The number of international students choosing to study abroad in the United Kingdom for their Bachelor’s or Master’s degree is increasing rapidly. Few of the major reasons why you should study in the UK!
1. British higher education and qualifications have remarkable international reputation, with students in the United Kingdom encouraged to develop their potential.
2. Ease to search for suitable course by visiting the UCAS website which has a database containing details of around 38,000 courses.
3. The discoveries our universities are making are at the forefront of global science and research. You’ll be at the cutting edge when you study in the UK.
4. Develop excellent language skills through study in the UK as English language is important being international language.
5. Quality education is being enforced by the government. The Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education is the key body charged with maintaining these standards.
6. The UK has a long history of hosting international students to study in its universities and colleges. In Britain last year there were 1.8 million full-time undergraduate students in higher education, which included over 104,000 international students.
7. Shorter undergraduate and postgraduate courses then in other countries which can help to keep the expenses low.
8. International students are allowed to work for up to 20 hours a week during term time and full-time during holidays.
9. The UK offers an amazing, unforgettable student experience like no other country. Make the most of it!
- The Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (FHEQ) contains descriptions of all the main higher education qualifications. Higher education qualifications mainly relate to levels 4 – 8 of the FHEQ. The main qualifications are:
- Bachelor’s degrees
- Higher National Certificates (HNC) and Higher National Diplomas (HND)
- Foundation degrees
· certificates and other academic awards granted by a university or higher education college (but not honorary degrees and higher doctorates
There are range of postgraduate qualification available if you would like to continue your studies after bachelor’s degree. Some are linked to a specific profession, while others allow you to complete an original piece of research.What a postgraduate qualification is?
There are four main types of postgraduate qualifications:
- Postgraduate certificates
- Postgraduate diplomas
- Master’s degrees
Most types of postgraduate qualification will include taught and research elements. Normally, to study for a postgraduate qualification, you will need to have a bachelor’s degree at 2:2 level or above. To find out the entrance requirements for a particular postgraduate course, visit the UCAS website.
Postgraduate diplomas and certificates
Postgraduate diplomas and certificates can be academic or vocational qualifications. They normally take nine to 12 months to complete full-time. The number of lectures and seminars you go to and projects and research papers you produce will vary depending on the type of course and the college or university you are at.
There are a wide variety of subjects to choose from. These are often linked to a specific profession. You can study a subject that’s new to you, or choose a subject that builds on the knowledge and skills you gained during your bachelor’s degree.
Grades are normally awarded as: distinction, merit, pass, fail
Postgraduate certificates can lead on to postgraduate diplomas. You can also use a postgraduate certificate or diploma as a route into a specific career or onto further study, such as a master’s degree.
A master’s degree is a qualification of academic study. It can be research based, a taught course, or a mixture of both and will take at least 12 months of full-time study to complete.
The number of lectures, seminars, projects and research papers will vary depending on the type of course and the institution. You may also have to send a dissertation at the end of your course.
Masters degrees available
The types of master’s degrees available include:
- MA: master of arts
- MSc: master of science
- MBA: master of business administration
- LLM: master of law
- MEd: master of education
- MPhil: master of philosophy
- MRes: master of research
Most master’s degrees are normally awarded as: distinction, merit, pass, fail. Some master’s degrees, such as in business administration and law, prepare you for a career in a particular field. Others, like the master of research can prepare you for a doctorate qualification.
A doctorate qualification gives you the opportunity to do an original piece of research. It will usually take at least three years of full-time study to complete. Doctorate qualifications are offered by universities that have research opportunities. Throughout the course, you will be expected to work independently with guidance from a supervisor. During the first one to three years of your doctorate, you will research your chosen topic and plan your dissertation and in your final year, you will normally write up your dissertation. Doctorates are usually awarded as either a pass or fail; in rare cases with a distinction. Many doctorate courses lead to a qualification such as a doctor of philosophy – a PhD or Dphil.
Bachelor’s degrees: BA, BSc, MB and more
A bachelor’s degree is a course of academic study leading to a qualification such as a bachelor of arts (BA), bachelor of science (BSc), or bachelor of medicine (MB). It usually takes three or four years to complete full-time (normally four years if you’re doing a sandwich course as this includes a year in industry or abroad). Some bachelor’s degrees, like medical courses can take longer. You can also study for a bachelor’s degree part-time, or through flexible learning. The qualification is designed to give you a thorough understanding of a subject. It helps you develop your analytical, intellectual and essay/dissertation writing skills.
