Higher Education Scholarships for Palestinians (HESPAL)

HESPAL aims to create the next generation of senior academics who can maintain international quality standards at Palestinian universities and develop renewed and sustainable links between Palestinian and UK universities.

The scheme will upgrade academic staff in Palestinian universities through a Masters or PhD Scholarship programme.

How many Higher Education Scholarships (HESPAL) are available for Palestinians?

In the academic year 2023/2024, we plan to support 6 PhD scholars and 8 master’s scholars from different Palestinian universities in the West Bank and Gaza to study in UK universities participating in the HESPAL programme.

When is the deadline for applying?

Applications for the academic year of 2023/2024 are now closed.

Find out more about HESPAL's application proccess through HESPAL Guidance Notes document at the bottom of the page. 

What are the areas of study?

  • Nursing
  • Hospital Management
  • Humanities, Agriculture
  • Business Administration
  • IT Engineering
  • Law
  • Water Management
  • STEM programs
  • Various Arab and Islamic studies' scholarships (Visit Exeter's website to learn more)

What does the scholarship cover?

The scholarship covers the following:

  • Tuition fees
  • Arrival allowances
  • Thesis allowances
  • Bench fees if needed
  • Monthly allowance to cover living expenses

The Scholarship does not cover visa fees, IELTS cost, and Airfare ticket to and from the UK.

What documents are required to submit with the application?

Applicants must provide the following supporting documents to the British Council in Occupied Palestinian Territories before the deadline of the scholarship:

  • Completed copies of HESPAL application form (including details of 2 academic referees).
  • Certified proof of Palestinian ID and Occupied Palestinian Territories residency.
  • Nomination letter from the Palestinian University.
  • Proof of employment at the Palestinian University. 
  • Proof of academic/work record – i.e. Degree certificate and transcript translated into English including grades for each year of study of bachelor’s degree and/or masters degree.
  • IELTS score: minimum 6.5.
  • Applicant must sign a written contract with their university declaring that they will return to Palestine and work in their university upon completion of their degree. 

What are the candidates' conditions of eligibility?

  • Applicant must be a resident citizen of Occupied Palestinian Territories.
  • Applicant must be currently employed by the Palestinian University which nominates them, which must be one of the participating Palestinian universities listed below.
  • Applicant with BA or Masters degree from a Palestinian University should have a minimum grade of very good (3.0) in UK (equivalent to 80% in local universities).
  • No age limit required.
  • Applicant must sign a written contract with their university declaring that they will return to Palestine and work in their university on completion of their degree.
  • Applicant must have IELTS certification appropriate for course and university (minimum score: 6.5).

    To apply for the scheme,  applicants must contact the University Coordinator listed in the section at the bottom.

Participating UK Universities

We are aiming to renew MOU's with all participating UK universities. However, the list of UK universities is attached (applications are currently closed). 

Participating Palestinian Universities

Al-Azhar University, Islamic University of Gaza, Gaza University, Al Quds Open University, Al Aqsa University, University Collage of Applied Sciences, University of Palestine, Bethlehem University, Palestine Ahliya University,Birzeit University, An-Najah National University, Arab American University, Hebron University, Palestine Technical University Kadoorie, Palestine Polytechnic University, Al Quds Open University, Palestine Ahliya University, Al Quds University and Al Istiqlal University.

Contact details of university coordinators



An Najah University

Dr. Amjad El-Qani

Palestine Technical University - Kadoorie Dr. Jafar Daoud j.daoud@ptuk.edu.ps
Bethlehem University Mr. Mahdi Kleibo mkleibo@bethlehem.edu
Palestine Ahliya University Mr. Haitham Hijazi haitham@paluniv.edu.ps
Al Quds Open University

Ms. Lina Abuhilal                                

Arab American University Ms. Nadia Kahalaf fathy.imour@aauj.edu 
Polytechnic University Dr. Islam Hassouneh vp-academic@ppu.edu
Hebron University Mrs. Muna Irziqat   MunaI@hebron.edu
Birzeit University             Dr. Mohammad Nagazreh


 Al Azhar University  Dr. Usama Zeineldeen


Islamic University of Gaza Ms. Wala'a Safi ex-scholarship@iugaza.edu.ps
Al Aqsa University Dr. Tamer Fatayer ts.fatayer@alaqsa.edu.pd
Al Quds University Ms. Asma Bader asma@staff.alquds.edu
University College of Applied Science Dr. Tamer Eshtawi v.rector_per@ucas.edu.ps; teshtawi@ucas.edu.ps
University of Palestine Dr. Fatma Alrubaei f.alrubaei@up.edu.ps
Gaza University

Dr. Amar El Qidra


Al Istiqlal University 

General Mohammad Haron