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Study in United Kingdom

Overview

Attracting over 458,490 international students according to the HESA website, the UK has a long tradition of quality education and houses universities dating back to the 12th and 13th centuries. 25 universities from the UK rank among the top 200 universities according to QS World Rankings 2020. And 4 universities lie among the top 10 universities. Universities in the United Kingdom are known to have excellent pedagogy merged with a focus on research.

Among the non- EU countries, China, India, the USA, and Hong Kong send most students to study in UK. The strength of Indian students approximates to 22,000 by June, 2019. A positive aspect for Indian students is an acceptance of 96 percent visa applications.

The country is known to provide generous discounts to students (including international) on public transport, food, books and entertainment; hence students are advised to ask about student discounts everywhere. There's a great deal of second-hand shopping that can happen in the UK.

The main areas of education that the country is known to offer are engineering, science, art & design, business & management, law and finance. Masters in UK is a popular choice that students explore.

Education System

Made up of four regions - Scotland, England, Northern Ireland and Wales, the UK offers 50,000 courses in around 25 subjects. Different regions in the UK can have a different set of academic rules. For higher education, there are mainly two bodies to maintain academic standards:

FHEQ - The Framework for Higher Education Qualifications of Degree Awarding Bodies in England, Wales and Northern Ireland
2. FQHEIS- The Framework for Qualifications of Higher Education Institutions in Scotland

Undergraduate Programs

More than 395 universities and colleges offer undergraduate or bachelor courses to students. In the table below, we provide a brief of types of undergraduate degrees for you to explore which you can pursue after 12th:

Degree title Duration Eligibility requirements Key points
Bachelor’s degree 3- 4 years

Minimum 70% in SSC (varies with stream)

IELTS 6.0-6.5

Focussed on a particular subject Examples-BA, B.Sc., B.Ed., BEng

Diplomas of Higher Education (DipHE)

2-3 years Below 60% in SSC ILETS 5.5-6.0 Equivalent to 2 years of Hons. Program Can be stretched to 3 years for Hons. degree For professions such as social work, medicine.
Certificates of Higher Education (CertHE) 2-3 years Below 60% in SSC IELTS overall 5.5.0-6.0 Equivalent to 2 years of Hons. Program Can be stretched to 3 years for Hons. Degree Designed for you to build confidence to study at university level

Foundation degree 

2- 3 years Below 60% in SSC accepted IELTS 5.5-6.0 Equivalent to 2 years of Hons. Program Usually opted if you wish to work right after secondary school Can be continued to third year for obtaining Hons. bachelor degree
Higher National Diploma (HND) 2-3 years Below 60% in SSC accepted IELTS overall 5.5-6.0 2 year certificate If you score well, you can go for the third year
Specialized undergraduate Master’s Degree program 4 years Minimum 70% in SSC (varies with stream) IELTS minimum 6.0 Integrated course Not common Melds first degree with master’s program
Sandwich degree 4 years Minimum 70% in SSC (varies with stream) IELTS minimum 6.0 One year is dedicated to workplace experience

 

Postgraduate Programs

Type of Masters Duration Eligibility requirements
Taught Masters Courses  (Examples: M.Sc., M.A, M.Eng.) 1-2 years First or upper second class undergraduate degree IELTS 7.0
Research Master’s (Examples- M.Sc., M.Phil., M.Res) 2-3 years First or upper second class undergraduate degree IELTS 7.0
MBA 1-2 years First degree, 2-3 years’ work experience, IELTS 6.5-7
PH.D. 3-5 years Master’s degree IELTS 6.5-7.0

Top Courses

Popular courses to study in the UK

  • Business and Administrative Studies (MBA)
  • Engineering & Tech (B.Tech., M.Tech.)
  • Social Sciences (B.A, M.A in History, M.Phil.)
  • Creative Arts & Design (Graphic, Film, Media)
  • Law (LLB, LLM)
  • Biological Sciences (B.Sc., M.Sc.)
  • Medicine and allied subjects

Admission Process

Admission Requirements for courses in the UK

  • Most Universities in the UK do not require the students to appear for GRE, GMAT .
  • Either of the two English proficiency tests i.e. IELTS/TOEFL is considered.
  • Academic excellence is sometimes mandatory and a high priority requirement for universities in the UK.
  • Work experience is also mandatory for certain courses like MBAs.
  • Students with 15 backlogs or so can apply at several UK universities, but other important factors to be taken into account when you apply are your standardized test scores such as IELTS.
  • Some UK universities have no specific requirements for backlog acceptance, and a good IELTS score has no stand in granting admissions to students.

