PTDF selection process

The selection for the MSc PTDF OSS is an annual process. The whole process from application through to selection is administered and managed by the PTDF, so please check the PTDF website for information on application form availability.

How the Application is Advertised
The PTDF places an advert in the national press in Nigeria announcing the next round of applications for the Overseas Scholarship Scheme. This is for both MSc and PhD programmes. Please check the website and at for information regarding the release of the application forms. The advert will inform you of all relevant details of where, in each Nigerian state, application forms can be obtained.

The Selection Process
This is the first step in the application procedure. From the applications received a selected number will be invited to sit an exam. On the basis of the results of the exam the final selection will be made. The list of successful candidates for the scholarship will be published on the PTDF website and in the national press.

Criteria for acceptance on to the OSS Programme
The following is the criteria you must meet in order to be eligible for the OSS programme:
Hold a first degree in Engineering, Geosciences, Science & Environmental Studies. This must be a minimum of a 2.1
You must have completed your NYSC
Be no more than 30 years of age for MSc and 40 years of age for PhD
Must be a Nigerians national
Hold a credit in English Language in SSCE or required pass mark in TOEFL or IELTS
Be computer literate

Paperwork required to be submitted along with your application
Copies of degree certificates and official transcripts of first degree ( and any subsequent degrees)
English Language certificate.
Two academic references.
PhD applicants should also include a research proposal if required

PTDF OSS Test Format
(Non-paraphrased info sourced from and
There are three parts to go through in two hours. You will not have time on your side
Part 150 objective questions (current affairs) to answer all. Each correct answer attracts a mark as well as each incorrect answer removes a mark. don't guess please. Part 2Three essay questions to answer one. Your English is tested in this section. Please do not draw diagrams. Practice writing essays; the more essays you can write outside the hall before the test the better you will be. Part 310 questions to answer all. These questions are in accordance with your first choice. draw diagrams as much as possible.” This section carries the most marks, and is based on the fundamentals of Thermodynamics… though the format can change!

More Advice From A NairaLander:
“From my findings I would advise that you keep abreast of current affairs e.g. DPR head, OPEC Nigeria governor etc, state governors, local govts, niger delta issues, West African politics and economics, oil producing states and a lot of others, mainly current affairs, also research on your M Sc. first choice, Nigeria and petroleum economics (GDP), all the works.”

Thanks bros’!!
So in case you didn’t know, now you do.
The Best.


Basin Dynamics and Evolution

Computing and Information Engineering

Diving and Underwater Technology

Energy Systems Engineering

Engineering Geology

Environmental Engineering

Fire and Explosion Engineering

Gas Engineering and Management

Geographic Information Systems

Geoscience of Subsurface Exploration Appraisal and Development (GeoSEAD)


Industrial Biotechnology

Marine Computational Fluid Dynamics

Mechanical and Production Engineering

Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering

Offshore Engineering

Offshore Ocean Technology

Oil & Gas Enterprise Management

Petroleum Engineering

Petroleum Geosciences

Process System Engineering

Reaction Engineering

Reservoir Engineering

Safety Engineering

Structural Geology with Geophysics

Sub sea Engineering

Welding Engineering


General Requirements:
A 1st or 2nd class UK honours degree or equivalent in a relevant engineering or science-based discipline.

