Swiss Government Excellence Scholarships for Foreign Scholars and Artists

Through the Federal Commission for Scholarships for Foreign Students (FCS), the Swiss Confederation awards various post-graduate scholarships to foreign scholars of all disciplines and to some foreign artists:

  • University research fellowships for scholars, doctorates and post-doctorates at Swiss universities, federal institutes of technology and universities of applied sciences (no scholarships for bachelor or masters studies)
  • Arts scholarships for advanced-level artists at Swiss conservatories and universities of the arts (only for a limited number of countries)

Scholarships for Swiss students

The scholarship office of the Rectors’ Conference of the Swiss Universities swissuniversities administers the foreign governmental scholarships of about 40 countries on behalf of the Swiss Confederation. The scholarships are offered to Swiss students, researchers and artists to study for a period of time abroad. For more details:

Rectors’ Conference of Swiss Universities swissuniversities

Beware fake scholarship offers in the name of the Swiss Government Excellence Scholarships (phishing)

The Swiss authorities are issuing this warning about fake scholarships advertised by email. The Federal Commission for Scholarships for Foreign Students (FCS) does not advertise scholarships by email; as a rule, scholarships are directly managed by the Swiss representation in the country concerned. The Swiss authorities recommend not responding to such emails and, above all, not transferring any money.


Through the Federal Commission for Scholarships for Foreign Students (FCS), the Swiss Government grants foreign students university scholarships (Swiss universities, Federal Institutes of Technology). These scholarships are offered on the basis of reciprocity (fixed number of scholarships for each country) or within the frame of a scholarship pool (scholarships without fixed distribution by country). They are intended for students who have graduated from university (postgraduates) and who, by staying in Switzerland, will be able to further their education and to undertake research work in the fields in which the Swiss universities are particularly active.

To a limited extent, scholarships are also offered for postgraduate studies at the Universities of Applied Sciences. This applies to the group of Western (AP-1) and Central and Eastern European countries (AP-2) included in the scholarship pool. Students must have graduated from a university or university of applied sciences with at least a Bachelor Degree and enrol in Switzerland for studies at post-graduate level. This offer applies for the seven universities of applied sciences, not including teaching colleges. In the field of the arts (design/music), the conditions for arts students relating to the country offer apply (see below).

This program is valid only for studies in Switzerland. It is not valid for on-the-job studies, part-time studies or correspondence courses.

In the framework of a special allocation, scholarships for advanced arts students (without fixed distribution by country) are offered to the best applicants who are already at an advanced stage of their training. This offer is restricted to those countries which are listed under AR, AP-1 and BR-1 as well as to China and Russia.

The scholarships are offered in principle to foreign governments. The applications have to be submitted for a preliminary selection to the national institution in charge and the Swiss diplomatic representation in the student's country of origin. The Swiss diplomatic representation will thereupon forward the pre-selected applications to the FCS for definitive selection. Finally the Federal Department of Home Affairs awards scholarships on the advice of the FCS.

As part of a special allocation, the Swiss Government provides a number of additional scholarships to postgraduates from Central and Eastern European countries (pool system, no fixed number of scholarships for each country).

Factsheet Scholarships (PDF, 21.6 kB)