'Embarking on a UK postgraduate degree will be one of the most rewarding times of your life. While funding and finances can be a concern there are plenty of options for international students'
If you are planning a postgraduate degree in the UK, there are several things that you need to consider. Tuition fees for postgraduate students from countries outside the European Union (EU) vary widely. Broadly speaking you can expect to pay annual UK course fees in the region of:
Arts, humanities and science courses - £7,000 to £13,000
Clinical courses - £10,000 to £24,000
MBA courses - £10,000 to £33,000+
In addition to tuition fees you will also need to prove to the UK Border Agency that you have enough money to cover initial course fees and living costs. The UK Border Agency
can give you up to date information on visa arrangements.
Apply for scholarships and bursaries
If you hope to get help with funding your studies, you need to do so before you leave your home country. You can visit the Department of Education in your home country or the nearest British Embassy office. There are many country-specific options available so it is worth checking out what is on offer where you live.
Education UK's Search (at the top right-hand side of each page of this site) has a Scholarships tab where you can search for international student scholarships and bursaries by keyword, subject area, your country of residence, postgraduate/undergraduate or awarding body.
Chevening Scholarships are for future leaders from around the world, usually to fund one-year Masters courses at British universities. Over the past 25 years 30,000 Chevening Scholarships have been awarded to international students. The scheme is offered in over 130 countries (timings will vary) and can cover part or all of your UK course costs. To find out more, about whether you are eligible and when to apply, check the Foreign and Commonwealth Office' Chevening pages
, and your local British Embassy or High Commission website, as well as your local British Council website.
CSFP awards are made to citizens of developing Commonwealth countries and are primarily for postgraduate programmes. You can contact your local British Council office for information on how to apply. The awards are tenable for between one to three years and cover travel, living and tuition costs. There are also awards, Professional Fellowships (three months) and Academic Staff Fellowships (six months) for shorter courses.
This scheme is aimed at postgraduate students who intend to study a subject of developmental relevance in their home country. Eligibility is restricted to residents in developing Commonwealth countries and you should contact your local British Council office or Embassy for more information.
This scholarship scheme supports a wide range of subjects including education, humanities and informatics. You can apply through your local National Commission – UNESCO cannot consider individual requests for funding.
The Royal Society runs 19 funding schemes to enhance collaboration between UK-based and overseas scientists. There are many fellowships on offer including Research Professorships, which provides long-term support for outstanding scientists and International Joint Scholarships which funds two researchers and their team.
The UK is home to seven research councils, which between them have a budget of nearly £3 billion a year in grants which helps fund numerous postgraduate programmes and research projects.
The Higher Education Funding Council for England, meanwhile, donates millions of pounds to various research and postgraduate work schemes and to organisations such as the NHS.
Some scholarships and bursaries are country specific such as Scotland’s prestigious £2,000 Saltire Scholarship
open to US, Canadian, Chinese and Indian students. Others are institution based such as the University of Leeds Arts and Humanities Research scholarship, which covers all maintenance and tuition fees. Meanwhile international companies such as Santander bank, funds a multimillion-pound scholarship programme.
There are also lots of different options available depending on your home country. If you are a citizen of the USA then you can apply for the Marshall
Scholarships; the Said Foundation
funds students from the Middle East.
- This article originally appeared in Postgraduate UK magazine (2011)