So you have checked every brochure, website, and statistics? Haven’t you? Or you keep asking yourself “Should I study in the UK or not?” Are you a student who doesn’t know much about studying in the UK but has a strong desire to do so? Then don’t worry! We are here to elucidate the various factors which one should keep in mind before deciding to study in the UK. Revered for offering the best education system in the world, pursuing higher studies from the UK opens the door to an array of opportunities. With a striking amalgamation of English culture, traditions, and a multitude of degree courses, the country has attracted scores of international students for ages. This blog brings you a detailed guide on studying in the UK including the top universities in the country, cost of studying, student visa process, and much more!
This Blog Includes:
- Is It a Good Idea to Study in the UK?
- How Much Does it Cost to Study in UK?
- How can you Apply to a British University?
- Requirements to Study in UK
- UK Study Visa and Documentation
- How to Apply for a Student Visa in the UK?
- Scholarships to Consider
- Popular Universities to Study in UK
Is It a Good Idea to Study in the UK?
Recognition of British Universities
One of the top reasons to study in the UK is that it houses some of the world’s oldest institutions that are known for their research and comprehensive curriculum and have etched their name in the top 10 list of various world rankings like that of QS, Times Higher Education, etc. University of Oxford, London School of Economics and Political Science, University of Cambridge, University of East Anglia and Imperial College London are some of the world-famous universities situated in the country.
An Education That is Worth the Cost
The UK has remarked itself as one of the best places for educational purposes. And such remarkability comes from its efforts in providing quality education, modern infrastructure having imperial aesthetics, world-renowned faculties, and state of the art facilities.
Top-notch Programmes to Choose From
Be it pursuing an MBA in the UK, or MS in the UK, as an international student, you will have plenty of alternatives in front of you. Needless to say, choosing the right university and completing the application process on time needs efforts.
Work While Studying
Many students from across the world tend to work part-time and often do internships to build career skills that can make their CV more valuable. International students who want to study in the UK can work for up to 20 hours/week. However, one can even work full-time during vacations. Further, If you want to work after graduation, you can apply for a UK post-study work visa!
Get Scholarships and Financial Aids
Even though pursuing courses from study abroad destinations can open the doors to innumerable opportunities, lack of finances can act as an obstruction. But worry not! There is a multitude of scholarships for Indian students to study in UK. But before applying for any aid, make sure that you have been accepted to your desired university.
The National Health Service (NHS) provides free* medical treatment to international students who are enrolled in programs running for not less than 6 months. But to avail the benefits, one needs to pay an immigration health surcharge during the Visa application. Further, If you are staying here with your spouse, partner, or children, then they will also be exempted from paying treatment costs. Not only this, the UK does its best to provide medical support in universities too. Further, most of the British universities have specific policies regarding health. [Terms and Conditions Applied]
Every year, lakhs of students enroll themselves in various degree programs offered in universities across the UK. Thus, when you study in the UK, you will meet people who belong to different cultures, countries, speak varied languages, etc. One thing which you should keep in mind is that although British people speak English, there are many differences when it comes to enunciation and spellings.
How Much Does it Cost to Study in UK?
Apart from the primary tuition fees, the cost of studying in the UK includes accommodation, Visa, daily expenses, transport, etc. Enlisted are the details pertaining to the expenses which one may incur to study in UK:
- If you’re planning to pursue an undergraduate degree, the tuition fee can range between £8000 to £9000 per year (7,10,000 INR-8,00,000 INR) and can also go up to £30000 (27,00,000 INR) depending on the university, its location, and the chosen course.
- The cost of pursuing postgraduate degree programs to study in UK can cost anywhere between £12000 to £15000 (10,70,000 INR-13,00,000 INR) and can go up to £35000 (31,00,000 INR).
- The cost of studying programs like MBBS, clinical degrees and various engineering branches will be a little more expensive than other countries. However, the duration of an undergraduate programme is 3 years and a postgraduate programme is 1 year in UK, which in turn helps students save time and money.
How can you Apply to a British University?
Just like any university across the globe, there is a set standard of documents and a specific procedure to complete the application procedure followed in UK. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to complete the admission procedure in order to study in UK:
- Research and find out which university and course are most suitable for you to study in the UK. You can either conduct thorough research on your own or can take help from various overseas education consultants. In either case, do not forget to check the course as well as the university or institute ranking on trusted platforms.
- There are certain documents like passport copy, CV, etc that have to be submitted when filling the application form. The details of which have been given in the next paragraphs.
- Your statement of purpose (SOP) should highlight your educational qualifications, academic achievements, the purpose of pursuing a course, career goals, etc.
- All the UG applications to UK universities are submitted through the portal of Universities and College Admission Service (UCAS) website. A single UCAS application form to study in the UK will give you a chance to apply to 5 universities at once for 5 different courses. For PG courses, candidates directly apply to the universities through online or offline mediums.
- You will be required to submit a list of documents including the CAS Confirmation of acceptance letter to apply for the TIER-4 Student Visa.
