How To Get a Full-Ride Scholarship—A Comprehensive Guide

Discover and Apply for Scholarships How To Get a Full-Ride Scholarship—A Comprehensive Guide

How To Get a Full-Ride Scholarship—Explained

Affording higher education may seem like a luxury sometimes, but that’s where college full-ride scholarships step in. Thanks to them, many promising students from low-income families get a chance to pursue a degree in their desired field without having to worry about finances.

If you want to find out how to get a full-ride scholarship, you’re in the right place—this guide offers the best tips and tricks to do so! You will also learn how to find full-ride scholarships and apply for those you qualify for!

The Difference Between Full-Ride and Full-Tuition Academic Scholarships

If you’re looking for a scholarship that pays for everything—a full-ride scholarship is your go-to. Receiving a full-ride college scholarship is every student’s dream as it covers all potential study costs, including:


  • Tuition
  • Mandatory fees
  • Room and board
  • Book purchases or rentals
  • Personal expenses, such as:
    • Food
    • Transport

On the other hand, if you’re applying for full-tuition scholarships for high school students, you can only expect them to cover your annual tuition. That means you will have to figure out how to pay for all of the other expenses.

Who Offers Full-Ride Scholarships?

You can get a full-ride scholarship from various benefactors. Some of them are schools, private donors, organizations, and associations dedicated to helping particular groups of students, such as:

If you belong to any of the mentioned categories, DoNotPay can help you find the scholarships you’re looking for! After you sign up and answer a few questions, our app will use the information you provide to create a list of the best awards you’re eligible for!

Requirements for Full-Ride Scholarships

The answer to how to get a full-ride scholarship lies in the requirements of each scholarship you’re applying for. Some of the most common requirements for full-ride scholarships are:

  1. Academic merit
  2. Financial need
  3. Participation in extracurricular activities
  4. Intent to graduate college
  5. Supporting documentation

Required Academic Merit for Full-Ride Scholarships

Most scholarship committees require you to submit the following documents to learn about your academic merit:

  • Resume—a well-written resume showcases your academic and extracurricular accomplishments related to your field of study. You can also use it to mention some of the valuable skills you possess, such as leadership, commitment, and diligence
  • High school transcript—the scholarship committee requires this document to gain insight into your attendance record, grade point average (GPA), and standardized test scores, such as the ACT and SAT (or any of the available equivalents)

To learn more about the required GPA and test scores, take a look at the following table:

Requirement Minimum
GPA 3.5
SAT 25
ACT 1200

Financial Need as a Requirement for Full-Ride Scholarships

Many schools award full-ride scholarships to academically brilliant students demonstrating financial need to:

  • Encourage them to pursue higher education they otherwise could not afford
  • Give them a chance to improve their family’s financial situation after college (many full-ride scholarship recipients are the first in their family to go to college)

Participation in Extracurricular Activities for Full-Ride Scholarships

Extracurricular activities—such as working part-time in your field of study or playing high school sports—can land you a full-ride scholarship. You should participate in as many extracurricular activities as possible, provided they don’t interfere with your academic progress.

Intent to Graduate College as a Requirement for Full-Ride Scholarships

Schools and benefactors offering full-ride scholarships and grants often require applicants to create an educational plan—a document that guarantees that you will use the award to graduate from college in time.

An educational plan usually contains information about the:

  • School you plan to attend
  • Degree and field of study you want to pursue
  • Classes you plan on taking during each semester in college
  • Class prerequisites
  • Satisfactory academic progress for each year

Supporting Documentation Required for Full-Ride Scholarships

You might have to submit additional paperwork to apply for some full-ride scholarships, such as:

Find Full-Ride Scholarships With DoNotPay!

Whether you are preparing for college in your junior or senior year of high school or planning to enroll in a graduate school, DoNotPay can find the best full-ride scholarships for you!

You’re only three steps away from getting a list of the best full-ride awards:

  1. Log in to your DoNotPay account
  2. Find the Apply for Scholarships feature
  3. Answer a few short questions

If you receive an unfortunate response from the scholarship committee, don’t give up! Our app will find more opportunities for you and even apply for no-essay scholarships on your behalf!

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