A generation ago, most of us studied in our home town, or at another university or college in a neighboring city. All that is changing rapidly, and Universities are encouraging international students not only to broaden the experience and appeal of their courses, but also as a valuable revenue stream. Nowadays, there are as many as 4 million students worldwide studying in overseas. So where are all of these students going?
English Speaking Countries
The most attractive countries for international students are those which have English as a first language, namely the USA, UK, Canada and Australia. The quality of education in these countries is first rate, and there is also a great deal of movement between them as students search out the course which is best for them. The nation which sends most students to English speaking countries to be educated is India, closely followed by China and South Korea.
The countries in Europe which have the highest percentage of international students are Austria and Switzerland. Education standards are high, and fees are comparable or even less than what students would be expected to pay in the UK. Germany is another huge attraction for overseas students and was ranked as one of the cheapest places to be a student in the world as living costs such as rent are relatively low, there is a good student community and students qualify for many discounts in leisure or public transport.
European Common Market legislation means that students from the UK are treated the same way as native born students if they choose to study anywhere in the European Union. With top Universities such as Oxford or Cambridge charging up to £9,000 for each year of a three year degree, the fees at European Universities can be as low as £1,500 per year. If the thought of studying in Holland doesn’t appeal, Irish Universities charge around half of what the top UK Universities charge, but competition for places can be intense and studying in Dublin is not a budget option.