Cost of Attendance

Cost of Studying in the UK

  • According to The Reddin Survey for 2017-18, the undergraduate fees approximate in the range of £10,000 to £38,000. It can be higher for medical courses.
  • On average, MS in the UK may cost about £20,000 per year.
  • The top universities in the UK may have slightly higher fees. 
  • The government mandates that you will approximately need at least £1265 each month for living expenses.
  • UK is known to provide generous discounts to students (including international) on public transport, food, books and entertainment, so students are advised to ask about student discounts everywhere. You can know more about living expenses in the UK including accommodation and other living expenses.

Best student cities

Popular cities to study in the UK

  • Oxford
  • Cambridge
  • London
  • Aberdeen
  • Manchester

Visa

Steps to apply for UK Student Visa

  • First of all, congratulations on your admit! Now, check if you need the visa. You can only apply after you have received a CAS certificate from the university.
  • If you have received any scholarships from the university, make sure to check if the CAS certificate mentions that. This may create problems in the Visa interview. 
  • With this, you also need to show the required funds in your bank account. 
  • The earliest you can apply for a visa is 3 months before you start your course. You’ll usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks.
  • You need Tier 4 (General) Student Visa (Fees £310) for a full-time degree and Student Visitor Visa (Fees £83) if you are going for studying for less than 6 months
  • Get an Immigration Health Surcharge
  • Book visa at:https://visas-immigration.service.gov.uk/apply-visa-type/tier4
  • Give your biometrics at the Visa Application Center (VAC) for receiving a Biometric Residence Permit. You can collect it within 10 days of arrival in the UK.
  • Get your Tuberculosis Screening done from UK approved clinics.
  • Give your Visa interview either at a VAC or online through a video. 
     

Let’s see the list of documents required in the entire process to procure a visa.

  • Original Birth Certificate
  • CAS Form
  • Passport
  • Passport size photographs
  • Academic documents
  • Proofs to support your finances
  • English language proficiency test scorecards
  • Proof of payment for Immigration Health Surcharge
  • Tuberculosis Screening Certificate

Note: 

  • Visa should be applied within 6 months of receiving CAS form and before 3 months of beginning of course.
  • You can arrive in the UK before your program starts up to 1 week before if your course length is less than 6 months.
  • If your course lasts more than 6 months, you can reach the UK up to 1 month before the start of your course.

Top Scholarships

Given below is a set of universities, third parties and government institutions that offer scholarship opportunities to international students wanting to pursue their studies abroad.

List of scholarships for Study Abroad for Fall/Spring 2021

  • International Scholarship
  • Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship
  • Michael Wong Pakshong Bursary
  • GyanDhan Scholarship
  • Amy Li Cambridge Scholarship
  • Cambridge Trust Scholarship
  • President's Undergraduate Scholarships
  • Undergraduate scholarships for international students
  • Vice-Chancellor’s International Scholarships
  • International Office Undergraduate Scholarship
  • Vice-Chancellor's International Attainment Scholarship
  • International Undergraduate Merit Scholarship
  • UBir India Outstanding Achievement Scholarships
  • Vice-Chancellor’s Excellence Scholarships
  • Vice-Chancellor’s Excellence Scholarships
  • Think Big Undergraduate Scholarships
  • Global Economics Undergraduate Scholarship
  • Global Justice Scholarship - Undergraduate
  • Global Excellence Scholarship
  • Humanitarian Scholarship
  • International Undergrad Science and Engineering Scholarship
  • Simon and June Li Undergraduate Scholarship
  • SBS Full Time MBA Deans Excellence Awards
  • Skoll Scholarship

Work Opportunities

As a student in the United Kingdom, you can work upto 20 hours per week and full-time during holidays, if you are on a study abroad programme in a recognized university. The National Minimum wage for a student aged between 16 to 20 is £5.3 per hour, and for 21 or above is £6.7 per hour.

