Studying Abroad in London: A Guide

Thinking of moving to London from abroad to study? Here are the top things to consider as an international student…

Why study abroad?

Hopefully you already have an idea of why you’d like to study in the UK or in London in particular! There are many benefits of studying abroad including meeting new people and getting to see a new country as a local rather than a tourist.

London has many great universities and colleges, covering every subject you could possibly want to study in the UK. As an international student, educational establishments will be able to advise you on the application and enrolment process for the course you want. They will have a lot of experience with students from abroad, so don’t be afraid to ask them questions about the process.

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Do I need a visa to study in London?

Whether or not you need a UK student visa depends on your personal circumstances and nationality. If you are an EU or EEA citizen (or a UK citizen, of course!), currently no visa is required to study in the UK.

If you are from outside the UK, you will most likely need a Tier 4 UK Student Visa to be able to study, if it is a full time course of 6+ months (or 11+ for an English language course). These are issued based on a points system which assesses your eligibility. The most important things you will need are:

  1. A confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS). Please ensure your new educational establishment has a Highly Trusted Status (if a university) or is “A rated” (if a college), as this means it is effectively “approved” by UK Visa & Immigration.
  2. Proof that you will be able to support yourself financially during your studies. The exact amount differs depending on where your university is, and individual circumstances.
  3. English language ability (speaking, reading, writing & understanding)

You can read more about this visa on the official UK government website.

London University List

If it’s university you want to attend while studying in the UK, you can find a useful list of London universities¬†here. You can search for courses to see their specific requirements.

Study English in London (& other short courses)

You might also be thinking of studying English in London, or enrolling on a short-term training course. For this you’ll probably need a Short Term Study Visa. These allow you to study in the UK for up to 6 months, or up to 11 months if it’s an English language course. Similar eligibility requirements to the Tier 4 visa apply.

Study Abroad Resources

There are many resources where you can find more information about studying in London, the UK or abroad in general.

Official visa guidance from the government – answer a series of questions to see what type of visa you will most likely need.

Studylondon.ac.uk has thorough lists of London universities, courses, study abroad scholarship information and advice for international students.

If you are an EU citizen, check out the official Erasmus scheme website – the European Union programme for student exchanges within partner countries.

If you are considering a specific university or college, check their website for information for international students, as most have a dedicated section for this.

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