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Could a UK school be right for your teen?

Updated: Feb 22

Studying in the UK is an incredible, life-changing experience for the right kind of student. To be honest, it’s quite different than studying in the US! Read on to learn about the major differences, both in terms of experience and the application process, and decide whether it might be worthwhile for your family to explore schools in the UK for your teen’s undergraduate years.

What are the main differences between education in the US and UK?

  • Undergraduate education is typically only 3 years in England, Northern Ireland, and Wales (but 4 years in Scotland).

  • Students apply directly into their course of study (in the US, we call this a major) and there’s very little opportunity to switch or explore.

  • Students are thrown immediately into their course of study, perhaps diving into advanced material and using neat research equipment much sooner than students in similar programs in the US and Canada.

  • There are no general education (GE) requirements, so students can avoid classes they dislike.

So, not much like the US at all! But, for the right student, this could be a perfect opportunity.

What are the benefits to studying in the UK?

  • It is affordable! Tuition starts at $14,000 (US) per year, and there are only three years to pay for. Not to mention, you can still qualify for federal financial aid.

  • Every university offers a high quality education, as the education sector is regulated by the government.

  • There are over 160 universities in the UK, so there is something for everyone. Remember to explore the incredible schools outside of London!

  • UK universities have a very high proportion of international students on campus -- on some campuses, as much as 30% -- so students are sure to have a global experience. This extends to the faculty, too, who tend to come from all over the world.

  • It’s an opportunity to jumpstart a student’s academic interest with immediate experience in their course of study.

  • There is a graduate visa route to stay and work in the UK after graduation, as long as the student applies proactively.