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23 May 2024

8 minutes read

Exploring Fully Funded PhD Programs in Computer Science: Scholarship for International Students

Key Takeaways

  • Comprehensive financial support: Tuition, health insurance, and generous stipend for students.
  • Specialized and collaborative learning: University of Technology and Washington University offer tailored educational environments.
  • Diverse research opportunities: Curriculum builds foundational computer science knowledge and encourages specialization in AI and cybersecurity.
  • Enhanced academic and professional growth: Students often engage in teaching and research assistantships.
  • Global and inclusive student community: Universities offer up to 20 fully funded PhD studentships annually.

For international students aiming to excel in the world of computing, funded PhD programs in computer science present a golden opportunity. These programs offer not just intensive training but also robust financial support, making them a highly sought-after option for those who are looking for fully funded PhD opportunities.

One of the notable examples includes the University of Technology’s prestigious offering which partners with the Washington University in St. Louis to provide a collaborative education environment. These institutions stand out for their fully funded programs specifically tailored for graduate programs in computer science.

Such programs typically cover all aspects of a student’s financial requirements during their PhD journey. This includes tuition, health insurance, and a generous stipend, allowing students to focus entirely on their studies and research. PhD students in good academic standing can thus engage deeply with their academic pursuits without the burden of financial stress.

For those eager to dive into specialized fields like data science, institutions such as the University of Queensland and the Illinois Computer Science department offer tailored programs that not only provide a strong foundation across computer science but are also grounded in computer science pedagogy.

These programs ensure that students are not just learning advanced concepts but also acquiring the skills necessary to teach and propagate their knowledge.

The structure of these PhD programs is typically designed to support full-time CS PhD students through a curriculum that builds a comprehensive foundation in computer science. Many universities announce up to 20 fully funded PhD studentships each year, which are available to international applicants, ensuring a diverse and enriching learning environment.

These studentships are a testament to the university’s commitment to fostering new talent in the field of technology and innovation. For example, the Computer Science Department at the Engineering at the University of Cambridge offers funding for up to five years. This extensive support period is crucial as it allows students to undertake lengthy and complex research projects.

The PhD program provides these benefits to ensure that students in the department can immerse themselves fully in their research areas without the distraction of financial concerns. Moreover, most programs encourage their students to participate in teaching and research assistantships, which further their experience and qualifications.

A significant aspect of these programs is that they are designed to meet the stipends of students with internal and external funding sources, ensuring that every student in good standing has their needs met comprehensively. The Allen School provides an excellent example of this with their policy to meet the stipends of students irrespective of their nationality.

The doctoral program within these institutions is not just about research; it’s also about creating scholars who can contribute to academia and industry alike. Students often receive scholarships and research assistantships, which not only cover their living expenses but also provide them with valuable professional experience through work on real-world projects.

For those dedicated to making a mark in academia, these programs offer the chance to work on pioneering research projects under the guidance of leading experts in the field. The graduate computer science programs, such as those offered by Washington University in St. Louis, are particularly notable for their emphasis on innovation and research output.

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In addition to these opportunities, students will have the opportunity to engage in interdisciplinary work and collaborations with other departments, which broadens their scope of learning and research. The programs are typically designed to support students in good academic standing, and many extend their support over the typical duration to 60 months of the program, allowing for a thorough and unrushed study period.

Moreover, these programs often offer flexibility, allowing students to tailor their studies according to their interests and career goals. This means that a student can enter the program at any time and choose to focus on areas that are most relevant to their future aspirations.

Fully funded PhD programs in computer science are more than just educational opportunities; they are gateways to career advancement and intellectual growth. They provide a strong foundation across computer science, backed by substantial financial support and the opportunity to work on cutting-edge research.

For any ambitious student, these programs offer a path not just to a PhD degree but to becoming a leader in the field of computer science.

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Fully funded phD program at Institute Polytechnique de Paris

The Institute Polytechnique de Paris offers 3-year PhD programs in a variety of fields, including computer science. The doctoral research is conducted in 30 high-quality laboratories. PhD students can conduct their thesis with companies that have renowned R&D departments. Admission is possible by contacting a researcher to develop a PhD project together and discuss funding possibilities, or by applying online to thesis proposals

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Computer Science Scholarship at Stanford University

Stanford’s PhD programs in Computer Science are designed to develop outstanding researchers. They provide 5 years of full-time financial support for every admitted student, including international students. The application requirements include a statement of purpose, transcripts, TOEFL scores (if applicable), and letters of recommendation

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University of Auckland for International Students

The University of Auckland is ranked among the top 100 universities in the world and offers PhD studies in nearly 100 subjects, including computer science. International PhD students pay the same fees as domestic students, which was NZ$7,659.60 (around US$5,000) in 2023.

Additional benefits include dependent children attending subsidized schools, spouse work permits, unlimited work rights for PhD students, and a 3-year post-study work visa upon completion


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University of Oslo for International Students

The University of Oslo offers research training of high international standard across a broad range of subjects. A completed Master’s degree is required for admission to their 3-year PhD programs. In 2018, 468 PhD candidates successfully defended their theses at the university

Harvard Medical School PhD program

Harvard Medical School has nine PhD programs, all of which are based at HMS and enroll students in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS). These include programs in Biological and Biomedical Sciences, which cover computer science applications in biology and medicine.

What is the difference between a PhD program and a professional doctorate?

