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Reasons to study in the UK

Top reasons to study in the UK for Indian students

by Nabeel Ahmed

Reasons to study in UK – The UK has for long been a preferred destination for budding professionals, academicians and students alike. According to a report on Migration Statistics,published by the UK’s Office for National Statistics, 21,165 Indian students were granted Tier 4 (student) visas for the UK in the year ending March 2019. This was a 40% increase  from year ending March 2018.  

The country is home to some of the finest centres of learning like the University of Oxford, University of Cambridge, UCL (University College London) and Imperial College London. It thus witnesses a large influx of international students from all over the world, making it a melting pot of culture and learning. Besides, educational institutes across the country offer more than 50,000 courses in more than 25 subjects across all streams of studies. 

This article gives the top reasons why Indian students continue to give preference to the UK while considering to study further at a foreign university. 

Reasons to study in UK – Why UK is one of the best option for study abroad?

Vast array of courses on offer – Universities in the UK are famed for their undergraduate, master’s as well as PhD courses. The top 5 spots on the ‘Times Higher Education World University Rankings’ have been consistently taken by British universities. What’s more, these universities are not just reputed, but come with a long legacy of an exemplary alumni and faculty who excel in their respective fields. 

International recognition of degrees earned at universities in the UK – Degrees earned in the UK are recognised across the globe with PR degrees being recognised even in countries like Canada and USA. 

Lower tuition fees – Even though the cost of pursuing an education in the UK is not low, it isn’t exorbitant either, especially when compared to other countries like Australia and the USA. The average tuition fee in the UK averages between $38,000 for similar courses the average cost of tuition in USA costs around $50,000. These figures when coupled with cost of living and other necessities make the UK a much more desirable destination for students.

Shorter course lengths – An important aspect of education in the UK which has a leg up over education in other countries is the shorter length of its courses. While in the USA an undergraduate course requires 4 years of tuition, in the UK it requires just 3 years. Similarly, in Australia and the USA post graduate courses require a minimum of 2 years of tuition while the same post graduate courses in the UK require just 1 year of course work. The shorter time frame is great for students looking to start their careers early and also helps in bringing down the overall costs. Keeping this and the quality of education in mind, UK easily becomes one of the most beneficial places for students, especially when the students want to get maximum return on their investment by getting a lucrative job after completing their studies.  

Note: Undergraduate courses in Scotland require 4 years of tuition. In the rest of the UK, the same courses need just 3 years to complete. 

2 year post-study work visa – A post-study work visa gives students the opportunity to work or look for work for 2 years in the country once they have completed their respective educational courses. Students who are able to secure jobs paying around £20,000 can further apply for indefinite stay permits after living in the UK for 5 years. There is no cap on the number of skilled labour visas that will be granted to Indian professionals making it easier for students to find work and stay on in the UK.  

Large number of scholarships to choose from – The diverse education system of UK offers innumerable fields for students to explore. There are a large number of scholarships that students from across the world can apply for when looking to join a university in the UK. The British Council along with 12 universities in the UK has launched the ‘GREAT’ Scholarships 2020 program. Under this, 12 postgraduate scholarships are being offered with grants up to £10,000.

Some university scholarships, specific to Indian students in the UK are listed below –

Imperial College London Offering a scholarship worth £10,000 for students looking forward to pursue a master’s course from the Faculty of Engineering, Faculty of Medicine or Faculty of Natural Sciences.
Newcastle University (excelling in courses related to health, culture and creative arts, data and energy) Offering thirteen 50% tuition fee discounts and two full tuition fee discounts as well as automatic partial tuition fee scholarships with a value of £1,500 to £5,000. Scholarships are available to applicants applying to study at undergraduate and master’s level for almost all subject areas.
Robert Gordon University Offering one post graduate scholarship across all streams with £10,000 discount on full tuition fees
University of Bath (excelling in teaching in research work) Offering a scholarship worth £25,000 Indian students across all streams.

Other than this, over 20,000 international students also get financial aid from the UK government.

For more information on eligibility and application processes for scholarships by the Indian students, Buddy4study offers counselling and assistance. 

