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Study in United Kingdom


UK Education

The UK is fast emerging as one of the most popular study destinations for education in the world. There are numerous factors which prompt international students to pursue their education in the UK. UK education equips students with unparalleled academic and professional skills and augments their personal development with an unforgettable cultural experience.


Where ever you choose to study in the UK, you will surely have an enriching and international experience, one that will remain etched in your memory forever and will arm you with a truly global perspective


Quality Education

The British universities are owned and funded by the UK government and are subject to rigorous quality assurance audits periodically to standardize the quality of education across all institutions throughout the UK. This means that all aspects of education being offered by institutions in the UK, be they schools, further education or higher education or research institutions, will subscribe to a certain level of quality and standard as is closely assessed by the government.


All services such as facilities available to students, quality of teaching, research funds, infrastructure, accommodation services, student support and career services are monitored according to strict quantitative assessments. This means students can have confidence in the quality of delivery when they select to study in the UK.


World Class Qualifications

Quality standards for UK institutions are among the best in the world. The British qualifications are recognised and respected throughout the world. They serve as a solid foundation for building one's future, boosting career and prospects for a higher salary. UK universities, colleges and schools will provide a vibrant, creative, stimulating and challenging environment that gives students a chance for personal growth and to develop their potential.


International Recognition and Global Career

UK scientists and institutions have won ninety Nobel Prizes for their scientific achievements. The UK's creative brains - artists, fashion designers, film, television and leisure software designers - are regarded as among the best in the world.


Many students will select to study in the UK because of the international recognition held by UK qualifications. This is particularly important in an increasingly globalised world economy. Employers are looking for people with appropriate knowledge, professional skills and the willingness to learn. This is an essential part of the UK teaching and learning experience and is why the qualifications are well regarded around the world.


English language skills are also important for your future career prospects as English is accepted as being the language of business, science, IT and the internet around the world. Learning English in the UK allows you to immerse yourself in the language, to live and think in English.


Range of Courses

There are three thousand educational institutions in the UK that offer thousands of courses at different levels of education, be it schools, colleges, further education, higher education or research institutions. Students have umpteen number of options to choose from. There is also great flexibility in the way in which a subject can be studied and it is often possible to incorporate different elements such as vocational, English language training, work placements into a specific programme of study.  Conversion courses are very popular in the UK with international students as they allow students from a non related background to pursue their studies in a specific subject.


One of the biggest advantages of studying in the UK is that the option of combining work placements with academic study such as sandwich courses at the undergraduate level and work internships at the post graduate level. Having a work component weaved into the programme of study gives the students cutting edge knowledge and expertise as well as the hands on experience in your area of study, thereby strengthening chances of obtaining suitable employment later on.


Affordable Investment for the Future

Studying in the UK is often cheaper than in other countries due to the fact that the courses are shorter - the masters course generally are of 12 months duration as compared to 2 years in other countries and the bachelors programmes are normally of 3 years duration as compared to 4 years in other countries.


Since the duration of the courses is shorter the living expenses also tend to be lower in comparison, as the duration of stay is reduced. This also means that students can enter the employment market sooner than their peers in other countries. At the same time, mid career professionals who have returned to university to study, spend comparatively less time away from their workplace and careers, thereby helping to prevent any major dent in their overall financial status and professional growth.





Education System in United Kingdom

The UK is made up of 4 different countries - England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.  The education system in Scotland differs at school and undergraduate level to the other countries who follow a similar system


Education in the UK is compulsory for everyone between the ages of five and sixteen, and is provided by two kinds of schools: independent (fee-charging) schools and state-funded schools.


Education System in England, Wales and Northern Ireland


Primary School

Children normally start school at the age of 5 and move to secondary school at the age of 11. Pre-school programmes are also available to students at the age of 3 or 4.


Secondary School and Post-Sixteen Education

All UK universities teach students to at least the age of 16 to prepare them for GSCEs or equivalent qualifications. Following this students can stay on to study for AS levels (one additional year), A levels (2 additional years) or equivalent vocational qualifications. These qualifications can be done in a school, sixth-form college or college of further education.