What you can study
There are a vast number of bachelor’s degree courses to choose from. Some subjects like medicine, law and architecture prepare you for a particular career. Others, like English or history can equip you with skills for a wide range of jobs.
To study for a bachelor’s degree, you will need to have the qualifications which meet the entrance requirements for the course you wish to study. Most bachelor’s degrees ask for at least two A levels at grade E or above (or equal grades in other qualifications). The University and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) operates a system called the ‘UCAS Tariff’. Your previous qualifications can earn points on the tariff to help get you a place on a particular higher education course. Different courses will ask for a different number of points. To find out entrance requirements for a particular course, you can do a search on the UCAS website, or read the course prospectus – most are now available from the universities’ websites.
How a bachelor’s degree is assessed
Different courses will assess you in different ways. Generally, bachelor’s degrees involve a mixture of exams and coursework. Some ask you for a written dissertation that you produce at the end of the course. Bachelor’s degrees are graded: first, upper-second (2:1), lower second (2:2), third, pass, fail A third or above means you get a bachelors degree with honours. If you are not happy with the grade you have been awarded and want to appeal, you will need to follow the appeals procedure in your college or university.
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The cost of higher education can vary depending on where you study and the length of each course. In Northern Ireland fees are capped at £4,030 per academic year while other parts of the UK are capped at £9,250.
Accommodation in UK is the first and the biggest challenge you’ll have to tackle as a foreign student.Most common types of accommodation for international students in UK are:
- University Dorms
- Private Dorms
- Rooms in private houses
To accommodate as many international students as possible UK universities have increased the number of residence halls. However, there are no places for everyone, unfortunately. And these students have difficulties finding a place to live in. To tackle this issue universities are trying hard to establish certain bodies incorporated into their campus to help their incoming foreign students find a convenient place to accommodate. The majority of universities in UK already offer these services.
Cost of accommodation in UK varies to a large degree. Even in the same city, the range of accommodating costs can be very large. Naturally, as an international student saving as much money as possible is a priority for you. And knowing that rent is the highest expenditure you’ll have when studying abroad, finding an affordable accommodation will alleviate a great financial burden to you.
The student visa will allow you to live and study in the UK throughout your course. If you attend a pre-departure briefing in your home country, you will pick up more handy tips on your visa application. British Council holds pre-departure briefings in many countries. To find out more about these events in your home country, go to the British Council website and select your country from the drop-down menu.
Types of student visa
Tier 4 (General) student visas
If you are 16 or over and want to study at higher education level, you’ll need to apply for a Tier 4 (General) student visa.
You need to wait until you have an offer from a university or college before applying for your Tier 4 (General) student visa. Your university or college will then be able to give you a document called a Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies (CAS). To do this, your chosen institution needs to be approved by the UK government as a ‘licensed Tier 4 sponsor’.
Find out more about Tier 4 (General) student visas.
Short-term study visas
Short term study visas are available to students who want to join courses that are up to six months long or English language courses up to 11 months long.
Find out more about short-term study visas.
You can apply for a postgraduate scholarship from the UK government to cover things like course fees and the cost of living when you study in the UK. International students from the EU aren’t eligible for these scholarships. If you’re from Malta or Cyprus you can still apply for Commonwealth Scholarships. There are also undergraduate scholarships available if you’re from the Falkland Islands, St Helena or the Seychelles.
Apply for a scholarship to do a one-year taught masters
Check if your country is eligible for a Chevening Scholarship.
You can apply for a Chevening Scholarship if all of the following apply:
- you have an undergraduate degree
- you have at least 2 years’ eligible work experience
- you meet the Chevening English language requirements
If you’re from a Commonwealth country
If you’re from a developing Commonwealth country you can apply for funding for:
- a masters
- a PhD
- a split-site PhD
If you’re from a developed Commonwealth country you can only apply for funding for a PhD or a split-site PhD.
If you’re from the USA
You can apply for a Marshall Scholarship to do a masters or a PhD if all the following apply:
- you graduated from a 4-year undergraduate course in the USA in the last 3 years
- you got a GPA of 3.7 or more in your degree
- you haven’t studied for a UK degree before