Studying Abroad in the UK: 6 Things You Must Know!
Whether you are a student wishing to further with your education, or a working professional hoping to polish your CV and boost your career opportunities, higher education is a big decision, especially when it comes to studying abroad in the UK, a country known for its high tuition and living expenses.
In this article we would like to share with you some important (and interesting!) things you should be mindful of before embarking on the journey to study in this beautiful and exciting country filled with opportunities:
1. The UK, Yes, but Where in the UK?
First things first, the choice of which city to go for is always among the top matters of concern for those who have the intention of studying abroad in the UK. A quick search on Google Keyword Planner shows us an interesting result: most international students interested in coming to the UK would search for 'universities in London'.
While this is understandable since London is such a beautiful, exciting city full of life and prestigious universities in pretty much every field, it is also worth bearing in mind that many London universities and colleges are not necessarily located in Central London. In fact, many highly regarded UK universities and colleges are far away from the capital, e.g. Cambridge University or University of Edinburgh, both of which are ranked among top universities in the world. By all means, yes, do consider London but don't forget to shop around the country too.
Check out the list of all UK universities here where you can filter them by city, ranking, tuition fee, IELTS requirements and more.
2. Studying Abroad in the UK: The Choice of School
When it comes to this matter, the question is not: 'Which ones are the best universities in the UK', but it should be 'which university suits me best', because if you just look at UK universities ranking, you may overlook the important factors. For example, does the course content correspond to your need and interest? How high is that university's graduate employment rates? A university may have good overall reputation thanks to its strength in research activities, but you may also want to consider whether or not it had good practical training for the workplace. How well does the university link to employers? Some universities, such as the University of Salford, despite having not very high ranking, tends to place an emphasis on employability, and provides students with hundreds of placement opportunities every year.
In a nutshell, when making a choice of school, looking further than universities ranking will help you come up with a much sounder choice that meets your specific needs.
3. The Myth About Living Expenses
Living expenses tend to be among the greatest barriers to many students when it comes to studying abroad in general and who hasn't heard that it's exorbitant to live in the UK, right? Except not really. It is indeed quite expensive to live in London, but for the rest of the country the budget you need to survive on a monthly basis can be significantly lower.
For more details about living expenses in London and outside of it, have a look at this article here.
Also, check out this video to see what other international students think about the cost of living in the UK:
4. Job Opportunities in the UK
Again, how to look for a part-time job (see here) is a matter most international students seek after when considering a higher education in the UK. According to information from the Home Office, UK and EU students can have unlimited hours or work while studying in this country. Meanwhile, international students can work for 20 hours/week during term time and unlimited hours off term time.
Let's not forget, job opportunities are not the same everywhere in the UK. If you choose to live in bigger cities like London, Manchester or Birmingham, living expenses are usually higher. But, you may also stand a better chance of finding work there than in smaller cities like Nottingham or Edinburgh.
5. Visa and Other Documentation Issues
For those going to study abroad for the first time, the idea of contacting a school in another country, or filing a visa application dossier may seem daunting. However, most UK universities and colleges have an open policy of attracting international students. They tend to be very interactive and helpful to any request of information. Also, the visa application process for students studying abroad in the UK is quite straightforward and easy to follow.
Therefore, be proactive. Search and compare schools/courses by different aspects and be the master of your own application process. Being proactive and not relying on agencies is the best way to make sure you can end up with the most optimal choice for yourself!
6. Keep Yourself in the Loop
With the luxury of the Internet nowadays, it is easier than ever to connect with people or groups who share common interests. Joining groups and pages related to studying abroad in the UK can be very useful as it updates you with handy information you may not even know you need, for example, money saving tips and discount codes.
Relevant pages and groups like this are also a great opportunities for you to gain useful tips, such as improving your English for the IELTS/TOEFL exam or how to win scholarships for international students (see here).
So, are you ready to come study in the UK? Don't forget that there is a bursary worth £300 for every student who successfully enrolls to a course via our website because helping students' realise their ambitions is what we do. In the meantime, we want to hear your thoughts so give us a shoutout on Facebook and Instagram!
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