills you will acquire in your studies when you return to Vietnam.

You should be able to explain how you see your career path and how you may be able to implement change in your work place and more broadly contribute to Vietnam’s development in your field.

Click here to download additional scholarships interview tips..

Note: If you have a disability and require adjustments at the interview, we encourage you to inform one of our staff ahead of time.

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27. When will applicants be notified that they have been awarded a scholarship?

For all short-listed Australia Awards Scholarship candidates a decision is expected on conditional awards by end of July 2017.

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28. What is the difference between Masters by coursework and Masters by research?

A Masters by coursework is a degree where the course consists primarily of a series of compulsory and elective subjects. A Masters by coursework usually involves attendance at lectures, tutorials or laboratory classes, depending on the course and university. A Masters by coursework may also contain a minor thesis or research subject in one semester.

A Masters by research is awarded following the completion of a major thesis, involving original research, under the supervision of a senior academic (called a supervisor). Normally there are no lectures or classes, although some Masters by research degrees may also include one or two compulsory subjects.

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29. What fields of study are given priority under the 2017 selection round/2018 intake?

The priority fields of study for Vietnamese applicants are:

  • Governance and Economic Growth (economics, international trade, public policy)
  • Transport (project management and financing, transport engineering, urban transport planning)
  • Water and Sanitation (water management, water engineering, water quality and supply systems)
  • Education (education management, quality assurance)
  • Gender Equality (gender and development, women’s studies)
  • Agriculture and Rural Development (agribusiness management, agricultural economics, rural development, sustainable tourism management)
  • Regional Stability and Human Rights (public international law, international human rights law)
  • Disability
  • Climate Change (cross-cutting theme)

Ineligible courses

Please note that applications for following courses ineligible for scholarship:

  • MBA
  • IT hardware and software
  • Medicine
  • Pharmacy
  • Communication/Media/Journalism

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30. What split courses are available for the AAS 2017 selection round??

Under a new agreement between the Australian National University (ANU) and the National Economics University (NEU), a split course arrangement is available for two courses at ANU: Master of International and Development Economics and Master of Environmental and Resource Economics. The first year of study will take place at NEU and the second year at ANU. The Australia Awards Scholarship would cover only the second year of study at ANU. Further information on the ANU/NEU split course can be found here.

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31. Should proposed courses be in the field previously studied?

For Master degree, applicants who nominate a course in a field of study in Australia that is different from their academic background can still be considered, depending on their relevant work experience and career goals. In the application you must demonstrate how you would use the knowledge and skills gained in your proposed studies to advance Vietnam’s development when you return from Australia.

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32. Can courses of study be changed after the application submission?

In the first instance, applicants should choose carefully courses which fit with their English Language levels (or expected English Language levels after pre-departure training if required) in order to minimise the need to change courses after their application.

Applicants must choose both courses in Preference 1 and Preference 2 in the same field of study. If applicants choose courses in different fields of study they will be required to change one of their courses so that both courses are in the same field of study.

For applicants who may have to undertake pre-departure English language training, the selected Preference 2 course in the application form should preferably have a lower English language level requirement than the Preference 1 course selected, in case a candidate cannot reach the English language entry requirement for the Preference 1 course.

Shortlisted candidates and conditional awardees may be able to change their course in exceptional circumstances. The reasons for course change will be considered on a case-by-case basis with the condition that i) the new course selected should be in the same field of study, ii) be relevant to the candidate’s work experience and/or career objectives and iii) be supported by their employer if currently employed.

At placement stage, if candidates cannot satisfy the academic and English Language entry requirement of their selected courses, which have been approved by the Joint Selection Committee, at an Australian university, then their scholarship may be withdrawn.

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33. As a Government employee, what are the requirements to return to my employer post-study in relation to Vietnamese law and regulations?

It is your responsibility to fulfill your contract’s obligations with your employers.

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Additional information