Reasons to study in UK – Part time jobs

Students enrolled in institutes across the UK are allowed to work part time to earn money that can help supplement their finances and familiarise themselves with the local culture. Students can work for up to 20 hours in a week (as per visa guidelines). Finding part-time work for students is fairly easy and there are plenty of options in the campuses. Some types of campus jobs for a student could be:

  • Library monitor
  • Teaching assistant
  • Working at the University bookstore 
  • Babysitting
  • Working at a barista

Post study work visa news can be read in this short blog – Why study in UK?

Reasons to study in the UK – Institutionalised healthcare

The UK is one of the countries to have institutionalised national health care system which reduces overall healthcare costs. International students with a Tier-4 general visa who have spent more than 6 months living in the country are entitled to NHS (National Health Services).

Reasons to study in UK – Experience of a lifetime

Education demands not just learning, but also exploring the world and broadening of horizons. A holistic education requires much more than classwork and tuition, the parameters for modern education are much wider. All these parameters are adequately fulfilled when students choose universities in the UK. Part-time work opportunities, involvement in student bodies, the chance to experience the British culture and travelling across Europe are some of the avenues open to them. 

Reasons to study in UK – Cheap transport system

With a bustling and cheap transport system all these avenues can be explored without them being a financial burden. Below are a few options students can avail to travel in and around the UK without burdening their finances.

Railcards for students aged between 16-25 Save a third of the cost of travelling within the UK.
Oyster card for London Underground (Tube) Coupling it with railcards helps lower travel costs within the city.
Eurostar high-speed trains running between major cities within the EU like London, Paris and Brussels Allow for great connectivity at low cost for students
For travel by coaches (long distance bus services) Students aged between 16-25 can use the National Express coach card to shave 30% off their travel costs
Cycling is very popular in the UK as a means of transport and exploring Many cities in the country like London, Liverpool and Belfast offer cycle hiring services for a seamless travelling experience.

Interested to pursue MBA in UK

Reasons to study in UK – FAQs

Q. How much does it cost to study in the UK?

The average cost of tuition in the UK ranges between 5000 to 27000 USD. Couple this with the cost of living – 1,435 USD (to be maintained in bank account for every month you plan on staying in the UK) you can get a fair idea of the overall expenditure. 

Q. What are the educational requirements for studying in the UK?

Based on the course one is opting for, the educational requirements may vary. However the required test scores for IELTS are important. Other requirements include:

  • Adequate financials for studying and living in the UK
  • Necessary travel documents like passport and student visa etc.
  • Necessary documents that prove the necessary previous educational requirements.  

Q. Can students stay in the UK after completing their education?

Yes, students applying for and post completion of their courses will be allowed to stay in the UK for an additional two years to work. This is applicable for students joining their respective universities in 2020. 

Q. Is studying in UK better than USA and Australia?

 Studying in the UK has many advantages that are not available in other similar countries. Some of these are- 

  • Lower tuition fee as compared to countries like Australia and USA
  • Shorter course lengths in both undergraduate and master’s programs. (3 for undergraduate and 1 for post graduate as opposed to 4 for UG and 2 for PG in USA) 
  • World class universities with strong alumni network and exposure. 
  • Plenty of scholarships to choose from. 

Q. Can I work part-time while studying in the UK?

Overseas students are allowed up to 20 hours of work a week while pursuing their education in the UK. So yes, you can work part-time while studying to ensure maximum utility of your time there.  

Q. How can I apply for a student visa to study in the UK?

The application process for studying in the UK requires the following. 

  • A completed student visa application form 
  • Proof of financial viability laid down by the government regulations and requirements.
  • An offer letter from an accredited university in the country. 
  • Marksheets of previously completed courses 
  • Scores of exams like IELTS, which are necessary to study at a university in the UK for overseas students. 

Q. How are the job prospects after studying in the UK?

Being home to some of the finest institutes in the world, graduates from UK are well sought after in the job market. However, for the most part the prospects of securing a job will depend entirely on the way the time spent there is utilised. 

Q. Where I can go for guidance for the application process to study in the UK?

There are many organisations that can help guide you through the application process for studies abroad. Do your research and establish where you want to study. Buddy4Study can counsel you through the application process and much more.