Structure of the Higher Educational System in Spain


In Spain, higher education institutions are classified according to whether they organise university or non-university provision. The later are further subdivided into centres which offer advanced vocational training cycles and specialised education institutions

University education 

This type of provision is organized by universities, which may be public or private.

Public universities and private universities are founded pursuant to a specific act passed by the Legislative Assembly of the region where the institution will be located, or an act approved by the Spanish Parliament, at the proposal of the central government and in accordance with the relevant Autonomous Community Council. A report from the General Conference for University Policy is also mandatory.

Public universities are integrated by University Schools, Faculties, Departments, University Institutes for Research, Doctoral Colleges and by other necessary schools or structures for the development of their functions. The requirements for the establishment and the maintenance of these institutions are established by the Government, once a report by the General Conference for University Policy and the Council of Universities has been issued.

University Schoolsand Facultiesare the institutions responsible for the organisation of their studies and in charge of academic, administrative and implementation processes of the regulations that lead to the conferment of the different university degrees. Their creation, modification and abolishment, as for the implementation and abolishment of studies leading to the obtainment of an official university degree and validated nationwide must be accorded with the Autonomous Community to which the university belongs either through the Autonomous Community’s initiative gaining the agreement of the Government Council of the university, or through the university’s own initiative through a proposal of the Government Council, in both cases with a previous favourable report on behalf of the Social Council.

Departments are teaching and research units in charge of coordinating studies of one or more fields of knowledge in one or more university centres according to the teaching schedule of the university. They support teaching and research activities and initiativesof the teaching staff as for exerting all other functions appearing in their statutes. The establishment, modification and abolition of departments correspond to the university, according to its statutes.

Universities may also have university research institutes. Their activity focuses mainly on technical and scientific research and on artistic creation. These centres are also entitled to offer graduate programmes (Master’s degrees or PhDs). University research institutes may belong to more than one university. They can also be the established by public or private organisations by means of collaboration agreements or specific arrangements. Furthermore, universities can create joint research institutes, in cooperation with other public research bodies, with the National Health Service and with public or private non-profit research centres.

Furthermore, universities and public authorities promote the creation of integrated higher education areas, which develop new channels of collaboration between the production sector, universities, vocational training institutions and other dependent bodies, so as to encourage business and scientific innovation. Therefore, an integrated higher vocational area consists of a university campus which incorporates vocational training centres offering higher vocational training, specialised in professional families which are related to the areas of specialisation of university colleges operating in the same campus.

The official regulations which establish the structure of PhD programmes also authorize the creation of Doctoral Colleges, the objective of which is to organise provision at this level into one or more interdisciplinary knowledge branches, which may also include official science-oriented Master programmes, as well as many other types of training activities in the area of research. These colleges may be founded by one or more universities, with the possible participation of other bodies, centres, institutions or national and international entities which carry out R&D activities.

Public universities may also have public or private associated centres offering official study programmes. The association is established by means of an agreement which requires to be endorsed by the relevant regional government, at the proposal of the University Government Council, once the proposal has been positively informed by the University Social Council. Associated centres must be established within the territorial scope of the relevant regional government, or receive approval from the regional government where they are located.

Private universities and university private centres may be created by any individual or legal entity, regarding that they respect the constitutional principles as they are subject to State and Autonomous regulations. University private centres must be integrated into a private university as centres belonging to the university or they must be ascribed to a public or private university.

Private universities elaborate and approve their own regulations for their organisation and functioning. These must respect and guarantee, through a broad participation of the university community, the academic freedom manifested in the academic freedom, research and study.

In order to guarantee the quality of universities and university centres a series of requisites are established to which they must comply with whether they were already in existence or whether they were recently created. From these the Autonomous Communities establish the specific requirements for the universities to establish themselves in their territory. For detailed information on the minimum requirements of university centres see the article on Organisation of Private Education.

Both public and private universities, together with university centres must be registered in the Register of Universities, Centres and Qualifications (RUCT).

In 2013/14, the Spanish university system was integrated by 82 universities, 50 of which were public and 32 private. Six universities (one public and five private) organise distance education. In addition, there are two universities with a special status, since they only provide specialised graduate programmes (Master’s degrees and PhDs).

Higher non-university education 

Higher Vocational Training may be offered in different types of institutions, namely, in secondary education schools, which also organise Compulsory Secondary Education (ESO) provision and Bachillerato programmes, in national reference centres and in integrated vocational training centres. For detailed information on these centres see the article on Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure.

Regardless of public or private ownership, these institutions are subject to the same minimum requirements. Among these, the highlighted minimum requirements of the spaces established in the regulation of each qualification and the equipments established by the Educational Authorities in order to achieve the results of each vocational module.

The Act on Education 2006 (LOE) includes the two first-cycle programmes within the Spanish education system as part of higher education, even though they lead to rather different professional and academic qualifications. These two programmes are Bachelor’s degrees and Advanced Vocational Training. They are not equivalent, they are offered in different institutions and they lead to qualifications included in different levels of the Spanish Qualification Framework for Higher Education (MECES):

Bachelor programmes belong to university education, have an academic orientation and are longer than non-university higher provision. They lead to a Bachelor’s degree assigned to level 2 qualifications within the MECES and is defined by the following descriptors, in terms of educational outcomes:

• To have acquired advanced knowledge and proven comprehension of practical, theoretical and methodological aspects of the relevant field of studies, including understanding of the most recent and state-of-the-art breakthroughs in the area.

