Known for its high quality and standards, the UK education system has an international reputation. Its curriculum is the most commonly taught in international schools worldwide. Students compete fiercely for admission to the country's best schools.
Every semester, the United Kingdom (UK) draws international students from all over the world to its over 150 higher education institutions, including some of the world's top-ranked universities.
Types of Education System in UK
There are five stages of higher education in the United Kingdom: early childhood education, primary and secondary education, further education (FE), and higher education (HE). From the age of 3 and up to the age of 16, all Britons must attend school (mandatory education), but after that, their education is up to them.
Higher Education Modes for International Students:
- Undergraduate degrees in the United Kingdom are usually completed in three years, except for Scotland, which takes four years to complete an undergraduate course. Most UK institutions offer sandwich undergraduate programs with a four-year duration. There is an additional year of work experience in the third year, which brings the course duration to four years instead of three.
- Most UK master's degrees last one year, allowing you to enter the workforce sooner (than in many other countries). Moreover, there are numerous postgraduate certificate and diploma courses and taught masters courses (such as MA, M.Sc., LLM, MBA) and research degrees (such as MPhil, Ph.D.).
- Architect and medical degrees can take up to seven years to complete. Some of the most highly regarded medical schools are found in London. However, getting into these universities is an arduous process, as each university conducts a preliminary test before admission.
- International students can earn their Master's degree through another method, such as thorough research. Graduate students who conduct in-depth research in a specific area related to their bachelor's degree can receive a master's degree.
- Students from abroad who want to continue their research can be accepted to graduate schools and earn a doctorate. In two to three years, graduate students can conduct many independent research projects, and the results of those projects can be published as scientific articles either in print or online publications. An international student who wishes to earn a degree must submit a thesis following the research they conduct over a period of 2 to 3 years. Students who pass the admissions committee's review will receive a doctorate.
The Qualification Framework
Qualification frameworks provide a unified approach to higher education in the UK, which focuses on academic standards. In the UK, two frameworks govern academic qualifications in higher education:
- Degree Awarding Bodies - The Framework for Higher Education Qualifications (FHEQ) for England, Northern Ireland, and Wales.
- FQHEIS (Framework for Qualifications of Higher Education Institutions in Scotland) is the standard.
QAA (Quality Assurance Agency)
QAA (Quality Assurance Agency) plays a significant role in the UK Education System. Since 1997, this agency has been working to improve the quality of higher education in the UK and ensure that standards are met.
Each university and college sets its quality and academic standards in accordance with its regulations and policies. QAA is responsible for identifying good practices and making recommendations for improvement in educational institutions.
UK Scholarships for International Students
The UK government offers international students several scholarships for Master's degrees. Chevening Scholarships are the most popular Master's scholarships because they cover living and educational expenses. Several leading universities in the UK have supported this scholarship, which the Ministry of Foreign Affairs funds. This scholarship is open to international students under 35 years of age. Students must have at least two years of relevant work experience with a top grade in their bachelor's degree to be eligible for this scholarship.
Tuition Fees and Costs in the UK
Higher education in the United Kingdom is both highly regarded and expensive. Depending on the university you choose and the government zone you will be studying in (England, Scotland, or Wales), tuition fees may differ.
Before you commit to anything further, check the university's website. It indeed costs a lot of money to attend a British university, no matter where you come from, but scholarship programs may be available to you.
Ready to get started? Book a FREE appointment to discuss your study options in UK.