Post Eighteen Education

Students normally commence higher education at the age of 18 and study at university or colleges of further and higher education. A Bachelor degree programme normally lasts for 3-4 years, a Masters degree programme for 1 year and a Doctoral degree programme for 3-4 years.


The UK government is currently aiming for 50% of students to continue in education after the age of 18.




Cost of Education

UK undergraduate and postgraduate course fees *

You'll get great value for money from a UK education no matter where you choose to study. The figures below show approximately what you can expect to pay, but course fees vary considerably between UK institutions.

Average undergraduate UK course fees per year:


  • Foundation courses: £4,000 to £12,000
  • Arts courses: £7,000 to £9,000
  • Science courses:  £7,500 to £22,000
  • Clinical courses: £10,000 to £25,000

Average postgraduate UK course fees per year:

  • Arts and humanities courses: £7,000 to £12,000
  • Science courses: £7,500 to £25,000 
  • Clinical courses: £10,000 to £33,000
  • MBA: £4,000 to more than £34,000


You can find fees for most UK undergraduate and postgraduate courses in our course finder.


(*Source: British Council Website)





Accommmodation and Living Expenses

University/college owned international student accommodation

Most UK institutions provide accommodation for international students. This will either be a room in halls of residence (either full-board or self-catering) or a self-catering shared house or flat. If you want to stay in university/college owned accommodation you should apply as soon as you are accepted on your course.

Remember that it’s always a good idea to arrange accommodation before you travel to the UK. If you can’t, speak to the accommodation office at your place of study when you arrive.

Private accommodation for UK international students

You can make the most of your independence as an international student by renting private accommodation. The most usual type is a room in a house or flat shared with other students. It’s a good idea to agree how to split bills beforehand and you’ll do your own cooking and cleaning.

It’s a good idea to ask for advice from your institution’s accommodation or welfare officer before you sign any contracts for private accommodation.

Lodging with a UK family in their own home is another option. You will usually need to abide by their house rules, but it’s a great opportunity to experience UK culture first-hand.

For more detailed information on international student accommodation options and advice visit the UKCISA (UK Council for International Student Affairs) website.

UK accommodation for international English language students
If you’re studying English in the UK, your English language centre can help you arrange accommodation. The choices available will depend on where you study: it may be halls of residence or a hostel, or lodging with a UK family. Living with a UK family is the most common option and will give you the opportunity to practise English in a supportive environment.

Independent school accommodation in the UK

If you are planning to study at a UK independent college or school, you will most likely be offered boarding at that institution. Independent boarding schools offer a relaxed, home-like atmosphere. Pupils stay in bedrooms or dormitories on the school site, living under the same roof as residential house staff and their families.

Find out more about studying at a UK independent boarding school.  

Useful links:

UKCISA - http://www.ukcisa.org.uk/student/info_sheets/accommodation.php


(*Source: British Council Website)




Required Tests

You may be required to sit on an English Language Test such as IELTS or TOEFL before the university will confirm your seat on the course. The IELTS is organized by the British Council and results take 2-3 weeks.

The minimum scores usually required are 6.0 to 7.0 for IELTS and 213 to 250 (CBT) for TOEFL.


For MBA programs in good universities, a good GMAT score is required, in addition to IELTS or TOEFL scores and work experience of 2-3 years, in addition to decent academic performance at the Bachelor's level.




Work Prospects

Thanks to changes in work regulations, international students in the UK can now work up to twenty hours a week when studying and full time during vacations.

After completion of education in England, you are allowed to stay back for up to ONE YEAR, under the 'Prime Minister's Initiative' announced recently. During this time, you may try for obtaining a work permit - to work in UK.


In Scotland, one may stay back for TWO YEARS, after completion of their program.