• To be able to apply knowledge, by means of elaborated procedures and defence of arguments, comprehension and problem-solving abilities, to the solution of problems in complex working or professional specialized environments, which may also require the use of creative and innovative ideas.

• To be able to gather and interpret information and data in order to support conclusions, including, whenever necessary and appropriate, a reflection upon social, scientific or ethical issues related to their area of specialization.

• To be able to handle complex situations or those requiring to devise new solutions, both in the academic and professional world, within the relevant knowledge area.

• To be able to address all kinds of audiences (either specialised or not) and to communicate in a clear and accurate way knowledge, methodologies, ideas, problems and solutions related to the area of specialization.

• To be able to identify professional development needs within the area of studies and professional or working environment, and to organise learning paths autonomously, both in structured and non-structured contexts.

However, the Spanish Qualifications Framework for Higher Education and the organisation of official university education, in order to include some Bachelor degrees in Level 3 (Master’s) of the Framework, were modified in February 2014. The duration of some studies, generally in the field of Health, is longer than that established for Bachelor programmes and they provide access to PhD programmes, either directly or through complementary training.

Advanced Vocational Training belongs to the stage of post-compulsory non-university education and has a clear professional orientation. These programmes lead to a diploma of Higher Technician, included level 1 of the qualification framework (MECES). Advanced Vocational Training qualifications may be defined by the following descriptors, in terms of educational outcomes:

• To apply and assimilate technical knowledge in order to define and develop work procedures autonomously in the relevant professional field. To be able to coordinate and supervise specialised technical work.

• To be able to analyse the necessary information to evaluate and handle expected and unexpected situations, looking for essential, creative and innovative solutions, within the relevant professional area.

• To be able to inform peers, supervisors, clients and subordinates, of knowledge, ideas, skills and operational procedures. • To have acquired the necessary skills to engage in further education autonomously, showing maturity to innovate in the application of these skills and to progress to higher training levels.


Branches of study 

Bachelor’s degrees have a minimum duration of 240 credits of the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS), and are ascribed to one of the following branches of knowledge:

• Arts and Humanities.

• Experimental Sciences.

• Health Sciences.

• Social Sciences and Law.

• Engineering and Architecture.

Admission requirements

The Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport (MECD) regulates the access to university studies. It establishes the general conditions at a national level and at a regional level through the corresponding Educational Authorities, which in turn, are in charge of adapting and developing these rules within the scope of their competences.

University access is guaranteed through the observance of the fundamental rights. Furthermore, admission to university is granted on the basis of equality, merit and ability. In addition, universal accessibility and design are also taken into consideration. The body in charge of ensuring that students access official Bachelor programmes is the General Conference for University Policy. This body is general, objective and universal, equally valid for all Spanish universities and complies with the criteria established by the European Higher Education Area (EHEA).

Access to university education depends on the academic situation of candidates:

1. They may have access to official Bachelor programmes provided they have successfully completed general upper secondary education: • Students holding a Bachillerato certificate who have passed the university entrance examination organised by the education authorities and public universities.

• Students coming from the education systems of the Member States of the European Union (EU), or from other States that have signed international agreements with Spain that are applicable in this regard, on a basis of reciprocity. In this case, they have to meet the requirements established in those countries for students to have access to their universities, under the same conditions as students who have passed the university entrance examination.

2. From this academic year 2014/15, they may have access if they meet the criteria set by universities in their procedures for admission to official Bachelor programmes. Universities establish these procedures, which must include one or several of the following criteria: final grade obtained in the studies completed or in specific modules/subjects; relationship between the curricula of the studies completed and the relevant university degree; additional academic or vocational training and previously taken higher education studies.

These criteria apply to: 

• Students coming from the EU who do not meet the requirements in order to have access to the universities in their countries, or from States that are not members of the EU and that have not concluded international agreements for the recognition of the Bachillerato certificate, on a basis of reciprocity.

• Students holding an Advanced Technician certificate in any specialisation of advanced vocational training, Plastic Arts and Design or equivalent qualifications.

However, there are other academic situations where universities are free to decide whether they apply or not an admission procedure for candidates to have access to these university studies:

• Students holding an official first or second-cycle university degree, corresponding to the EHEA or the previous organisation of university education, or equivalent degree.

• Students with partial studies carried out in Spain or abroad, or students whose degree has not been recognised in Spain but who want to continue studying in a Spanish university. In this case, apart from the criteria the relevant university might establish, students will have to be recognised at least 30 ECTS credits by this university.

• Students who were in a position to have access to university according to the organisation of the Spanish education system prior to the 2013 Act on the Improvement of the Quality of Education.

• Students with studies other than those equivalent to the Bachillerato or Advanced Technician certificates, obtained or carried out in a Member State of the EU or in other States that have signed international agreements that are applicable in this regard, on a basis of reciprocity, provided they meet the academic requirements established in that Member State for students to have access to its universities.

3.They may have access if they have passed the relevant specific university entrance examination:

• People aged over 25 who do not hold any qualification to gain access to university education by other means.

• People aged over 40 without a qualification providing access to university education who accredit work or professional experience.

• People aged over 45 without an academic qualification providing access to university education, through an adapted entrance examination.

In those cases in which there is a compulsory entrance examination, each university decides on the location and dates for the sessions, as well as on the registration dates for students and the date when the examination will be held. Universities may exceptionally establish specific knowledge and/or skill evaluations regardless of the original qualification.


