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Why do international students choose to study in the UK? | Immigration Matters

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According to a recent Student Survey… it’s a question of quality  

In February 2007, the British Council launched the on-line global Student Decision Making Survey, which asks potential students a range of questions. These are students in their home country who are interested in studying abroad or pursuing a foreign qualification in their home country. The survey captures why students want to study overseas, what they are looking for in an institution, location and course, where they look for information and much more. 

Throughout 2007, the survey was run in over 30 countries, on-line and at education exhibitions, attracting over 32,000 respondents. This was built upon in 2008, and a further 40,000 responses were captured. The British Council continues to collect data from prospective students every day. 

At the end of 2010, the data collected from 115,000 students in 200 countries showed that the quality of a UK education was a major factor in persuading them to travel to the UK to study. 

What influences an overseas student’s decision to travel abroad to study?

  • 59% of those heading for the UK said the quality of education available in the UK was the key.
  • 38% of those heading for the US were most likely to focus on their career prospects.
  • 25% of those heading for Germany saw low tuition fees as a priority.
  • 24% of those heading for Australia and Canada considered the opportunity to work whilst studying a major factor.

50% of all students studying outside their home nations travel to one of five countries to study

  • 19% travel to study in the US
  • 10% travel to study in the UK
  • 7% travel to study in Australia
  • 7% travel to study in Germany
  • 7% travel to study in France 

Low tuition fees are not a major consideration for many
Interestingly, only 10% said that low tuition fees were in their top three considerations, leading the study to conclude that the “cost of studying overseas does not feature strongly when students are choosing a study destination”.

UK is a market leader
The report notes that, whilst it faces increasing competition from other nations providing an education for overseas students, the UK is still “a market leader” in university services. 

To register your application to become an international student… contact UKUS via the Online UKUS Registration Form 

Student Visa Hurdle

The British Council survey throws up some interesting points on quality and work options.

Whilst the visas did not appear to be a major factor in the survey, to students from poorer countries obtaining a student visa is one of the main considerations when choosing where to study.

A British, German or French student wishing to study at an American or Canadian university would barely think about obtaining a student visa when making a decision, and the thought of being refused a US visa would not even enter their minds.

Contrast that with the perception of a student from Africa, Bangladesh, Pakistan or the Philippines, where even the idea of obtaining a visitor visa for the US or Canada seems like an impossible dream then you begin to understand how the ‘visa hurdle’ loom large in their minds.

Despite recent changes, the UK still has a simple, transparent points based system (PBS) for student visa applications.

In the UK, all a student has to do is gain 40 points (and demonstrate a relatively low level of English language capability) under the streamlined and transparent ’Points Based System’, 30 of which comes from a Tier 4 licensed Sponsoring educational provider (which can be checked on the Tier 4 Sponsors Register) and 10 by demonstrating sufficient funds, and a student visa is virtually guaranteed.

British Embassy Visa Sections take a matter of weeks or days to grant a UK student visas (which can be obtain by applying online), rather than months for some countries, and rarely involve an interview. Almost 300,000 student visas were granted in 2010 for UK Universities, Colleges and private Schools and the sector is worth billions to the British economy.

International students studying at Universities and government colleges will retain the right to work part time up to 20 hours per week and full time during vacations.

The UK is also a multi-cultural, tolerant society where migrants and students will find a safe environment in which to study or work.

Source: UK University Services (UKUS) News

See also:

International students numbers soar as UK remains an attractive place to study

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24 Responses to “Why do international students choose to study in the UK?”
Read them below or add one

  1. […] to the latest research it is the quality of education that seems to be driving more and more international students to study in the […]

  2. Why do so many international students choose the UK?…

    According to the latest research it is the quality of education that seems to be driving more and more…

  3. Kenny Xavier Keaike says :

    I believe this is illegal and inapprpriate but its up to the UK Government to intervane this matter and find possible solutions to address this .Situation for some of us are looking to gain better educaiton here in UK and and going back to facilitate our develpoing nations in various economic activites , rather than coming here with no intentions using education as one way to come and live of illegally …. Mate Khan get your facts straight , you should be a shame of yourself and have pride for your your country – do the right thing get your education qualification and go bakc and develop your country rather running away from your all this oppression…..

