Study in UK: Colleges, Courses, Fees & Accommodation

Overview

The United Kingdom is home to some of the best countries in the world, including England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland. The island nation is known for its natural beauty and quality lifestyle and houses several esteemed international universities. Often counted in the list of the top three most coveted countries for international students (among Canada and the USA), the United Kingdom is renowned for its undisputed educational reputation.

Why UK

The United Kingdom has created a strong legacy in higher education, dating back to the 12th and 13th centuries. According to QS World University Rankings, 4 out of the top 10 universities in the world are from the UK. Its higher education system is world-class and respected across the globe. 

The United Kingdom is a global powerhouse of science and research and ranks #3 worldwide for published scientific research. Students can also pursue their research interests in some of the most sophisticated environments available globally. The Rusell Group (a group of 24 public universities based out of the UK) is solely responsible for producing more than two-thirds of the world-leading research in UK universities. 

Admissions

The admission process differs from college to college, but the following documents remain/general requirements remain a staple for admission to higher education in Canada. The admission process differs from one college to another, but the following documents/general requirements remain a staple for admission to higher education programs in the United Kingdom. 

The first and foremost step for aspiring undergraduate students is to register at the University and College Admissions Services (UCAS) - a British organization responsible for primarily operating the undergrad admissions process for universities in the UK

After registering, students need to start collating the following documents-

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Proof of English proficiency (TOEFL/IELTS)

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GMAT/GRE for postgraduate programs

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Letters of recommendation

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Statement of purpose

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Academic transcripts

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Copy of a valid passport

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Universities

Home to several prestigious universities, including Oxford, Cambridge, and the University of London, the UK is indisputably the top choice for international students across the globe. The United Kingdom also houses the venerable Russell Group - a group of 24 elite research-intensive universities which offer unparalleled teaching and learning experiences.

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University of Cambridge

Cambridge, United Kingdom

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University of Oxford

Oxford, Oxfordshire, UK

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Imperial College London

South Kensington, London, UK

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Courses

Thanks to a rich academic heritage, the presence of age-old prestigious universities, a research and innovation-driven economy, and a multicultural atmosphere, the UK has become a hotspot for international students. Aspirants come from all walks of life to seek better education in the UK, which provides world-class faculties and facilities in almost every vertical - from business to medicine and everything in between.

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Finances

Undergraduate degrees from England and Wales generally take 3 years to complete, while those from Scotland require 4 years’ worth of coursework. Programs in the UK education system are comparatively shorter and more intensive than those in other countries. As a result, students graduate sooner, which helps save not only time but also money.

Degree level 

Average fees per year

Undergraduate 

10,000 to 20,000 EUR

Graduate 

10,000 to 20,000 EUR

Doctoral 

15,000 to 25,000 EUR

Living Expenses 

Living as an international student in the United Kingdom takes careful planning and execution. Students have to consider that the cost of living depends on lifestyle, location, and other factors. For example, living expenses are considerably higher in London as compared to, say, Liverpool or Birmingham. However, looking at average numbers always helps

Expenses 

Average Monthly Cost

Food

£30

Book and Supplies 

£30

Transportation 

£32

Mobile phone bills/internet

£15 

Clothing

£35-55

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Scholarships

UK programs are affordable because they usually take less time to complete. Students only have to study for three years for an undergraduate program and a year for a postgraduate program. The cherry on top is that there are a lot of scholarships, grants, and bursaries available for international students. 

Government-funded Scholarships in the UK for International Students

  1. British Chevening Scholarship

  2. The Commonwealth Scholarship

  3. Marshall Scholarship

Non-governmental UK Scholarships for International Students

  1. Euraxess UK

  2. CastleSmart Scholarship

  3. The Royal Society Grants

Students also have the opportunity to choose from a plethora of university-specific scholarships that are available throughout the program.

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Accommodation

Students should start looking for accommodation arrangements right after receiving admission into a UK university. Because accommodation is the most tricky part of moving abroad, early birds will be able to find the perfect combination of location, price, and flatmates. 

On-campus Accommodation

Most universities in the UK offer residence facilities called Halls of Residence to international students. These types of accommodation are owned, maintained, and managed by the universities themselves. These halls have separate private rooms, but amenities like kitchen, laundry, and bathroom are shared among fellow students.  