Universities enjoy the autonomy to design the curriculum for the programmes and degrees they offer. However, the programmes must be verified by the Council of Universities and receive authorisation from the relevant regional government, once they have been submitted to consultation of the National Agency for Quality Assessment and Accreditation (ANECA) and/or the analogous Agency of the corresponding Autonomous Community. Once the studies have been verified and accredited, the studies must be registered in the Registry of Universities, Centres and Degrees (RUCT) as mandatory requisite to obtain the official validity throughout Spain.

The guidelines to be followed by each university in the design of their study programmes are:

• Each programme must have a workload of at least 60 ECTS credits devoted to basic training, 36 of which have to be linked to some of the areas included in the knowledge branch to which the programme belongs. These areas are further specified into subjects, with a minimum of 6 ECTS credits each, which need to be taken during the first half of the programme.

• The remaining credits to complete the 60 compulsory ones are devoted to basic training and must be earned through basic subjects from the same branch or knowledge or from a different one, or through other areas, provided that they are basic for the initial training of the student or they have a cross-curricular nature.

• In the final stage of the programme students must do Bachelor’s project, which receives between 6 and 60 ECTS credits. The aim of this project is to assess the acquisition of competences associated to the degree.

• Students may receive accreditation of ECTS credits (up to 6) for their participation in a series of activities at university, related to the area of culture, sports, students’ representation, solidarity and cooperation.

In those universities located in regions which have a co-official language, the regional language is the one normally used in university activities, in compliance with the regulations for university education established by each regional government.

Teaching methods 

Universities follow the principle of autonomy to decide on methodology. To be more precise, university departments are the basic bodies in charge of both teaching and research of their respective areas of knowledge. They are responsible for the planning and coordination of the curriculum and of research activity at universities. In practice, teachers are free to make use of the teaching methods and pedagogical resources they consider more appropriate.

In general, teachers employ different teaching methods at university, being lectures the most common practice, although it is becoming more and more common to resort to other types of activities, such as seminars, cooperative work, learning based on problem-solving activities, project-based learning, etc. Practical classes (for example, laboratory or computer practices) are very frequent in experimental science studies.

The use of information and communication technologies (ICT) in the classroom is quite frequent. Most universities have technology support services for teachers, so as to help them devise multimedia materials and to encourage their use of ICTs. Presentations by means of computers or overhead projectors are also common practice, as well as the use of videos, computer-assisted learning, etc. In addition, teacher/student communication through the Internet or through virtual classrooms, online platforms, virtual spaces for specific subjects, websites, and so on.

Progression of students 

Universities, making use of the autonomy granted to them by legislation, establish the conditions for the promotion of the students, as well as the minimum and maximum periods of permanence of students.

In order to pass a subject, students are allowed to sit examinations for a limited number of times. Students have between four and six attempts depending of the programme or institution. Moreover, they are allowed to take final examinations for the same subject only twice a year.


A main concern for both the Education Authorities and universities is improving the employability of their university graduates. In order to deal with this problem, university education must respond to the following principles:

• To include in their study programmes abilities and skills geared towards innovation, the fostering of creativity, business initiative and entrepreneurship, incorporating them into the different subjects, concepts and cross-curricular competences, in learning methods and in assessment.

• To make proposals for new degrees and educational provision which prepare students for the qualifications required by new employment needs so as to improve employability of citizens in the labour market.

• To promote adaptability to social and economic changes, providing citizens with opportunities for ongoing professional development and extension of university studies; and to increase the possibilities for mobility in education within Spain and in Europe, as well as the effective incorporation of university graduates into the labour market, strengthening the links between universities and the business world, paying special attention to the promotion of competences for entrepreneurship and self-employment.

Collaboration between universities and the productive sector may be articulated on the basis of the following initiatives:

• Creation of technology-based innovation companies.

• Establishment of innovation poles, by means of providing a common physical space for universities and companies in the production sector. • Launching and promotion of programmes to enhance transfer and appreciation of knowledge.

• Creation of consortiums for research and transfer of knowledge.

• Creation of corporate-sponsored university chairs, based on collaboration in research projects, which allow university students to participate and combine their research activity with training opportunities.

In addition, both in the regulations for university education and in the 2010 University Student Statute, there are a series of specific measures aimed at promoting employability of university students, such as:

• Universities offer student mobility programmes through university cooperation agreements. These programmes pay attention to academic training related to the degree in which the student is enrolled, and to other competence areas, such as training for employment. For detailed information on the types of mobility programmes available for university students see the article on Mobility in Higher Education.

• Universities have student information and guidance services available, the aim of which is to provide information and orientation regarding learning itineraries and future professional opportunities, training in cross-curricular competences and design of professional projects, in order to facilitate student employability and insertion in the labour market.

• Universities also offer student guidance and monitoring until they graduate. The law also considers the possibility of degree advisors. These are coordinators or student advisors who provide guidance to students throughout the program, regarding their learning process as well as their professional prospects in the labour market.

• The statute also contemplates the possibility of creating alumni associations for former students. These associations must be registered at universities, and one of their goals is to collaborate actively in providing access to the labour market to university graduates.

For detailed information on the organisation and advisement of university students on the basic structure of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport (MECD) see the article on Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education.

