The second most popular overseas study destination in the world is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, usually referred to as the UK or Britain. Every year, the UK welcomes around 460,000 foreign students from all over the world. Higher education in the UK serves as an example for many nations throughout the world thanks to the development of a top-notch educational system there.
With a population of around 9 million, London, the capital of the United Kingdom, is one of the biggest cities in the world. London, a well-known cosmopolitan city in southeast England, has a long tradition of embracing visitors from all over the world. In London, where there are substantial and friendly multinational communities from all over the world, approximately 2.5 million immigrants live today.
Several of the top financial institutions and companies in the world have their headquarters in London, which is regarded as the financial center of Western Europe. Over the years, the city has also served as a significant hub for a number of significant large-scale businesses, including trade and manufacturing, media and communications, and technology.
High-Rated Universities are Located Across London
London has world-class educational institutions, a well-developed public transportation system, and an unending list of intriguing things to explore outside of the classroom, which is very significant for international students. The largest urban economy in Europe is located in the metropolis on the Thames.
The multilingual metropolis is home to speakers of over 300 languages, with English being the language that almost everyone speaks. In the winter, London is in the Greenwich Mean Time (GMT+0) time zone; in the summer, it is in GMT+1 (commonly known as British Summer Time, or BST).
Flights from all over the world may easily reach London’s three main international airports, Heathrow, Gatwick, and Stansted. For instance, flights from China take a few hours longer than those from India, which take roughly 10 hours. Similar to flights from South Africa, flights from South America may take an additional three to four hours, and flights from Australia to London might take up to a full day to complete. But London is only a short eight-hour journey from New York City.
One of the numerous reasons why international students chose London as their university destination is the city’s accessibility and central location.
Students from abroad can study in London
According to the most recent estimates, London is home to up to 125,000 international students who are currently enrolled in academic programs. Many universities and specialized institutes of various sizes, campus layouts, tuition rates, and educational standards can be found in the city.
According to QS World Rankings 2023, eleven colleges in London are among the top 500 universities worldwide:
• University College London
• The London School of Economics and Political Science
• Imperial College London
• King’s College London
• Queen Mary University of London
• City, University of London
• Brunel University London
• Birkbeck, University of London
• Goldsmiths, University of London
• SOAS, University of London
In addition to having top-notch faculty, many London institutions are well-known for the caliber of their research and innovation programs. Five of the prominent Russell Group, a collection of 24 elite British universities known for their academic excellence and shared emphasis on research, are in reality located in London:
Imperial College London is ranked by QS as the third-best university in the UK and sixth-best internationally. Except for The London School of Economics and Political Science, which has just under 9,000 students overall, all of the aforementioned universities are large-scale institutions or are parts of larger university groups, such as the University of London. These institutions all have over 25,000 students enrolled.
In addition to these, the city is home to other award-winning universities that specialize in specific fields. The most well-known of these institutions are:
• London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, University of London
• London Business School
Royal College of Art
• Royal College of Music
• The Courtauld Institute of Art, University of London
• Royal Veterinary College University of London
• Royal Academy of Music, University of London
• Guildhall School of Music and Drama
• Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance
• The Royal Central School of
Speech and Drama
The London Institute of Banking and Finance
A world-class educational infrastructure, including top-notch libraries, student union services, research centers, entrepreneurial centers, and post-graduation career support services, has been developed in London thanks to the city’s high concentration of universities.
This means that even international students who aren’t enrolled at one of London’s top 500 universities can profit by utilizing the same resources as university students. The following universities also accept international students:
• Middlesex University
• University of Greenwich
• University of London
• University of Westminster
• Kingston University London
• University of East London
• School of Advanced Study, University of London
London Metropolitan University
• London South Bank University
• University of Roehampton
• St George’s, University of London
• University of West London
• St Mary’s University, Twickenham
• Regent’s University London
• Ravensbourne University London
• Richmond, The American International University in London
• Rose Bruford College
International students should be aware that due to the city’s exorbitantly high real estate, rental, and utility expenses, London is regrettably routinely recognized as one of the most expensive cities in the world to live in. International students are advised to set aside between 1,800 and 2,000 US Dollars per month, according to Imperial College London. This sum includes around 1,200 USD for shared housing, 350 USD for food costs, 150 USD for transportation, 120–150 USD for utilities, and another 150 USD for incidental expenses.
