Indigenous Commonwealth Scholarships

The Indigenous Commonwealth Scholarship Program is a Federal Government Program administered by each University. The Indigenous Commonwealth Scholarships Program assists Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students from low socio-economic backgrounds, particularly those from rural and regional areas, with costs associated with higher education.

Scholarship Value: up to $2,728 per term

Length of Scholarship: Term 1 2019 with opportunity to reapply in Term 2 2019

Number Available:

Opening Date: 20 May 2019

Closing Date: 05 July 2019

Study LevelUndergraduate; Postgraduate (Course work)
Year of StudyFuture/First Year; First Year; 2nd year
CitizenshipAustralian Citizen
EthnicityAboriginal; Torres Strait Islander
Study Region
Study ModeAll modes
Study LoadAll loads

Eligibility Criteria

An Indigenous Commonwealth Scholarship will be awarded on the basis that the applicant meets the Indigenous Student Assistance Grants (Special Grants) Notifiable Instrument 2018.

To be eligible for an Indigenous Commonwealth Scholarship applicants should provide evidence that they are:

  • identify as an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander person and provide Confirmation of Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander Identity documents as detailed under Supporting Documents below.
  • Preference is given to students from a remote or regional area
  • enrolled in an undergraduate course, associate degree, eligible enabling course, or enrolled in a postgraduate course in an area of National Priority (currently Nursing and Education) required for initial registration to practice in the chosen National Priority
  • a Commonwealth supported student at CQUniversity
  • in receipt of a Centrelink benefit or can demonstrate low personal/family income;

Students will be ineligible if they:

  • have already completed the requirements of a course of study (with any provider) regarded to be equivalent to or higher than a bachelor's award, unless such award is a prerequisite to your current undergraduate course of study
  • are in receipt of a Centrelink Relocation Scholarship or Residential Costs Option, Centrelink Start-Up Scholarship or Loan

More detailed eligibility information can be found via the above guidelines.

Applicants will be assessed on the application form and a written submission of no more than 500 words addressing the following:

  • Career goals and how the Scholarship will assist you in achieving your educational goals
  • Academic performance
  • Extracurricular activities – especially community and volunteering activities and demonstration of leadership
  • Life experiences

The Indigenous Commonwealth Scholarship Program comprises of two main categories:

  • Commonwealth Education Costs Scholarships (CECS) which assists students with education costs; and
  • Commonwealth Accommodation Scholarships (CAS) which assists students who relocate to study with the costs of accommodation.

These two categories are then broken down into four (4) scholarships:

  1. Indigenous Enabling CECS – for students enrolled in enabling programs (e.g. STEPS or TEP)
  2. Indigenous Enabling CAS – for students enrolled in enabling programs (e.g. STEPS or TEP)
  3. Indigenous CECS – for students enrolled in undergraduate programs
  4. Indigenous CAS - for students enrolled in undergraduate programs

Students can receive both a CECS and CAS at the same time.

Value of the Scholarships

Scholarship values are indexed annually. The value of Indigenous Commonwealth Scholarships per Term 1 2019:

Commonwealth Education Costs Scholarships - $1,363.50 (based on FT term study load)
Commonwealth Accommodation Scholarships - $2,728 (based on FT term study load)

Eligible students are invited to reapply for the Indigenous Commonwealth Scholarships mentioned above, to the equivalent values mentioned above in Term 2 2019.

Additional Information

Applicants who have received a Commonwealth Scholarship or Indigenous Commonwealth Scholarship at another institution must declare this at the time of application.

Applicants who are receiving a Centrelink Student Start Up Loan, Centrelink Relocation Scholarship or Residential Costs Option must declare this at the time of application.

Failure to declare this may result in your scholarship being withdrawn and any paid monies being reclaimed.


Applicants must ensure they have entered current banking details into My Centre for payment to occur. Scholarship payments will be made to successful applicants in Week 6 after final post Census date eligibility checks each term. Payments will be credited electronically to the student’s nominated bank account. When payment has been made into the nominated bank account, confirmation will be sent to your official CQUniversity student email address. There is no advance payments of scholarship money.

Applications must include all necessary supporting documents. Incomplete applications cannot be considered. Applicants will need to supply the following supporting documentation:

  • Confirmation of Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander Identity Documents:
    • Provide a letter signed by the Chairperson and with the seal of an Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander organisation in the community in which the student lives or has previously lived; or
    • A student may submit a Statutory Declaration stating that they are in the process of obtaining a Confirmation of Identity, along with the expected date they will be able to submit it.  The expected date should be prior to Census date in that term, as actual payment cannot be made without the Confirmation of Identity document.
  • Written submission addressing the Selection Criteria
  • Evidence of Academic achievements or Unofficial transcript
  • Evidence of Community involvement documents e.g. participation certificate, exemplary work or demonstration of leadership
  • Resume
  • Income statements of applicant and
    • Income for their partners (if partnered)
    • Income for their parents (if under 22 and not deemed ‘independent’ by Centrelink)
  • Possible required documents for low income verification:

  • Centrelink Income Statements (if applicable) –
    • for yourself
  • your partner if partnered or
  • parent/s if you are under 22 years of age
  • (How to obtain a Centrelink Income Statement)

  • 3 x current consecutive payslips (if applicable) -
    • for yourself and/or
    • your partner if partnered or
    • parent/s if you are under 22 years of age
  • Latest Notice of Assessment or most recent Tax Return (If you or your partner are in receipt of business or investment income)
  • 3 months of all personal or business bank account statements
  • Please note: additional documents may be requested if low income is difficult to determine.

To apply for the Indigenous Commonwealth Scholarship:
Complete a Scholarship Online Application Form, ensuring all supporting documentation is completed and attached as outlined here

  • For Current students (applicants who have already have a Student ID number) apply through MyCentre. You will need to log in with your student details.
  • For Future students (applicants who have applied or are intending to apply to study at CQUniversity but not yet received or accepted an offer) apply here.

Complete Applications must be received at the Student Life and Wellbeing Centre, Scholarships Office by 5 pm AEST on the closing date, 26 April 2019. Failure to supply requested documents will result in your application being incomplete. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

The Student Life and Wellbeing Centre will assess Commonwealth Scholarship applications. Academic progress will be taken into consideration for those applicants who are continuing CQUniversity students. All applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application via their CQUniversity student email as soon as possible after the selection panel meets. Decisions are final.
Commonwealth Government

Commonwealth Government provides a suite of Indigenous Commonwealth Scholarships each year to institutions.