Student assessment 

Universities must verify the knowledge acquired by students, as well as the development of their intellectual training and their academic achievements. In order to do so, it is necessary to establish assessment regulations. Evaluation objectives, tools, procedures, activities and criteria are set up in the syllabi of each programme, and fall under the responsibility of university departments and teachers.

One of the results of the adaptation to the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) is the implementation of an assessment system for university education, the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS). The European credit is the unit for academic accreditation, it represents the amount of work that a student must complete in order to attain programme objectives. Each ECTS credit represents between 25 and 30 class hours. In order to obtain the number of ECTS credits assigned to a subject, both in practical or theoretical learning or in any other academic activity, students must pass the exams or assessment procedures established for that area.

The results obtained by students in each subject, which appear in the student’s record, receive a numerical mark from 0 to 10, with a decimal position, which can be followed by a qualitative mark:

• 0 – 4.9: Fail

• 5.0 – 6.9: Pass

• 7.0 – 8.9: Very good

• 9.0 – 10: Excellent

Students may also be awarded an Excellent mark “with Distinction”, when the student has been given a 9.0 or higher. However, the number of students receiving this special mention cannot be higher than 5% of the total enrolled in a subject in an academic year. If this number is lower than 20, only one Excellent with Distinction may be awarded.


On completion of a Bachelor’s degree programme, students receive a Bachelor’s degree in the relevant area of specialisation. The diploma bears the specific name given to the degree in the Registry of Universities, Centres and Degrees (RUCT). The diploma is issued, on behalf of the King o Spain, by the University Vice-Chancellor. It has official validity in all Spanish universities, and qualifies for regulated professional activities, under the conditions established in the relevant official documents.

According with 2010 official regulations for university education, certified professional or working experience may also receive recognition in terms of credits, with validity to obtain an official qualification, as long as the experience is related to the competences inherent to the qualification.

As a result of the process of adaptation to the EHEA, a new procedure has been established, by means of which universities may issue the European Diploma Supplement of official university degrees, upon request of the person concerned, in order to provide information about the level and contents of the programme for which the diploma is issued including information on the external work placement. The aim of the EDS is to guarantee, for mobility purposes, transparency and legibility of knowledge and skills acquired.

The MECD has regulated the recognition of studies among the different courses of study that constitute Higher Education, establishing the relations between the different Higher Education diplomas, as for the validation of ECTS credits, including Bachelor degrees and Higher Technician from Advanced Vocational Training. Universities are responsible for the recognition of official studies accrediting Higher Technician of Advanced Vocational Training, with the effects of allowing students into study programmes leading to the university Bachelor’s degrees.

Branches of study 

Advanced Vocational Training is the last stage of formal vocational education. These programmes lead to specific professional accredited qualifications within the National Catalogue of Vocational Qualifications. For detailed information on the National Catalogue of Vocational Qualifications see the article on Lifelong Learning Strategy.

Advanced Vocational Training is structured in a series of training cycles, organised into vocational modules and classified according to a number of professional families established in the Catalogue:

• Administration and Management

• Arts and Crafts

• Building

• Chemistry

• Commerce and Marketing

• Computer and Communication

• Electricity and Electronics

• Energy and Water

• Extractive Industries

• Farming

• Food Industry

• Glass and Ceramics

• Graphic Arts

• Health

• Hotel and Tourism Industry

• Imaging and Sound

• Installation and Maintenance

• Maritime and Fishery

• Mechanical Production

• Personal Image

• Safety Environment

• Socio-cultural and Community Services

• Textiles, Clothing and Leather/Fur

• Transport and Maintenance of Vehicles

• Physical and Sport Activities

• Wood, Furniture and Cork

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Best universities in Ireland 2018

ireland universities

Explore the best universities in Ireland based on data collected by Times Higher Education

Despite a moderate island population of roughly five million, there are a number of excellent higher learning institutions in the Republic of Ireland. These are the best universities in the Republic of Ireland based on the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2018. 

Three of the country’s best universities are based in the greater area of Dublin, Ireland’s capital and largest city. Culturally, Dublin is well-known for being the setting of the novels of James Joyce. Meanwhile, the Guinness brewery at St. James’ gate street was the original location for the brewing of Ireland’s best-known stout in 1759, and is now a popular tourist attraction.

The ancient language of Irish Gaelic is still spoken in places on the “Emerald Isle”, and continues to be taught in schools. However, English is more commonly used by the majority of Irish residents, and virtually every university course is taught in the language.

Top 5 universities in Ireland

1. Trinity College Dublin

Established in 1592, Trinity College Dublin is the oldest university in the Republic of Ireland. It was founded as an Irish equivalent to the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge, and retains its reputation as a research centred university.

Trinity College Dublin is located in central Dublin near the River Laffey, and is a mere stone’s throw away from the Irish Houses of Parliament, making the university ideal for aspiring political science students. Although Trinity is not structured in a collegiate like Oxbridge, the university offers a huge range of courses from acting to zoology. Trinity also support its students through assigning each student a personal tutor, and providing a campus-based Careers Advisory Service.

Among the university’s alumni is mathematician William Rowan Hamilton, who has a research institute at Trinity named in his honour. Author of Dracula, Bram Stoker, and Nobel Peace Prize recipient Mairead Maguire are other well-known graduates.

2. National University of Ireland, Galway

Galway is a small city located on the western coast, among the green countryside. But don’t let that fool you into thinking the city is a quiet rural outpost, for lively events such as the annual Pride festival make Galway a social hub ideal for students. It is also a 2020 European Capital of Culture.