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When comparing a PhD program with a professional doctorate, it’s essential to understand that both paths are rigorous but cater to different professional goals. Here, we’ll explore the distinctions between these two types of doctoral programs, with a focus on how universities, particularly university of technology, structure these programs to benefit their students, especially those in fields like computer science and engineering.

A PhD, or Doctor of Philosophy, is traditionally research-focused. The program is designed to develop experts who can contribute original research that advances their field.

For instance, CS PhD students in good standing at a university of technology are typically involved in pushing the boundaries of knowledge in areas such as artificial intelligence, computer graphics, cybersecurity and cryptography. These students in computer science are not just learners but also creators of new knowledge.

Conversely, a professional doctorate, such as a Doctor of Engineering (EngD), focuses more on applying research to practical problems. This program is aimed at professionals who seek advanced knowledge but with a clear practical application in their industries. For example, a professional doctorate in computer engineering might focus on applying advanced theory to real-world engineering challenges.

Graduate students in both programs often receive full tuition support, a critical factor in doctoral studies. Most PhD students receive a tuition waiver and a stipend for living expenses, making it financially feasible to dedicate themselves to full-time study. Similarly, professional doctorate students receive comparable financial support, though the details can vary depending on the university and specific program.

At the university of technology, both full-time students and part-time students can find programs tailored to their needs. Full-time PhD in engineering students might delve into extensive research projects as teaching or research assistants, gaining deep insights into areas of its research portfolio.

In contrast, part-time professional doctorate students might integrate their studies with their ongoing professional activities, applying new knowledge directly to their work environments.

Scholarships and studentships are available for eligible students, which cover not only tuition and fees but also provide a stipend to cover living expenses. This support underscores the university’s commitment to fostering advanced expertise in both academic and professional realms.

For those pursuing a PhD, particularly computer science students, the expectation is that they will contribute original research that is publishable and advances the field significantly. The university offers a range of support services to ensure that students are fully equipped to meet these challenges.

This includes access to state-of-the-art laboratories, comprehensive library resources, and mentorship from leading scholars in their fields.

In professional doctorates, the research component is also significant but is generally more focused on practical outcomes. Projects might be designed in partnership with industry, focusing on innovation in practices or products. Computer engineering students, for instance, might develop new software management tools or hardware solutions that can be directly implemented in industry settings.

The program’s structure in both types of doctorates is critical. For PhD programs, there is a heavy emphasis on developing a broad and deep understanding of a particular discipline through coursework before moving on to the dissertation phase.

Computer science students or those in computer engineering might spend years on research that leads to significant advancements in artificial intelligence or computer graphics.

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Professional doctorates, however, may involve more coursework that is directly applicable to professional practices. This might include advanced project management, leadership in technical environments, or cutting-edge techniques in cybersecurity and cryptography. The aim here is not just to generate new knowledge but to translate that knowledge into practice.

Ultimately, the choice between a PhD and a professional doctorate depends on the individual’s career goals and interests. Both pathways offer rigorous training and the potential for significant personal and professional growth.

At a university of technology, students are fully supported in their journey, whether they are immersed in the theoretical underpinnings of computer science or applying engineering principles to solve complex problems in the industry.

English Language Proficiency

  • For international students whose native language is not English, a minimum TOEFL score of 250 for the computer-based test, 100 for the internet-based test, or 600 for the paper-based test is required.

Application Documents

  • Application Form
  • Statement of Purpose (typed, single-spaced, and between one to two pages)
  • Three (3) Letters of Recommendation
  • Resume/CV
  • College and University Transcripts
  • Passport Copy (For International Students)
  • Student Visa (For International Students)

Application Fee

  • The application fee is $125, non-refundable, and must be received by the application deadline.

Financial Support

  • PhD students receive a five-year funding package that offers fellowship stipend, tuition aid, and assistantship salary, which covers the standard cost of attendance.

Program Duration and Tuition Fee

  • The PhD program in Computer Science typically takes 5-6 years to complete.
  • The annual tuition fee for the PhD program is $27,141.

Acceptance Rate

  • Stanford University has an acceptance rate of about 4%, making it a very selective institution.

Program Overview

  • The PhD degree in Computer Science is designed to prepare students for careers in research and teaching, either in industry or academia.
  • The program emphasizes preparing students to conduct independent research and make original contributions in computer science and related fields.
  • The course focuses on topics such as Artificial Intelligence, Computer Science, Robotics, Systems, and Scientific Computing

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What does a funded PhD program in computer science cover financially?

Funded PhD programs typically cover all essential costs of education, including tuition fees, health insurance, and living expenses through stipends, ensuring that students can fully commit to their research and studies.

What makes a candidate competitive for admission to a funded PhD program in computer science?

Successful candidates typically exhibit strong academic records, a clear research focus, and prior research experience. Demonstrated ability to contribute to and benefit from a highly collaborative and intensive research environment is also critical.

Are international students eligible for these funded PhD programs?

Yes, many programs are open to international students and aim to maintain a diverse student body to enrich the educational experience with a variety of perspectives and ideas.

What opportunities do funded PhD programs offer for hands-on experience?

PhD students in these programs frequently participate in teaching and research assistantships, providing them with practical experience and enhancing their resumes, which is crucial for academic and industry-related career paths.

How do these programs enhance specialized learning in computer science?

Universities often partner with prestigious institutions to offer specialized programs that focus on key areas such as data science and computer science pedagogy, preparing students to advance in both academic and teaching careers.

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