Q1. When did applications to the STEM Bursary scheme open for the 2021/22 academic year?

Applications for the 2021/22 academic year opened on the 5th April 2021.

Q2. For PGDE courses starting in August 2021, when do Bursary applications close?

The closing date for applications to the 2021/22 STEM Bursary scheme has yet to be announced.

However, we strongly advise you to submit your application as soon as possible to avoid disappointment. For the 2021/22 academic year, there are 150 bursaries available and applications are considered in the order that they are submitted.

As soon as a closing date has been set information will be made available on this website.

Q3. Is the STEM Bursary available for primary teacher training?

No, the STEM Bursary is only available for secondary teacher teacher training in the following subjects; Physics, Chemistry, Maths, Computing Science, Technical Education and Home Economics.

Q4. I have gained a place on a PGDE course. Am I eligible to apply for the STEM Bursary?

The eligibility criteria for the STEM Bursary may differ from the entry requirements for your chosen PGDE course.

As such, not everyone who has been successful in gaining a place on a PGDE ITE course will be eligible for the STEM Bursary.

We advise interested individuals to review the eligibility criteria of the STEM Bursary available on this website before submitting an application.

Applicants who do not meet the eligibility criteria in full will not be eligible for the bursary and will have their application rejected.

Full details are in the Terms and Conditions on this website.

Q5. I do not meet the eligibility criteria but would like my circumstances to be taken into consideration. Is this possible?

No, all eligibility criteria must be met in full before an award of a STEM Bursary can be made.

Q6. I have an ordinary degree and don’t have any other university level qualifications. Am I eligible for the STEM Bursary?

No, you would not be eligible to apply to the STEM Bursary.

Q7. My undergraduate degree is an Ordinary and I don’t have a Masters Degree (SCQF Level 11) but I do have a Post Graduate Diploma. Am I eligible for the STEM Bursary?

No, you would not be eligible to apply to the STEM Bursary. We cannot accept a Post Graduate Diploma in lieu of a Masters Degree at SCQF Level 11.

If you do not hold a 1st-class or 2:1 Honours Degree, you must meet the minimum entry requirements of your chosen PGDE course and in addition hold a Masters Degree which is at SCQF Level 11.

Q8. I have a conditional offer from a University. Can I apply for the STEM Bursary?

Yes, we welcome applications from individuals who meet the STEM Bursary eligibility criteria and who hold a conditional offer of a place on the PGDE course.

Successful Bursary applicants who hold only a conditional place will be issued a conditional STEM Bursary award.

A conditional Bursary award will be converted to a full (unconditional) STEM Bursary award ONLY if the applicant meets the conditions of their University PGDE offer on or before the 16th August 2021.

Q9. What if the payslips I provide as part of the employment evidence are not in my current name?

SDS can use your national insurance number to match your payslips to your application, so in such cases the submission of payslips in a different name should not cause an issue. However, if you have any concerns about this please contact the STEM Bursary helpline at 0800 917 8000.

Q10. I work part time/ casual hours... Does this mean that I am not eligible for the STEM Bursary?

The eligibility criteria require applicants to provide evidence that they have been in employment for a total of 36 months in the last 72 months (from date of application to the STEM Bursary).

This is irrespective as to whether an applicant has worked full time/ part time or casual hours.

Q11. I am unsure how to provide evidence of employment to satisfy the 36 month requirement. What should I do?

When we receive your application, we will provide you with a weclome pack that includes detailed guidance on how to evidence your paid employment history.

Examples of the documentation we can accept towards employment evidence include (but are not limited to) payslips, P60’s, P45’s, job offer letters and redundancy notices.

Q12. I have been on furlough. Does this count towards employment evidence?

Yes, we can accept evidence of furlough towards employment evidence.

Q13. I am self-employed. Am I able to apply to the STEM Bursary?

Yes, we can accept periods of self-employment towards the employment criteria, provided that you have been registered as self-employed with HMRC for the periods in question.

In addition, self-employed applicants must provide evidence of work undertaken (e.g. contracts, invoices) to demonstrate they have been in paid employment for 36 months in the last 72.

Q14. How and when are Bursary payments made?

Payments are made directly from the university, with the first payment being made in the last week of September 2021.

If your application is successful, university staff will contact you to make payment arrangements.

Q15. Bu toigh leam cur a-steach airson a’ bhursaraidh, ach tha mi ag iarraidh teagasg tro mheadhan na Gàidhlig... Am faod mi cur a-steach fhathast?

Tha sinn a’ cur fàilte air iarrtasan fo luchd-tagraidh a tha airson foghlam-teagaisg anns na cuspairean STEM as dorra a lìonadh, ma tha sin tro mheadhan na Gàidhlig no Beurla. Thoir an aire gu bheil am pròiseas iarrtais ga dhèanamh sa Bheurla.

Q16. I would like to apply for the Bursary, but I want to teach through the medium of Gaelic... Am I eligible?

We welcome applications from applicants aspiring to teacher-train in the hardest-to-fill STEM subjects, whether you want to teach in Gaelic or English medium. Please note that the application process is in English.

Q17. Where can I find out more about how to train as a teacher in Scotland?

More information on a teaching career in Scotland can be found at:


  • Our careers webservice with general information about becoming a teacher.
  • Contact details of your local careers centre should you wish to make an appointment with a careers adviser to discuss your career ideas.
  • Advisers won’t be in a position to answer specific entry qualification questions but can offer careers guidance and advice.


  • Useful website with information about becoming a teacher in Scotland.


  • The website of the General Teaching Council for Scotland.