The university was recently awarded significant investment and now has a student centre, a building for the study of human biology and a centre for drama, theatre and performance.

Anyone with an interest in linguistics may be well suited to Galway’s School of Languages, Literatures and Cultures which contains disciplines including French, German and Classical. The school is also the location of the UNESCO-recognised archive of historical Irish Gaelic documents, studied under Celtic Civilisation.

The oldest student society at Galway is the literary and debating society, which was founded in 1846, just a year after the university opened.

3. Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland

The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) has been a renowned surgical college since it was granted a royal charter in 1784, and now serves as Ireland’s largest medical school. Although a private institution, RCSI offers a number of scholarships for both Irish and international students in PhD and master’s programmes. There are multiple EU and Non-EU student admission pathways for undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.

RCSI has expanded to offer postgraduate courses in bereavement studies and healthcare technologies, as well as offering five-year undergraduate degree courses in pharmacy and four-year courses in physiotherapy. This is among many other science and health care related undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.

Many renowned figures from the worlds of surgical and medical development have received their degrees at RCSI. One such example is Nada Haffadh, who became Bahrain’s first female minster after being appointed health minister in 2004. Another is Lord Ara Darzi, a pioneer in the fields of surgical robotics and minimally invasive surgery.

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Coming Soon: QS World University Rankings: Business Masters Rankings 2018

university ranking
Coming Soon: QS World University Rankings: Business Master's Rankings 2018 main image
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27 Top-Ranked Universities in Canada

Universities in Canada

Universities in Canada have always gained a wide reputation for good teaching and excellent research. Seriously! – have you seen what they’re doing with telecom and cyber research? Canadian universities are highly ranked among international schools and institutions worldwide, and they continue to attract the smartest people to their highly respected and prestigious degree programmes. All these top ranked colleges, universities, law schools, medical schools, and engineering schools have a wide, global reputation and continue to be the top-ranked schools for international students. To go to some of the best universities in the world for your Bachelor’s, Master’s, or Ph.D, you should certainly consider Canada as your destination for the best rankings and widest reputation.

World university rankings take into consideration the teachers’ competencies, the quality of education, and student satisfaction, as well as the international student ratio, and the number of citations their research gets. So, there’s a lot of work that goes into making this university rankings list and selecting the best academic institutions Canada has to offer. Using the highest ranked universities below as a starting point, you can bet you’ll stand out from other students and you’ll join a fine and amazing elite who attended some of the top Canadian universities.

Top Ranked Universities on MastersPortal

Universities World University Ranking (2018) Academic Ranking of World Universities (2017)
University of Toronto 22 23
University of British Columbia 34 31
McGill University 42 67
McMaster University 78 66
University of Montreal 108 151
University of Alberta 119 101
University of Calgary 201 151
University of Ottawa 201 151
University of Waterloo 201 201
University of Western Ontario 201 201
Dalhousie University 251 301
Laval University 251 301
Queen’s University 251 201
Simon Fraser University 251 401
University of Victoria, British Columbia 301 301
York University 351
University of Manitoba 401 301
University of Saskatchewan 401 301
Carleton University 501
Concordia University Montréal 501 401
Memorial University of Newfoundland 501
University of Quebec 501
University of Sherbrooke 501
University of Northern British Columbia 601
University of Regina 601
University of Windsor 601
University of Guelph 301
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Eight Best Student Cities in the UK

Best Student Cities in the UK

The UK boasts the second-highest number of entries in the QS Best Student Cities 2017 index after the US, with eight cities in the ranking. Its capital, London, maintains its spot in the top five, and there are four entries which are either new or have returned after one or more years of absence.

The Best Student Cities index assesses on a number of indicators, including ‘student mix’, ‘rankings’ and ‘employer activity’, which UK universities perform particularly well in. As you might expect, UK cities’ weakest spot is affordability, with the UK known as an expensive place to study abroad. However, this doesn’t dissuade the thousands of new international students which the UK welcomes each year.

Below are the eight best student cities in the UK according to the QS Best Student Cities index – all offering at least two internationally ranked universities, plus a unique study abroad experience (click on each city name for more details).

1. London


The UK capital is ranked as the fifth best student city in the world this year and achieves the strongest score in the index for the ‘university rankings’ category, with an impressive 19 London-based universities currently ranking among the top 800 in the QS World University Rankings® 2016/17 – including two within the global top 10. London also receives a high score in the ‘student mix’ category, which is not surprising considering 300 different languages are spoken here, and 42% of students at the city’s ranked institutions are from outside the UK. London does falter when it comes to affordability, but nonetheless remains a highly attractive proposition; as well as being an academic hub, it’s one of the planet’s great centers of culture and creativity, famed for its museums, arts scene, nightlife and diversity.

Discover the top 10 universities in London >

2. Edinburgh


Moving on to Scotland for the next of our best UK cities for students, and the Scottish capital, Edinburgh, is ranked 33rd in the Best Student Cities index this year. Known for its striking castle, historic old town and massive annual events such as the Edinburgh International Festival and New Year’s Hogmanay street party, the city is also home to several of the best universities in the UK. The University of Edinburgh is ranked 21stin the QS World University Rankings® 2015/16 – the sixth-highest UK entry.