What kind of student jobs can you do in the UK?


There are various part time options available depending on what suits you and what you get hold of:

1)At a cafe, restaurant, back office, store, malls, supermarkets, gas stations, etc.
2)Social Media Jobs: Companies pay students to create and manage their social media profiles. If you know how to have the skills to do digital marketing, you can get paid a lot of money here.
3)Freelance Jobs: If you have a skill, you can share it on Youtube or make a course online
4)Tutoring: You need to pre-apply for this. If there is a research opportunity, you can work with a professor as their assistant.

How to find jobs in the UK?

1)Students have multiple available resources for them to help look for part time or full time jobs.
2)Most universities have career centres that help you get jobs. Other resources include looking for jobs online using websites like LinkedIn, StudentJob, Employment 4 Students, etc. You can also go and apply in person if there are vacancies.
3)Keep in mind that you must be polite and professional in all your communications (via email or phone). Also, if the application happens in rounds or stages, then politely follow-up if you haven’t heard from them in a while.

What are my employment rights as a student working in the UK?

1) You are entitled to the National Minimum Wage.
2) You must get paid as an intern even if the same company has offered you a future full-time position.
3) You are entitled to equal pay rates, sick-leaves, maternity, paternity and other holidays by the company.
4) You are entitled to training and development events, and career breaks.
5) Monetary benefits are to be given on pro-rata basis. For example: If a full-time employee gets 1000 pounds bonus, part-time must get 500 pounds.
6) You are not entitled to overtime pay unlike full-time workers.
7) One can justify not having your health insurance because you are part-time.
8)Interns may not entitled to payment in case of unpaid student internships, school work experience placements (under 16 years of age) and volunteer work.
9) If the intern just has to shadow another employee, they may not get paid.
10) One can report to Employee Tribunal if treated unfairly.

What are the average salaries after completing my graduation?

Job Title Average Annual Salary

Data Scientist £35,000

Project Manager (IT) £42,000

Physician/General Doctor £51,000

Psychologist 31,000"

FAQs

1.What are the new visa regulations changes for international students in the UK?

According to the latest regulations, starting from international students graduating in 2020-21 will get post-work study rights in the UK. This means that their visa will be extended for two years after their study. Unlike for the past students, they will not have to depend on a single employer to apply for their visa.

2. When should I apply for UK Universities for a master’s course?

You will need to apply the latest by June or July (check each university’s deadlines separately). The classes start in September End or October beginning. To be safe, apply four months in advance.

3. Can I pursue a part-time post-graduate course in the UK?

If you need a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK (unlike national and European students), you can only pursue a full - time course.

4. How much are the tuition fees for international students to study Masters in the UK?<

The average cost of study may be about 11000-20,000 a year. Details about the overall cost of education in the UK can be found here.

5. What is the difference between 'ordinary' and 'honors' degrees for undergrad in UK?

Ordinary degrees imply that a student has completed all the classes. Additionally Hons. Degree tells about the achieved level of scores. This depends on a university.

6. Do I need a compulsory need to give Visa Interview?

VISA interview is conditional. UKBA has reintroduced visa interviews, so students applying for a UK visa may be asked to appear for an interview with the visa officers. Those who have once declined a visa or whose scores on standardized tests are low are more likely to be chosen for a visa interview.

7. In what cases will a visa get rejected?

Due to insufficient funds or incorrect financial evidence, your visa may be rejected.

8. What funds do I require to procure a UK Visa?

You need to pay for the first academic year tuition fees mentioned on your CAS. Additionally, you should have funds for supporting your living expenses for the first 9 months in the UK (£1265 per month for inner London, £1015 per month otherwise).

9. What types of financial proofs can I show for funds?

This may be a student loan from a bank, government scholarship, if you have any financial sponsorship from an international organization as per UKVI, bank account statement or bank letter under you or your parent’s names.

10. Can I get a student loan from the UK government?

No, the UK government doesn't provide loans to non-EU students.

11. Can I pursue a part-time post-graduate course in the UK?

The university can sponsor for a part-time Tier 4 Visa for part-time postgraduate degrees.

12. How much are the tuition fees for international students to study Masters in the UK?

For Masters students, the tuition fees are around £10,500 to 33,500 a year.

