Why study in UK? | Benefits, top universities, fun facts, and more!
Last Updated on February 22, 2021 by iSchoolConnect
The second-most famous country amongst international students, the UK offers quality education, practical knowledge, career opportunities, and a rich culture waiting to be explored. Read this blog to know why we think you should study in the UK.
Students looking to study abroad often get confused when it comes to choosing the perfect destination. And the primary countries they consider are US, UK, and Australia. While it’s easy to just go with what your friends are doing, it’s better to evaluate these options yourself. To help you decide, we have covered all the details about studying in UK in this blog. Like ‘Why study in UK?’ ‘Best universities in UK,’ ‘Cost of living and studying in UK,’ ‘ Scholarships,’ etc.
Why study in UK?
Thanks to their unique teaching methods and hands-on learning approach, 4 of the top 10 universities in the world are from the UK.
Not only that, but the students also have the flexibility to design their own course, making it the second-most favorite destination for higher education.
Shorter duration courses
The course duration for a bachelor’s degree in the UK is 3 years, whereas the time given to complete a master’s course is one year.
This helps students reduce their overall expenditure for both tuition and accommodation. It also allows them to fast-track their graduation and land a job sooner than usual.
Research & job opportunities
While the UK only accounts for only 1% of the world population, it undertakes 5% of the global scientific research and produces 14% of the world’s most frequently cited papers.
This means that the brightest minds in the world will be teaching and undertaking projects with you. How cool is that!?
Scholarships and financial aid
Another benefit of studying in the UK is that the country offers a range of scholarships to all kinds of students. These scholarships are not only based on merit but also on athletic prowess, need, cultural background, and more.
For example, the GREAT Scholarship offers aid to students specifically from Bangladesh, China, Egypt, Ghana, and a few other such countries.
The UK is well connected to some of the most beautiful countries in the world, like Paris, Spain, Germany, Italy. etc. AND you can use your student pass to travel cheaply!
Not only that but London itself is a city brimming with museums, castles, and internationally acclaimed artists.
Free health benefits
If the reasons stated above aren’t enough to answer ‘Why study in UK?’, this one will seal the deal. As an international student, you will have access to free medical treatment through the National Health Service (NHS).
All you have to do for this is pay a small amount of charge when applying for your UK student visa.
Best universities in UK
A leader in engineering, science, art, business and management, law, and finance, UK attracts more than 60,000 international students every year.
Four out of the top 10 universities in the QS World University Rankings are from UK, accounting for UK’s incredible education system.
Here, students have the flexibility to combine courses and subjects from different areas of study, so they can tailor their degree according to their personal interests.
Here are a few of the top universities in UK that attract both researchers and students from around the world-
- University of Oxford
- The University of Cambridge
- Imperial College London
- The University of Edinburgh
- University of Manchester
- King’s College London
- The London School of Economics and Political Science
- University of Bristol
- The University of Warwick
One of the best things about studying in the UK is that the universities here encourage students to learn practical skills rather than focus on pure textbook knowledge.
This will not only help you master your discipline but also give you the opportunity to network with your peers and industry experts.
Cost of studying in UK for international students
The cost of studying in UK depends on the university and the course you want to study. For example, pursuing law at Oxford will cost you more than studying arts at LSE.
Cost of studying
But to give you a general idea, the cost of studying in UK for international students can vary between £10,000 and £26,000 annually.
Whereas EU students are charged ‘home fees,’ which is the same amount UK students are charged for their studies (this rule will change starting August 2021, when each university in Europe will set its own fees).
An additional benefit of studying in the UK is that bachelor programs here last for 3 years, while master’s courses go on only for one year. This brings down the total cost of studying in UK, even lower than the cost of studying in the US or Australia!
Coming to the living costs, you will be spending anywhere between £800 to £1,300 per month. This amount is enough to take care of your accommodation, food, transport, and other miscellaneous expenses. However, it doesn’t have to be as high as £1,300 if you’re not living in an expensive city like London.
Scholarships, part-time jobs, and more
To help students offset these expenses, UK offers a range of scholarships to international students, including-
- GREAT Scholarships
- GREAT Scholarships for a sustainable future
- Commonwealth Scholarships
- Chevening Scholarships
Apart from this, individual universities and organizations offer scholarships to students enrolled in a course.
And the best part is – not all scholarships are based on merit. You can also apply for one if you’re from a different background, are good at sports, etc.
Another way to manage your money well is to find a part-time job while studying. UK allows international students to work 20 hours per week so they can cover their daily living expenses.
And if that doesn’t seem like enough, you can always head to our blog about how to manage your own education cost.
UK admission requirements
The application process is easier for undergraduate students than it is for students applying for a postgraduate program.
For an undergraduate course, you will have to apply through UCAS, or the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service and need to provide-
But if you’re applying for a postgrad course, shortlisted the universities you want to apply to and go through their websites to learn about the exact admission requirements. However, a few requirements are common across programs and universities.
For students pursuing a postgraduate degree, the universities will ask for –
- Statement of Purpose
- Letters of Recommendation
- Proof of English proficiency
- Standard test scores (GRE or GMAT)
- Portfolio (for subjects like fine arts, architecture, etc.)
Start preparing these documents 6 months before you have to apply. After you submit your application, it is time to wait. If shortlisted, you will receive a letter of acceptance, which you can then use to apply for a student visa!
Students above 16 who want to pursue their higher education in the UK need to apply for a student visa through the Student Route.
Basically, the UK government is going to check if you satisfy the following 4 conditions before handing over the visa to you-
- The student should have a university admit
- He should have enough money to support yourself
- The applicant can speak, write, and understand English
- And you have consent from your parents to go (only for students aged 16 or 17)
Consequently, the visa application asks you to upload the following documents-
- Financial proof (for funding your studies)
- Receipt of immigration health surcharge payments
- Academic certificates and transcripts mentioned in the CAS form
- English language proficiency test (IELTS) mentioned in the CAS form
- Current passport
- Two photographs (passport-size), and
- Original birth certificate (with translation for non-English document)
Once you have these, filling and submitting the form should not be time consuming.
The application process for a UK student visa is as follows-
- Secure an admit, or a CAS (Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies) from a UK university or college
- Head to the gov.uk website and apply for a student visa
- Fill the form with all the required information, upload the necessary documents (mentioned below), and submit
- Pay the UK student visa fee of £348
- Make a payment of £470 for the immigration health surcharge, availing access to UK’s National Health Service
The earliest you can apply for the UK student visa is 6 months before your semester start date.
And even though the usual processing time for the visa is 3 weeks, we suggest that you apply at least 3 months in advance.
Fun facts about UK
Yes, UK has an incredible education system and renowned universities. But that’s not all the country has to offer.
Its beautiful countryside and busybody cities are brimming with a vast and enriching culture. And a curious student will find a hundred sights that will capture his attention.
- London has the largest library in the world
- There’s not a single point in Britain that isn’t 75 miles away from the coastline
- London has over 140 museums for you to visit
- It is estimated that there are more Indian restaurants in London than in Indian urban centers like New Delhi or Mumbai
- The U.K. has 31 heritage sites under UNESCO protection
Should I study in the UK?
UK is highly renowned for its research-oriented teaching methods, high-ranking universities, and has lower education costs as compared to US or Australia.
The country has also changed its immigration policies, allowing students to stay back and work for 2 years after graduation.
It is home to some of the most brilliant minds we have known.
AND it has a culture like no other place in the world.
So as long as you can find a university that matches your profile and is offering the course you wish to pursue, of course you should study in the UK!
In case you’re still confused or want to know more about the UK, reach out to us or drop a comment. We’d be very happy to help!