Average fees for international students at Edinburgh’s leading universities are slightly higher compared to the other UK cities listed here. However, for undergraduate students from within the EU (except those from the rest of the UK), university fees are entirely subsidized by the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS). So depending on where you’re from, Edinburgh or Glasgow could be some of the most affordable options in this list. Indeed, Edinburgh has already attracted a large student population, 40% of which are international.

3. Manchester


Ranked 36th in the Best Student Cities index, Manchester offers world-class universities and a fun-packed student culture that gives even London a run for its money. Located in the North West of England, Manchester is especially well known for its music scene, which has produced big-name bands such as The Smiths, Joy Division and Oasis. Today arts, culture and excellent nightlife are all very much in good supply, as are opportunities to explore the rich history of this part of the UK. Like London and Edinburgh, Manchester achieves a strong score for ‘student mix’, and ranks 23rd for ‘employer activity’ (higher than Edinburgh and all of the other UK student cities aside from London), showing that it’s not just an enjoyable place to study, but a city whose alumni are looked upon favorably by employers.

4. Coventry


Although it’s a slightly less well-known option in our list of the best UK cities for students, Coventry should not be underestimated. Ranking at 44th in the Best Student Cities index, this West Midlands city is propelled to this position largely due to the close proximity of the University of Warwick (currently 48th in the QS World University Rankings). Meanwhile the city center is home to the highly reputed Coventry University. Between these two institutions, the area has a very large student population, of which almost 40% are from outside the UK. Coventry also earns a high rating from graduate employers, reflecting both the strong reputation of its universities and the city’s long history of leadership in manufacturing and design. When it comes to culture, Warwick University’s Arts Centre is one of the largest in the UK, and Coventry also has several theatres, art galleries, and large venues for music and sporting events.

5. Nottingham


Next in our list of the best UK cities for students is Nottingham – famous for its connection to the Robin Hood legend, and also growing in prominence for its universities and student scene – it even beats overall leader Paris in the ‘student mix’ category. Ranked the 57th best student city overall and a new entry this year, Nottingham is affectionately referred to as the ‘Queen of the Midlands’ and is also known for being a major sporting center, named the ‘Home of English Sport’ in October 2015. Not only does the city have a large international student population; its highest ranked university, the University of Nottingham, has branch campuses in Malaysia and China, and has been praised for its international approach to higher education.

6. Glasgow


Scotland’s largest and most populous city, Glasgow is ranked joint 63rd and is home to two universities in the top 250 of the QS World University Rankings® 2015/16: the University of Glasgow, which ranks joint 62nd and the University of Strathclyde at joint 249th. The former is one of the world’s oldest universities, established well over 500 years ago. In recent years, Glasgow has become one the UK’s leading hubs of culture, commerce, research and academia. Like many other UK cities, Glasgow hosts a large number of international students, and therefore achieves a particularly high score in the ‘student mix’ category of the QS Best Student Cities index, providing opportunities for students to meet people from many different backgrounds and cultures.

7. Birmingham


Ranked 66th in the Best Student Cities index, Birmingham is the UK’s second-largest city, located in the heart of England and home to 3.7 million people. From its industrial roots, Birmingham has become a thriving commercial and financial center. It’s also the UK’s largest center of higher education outside London, with five universities, two of which rank among the top 350 universities in the QS World University Rankings® 2015/16. As you’d expect from a city of Birmingham’s size, there is plenty of culture and nightlife to be enjoyed, and its status as one of the UK’s most multicultural cities adds to its diversity and the range of experiences on offer.

8. Newcastle


The UK’s final representative in the Best Student Cities index is hot on the heels of Birmingham in 67thplace, and is the largest city in North-East England. It’s diverse, vibrant and welcoming. Named after the Norman castle of the city center (not so ‘new’ anymore!), the city’s history spans from the Roman period, through its time as an important industrial center for coal-mining, engineering and shipping during the 19th century. Newcastle’s aptitude for engineering continues to this day, with award-winning structures such as the Gateshead Millennium Bridge. As well as meeting the friendly local ‘Geordies’ whilst studying here, you can expect to meet a range of people from different cultures too – 23% of students at the ranked universities in Newcastle are international.

And an honorary mention:


Although neither Oxford or Cambridge are featured in the QS Best Student Cities index (to be featured, a city must have a population of over 250,000, and be home to at least two universities included in the QS rankings) they deserve an honorary mention due to their international prominence as study destinations. The ‘Oxbridge’ experience remains highly distinctive, steeped in centuries of tradition. Both are old medieval towns, built on rivers and situated towards the south of England not far from London. Relatively peaceful, they nonetheless offer an enriching environment for students, with all the extracurricular activities you could wish for, and no shortage of dedicated student nights. To find out how the two halves of Oxbridge compare

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I remember clear as day, being sat on my final plane from Sydney to Wellington after travelling for almost 30 hours, when the prospect of living in a foreign country for an entire year hit me.

I had spent the flight completely fangirling over New Zealand, a country I had been dreaming about for over a year. The moment we touched down at Wellington airport, my exhilaration and anticipation suddenly turned to nerves. What the hell had I just done? I couldn’t just nip back home now if I ended up hating New Zealand. I couldn’t just call up the family to have a quick chat due to the time difference. And things only got even scarier. What if I’d done my visa wrong? What if they didn’t let me in the country? What if this entire time they don’t actually speak English, and I wouldn’t be able to understand anyone? I think it’s safe to say this was my first instance of culture shock.