    Thank you – PNG MANGI

  4. well mr khan i think you are talking without doing any study about the situation students do not come here to work they want to study but its the colleges established by you guys who wants to suck out the money of those international students who had a dream about going to UK and study in well mannered and well facilitated colleges but the reality is different its not what they expect and you dont refund them so what are they supposed to do..its you guys who forced them to go out of system and the kind of you guys who runs business and want to get a cheap labour coz at the end of the day its about money !!!
    FG the are you a lawyer!! so they ask about visa changes but how about the money u charge them to do that..its not them but its those lawyers who want to earn money by going out of system.. so blame the system !! hate the game not the players !!peace!!

  5. Wanyakala says :

    When immigaration is politicised to play on peoples emotions about the realites of the pains ably expressed by the blessed archibishop the respect for the original britishness reamins begging. People are motivated not to work through benefits, secularism has left peolple morally disoriented and even education as a priority for the new generation britons as I see young students staggering home while drunk as thier international collegues read more thn 18 hours. My visa appliaction is before court yet to get verdict after six months for misreading my maintenance financial statements. The home office arrogantly told the judge that EVEN IF ACCOUNT WERE MISREAD after ten years for struggling for my PhD I DO NOT DESERVE TO ATTEND MY GRADUATION AFTER SPENDING ABOUT 100,OOO POUNDS TO GET IT?????

  6. […] Why do international students choose to study in the UK? […]

  7. […] Why do international students choose to study in the UK? […]

  8. […] Why do international students choose to study in the UK? […]

  9. Sheilajoy says :

    Well as an English person, born in USA and lived here long time I know we have the best education in the World. Let people come here from wherever to study and understand the British system. If that means they have loads of jobs and don’t do much study – so what. Plenty of our own young people do exactly the same evry year when they leave home and go to Uni to study ( how to drink, have fun, make friends and grow up, hopefully )
    We should b glad young people come here to ‘study’ and in the process learn by working loads of jobs, what the UK is all about. That is another education all together and just as important.
    Teacher

  10. Muhammad says :

    Hi Guys,
    It is hard to find all fishes clean in pond. Yes there are some who are abusing the immigration system but if someone abuse system than I believe that first need to look at system rather than looking at abusers.If UKBA or Britain Gov thinks that they can ran this country without immigrants than why don’t they stop migrants. Fact is immigrants are here to feed the people of this country. If you check the statics figure you all will be shocked that Immigration industry is Britain’s 2nd largest revenue generation industry 40BN a year. In other words getting ride of immigrants means the whole nation will be on road and will start bagging.

  11. rausch gabriel says :

    With some of the thinks that i have read here i agree, but we all know that most of us are “runing” to build something for the future. Does any one of you out there has asked him self if the Gov. was aware of this beaucause they knew any way that this is gonna heappen sooner or later?

  12. JOBoy DEgusman says :

    not all student who come to uk only seek for employment.check your fact straight NAWAS its the people like you THE INDIANS who abuse the system ..

  13. the comment of khan is not hatred but its a reality,mr kelly i dont think u dont understand the situation now.this students even not yet half way to the so called studies but then they are asking now how to change thier visas from student to working visas even asking advise for dependents who also wanted to work. i dont think ur dumb or deaf or blind enough.if they want to study let them study but your should be thepriority of the jobs available

  14. adnandk says :

    mr khan is absolutely right being a student studing in uk what i have seen in 1 year that students main focus is to earn pounds not to get a degree they just came to college for attendane and their maximun time is spended on doing maximum jobs( pizza delivery , chicken shops ,leafletting,etc)no one is here to study

  15. alexander dorash says :

    It looks like mister is passing or passed that way and hate unjustice.

  16. Mr Khan has extremely limited view on this matter. Looks like he is totally unfamiliar with the way it works. Plenty of emotions and nothing of a knowledge.

  17. Students, what do you think of Mr Khan’s comment that foreign students are not here to study and then stay on illegally!

  18. M.Khader Nawaz Khan says :

    Respected Sir,

    Foreign Students are coming to UK by obtaining visa not for study. Just they went college give attendence and left college to do illegal work and earning money. Also the colleges are not bothered about the students, because they are getting money. Some of them over stay even after their visa lapsed. UK Government is not very strict because the Judges also over protecting the criminals and in name of Human right. Good democracy. Keep it up dear UK

  19. […] Why do international students choose to study in the UK? […]

  20. […] In a very short space of time, the Home Office or UK Border Agency (UKBA) has reinstated the highly prized license which allows education establishments, such as Glasgow Caledonian University, sponsor foreign students to study in the UK. […]

  21. […] Why do international students choose to study in the UK? […]

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