2Studying at a UK university Mary HughesDirector, Enrolment Management ServicesAlastair RossHead of Administration, Brussels
3Introduction Why study in the United Kingdom? Factors to consider when choosing a universityUCAS and the application processFees, funding and student loans
4Prestigious institutions Excellent reputation32 UK universities in top 200 (THE)Internationally recognised qualificationsWorld leading researchQuality assured by peer reviewInternationally acclaimed academic staffLarge number of Nobel Laureates (117)Many institutions have won Queen’s Anniversary Prizes; a recognition of world class excellence
5Teaching quality High quality research-led teaching Monitored by the QAANational Teaching FellowshipsSmall group teachingVariety of teaching and assessment methodsLectures, seminars, tutorials, workshops, self-studyExtensive information servicesLibrary holdings and electronic cataloguesSubject specialist librariansLearning support servicesImportance of student satisfactionMonitored via the NSS
6Diversity and flexibility Over 150 institutionsOver 50,000 coursesVarious types of qualificationsCertificates, diplomas and degreesProfessional, vocational, academicDiversity within degree programmes allows for personalisation of learningJoint honoursYear abroad‘Sandwich’, or work placement, yearBachelor’s degree in 3 yearsMaster’s degree in 4 yearsFull-time or part-time
8An international experience UK universities have a long history of welcoming international studentsTypically institutions have:Large numbers of non-UK studentsLarge number of non-UK staffPartnerships with universities around the world to supportResearch collaborationStudy and work abroardDouble degreesSupport systems geared to international students from English language to pastoral care
9Student lifeUK universities value and support extracurricular activitiesStudent Union (NUS)Clubs and societiesSports (British Universities & Colleges Sport)Volunteering and fund raisingStudent mediaLanguage acquisitionGovernance rolesEntrepreneurial skillsPart-time employmentOn-campus student accommodationRange of support services
10Student livingMost UK universities provide student accommodation, often guaranteed for first year studentsVariety of options:Catered, part-catered or self-cateredEn-suite or shared facilitiesIn town or central campusCommon rooms, dining halls, bars and cafésStudent committees for coordinating social activities and advocacy role
11Support servicesPersonal supportCollegiate structureStudent Advice and Information ServiceInternational Development teamUniversity Medical Centre and PharmacyCounselling ServiceChaplaincyOaks Day NurseryLearning supportStudent Learning Advisory Service- Study guidance- Study skills workshops- Academic Peer Mentoring- Online skills resources- VALUE MaP workshops on effective studyDisability and Dyslexia Support ServiceCareers support Kent Union Jobshop Careers and Employability Service - Extensive website - Online vacancy database - Careers Information Room - Personal advice and guidance - Workshops, talks and visits from graduate employers - Career education programmes - Alumni Careers Network - ‘Employability Points’ schemeOne of only 8 universities in the country that boasts a collegiate system (the others are Oxford, Cambridge, Durham, York, Lancaster, Bristol and Roehampton (checked May 2011)Ready-made community which eases transition from home to universityEach college contains accommodation, teaching rooms, catering and social facilitiesEach college has a staffed reception areaCollege masters are responsible for student welfare and provide personal supportCollege student committees:Represent the students’ interestsActively contribute to the way the colleges are run
12Employability Transferable skills Part-time work during study builds experience and develops transferable skillsSandwich years offer the chance to earn a salary and gain vital transferable skillsTwo-thirds of employers provided industrial placements (6-12 months)More than half have paid internships lasting three weeks or longerGood graduate starting salaries and employment ratesContinued support from Careers service after graduation
13The application process Visit the UCAS websiteDo a course searchLook at entry requirements, possibly league tables and locationOrder a prospectus and visit the university websiteVisit the university!Make your choices
14Factors in choosing a UK university Course portfolioCity-based vs campus-basedLocationTransport linksCostsEntry requirementsExtracurricular activitiesLeague tablesWhat elements are important to you?