Culture shock *clears throat* can be defined as the feeling of disorientation you experience when you’re suddenly surrounded by a new, and unfamiliar culture. If you’re currently on a study exchange or year abroad and this happens to you, remember that it’s incredibly common and not a reason to panic. Here are just a handful of the hilarious (and cringe) culture shock moments I experienced on my own exchange trip to New Zealand.

Not having a clue what to do in a foreign airport

Wellington airport provided my first exposure to culture shock. Being from the UK, I was mostly used to visiting Europe, so visas are a concept I’d never had to face before. So, when I was preparing to go on exchange, I was overwhelmed by the prospect of applying for a visa. There were so many, with lots of different requirements, and I spent most of my time being completely lost and calling the immigration office up to 5,000 times a day, begging for help.

While on my last plane, the staff gave out welcome forms that we had to fill out to declare what we were bringing into the country. New Zealand is very strict when it comes to this, and if you’re found lying you can get a steep fine. I’m not sure why I struggled so much with this form. It was probably because it was my first time travelling alone, but I thought the form was solely about hand luggage. Yeah, I don’t know what I was thinking either. So, when it asked if we were bringing in any food, I happily ticked the “no” box.

So, you can imagine my horror when they placed my suitcase, containing six boxes of Jaffa Cakes and two big boxes of Yorkshire Tea (lol, “Northern lass” priorities), on the X-ray scanner. The guy in charge immediately spotted the food and proceeded to stare into my soul. All I could do was stare back, wide-eyed, attempting to plead with him. Luckily for me, my pleas were registered, and the kind gentleman allowed me to safely leave with my Jaffa Cakes and Yorkshire Tea intact. (Thank you, kind person).

Not being able to pronounce anything

I think one of the most significant cultural differences between the UK and New Zealand is that there is a widely spoken language in New Zealand other than English. Yes, of course they speak English, but I was naive enough to be unaware that most place names are in fact Maori names. My first glimpse of this was when I got off the plane to be welcomed with the words Kia ora. Maybe I should’ve done research, and learned a few basic Maori phrases.

My crappy Maori skills would be a recurring theme throughout my entire exchange. I remember, one time, I was trying to get to a city just north of Wellington, called Porirua. I happily got on the bus, and asked the Maori bus driver for a return to Porirua, only to completely butcher the name. I had pronounced it Por-eye-ru-ay, which (spoiler alert) is not how you pronounce that word. The bus driver just stared at me, trying not to laugh, and corrected me, which resulted in me cringing for the rest of the day.

I soon learnt that each vowel is pronounced entirely different in Maori. And there are several letter combinations that form completely different sounds than in English. For example, ng is pronounced as it sounds in the word singer and wh is pronounced like an f sound. I think every foreign person living in New Zealand has pronounced the word whakapapa wrong at some point. Luckily, New Zealanders tend to be sweet and get the gist of what you’re trying to say (it’s still awkward though).

My own accent made things even worse. I have quite a strong (understatement of the year) Yorkshire accent which made trying to pronounce things even worse. In Yorkshire, we don’t tend to pronounce the h at the start of a word, so hat tends to become ‘at, happy is ‘appy, and so on. So, when I tried to catch a bus to a Wellington suburb called Hataitai, you can imagine it generated a few chuckles from the driver.

Not being able to find anything in shops

It’s always confusing shopping in a foreign country, but, I had wrongly thought there wouldn’t be any issues in New Zealand. Instead, everything had a different name. Peppers were no longer peppers, they were capsicums. Courgettes were zucchinis. Heinz was called Watties…the list goes on. I’d find myself wandering around shops lost.

To make things worse, I ran out of my two massive bags of Yorkshire Tea within the first month. I ran down to Countdown (the closest supermarket to my flat) in search of England’s greatest tea (definitely not biased). Did they have it? Nope. So, I ran to the next nearest supermarket, they had it but it was $12. I didn’t want to pay for that so I had to buy the cheapest New Zealand brand I could find, which wasn’t as good as Yorkshire Tea. Fortunately, my friends all sent over Yorkshire Tea reinforcements.

Not having a clue what anyone is saying

One thing Kiwis seem to always do is mumble. I’d have to continually ask people to repeat themselves, only for me to still not have a clue what they’d said. So, I’d just awkwardly smile, hoping it would make up for the fact that I didn’t know what was going on.

At the start of lectures, some New Zealand lecturers would speak in Maori. You’re not a true exchange student if you haven’t experienced this and started shaking with fear, thinking you’ve accidentally signed up for a Maori language class.

New Zealand slang was also something I had to master. The first time somebody said, “sweet as” to me, I thought they were complimenting my body. Yes, that actually happened, and it was mortifying.

So, as you can see, culture shock can happen even somewhere as seemingly straightforward and non-threatening as New Zealand. The first few weeks in a foreign country are always the most unsettling, but remember it will pass. Culture shock may truly never leave you, but you will start to see the funny side of these moments. Not having a clue what is going on can often be the best kind of icebreaker; often locals would end up taking pity on me and looking after me.

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Studying abroad: What parents need to know

study abroad

Being a parent, it is natural for you to be interested in your child’s education. You are likely to have a lot of questions related to overseas education. Tough decisions about when, where and what to study are usually made by the students, but as a parent, you may want to be involved in the decision-making process. We believe by being well informed, you can play a wonderful supporting role as a parent and mentor for your child, as they begin their long study abroad journey with us.