The high expense of living in London may be a deterrent for many overseas students from enrolling in a university there. You’re in luck because most colleges provide a wide range of scholarships to entice top-notch overseas students. The Commonwealth Scholarship & Fellowship and the Erasmus Mundus Scholarship are two examples of such awards. Before starting the application process, we advise that you conduct in-depth study and find all applicable scholarships.
Working While A Foreign Student
Due to the high cost of living in London, many international students choose to work part-time jobs in addition to their studies in order to support themselves financially. During the academic semester, international students in London are permitted to work up to 20 hours a week, and during the summer and winter breaks, they are permitted to work full-time.
Additionally, if an international student is participating in a work placement that is regarded as an essential and evaluated component of the course, they are permitted to work full-time during the semester. However bear in mind that any such work placement cannot last for more than half the duration of the entire program.
Much more lenient post-visa work regulations apply to students. International students can seek to stay in the UK for up to two years after completing an undergraduate or master’s degree thanks to the country’s “Graduate Pathway.” Graduates with a PhD may seek for a three-year extension.
Since the Graduate Way is unsponsored, you are free to work or look for employment in the United Kingdom throughout these two to three years. The Graduate Way gives overseas students the freedom to work as freelancers, interns, or even obtain job experience in the UK. Another reason why overseas students like obtaining their degrees from British colleges, particularly those in London, is the advantages of the Graduate Pathway.
Foreigners studying in London should keep an eye out for semester-long and summer internships given by top companies in London each month on renowned job forums. They are the top investment banks, hedge funds, and consulting firms in the world, among many other kinds of sizable organizations. Such internships demonstrate to potential employers your preparation for the workforce and significantly increase your chances of landing a permanent job after graduation, even if it’s not with the same company you worked at.
Many overseas students in London work part-time in a variety of academic settings, including research institutes, student unions, administrative centers, cafes, and sporting facilities, in addition to doing professional internships. Additionally, London has a variety of cultural, academic, and entertainment institutions that provide part-time jobs and attractive pay to overseas students.
Things To Do In London
For overseas students, London offers a diverse range of outdoor locations to take advantage of the nice British summer weather as well as engaging cultural, historical, entertainment, and sporting sites. International students who are interested in history, for instance, can study artifacts from various worldwide cultures and eras at the renowned British Museum.
Meanwhile, world-class football, cricket, tennis, rugby, and other sports are available all year long for sports enthusiasts to enjoy. Each neighborhood in the city offers a completely own ambiance and way of life. For instance, the North London neighborhood of Camden is well recognized for being a favorite among younger populations due to its vibrant flea markets and active nightlife. The Central London neighborhood of Spitalfields is well known for its top-notch restaurants and unique stores.
Here are a handful of London’s must-see locations for visitors who are studying abroad:
• Tower of London
• Buckingham Palace
• Natural History Museum
• St. Paul’s Cathedral
• Wembley Football Stadium • Lord’s Cricket Ground
• Victoria & Albert Museum
The National Gallery
• London Eye
• Tower Bridge
• Big Ben
• Westminster Abbey
• London Eye
• Tower Bridge
• Big Ben
• Westminster Abbey
• Hyde Park
• The Shard
• The British Library
International students can enjoy a variety of alternative and young activities in London in addition to the tourist hotspots mentioned above. They include having access to urban adventure activities, exciting nightlife spots, and even ghost tour opportunities!
These are a few unusual things you may do while visiting London:
• The Attendant – A Victorian-era toilet that is now a cafe
• The Leake Street Tunnel – A hub for street art
• The Cartoon Museum – A history of cartoons & comics in Britain over the years
• Sky Garden – London’s tallest garden, 155 metres above ground on The Shard
• Jack The Ripper-themed walking tour across East London
• Emirates Aviation Experience
• The Slide at ArcelorMittal Orbit
• The Dare Skywalk at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
• Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter
• Madame Tussauds London
The comparatively small area of the United Kingdom allows you to easily take weekend vacations to the country’s other main cities in addition to the fascinating sights and sounds of London.
For instance, Brighton, a beach city in southern England, is only a two-hour drive from Manchester and Liverpool in the north of England, both of which can be reached in under five hours by rail. The Scottish Highlands, a well-liked tourist destination, are easily reachable through an hour-long flight from London to Edinburgh.
Also, overseas students can benefit from incredibly affordable flight tickets to most major western European cities, including Madrid, Paris, and Amsterdam, which are all conveniently close to London. It is not surprising that so many international students choose to study in London given the diverse array of activities available there as well as the top-notch academic and research facilities.
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