The United Kingdom is one of the highest-ranking countries in terms of education and quality of life. There’s no wonder why millions of students try to enroll in its campuses every year.
India sits at the 2nd spot in the top 10 countries sending students to the UK with 26,685 enrollees in 2018/19. But studying in the UK comes at a price—an expensive one at that.
The Expensive Reality of Studying in the UK
Tuition fees in the UK range from around £10,000 (~US$14,130) to £38,000 (~US$53,700) or more depending on the course. Medical degrees, for instance, tend to have higher fees.
Aside from the cost of tuition, international students will also need to consider living costs, which can go around £12,200 (~US$16,950) per year, depending on the location.
You may wonder, “If the costs of studying in the UK are that high, how come there are so many international students still studying there? Are all of them rich?”
Well, not necessarily. There are means to finance one’s studies even if they’re experiencing financial challenges. There are institutions looking out for those who are wishing to get into higher education in a different country like the UK. Through these institutions, students can avail of education loans.
In India, lenders are mostly private banks and are governed by the Reserve Bank of India. However, there are instances where student loan applications will not get approved or the loan terms may not be feasible for the student and their family.
In those cases, there are available student loan alternatives that students can explore in pursuing their higher education dreams in the UK.
Alternatives to Student Loans
Here are the available student loan alternatives for Indian students in the UK:
- British Council Scholarships
The UK government offers hundreds of scholarships, bursaries, and additional financial support to eligible students from various countries including India.
- Chevening UK Government Scholarships
Chevening Scholarships allow outstanding emerging leaders from around the world to study in the United Kingdom for a one-year master’s degree.
- Tata Scholarship
The Tata Scholarship Fund will sponsor approximately 20 scholars at any given time, ensuring that the best Indian candidates, regardless of their financial situations, have access to Cornell University in the UK.
- Fulbright Fellowships
Applicants to the United Kingdom can apply for one of two award types: Open and UK Partnership awards.
- Turing Scheme
The Turing Scheme is a UK government initiative that provides support for international education and training opportunities around the world.
- Royal Society Grants
The Royal Society receives grants from UK government agencies to support students who excel in scientific excellence and innovation, science and mathematics education, international activities, and science communication activities.
- The Mahatma Gandhi Scholarship Programme
The program’s key goal is to provide students with a world-class degree based on merit rather than financial necessity.
- Commonwealth Academic Fellowships
Commonwealth Scholarships are awarded to deserving students who have the ability to make a meaningful difference in the world. It is targeted at Commonwealth students who would not be able to afford to study in the UK otherwise.
- Commonwealth Split-site Doctoral Scholarship
Ph.D. students from low and middle-income Commonwealth countries may apply for a scholarship to spend up to 12 months in the UK as part of their doctoral studies.
Now that you have a better idea of the alternatives to student loans in the UK, you’ll have more options in financing your higher education dreams. Remember to check your eligibility before you apply and submit all the necessary documents for your application.
If you’d like to know more about scholarships, grants, and other financing options for your studies abroad, check out our other articles here on MSM Unify.