13. What are the different types of Master courses offered in the UK?

Taught Masters and Research masters are offered in the UK.

14. What is the duration of the Masters in the UK?

It is around 1-2 years in the UK.

15. Name 5 top universities in the UK for engineering.

According to U.S. News and World Report, these are Imperial College London, University of Cambridge, University of Manchester, University of Nottingham and University of Oxford.

16. Which are the four regions included in the UK?

They are England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

17. Describe the climates across the UK.

It has a temperate climate. The extreme weather is rare. The summers and winters are not towards unpleasant sides in the UK.

18. Mention five popular courses to study in the UK.

These are Business and Administrative Studies (MBA), Engineering & Tech (B.Tech., M.Tech.), Social Sciences (B.A, M.A in History, M.Phil.), Creative Arts & Design (Graphic, Film, Media) and Law (LLB, LLM).

19. What is the M.Phil course which is popular in the UK?

This is a Master in Philosophy course which is a research degree.

20. Name 3 popular scholarships popular in UK?

These are Chevening Scholarships, Commonwealth Masters Scholarships and Gates Cambridge Scholarships.

21. What is the Masters with placement option?

These are Masters Courses that have integrated work options. Work in an organization is part of the entire coursework. This adds to students’ resumes.

22. Which universities in the UK require GRE scores?

The London School of Economics requires GRE. But requirement of GRE is university and program specific.

23. How long can I stay in the UK after the completion of MS?

You can stay for two years after completing your course in the UK.

24. What is the point-based system for a UK work visa introduced recently?

There is a list of doctors on a panel suggested by Australian government from which you can get your medical examination done.

25. What's the difference between a taught and research Masters?

Most Masters Degrees are taught courses, consisting of lectures and seminars followed by a dissertation project. Research Masters involves much more independent work, but the exact difference between a taught and research Masters varies. An MRes (Master of Research) usually involves longer (or multiple) dissertation tasks. An MPhil (Master of Philosophy) is entirely research-based and may form part of a Ph.D.. Research Masters are less common outside the UK.

26. What are the most popular subjects for a Masters?

The most popular postgraduate subjects in the UK are: Business Studies, Education, Nursing, Economics, and Biological Sciences. There is a huge range of Masters Degrees out there though, so take the time to find the right one for your interests and career plans.

27. What GPA do you need for a Masters?

Universities in the USA may look at your undergraduate GPA (grade point average) score when considering Master’s degree applications. A GPA of 3.0 or higher is usually considered 'good' – and is roughly equivalent to a UK 2.1. Universities in the UK and Europe don't usually use the GPA system.

28. Can students work during studies in the UK?

All students with Tier 4 visa are allowed to work for 20 hours per week during an ongoing session and full-time during vacations. Doctorate students can work full-time throughout the year.

29. What are Sandwich courses for bachelors in UK?

Usually business, engineering and science related subjects are offered for these programs. You can go to a university's website and check for such courses. Some examples include Bath, Lancaster, Surrey, Loughborough and Aston.

30. What are the types of Sandwich courses?

These are thick (a year long) and thin courses(2-6 months).

31. Do I get any payment during placement in a Sandwich course?

Legally, you are not entitled to get a pay. However, if a company wishes to pay you it can do that. It usually pays £10,000 to £17,000 a year.

32. In what cases do my bachelors degree be converted as hons. degree?

You need to pass three years of your bachelors with at least third class passing marks to get a hons. degree.

33. Name some bachelor's degree courses I can study in UK.

You can study Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Science (BSc), Bachelor of Education (BEd) and Bachelor of Engineering (BEng).

34. Is Scottish masters of Arts a bachelor's degree?

Yes, although the name is confusing, Scottish Masters of Arts is not a graduate masters but an undergraduate degree.

35. How many courses can I find on UCAS for my undergraduate degree in UK?

More than 50,000 undergraduate courses can be found on UCAS website.

36. Where can I search for undergraduate courses on UCAS?

You can follow this link to search for undergraduate courses on UCAS in UK.

37. What terminology is followed in UK for undergraduate degree?

These include Level 4 or Certificate (C) for one year of undergraduate study, Level 5 or Intermediate (I) for two years of study and Level 6 or Honours (H) for three or four years of study.