The UK is a great place for international students. World-class universities in the country consistently rank in top ten lists worldwide, and a long history of international study are just two of the many reasons to make the UK your study destination. You can explore the rest of Europe, work to earn some extra cash, and experience the melting pot of UK culture.
If you’re from within the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland, you won’t need to get a visa. Everyone else that wants to study in the UK will need to apply for a Tier 4 student visa.
There are two categories of visas that you can apply for depending on your age. If you’re over 16, you can choose the Tier 4 (General) student visa and study at a UK university. If you’re between four and 17 years old, you can apply for the Tier 4 (Child) student visa to go to an independent UK school.
When you apply to study at a university, you’ll receive a confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS) after you get accepted. You must use this to apply for your general student visa within six months of receiving confirmation.
You will be able to take any course that is taught according to the UK national curriculum, the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) or the independent school education inspection standards, but your school must be a licensed Tier 4 sponsor.
Firstly, the universities are excellent. Some big names are known worldwide such as Oxford, Imperial, and Cambridge, but even the lesser known universities are great choices. There’s a lot of support for international students due to a long history of welcoming foreign students to the UK.
One of the great things about the Tier 4 visa is that you’re allowed to work for up to 20 hours per week. Earning an income while you study can offset some of your living costs or give you some pocket money to spend in your spare time. Getting to grips with the UK work culture is a fantastic stepping stone to further opportunities after you finish your degree.
The UK is full of culture. People from all over the world have contributed to the food and tradition, so there’s plenty to get involved in. The UK has a fascinating history which you could spend years exploring – there won’t ever be a dull moment.
Exploring the rest of Europe while studying is easy when you’re in the UK. You can take a train to see wonderful European cities or fly to a vacation destination on one of the low-cost airlines.