This info was gotten from

The Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF) is a parastatal of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources established by Degree 25 0f 1973 dedicated for the purpose of development, promotion and implementation of petroleum technology and manpower development through research and training of Nigerians as graduates, professionals, technicians and craftsmen in the fields of engineering, geology, geosciences, management, economics and relevant fields in the petroleum and solid minerals industry in Nigeria or abroad.
Mandate of the PTDF
The fund shall be dedicated for the purpose of development, promotion and implementation of petroleum technology and manpower development through research and training of Nigerian as graduate, professional, technician and craftsmen in the relevant fields in the petroleum and solid minerals industry.
Prior to the establishment of PTDF, there existed the Gulf Oil Company Fund, which Act was repealed by the promulgation of Act No 25 0f 1973 establishing the Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF) as a Fund for the purpose of training and education of Nigerians in the oil and gas industry. Section 1 of the act provides the following moneys shall be paid into the Fund:
The balance of monetary assets outstanding in the accounts of the Gulf Oil Company Training Fund at the commencement of the Act;
All further sum payable to or received by the minister of Mines, Power & Steel ( Now minister of energy) in terms of any agreement made by the Government and any company in relation to Petroleum Oil Prospecting or mining concessions; and
Any other sums from time to time freely donated or accruing to the Government or the Fund for the training of Nigerians in the oil and gas industry as the said minister may direct. In addition, section 2 of the Fund shall be available for the purpose of training Nigerians to qualify as Graduates, Professionals, Technicians and Craftsmen, in the fields of engineering, geology, science and management in the oil and gas industry in Nigeria or abroad. Specifically, the said section 2 further provides that the Fund shall utilize for the following purpose:
a) To provide scholarships and bursaries, wholly or partially in the Universities, Collages, Institutions and in Nigeria or abroad;
b) To maintain, supplement, or subsidise such training or education as mentioned above;
c) To make suitable endowments to faculties in Nigerian Universities, Collages or institutions as approved by the minister
d) To make available suitable books and training equipment in the institutions aforesaid

e) For sponsoring regular or as necessary visits to oil fields, refineries, petrochemical plants, and for arranging any necessary attachments of personnel to establishments connected with the development of the oil and gas industry; and
f) For financing of and participation in seminars and conferences which are connected with oil and gas industry in Nigeria or Abroad.
To train Nigerians to qualify as graduates, professionals, technicians and craftsmen in the field of engineering, geology, science and management in the oil and gas industry in Nigeria or abroad.

HOW TO BECOME A PTDF SCHOLAR UNDER THE FUND’S OVERSEAS SCHOLARSHIP SCHEME (OSS) October is the beginning of the last quarter of the year. For the Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF), the month of October ushers in the process of selecting Nigerians for the award of PTDF Overseas Scholarships under its OSS Scheme, the flagship programme of the Fund.

The Scholarship Scheme affords young Nigerians, the opportunity of being trained in highly rated Universities abroad to specialise in related fields of Engineering, Geological Sciences , Environment and Energy Studies both at Master’s and Doctoral levels.

The expectation is that beneficiaries will fit in directly to the oil and gas industry and ultimately contribute towards PTDF’s goal of attaining 70% Nigerian Content target of government in the oil and gas industry by 2010.Since it took off effectively in 2002, not less than 867 Nigerians have been trained under the Scheme. This is made up of 746 M.Sc scholars and 121 Ph.D scholars.

For the 2008/2009 academic year, the Fund sponsored a total of 290 students made up of 250 and 40 Ph.D. The PTDF overseas scholarship scheme covers payments for tuition fees, accommodation and living expenses as well as provision of air tickets to successful scholars in top ten Universities in Europe and other parts of the world. With an estimated expense of £24,500 per scholar per academic year, the Fund committed about £13,159,724.38 (nearly £13.2 million pounds) on the training of and Ph.D scholars between 2002 and 2006.

Since the commencement of the overseas scholarship scheme, various interest groups have been raising concerns about the transparency, integrity and impartiality of the process. There are also insinuations that certain parts of the country are favoured in the allocation of the awards. It is not unlikely that those who raise these concerns do so from lack of understanding of the way the scheme works, and failure to appreciate the rigorous steps taken by PTDF to ensure equity in the allocation of the awards, without compromising the high standards and strict adherence to the guidelines for the award.

With the commencement of the process for the 2009/2010 awards this October [2008], it is necessary to bring to the knowledge of interested candidates and other interest groups some important facts governing the award of PTDF scholarships to deserving students which hopefully will lead to a better appreciation of how the scholarship scheme works. Generally, PTDF is guided by four factors in the award of scholarships to deserving Nigerians.

(1) Federal character: Under which all states/Geopolitical zones are given equal number of scholarships.