Documents Required

The following documents are required for the student visa of UK :


  1. Visa Application form (VAF1 - Non-settlement) - fully completed and signed by applicant.
  2. Appropriate Visa fee of for multiple entry.
  3. Passport valid for at least 6 months, with available 'visa' pages for stamping (additional pages are not acceptable).
  4. If available, the student's old passport.
  5. Study Overseas Ltd (UK) reference letter & copy of signed Declaration Form – for Study Overseas Ltd (UK) students.
  6. Receipt for any deposit or prepayment of tuition fees paid to the University – if applicable.
  7. Evidence of current studies, or current employment. If neither, evidence of current status.
  8. Valid original acceptance letter from school/college in the UK stating
    1. i Cost of course fees and receipt for any fees paid
    2. Details of accommodation and how much it costs
    3. The start date and duration of the proposed course
  1. Evidence of ability to pay for course:
    (Please contact your nearest Study Overseas Ltd (UK) office for detailed advice).
    1. Original bank statements/passbooks covering at least 6months or FD (copies to be submitted)
    2. The sponsor's IT returns for 3 years and salary certificates.
    3. Deeds of any property or land owned in the student's country of origin.
    4. Chartered accountant's report


  1. All educational certificates after/from schooling till date
  2. Evidence of English Language qualifications.
  3. Sponsors are normally parents, grandparents, brothers, sisters or relatives. From sponsors, a letter of sponsorship, photocopies of their passports showing their immigration status (if sponsor is outside student's country of origin), evidence of their financial status and available accommodation in the UK (if sponsoring for accommodation).

Note for students in India and Pakistan: It is strongly recommended that sponsors, other than parents, living outside of India or Pakistan prepay your University tuition fees and keep the receipt of the payment before you apply for your visa. This proves that the sponsor is genuine.

Sponsorship from individuals who are not close family members of the student will have to be supported by very strong evidence on why they wish to spend a large amount of money on your education.



Students enrolled on a course for more than 6 months may be required to undergo a medical examination before leaving for UK. This may vary depending on the country you are living in.

Note for students: Medicals are not currently required as part of the Visa application process.




Final Documents for Visa

CAS: Fees/Maintenance
Your CAS must show the cost of the fees.  This should also show what fees you have already paid, otherwise you should send an official, original receipt confirming some or all of the fees (and accommodation, if applicable) have been paid.

If you are using a bank loan as your evidence, the bank must be regulated by an official regulatory body and you must provide a document from the bank confirming the loan.  If you do not get the bank loan until you have your visa, you must provide the original document confirming the loan.  The loan should be dated no more than 6 months before the date of the application.

The loan funds must be available to you before you travel to the United Kingdom. There must be no conditions placed upon the release of the loan funds to you, other than you making a successful Tier 4 application.
You must show that you have enough money to pay your fees and monthly living costs for at least the first year of studies (or the length of your course if it is shorter than 9 months).

We cannot accept unsupported online receipts.  We will use the closing balance of the document you provide as the level of funds available to you.  This is also the date we will use to check the value of your money in pounds sterling.

This must be in the form of cash funds in the bank (this includes savings accounts and current accounts even when notice must be given, loan or official, financial government sponsorship available to you. Other accounts or financial instruments such as shares, bonds, pension funds, etc., regardless of notice period are not acceptable.  If you wish to rely on a joint account as evidence of available funds, you must be named on the account along with one or more other named individual.  If you wish to use money held in an account owned by your parent(s) / legal guardian, you must show evidence that you are related to your parent(s) / legal guardian and that your parent(s) / legal guardian has given permission to use this money.  If you have an offer of a bank loan confirmed that will be available on the issue of your visa, you must provide the original document confirming the loan.  There must be no conditions placed upon the release of the loan funds, other than you making a successful Tier 4 application.

All evidence, except for loans, must show that the money has been in your personal bank account or your parent(s) / legal guardians bank account for a consecutive 28 day period (finishing on the date of the closing balance) ending no more than 1 month before your application.

Overseas funds must be converted into pounds sterling so that we can assess them. The official exchange rate we use is the one produced by OANDA.  You should use the exchange rate on the OANDA website for the date the document was issued. This is an independent website, for which we are not responsible.

Only the following documents will be accepted as evidence:

  • Personal bank or building society statements;
  • Savings account/building society pass book/s;
  • Letter from your bank or building society;
  • Letter from a financial institution regulated by the home regulator (official regulatory body for the country in which the institution operates and the funds are located) confirming funds or loan.