Off-campus Accommodation 

If students opt to live off-campus, they can either look for university-owned accommodations or private-owned accommodation options.

Private Rooms: Buildings featuring flats where students can stay in single or shared rooms.

  1. London: 843 GBP/month

  2. Manchester: 658 GBP/month

  3. Birmingham: 644 GBP/month

  4. Liverpool: 647 GBP/month

  5. Leeds: 598 GBP/month

Studio Apartments: A type of accommodation where one large room serves the purpose of living, dining, and bedroom.

400 to 8000 GBP/month

Homestay: Considered one of the safest types of accommodation, this allows students to live with UK-based families right in their homes.

10 to 60 GBP/night

Visa

Procedure

Students have to apply for their student visas online using the British Government’s official Gov.UK website. International students seeking Tier 4 student visas are required to apply at least three months before the commencement of the program. Students should also enroll for Biometrics at a visa application center to obtain a Biometric Residence Permit.

Types of Visa Available for International Students

Type

Description

Application fees

Short-term Study Visa

For students who want to pursue a 6-month short course or an 11-month long English language course.

97 GBP for 6 months

186 GBP for 11 months

Tier-4 Student Visa

Applicable for students who are enrolling in a program that will last longer than 6 months.

348 GBP

Tier-4 Student Visa (Child)

For students aged between 4 and 17. 

348 GBP

passport.svg Copy of valid Passport visa documents.svg Financial Documents i20.svg Form I-20 ds160.svg Copy of DS-160 sevis fee receipt.svg SEVIS Fee Receipt

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Careers

The United Kingdom has the sixth largest economy in the world and is, therefore, the perfect place for students to kick-start their careers post-graduation. 

Part-time Work Opportunities

If a student is enrolled at a university or a college listed on the official UKVI Sponsor list and the list of “recognized bodies,” they are allowed to work while studying. International students who study full-time undergraduate or postgraduate degree programs at a recognized university can work a maximum of 20 hours per week. Students also require a National Insurance (NI) Number to land any kind of job in UK.

Full-time Work Opportunities 

Tier-2 Visa

If students are trying to land a full-time job post-graduation, they need to apply for a Tier-2 General Visa. This visa is mainly issued to people who have an employment offer and generally practice one of the high, in-demand professions in the UK. It allows them to stay for a tenure of 5 years in the country and work.

Documents required for Tier-2 Visa 

  1. Job offer from an employer in the UK

  2. Completed application form

  3. Passport size-photos

  4. Valid passport

  5. Proof of higher study and a valid UK study visa

  6. Medical check and health certificate

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FAQ's

Studying in UK is a major milestone for any student who wants to boost her career. The country is known for its world-class education, diversity, and bustling student cities. It is home to several esteemed universities which offer short but intensive programs that prepare students for success. Every university is subjected to regular inspection by the Quality Assurance Agency to ensure that the government-set guidelines for learning, research, and training are maintained by each institution, thus making UK degrees recognized by employers worldwide.

Studying in UK for free sounds like a pipe dream. However, there are certain things an international student can do to reduce the cost of studying in UK-

  1. Apply for full-funded scholarships-

  • British Chevening Scholarships for International Students

  • Gates Cambridge Scholarships for International Students

  • Warwick Chancellor’s International Scholarships

  • Westminster International Scholarships

  1. Study at affordable universities in the UK 

  • Bucks New University

  • Leeds Beckett University

  • The University of Bedfordshire

  • The University of Sunderland

  • The University of Chester

According to QS Rankings, UK ranks 5th in the list of most expensive study destinations in the world. Here, a student has to pay four times more than they would if they were to study in other European countries. However, the silver lining is that UK is not as expensive as the United States and since the programs are shorter in duration because of their intensive nature, a big chunk of your money will be saved. Moreover, the UK government offers generous scholarships, grants, and bursaries for international students to further lower the cost of education.

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Browse Exams

TOEFL

English language proficiency test

PTE

The computer-based English test

SAT

Standardized test administered by College Board

GRE

Admission test for graduates

GMAT

Test for Business and Management Programs

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