Requirements to Study in UK
As discussed, there are a set of documents that you need to submit while filling the application form in order to study in UK. Here is a list for the same:
- Copy of a valid passport
- Scorecard of English proficiency tests like TOEFL/IELTS/C1 Advanced. (Some universities exempt students from this if they meet the set criteria)
- Academic Transcripts
- Letter of Recommendations (LOR)
- Portfolio (for specific courses)
- A CV (if applicable)
- Statement of Purpose
UK Study Visa and Documentation
Before we delve into the process and documents required for applying for a British visa, let us first understand the types of visa available for students to study in UK:
|Tier 4 Student Visa||Short-term Student Visa|
|This is for those who are 16 years of age or above and have enrolled in a course exceeding more than 11 months.||This type of visa is for those students who want to enrol in a short-term course.|
|You will have to collect your Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies (CAS) or letter of acceptance from the institution where you have applied to study.||The duration of such courses doesn’t exceed 11 months.|
Let us now have a look at the documents required to complete the Visa application process in order to study in UK:
- A valid passport (Should have validity for more than 6 months from the date of application of visa)
- Proof of financial stability
- Details of your travel plans and where you are about to reside.
- Health checkup report.
- Keep a blank page on your passport for the visa.
- If you have collected all the documents, recheck and make sure that everything is in English. If not, then you need a certified translator who can translate all of them in English.
Once you have collected all the requisite documents, you can then apply online. You will have to sign, submit your application form, book an appointment, pay the application fee and collect the receipt. You will be required to visit the application centre to complete other relevant formalities. It is advised to apply for a visa 3 months prior to the initiation of your course in order to study in the UK.
UK Visa Application Fee
- UK visa application fee for Tier-4 Student Visa: £348 [roughly 28,650 INR]
- Application fee for short-term Student Visa: £97 [roughly 7,990 INR] for a 6-month visa & £186 for an 11-month visa [15,300 INR]
Under the following conditions will you be required to submit a healthcare surcharge fee while completing the application process:
- A citizen of a country outside the European Economic Area (EEA)
- Applying for a visa to study, work or join your family
- Applying to stay for a period of more than 6 months
- Not applying to become a permanent resident of the UK
How to Apply for a Student Visa in the UK?
Now that you know what documents you need as well as the visa that suits your study purposes, let’s discuss the visa application process to study in UK. Below we have detailed the step-by-step guide to apply for a student visa in the UK.
Choose a Student Visa
The first step to apply for a visa to study in UK is to select the one that suits your study purposes. If you are aiming to study a program that exceeds the duration of 11 months, then you must go for a Tier-4 Student Visa whereas if you are visiting the country to pursue a short-term course, then opt for a short-term student visa.
Prepare Your Visa Application
Once you have decided upon which student visa you need, then you can move towards preparing your visa application. You can apply for a student visa online at the official immigration website of the UK. You will be asked to select your country, the objective of visiting the UK as well as the duration of your study programme, after which you will be directed to the application portal. It is important to apply for a student visa for at least 3 months before you start your academic programme.
Get an Appointment
While applying online, you will be required to make an appointment at your nearest visa application centre where you need to submit your biometrics, i.e. Fingerprints and a photograph. Along with this, you will have to provide your eligibility documents (the list has been mentioned above). Many visa application centre might keep your passport and other documents during the application processing. Also, you must also provide a certificate proving that you do not have Tuberculosis (TB) alongside your application.
Wait for the Final Decision
You will be provided with a letter enclosing the result of your visa application to study in UK. It will explain the next steps which you need to fulfil after arriving in the UK. If your application is successful and is given a green light, then a sticker which is referred to as a vignette will be given to you which you need to keep in your passport. The vignette will comprise of the following elements:
- The type of visa you have granted (like Tier-4 Student Visa)
- The dates by which your visa is valid for (Start and End Date)
- The conditions you must meet while staying in the UK like whether you have “access to public funds”, permit for part-time work or “restricted work”.
Further, you will be required to register your personal detailed with the police department in the UK.
Scholarships to Consider
Finances play an important part to study at famous universities abroad. Since the cost of studying in UK for Indian students can be on a higher side, availing the benefits of scholarships can help ease the burden. Tabulated below are some of the popular scholarships for Indian students to study in UK:
|Scholarship to Study in UK||Timeline|
|Chevening Scholarships||August 2020 to November 2020|
|Dr. Manmohan Singh Scholarships||January 2020|
|Hornby Scholarships||Between October to September every year|
|Rhodes Scholarship Program||Between June to July|
|Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan||Between October to November|
|Felix Scholarships||September [every year]|
Popular Universities to Study in UK
Now that you are familiar with the basic details pertaining to pursuing higher education in UK, let us take a quick look over some of the most popular universities in the UK.
|University||QS World University |
|University of Oxford||5|
|University of Cambridge||7|
|University College London||10|
|Imperial College London||8|
|University of Edinburgh||20|
|The University of Manchester||=27|
|King’s College London||=31|
|London School of Economics and Political Science||49|
|University of Bristol||58|
|University of Warwick||62|
|University of East Anglia (UEA)||=333|
University of Oxford
This collegiate research university has been consistently ranked 1st in THE(Times Higher Education) World University Rankings for 2018, 2019 as well as 2020. At present, the university has around 24,000 students out of which, 11,000 are pursuing undergraduate courses while others are enrolled in an array of postgraduation courses spanning disciplines. When it comes to counting courses, Oxford alone has 350 various degree programs. If you are an Indian student and want to enrol in a degree program at the coveted university then go through our blog on how to get admission in Oxford University from India!
