meaning of 'eligible'

Hi dear moderators,
Could you help me to understand one sentence given below:

All eligible semifinalists will be offered $12,000 in undergraduate scholarships or graduate assistantships at the Fulbright College of the University of Arkansas.

The word’eligible’ confuses me a bit. How can I interpret the sentence:all eligible --all the 12 participants or only 3 of them who were selected for the final round (the total number of semifinalists is 12 but only three of them were selected for the final round). My feeling is that the latter is more probable.

Please, shed some light on this.


According to the passage and your commentary, all 12 will be offered scholarships. The selected three are ‘finalists’, we can only presume-- unless further context proves us wrong.

Hi Pamela,

The point about the state of being ‘eligible’ is that you are suitable to be chosen or entitled to be chosen for some benefit but it doesn’t mean that you will necessarily receive such benefit. For example in the UK anyone over 60 is eligible for what is called a pension credit ( an additional allowance) but not everyone receives it because there are further restrictions regarding savings or income.



How about eligible bachelors?


Hi Pamela

What is “the final round”? The final round of what?

I mean, if it were a “final round” in the procedure for being accepted to the university, then it seems obvious to me that those who do not end up attending the university (for whatever reason) will also not receive scholarships that come directly from the university.


Of piano competition, Amy. :wink:

Many thanks to all of you for the contribution you have made. You have cleared up my doubts about the whole sentence.

Hi, everybody!

Could you tell me the meaning of “undergraduate scholarships” and “graduate assistantships”

(I just failed to find those collocations in my dictionary)



Scholarships are forms of financial assistance for students.
An undergraduate scholarship is money offered to a student who has not yet earned any university degree. The money typically covers only part of the cost of attending a university. (A “full scholarship” covers all the costs of attending university.)

A graduate assistantship is also a form of financial aid, but the student already has a university degree and is studying for the next degree. Here is a definition for assistantship:
a form of financial aid awarded to a student studying for a graduate degree at a college or university in which the student assists a professor, usually in academic or laboratory work. … tship&r=66