Studying in the UK – Higher and University Education


The statistics show that young people who have higher or university education find an employment easier than their lower educated peers. They usually also earn more and are happier in life because higher and university education enables them to focus exclusively on the field they are interested in or get qualification for specific job such as medicine and architecture for example. However, higher and university education offers much more than just qualification. Specialised knowledge and skills which are acquired during the courses open a whole range of new opportunities, while the courses and various activities also enable students to meet new people with similar interests.

With about 170 universities many of which are on the very top of the world’s best educational institutions, the UK is one of the premium studying destinations attracting millions of students from both the UK and abroad. The UK’s universities offer a large number of interesting subjects with the ability to study ‘combined’ courses. The courses are either focused on a particular subject or lead to a specific qualification. But besides passing the admission procedure, the students also have to pay a tuition fee to be able to enrol in higher and university education system in the UK. And for the students who do not come from financially well-situated families, the tuition represents a major obstacle in their educational aspirations.

From September 2012, all students who will apply to the UK’s universities and colleges can be charged:

  • up to £9,000 per year (full-time)
  • up to £6,750 (part-time)

The mentioned charges count only for public educational institutions in the UK, while private universities and colleges have no limits in regard to the amount of tuition fee.


Fortunately, the government is aware that the tuition charges are unaffordable for many students and that without various forms of financial help, the country would risk losing many great talents. Both full- and part-time students who cannot afford to pay for the tuition can receive loans which are paid back only when the student finishes their course and starts earning more than £21,000 a year. Part-time students who already earn more than £21,000 a year have to start paying back their loan after four years regardless if they have finished their course or not.

Financial help with the tuition is also available to the EU students who are not from the UK, while students from one of the EEA (European Economic Area) and Switzerland may be eligible for an additional financial help. England also offers financial help to students of Turkish workers in the UK.

Without a strong financial support by the family, higher and university education in the UK is a serious financial burden for the students. But it is a good investment in the future, while various forms of financial help which besides tuition fee loans also include scholarships, bursaries, awards, maintenance grant or loan and extra financial help for students with a disability or children make higher and university education in the UK available to everyone regardless of their social and economic background.