University of Cambridge
Established in 1209, the University of Cambridge is amongst the renowned and esteemed academic institutions in the world. If you are planning to study in UK at Cambridge then you will be pushed beyond your limits and encouraged to explore varied research opportunities in your chosen field. With 31 colleges offering scores of degree and short term courses, the university opens the door to an array of career opportunities. The university is home to more than 100 academic departments spread across six schools offering popular academic programmes like BBA, MBA, BTech, MS, amongst other
Imperial College London
Another name in the list of leading colleges to study in UK is the Imperial College London. This university is home to almost 17k students and is revered for its research environment. Apart from the master’s program, the college offers 3 types of doctorate courses namely, PhD, Integrated PhD, and Professional Doctorates in an array of areas. MSc Mechanical Engineering, MRes Advanced Molecular Synthesis, MSc Human and Biological Robotics, MD(Res) Clinical Medicine Research, etc are some of the popular courses offered by this institution.
University of East Anglia
Rooted in 1963 in the UNESCO awarded City of Literature – Norwich, University of East Anglia is an ideal study destination for Indian students. It has fetched a 21st position The Complete University Guide 2020 in the UK and 192nd rank in the 2020 list of top universities by THE World University Rankings. Ranging from excellent undergraduate, postgraduate, doctoral programmes to short term diploma courses, UEA has a perfect course for every student! It comprises 4 faculties which are further divided into 26 schools as per specialization. The 320-acre university campus houses all the facilities a candidate would require. If you are planning to study at UEA then you must know that popular novelists like Ian McEwan and Kazuo Ishiguro are some of the popular alumni of UEA.
London School of Economics and Political Science
Originally established in 1895, the London School of Economics and Political Science is a public research university situated in Houghton. The Fabian Society members: Beatrice, Webb, Graham Wallas, George Bernard Shaw, and Sidney Webb are some of the respected figures who have helped in the development of this university. Apart from the undergraduate and graduate programs, LSE offers scores of diploma, short term, and executive courses. BSc Actuarial Science, BSc Economic History, MSc Economy, Risk, and Society, MSc Data Science, Executive MSc in Cities, etc are some of the degree courses offered at the university.
Which is the best university in Norfolk to study MA History?
University of East Anglia located in Norwich is one of the best places to study History in the UK. It is ranked at 192nd position in the list of world universities by THE.
Can one study in UK without giving IELTS?
Yes, it is possible for you to study in UK without IELTS! The alternatives to IELTS might include online interviews held by the university or a major in English and high school certification. These might not be applicable for all universities but certain universities do offer this provision. Some of the universities provide this route include the University of East Anglia, University of Bristol, London Southbank University, Brunel University among others.
What are the top courses to study in UK?
The universities in the UK are known for providing quality education through their diverse curriculum, modern infrastructure, and academically brilliant faculty. The most popular courses to study in UK include Natural Sciences, Medicine, Social Sciences, Business, Law, Engineering and Technology, Arts, Media and Communication to name a few. So, if you want to build a career in any of these disciplines, you should consider studying in the island nation!
How long can one stay after studying in UK? [2020 Update]
With the establishment of the new laws, Indian students will now have the opportunity of obtaining a two-year work permit upon the completion of their degree thus opening up avenues for permanent settlement in the country. There are immense prospects for a lucrative career after you study in UK. So, it is important that you engage effectively with your course and stay on the lookout for good career opportunities!
Can one work part-time while studying in UK?
As an Indian student, you can work part-time while pursuing a degree in the UK. While you study in UK, you can work up to 20 hours a week during the duration of your semester or term. You can also work full time during the duration of your university break. The opportunity of working alongside your degree helps in not only meeting the living expenses but also provides opportunities for exposure and experience!
As discussed, with an array of degree programs spanning across disciplines being offered by world-renowned universities, pursuing higher education in the UK will not only help in improving your career skills but will also open the door to innumerable opportunities. Due to the quality of education provided by the institutes in the United Kingdom, the overall tuition fees can be slightly high. However, this can be reduced considerably by the scholarships or aids offered by both the government and universities.
Hence, if you have decided to study in UK then the career prospects are immense. Needless to say, with scores of top-rated universities and courses available in the island nation, you might get confused with the admission process. Click Here to register and take the assistance of experts at Leverage Edu who will help you in completing the application formalities with ease!