An island off the coast of northwestern Europe, the United Kingdom (UK) consists of Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales) and Northern Ireland.
Famous for its Royal Family and quirky British traditions such as afternoon tea, scones and queueing very politely, the UK has a proud history and rich cultural heritage, with each of the four countries adding to this mix with their own unique traditions and customs.
Home to four of the world’s top ten universities, the UK is the world’s second most popular choice for international students aspiring to study abroad with over 450,000 international students choosing to pursue their higher education in the UK every year.
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The UK is one of the most popular countries to travel to for the purpose of earning an education. Generations of international students have come to the UK for their education, which means that British universities have decades of experience in working with international students.
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Ranked world's 1st
With an undisputed reputation for academic excellence, a degree from a UK university will be respected wherever you choose to live and work following your higher education, earning itself a reputation for being one of the most popular destinations for international students
Almost every UK university has an international programme, and frameworks have been established to ensure that support is exceptional.
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Student’s will typically require around £10,000 - £12,000 per year to pay for accommodation and living costs, while students in London require significantly more than this.
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Working alongside studying for your degree is a great way to support yourself as well as expanding and challenging your language skills.
Before starting any form of employment, it’s important to check that you are eligible to work in the UK. You should be able to find this information in your passport or biometric residence permit, but in general, if you are a Tier 4 student sponsored by a higher education institute for a full-time course, you can work during your studies.
If you are studying at degree level, you will be able to work for a maximum of 20 hours per week during term-time. During the holidays you can work full-time.
With the UK working to attract more international students each year, measures are currently being put in place to enable local businesses to provide more employment opportunities to students studying in the UK.
IELTS 5.0 (with no less than 4.0 in Reading, Writing, Speaking, Listening)
55% in (GCSE/IGCSE/others), IELTS 6.0 (with no less than 5.5 in Reading, Writing, Speaking, Listening), PTE 51
55% in Undergraduate, IELTS 6.5 (with no less than 5.5 in Reading, Writing, Speaking, Listening), PTE 58 (with no less than 52 in all)
Shortlist each university will have their own requirements of specific language tests and scores, you will also need to meet the minimum requirement of the UK Border Agency in order to secure your student visa if you need one
It might be a relief to know that there are hundreds of scholarships and bursaries available to international students who want to study in the UK. As well as key schemes run by the UK government, individual universities also have their own scholarships and bursaries, so it’s well worth doing your research to check whether you’re eligible to apply.
All international students, apart from Swiss nationals and those from the EU/EEA states are likely to require a visa in order to study in the UK.
UK visas are currently managed by the UK Visas and Immigration, who have a comprehensive and easy to follow website which provides all the information you need to determine whether you’ll need a visa, and which one to apply for.
Valid for up to 6 months, it can be extended up to 11 months for English language courses.
£97 for a 6-month visa, £186 for an 11-month visa
For students aged 4-17 who want to study at an independent school in the UK.
£348 for the Tier 4 (Child) Student visa
For students aged 16 and over.
£348 for the Tier 4 (general) Student visa
If you want to talk to someone about what the best scholarships or bursaries may be for you, chat to one of our educational experts now.
A truly global city, London has more international visitors than any other city in the world. Its visitors will find plenty to see and do with an eclectic mix of culture, music and theatre, eight royal parks, and more museums, galleries and libraries than any other city in the UK.
Home to more than 400,000 students, London has the highest concentration of higher education institutions in the world, with more than 40 universities to be found in the city.
By population, Liverpool is England's ninth largest city, and the largest in Merseyside and Liverpool. It is the 6th largest urban area in the UK and the hub of the 5th largest metropolitan area with a population of 2.24 million.
Liverpool's reputation as a harbor city has attracted a wide variety of people and cultures, especially from Ireland and Wales. The city houses the oldest Black community in the UK and the oldest Chinese community in Europe. The inhabitants and inhabitants of Liverpool are officially referred to as liverpudlians, but mainly as scousers. The accent and dialect of Liverpool are also synonymous with the word Scouse.
The European Capital of Culture in 2008, Liverpool is as famous for its warm welcomes as its sporting and musical heritage. The birthplace of The Beatles, it’s also home to famous football teams Liverpool F.C. and Everton F.C.
A modern, exciting city, Manchester is growing at a pace that outstrips even that of the capital. Famous for sport, football and genre defining music, it has one of the highest university populations in Europe.
Located on the banks of the River Lagan on the East coast of Ireland, Belfast is the country’s capital city and has the perfect mix of vibrant city life with easy access to the stunning coast and countryside.
The capital of Wales, Cardiff is a city that is proud of its culture, history and language. Europe’s smallest capital city as well as one of its newest, there are more castles in Cardiff than any other city as well as a vibrant, student-friendly atmosphere.
England’s second biggest city is also one of the youngest with almost 40% of its population being under 25. Home to more canals than Venice, the largest urban park outside a capital city and over 50 festivals each year, Birmingham is a great place for students
The most densely populated city in Scotland, Glasgow is a friendly, exciting and culturally vibrant city. With two universities in the top 300 of the world rankings, Glasgow is leading city for international study.
The UK is currently at the highest employment rate (76.1%) since its records began. Unemployment at 4% has not been lower since the 1970s and, with vacancies at an all-time high, there are fewer people chasing more job openings.
While London is an expensive city to live in, the rest of the UK is fairly economical to its residents and employment opportunities are at an all-time high.
Long-term prospects for international students in the UK are also encouraging following the introduction of the Start-up visa which has been introduced by the UK government. Aimed at those from outside the EEA and Switzerland, it is for people who want to start a business in the UK.