15League tables Survey of final year students Teaching on the course Assessment and feedbackAcademic supportOrganisation and managementLearning resourcesPersonal developmentOverall satisfactionStudents’ UnionLeague table (newspaper)Entry requirementsFeedbackJob prospectsOverall qualitySpend per studentStaff/student ratioTeaching qualityQuality of research produced by universitiesRank of 4* means the research is of a world leading or international standardStudents benefit from learning from experts in their subjectLeague tableCompletion ratesEntry requirementsInvestment in facilitiesResearchStudent satisfactionThe Table of Tables is published by the THE and combines the results of all the UK’s university league tables
17Entry requirementsEntry requirements differ depending on the programme of study and the universityLook on the university website to find out what the general entry requirements are for your qualification/countryIf in doubt, contact the universityIf you are not a native English speaker, you will be required to prove your English language ability:International English Language Testing System (IELTS)Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)Check university websites or prospectuses for others
18The Application Process Choose CourseApplyingMid Oct – Oxford, Cambridge, Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary,Mid Jan – All less above.End Mar – Art and Design less above.5 ChoicesDetails, Education, Personal Statement (47 lines, 4,000 characters) Reference.OffersInterviews, Entrance TestsFirm, InsuranceResultsExtra
1910 Tips on Personal Statements Express interest in the subject and show real passionGo for a strong opening line to grab the reader's attentionRelate outside interests to the courseThink beyond universityGet the basics rightDon't try to sound too cleverTake time and make it your best workDon't leave it until the last minuteGet a second opinionHonesty is the best policy
20Fees and Funding Academic costs Living costs Tuition fees Books and materialsLiving costsTravelAccommodationFoodClothing and laundryPersonal itemsSocial lifeMobile phoneTV licence*Unexpected costs/healthcareYour living costs could vary between £185 and £374 per weekLondon is more expensive than elsewhere in the countryThe north of England has a lower cost of living than the south of England* If you use a TV in the UK, you must have a TV licence
21Tuition fees and government loans CostThe cost of undergraduate study in the UK is between £6,000 and £9,000 per year (for UK and EU full-time students)Each university sets its own feesThe cost of years in industry, years abroad and postgraduate study can varyTuition Fee LoanEvery full-time UK and EU student is entitled to a full loan to cover the cost of tuitionThis is paid directly to the university by the UK government; you do not have to pay anything upfrontBecause they are loans, they do earn interest and have to be repaid.
22Loan repaymentRepayments begin the April after graduation and only when income exceeds £21,000 per year or equivalentRepayments are calculated at 9% of anything earned over £21,000For example:If you earn £25,000, you repay 9% of £4,000£25,000 - £21,000 = £4,0009% of £4,000 = £360 per yearOr £30 per monthIf income falls to £21,000 or less, repayments stopAny amount remaining after 30 years will be written off
23Other financial support Scholarships are awarded on meritOften for academic achievementAlso for the arts, music and sportBursaries are awarded on the basis of financial needCheck the university website for details and apply for any funding for which you may qualifyScholarships are not always awarded automaticallyUnlike loans, these awards do not need to be repaid
24Scholarships Examples of the types of awards available: Academic scholarships£2,000 per yearFor AAA at A-level; IB for 35 points with 15 points at higherOther universities may have scholarships for specific subjectsStudy Abroad scholarships£2,000 (during year abroad)By essaySports scholarshipsFinancial support of between £250-£5,000 per yearFor elite sports people competing to a recognised standardMusic scholarships£500-£5,000 per yearFor performance and music lessonsAllocated by audition
25Conclusion UK universities provide: Reputable and internationally recognise qualificationsExcellent teaching by research active staffChoice, diversity and flexibility in learning of subjectsSuperb student support servicesInvolved and developmental student activitiesFinancial support and scholarshipsThe ‘feel’ of the university came in as the 4th most important factor in choosing a university; therefore it is essential that you go and visit.