What is the difference between Scholarships and Grants?

Scholarships and Grants are financial helping aids for students. But there is a slight difference between them.

Posted by Navya B on 3rd March 2018

What is the difference between Scholarships and Grants?

The main difference between Scholarships and Grants is Scholarships are only provided to students based on merit that is students who score certain marks can only apply for Scholarships.

Grants can be applied by anyone, there is no eligibility here. But the students who avail of financial aid can seek grants.

Grants and Scholarships are very close to each other and there is a thin line between them. Only a few changes make the difference.

Different types of Scholarships and Grants

The different types of scholarships are

The different types of Grants are

Eligibility Criteria to apply for Scholarship and Grants

The eligibility for both Scholarships and Grants do not vary a lot. So the requirements can be summarised as

  • A candidate should be a citizen of the United States.

  • You need to be pursuing a degree or sometimes even an undergraduate degree.

  • You need to be 18 years and above.

  • A candidate should have been finished a higher education.

  • Students need to have a minimum CGPA of 3.0 or above 

How to apply?

As the procedure to apply for any scholarship and grant does not very much, so it can be taken as follows

Step 1: Understand your eligibility and requirements.

Step 2: Download the application form the website. Either it is from FAFSA, state government or any private or non-private organizations.

Step 3: Fill the form and submit it in prior to the deadlines.

Step 4: Wait for the response and the aid will be sent to you if it is accepted.

Advantages and disadvantages of Scholarships and Grants


  • Pros

    • It is free money and scholarships need to be paid back’

    • You can win any number of scholarships

    • If a student wins Scholarships it will help them boost their career.

    • It is also a source of Pride.

    • There are billions of dollars’ worth awards for scholars for their interests and talents.

  • Cons

    • They are limited and programs are selective.

    • Scholarships are merit-based, it checks for features like student background and other important majors.

    • The Scholarship applications are long procedural and time-consuming.


  • Pros

    • Grants are free money

    • There is no need to pay back the financial aid you have received.

    • Basically, Grants are need-based

    • Only one application is needed to be filled, it is easy.

  • Cons

    • They are a limited resource and can run out soon.

Colleges which provides Scholarships and Grants

Eastern Washington University

Oregon State University

Concordia University

Marylhurst University

Gonzaga University

Nevada State College

University of Nevada, Reno

Western Seminary

University of Oregon

Multnomah University

Southern Utah University

Peninsula College

Weber State University

City University of Seattle

Washington State University

Corban University

Liberty University

Eastern Washington University

Duke University

Concordia University

Arizona University

Gonzaga University

Capella University

University of Nevada, Reno

Walden University

University of Oregon


Scholarships and Grants both are helping aids for many students. There are a lot of students who wills to study but they won’t be able to do it peacefully because there might be in financial debts.

There is a thin line of difference between both of them. And the best part is scholarships and grants need not be paid back.


  1) Which is better a grant or a scholarship?

One thing is that both are free money that you don't have to repay. Grants are given by Federal government according to financial need, on the other hand, Scholarships are given by corporations, non-profit organizations, and individuals. Scholarships may ask you to write an essay on a creative topic or create a prom dress out of duct tape.

  2) Are grants or scholarships taxable?

 If you have taken grants or scholarship for the pursuit of a degree then it is not taxable. But, if it is for the general living expense to a non-degree student. then it is taxable.

  3) How can you qualify for a grant?

To qualify for a grant you must have applied for FAFSA, should not have earned a bachelors and professional degree and their family income should fall under a certain bracket. As grants are given for those who need financial support.

  4) Do you have to pay back a grant if you drop out?

Grants don't have to be repaid but if you drop out of your course without completing it then you have to repay a portion of your Pell Grant.