(2) Merit: Under which the highest scorers in the aptitude test/interview from each state and the Federal Capital Territory/Geopolitical zones are selected for the awards.

(3) Oil producing states: In which additional scholarship slots are given to each of the oil producing states.

(4) Gender Sensitivity: In which the best female candidate(s) with the highest scores in the aptitude test from each of the six geopolitical zones are awarded scholarships.

For the 2007/2008 academic year, five scholarships were awarded to candidates from each of the 36 States of the Federation purely on merit. Each of the nine oil producing states were in addition to the five, granted two additional slots bringing to 7 the total scholarship awards to each of the nine oil producing states.

Nigerians aspiring for scholarship awards under the scheme should therefore look out for the publications in some national Newspapers as from 22nd October, 2008 calling for applications from interested candidates. The next thing would be to obtain an application form from their state scholarship boards or apply online through the PTDF website (

To be eligible for the scholarship award, the candidate must not be more than 35 years, and should possess a minimum of second class upper Degree in oil and Gas related fields. The related fields include the physical sciences, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics, Computing, Engineering, Environmental Studies, Geology, Geophysics, Microbiology and Biochemistry and could be expanded to include the Management Sciences and Law, depending on need by the industry.

It is also expected that the applicants are computer literate, possess a certificate of proficiency in English Language, from any of the following Examination bodies GCE, SSCE, TOEFL, GRE, IELTS, or GMAT and must have served the mandatory National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) and as such should be able to produce an NYSC discharge certificate or certificate of exemption.

In addition, the management of the Fund has decided to reintroduce sponsorship of a limited number of Management courses from 2009/10 academic session. These include Petroleum law and policy, Energy economics, Energy finance, Petroleum Accounting and Oil and Gas Management. This is in response to calls from Nigerians on the need to expand the approved sponsored courses. To be eligible to apply for the scholarship in the Ph.D category, aspiring candidates must possess a good first and second University Degrees or HND and PGD/Masters Degree certificates. They are also expected to submit a research proposal of between four to five pages in the areas of Environmental Studies and Health Safety and Environment; Marginal fields Development; flow assurance and pipeline Engineering ; Geology, Civil and Marine Technology; Renewable Energy Reservoir Engineering and Petroleum Technology; Refining Technology and Applied Geophysics. The research proposal must indicate the expected results and relevance to the oil and gas industry.

Other requirements for the Ph.D category of the PTDF overseas scholarship scheme include the presentation of a valid admission letter by the applicant who must not be more than 40 years of age. However lecturers seeking the award must not be above 45 years of age. All applicants must include their Master’s Degree project.All applicants who completed the application form are to return the application forms to the state scholarship boards where they purchased them. The completed application forms are subsequently retrieved from the state scholarship boards by PTDF for collation at the headquarters using the approved criteria.

Applicants for scholarship who meet the requirements are invited for an aptitude test conducted simultaneously in six centres in the six geo-political zones. The aptitude test, is supervised by University professors who set and mark the questions, while applicants for PhD scholarship who meet the requirements are invited for the interview usually conducted in Abuja on fixed dates by selected reputable University professors and industry experts with requisite knowledge and background in the areas of relevance. The best performing candidates in the aptitude test are shortlisted out of which the top 5 or 6 depending on the awards for the year are selected from each state for the award of the PTDF Overseas scholarship, while a given number of the highest scorers are selected on zonal basis in respect of Ph.D

This rigorous process is deliberately put in place to safeguard the quality and integrity of the scholarship scheme. This has manifested in the consistent high performance of PTDF scholars in their Universities of study abroad, particularly in the United Kingdom where PTDF scholars are reputed to be among the first ten and in some cases among the first five top students, with some of them passing out with distinction as well as winning various awards. The PTDF is proud of this laudable achievement. The management of the Fund will not relent in its efforts in this regard. Nigerians are therefore, hereby assured that every effort will be made by management of the Fund to ensure the maintenance of the credibility and integrity of the selection process, guided by transparency and due process at all times.
Kalu Otisi Esq.
Head (Press and External Relations)

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