It’s quite natural to have dozens of fears and apprehensions in your mind while you plan your child’s future abroad but highly unlikely you would want to shatter his/her dreams for the sake of your fears. Below you’ll find a list of helpful suggestions on how you can assist your child through the entire study abroad process and later when they move abroad.

Stay informed

You’re likely to feel a lot more secure about your child’s education abroad once you do some effective research. Start by gathering information on your child’s chosen study destination. Look into the course curriculum, campus life abroad and the accommodation options available for international students. You may also want to check with the admissions committee of the university that your child has shortlisted. If you don’t know how to reach or write to the university, we can surely help you.

You can use our online resources to gather all the information you need. An education abroad can pose a lot of challenges and potential difficulties for you and your child. So be prepared to ask the right questions to the college representatives using all the information you’ve gathered.


Safety of a student studying abroad is one of the primary concerns these days. As a parent you might have premonitions about sending your child for overseas education but think carefully – how safe is your own native country? Safety concerns will arise in every parent’s mind and it as important as any other issues. Students’ safety is one of the main concerns of any reputed institutions abroad so it’s natural that most universities abroad will have their own safety protocols for international students.

As the departure date of your child nears, you can have a lot of anxiety and second-thoughts creeping up in your head. We know how difficult it can be to part with a loved one, but it’s important to understand just how much the student benefits from an independent living and foreign exposure.

Being supportive and learn to let him/her go is the key here to let them know that you stand by their decisions. Give your child the information and resources he/she needs to make better decisions and educate them how to be safe and cautious once they reach their study destination. You should encourage your child to cultivate and utilise their “street smart” skills while living abroad.


Help your child with his/her packing. It’s important to pack light, but wisely. Draw up a checklist detailing all the things that he/she will need for the course duration abroad.

Check the weight of the luggage, and see if your child is able to move around with it. Your child will have to carry that luggage around for a while, so it’s important to make sure he/she is able to handle the load.


Work out a plan of communication before the departure date. It is important to be flexible with your plan because it may not always work out that way. Your child may have Internet issues or phone connection delays — so be prepared for such instances.

Don’t be over-demanding and expect them to call you every day. Try and understand their difficulties and make arrangements to connect at a time, which is favourable for your child as well as you.

Make an effort to connect with other parents whose children have previously studied abroad and learn about their experiences.

Students and parents should both have a set of emergency contacts with them at all times. You should note down the contact details of your child’s college representatives or classmates.

Lisette Miranda, CEO of PINC International, started a program on Snapchat to give both parents and prospective program participants an up-close look at day-to-day life with a PINC programme. According to her: “It’s our primary job as program providers to ensure parents that their children are safe and this investment is worthwhile. Once parents are on board though, we’ve noticed how supportive and encouraging they are of their children to make the most of their time abroad.”


By devising a sound financial plan, you can help your child manage his/her monthly expenses well. Use your experience and knowledge to guide your child on all issues related to money.

To limit spending and avoid needless expenditure, make a list detailing expenses that are mandatory and expenses that can be avoided. Try to find out various ways of reducing your child’s expenditure, for example, getting him/her an international calling card.


Each child has different maturity levels. Give it some time for your child to settle down until she/he starts making plans on their own. Have a talk about the financial, social and academic responsibilities with your child. Encourage your child to solve his/her own issues that may arise while studying abroad. Get them to do the bulk of research on matters related to overseas education. This will not only empower your child, but will also help him/her face any challenges that may emerge during his/her stay abroad. Place your trust on your child and give him/her the confidence needed to make his/her own decisions while studying abroad.

Your child is a growing adult who has to live his/her life ultimately the way he/she plans to. Keeping a tab at every step and assessing their movements may not help them much. Don’t over-think that your child will be influenced by the Western culture or so because ultimately it’s we who create our own culture.

Food & accommodation

As a parent, you can teach your child to be more adaptive to different cuisines abroad though they might be used to home-cooked food. You can also teach your child to cook his/her own food to save up on restaurant bills. But avoid calling him/her every minute, asking what he/she had for lunch or dinner. Your child may not be in a mood to eat or might be really busy with the studies so make sure you give some space.

Perhaps you can do some homework and find some local restaurants that serve Indian food. And when it comes to accommodation, you can follow-up with university representatives to find a suitable place for your child to stay.


You may want to visit your child while he/she is living abroad. Plan a visit only at a time that is convenient for your child. You don’t want to be showing up with your luggage during their exam time.

Remember that while it may be a vacation for you, your child still has responsibilities. You may miss your child a lot, but it’s important for him/her to spend some quality time immersed in a foreign culture and engaged with a new company to grow as an individual.

Returning home

Just as you must prepare your child for his/her chosen study destination, you must also embrace the fact that on his/her return to India, he/she may encounter a ‘reverse culture-shock’.

Allow your child a period of adjustment when they first return home. Encourage your child to keep in touch with the people he/she met while studying abroad. These connections can last a lifetime. Listen to what your child has to say — he/she probably might have a great deal of experiences to share with you.

We hope you found our suggestions useful. Why don’t you share your experiences with us? Or tell us your plans for your child’s career.

Last but not least, you can have a detailed conversation with our advisers. They will answer all your questions related to overseas admissions and help you with some additional information that might help you and your child plan better.

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Planning to Study in USA ? – Find University Ranking

study in USA

What is University Ranking and How is It Useful for Plan to Study in USA ?

If you are planning to Study in United States, choosing a university can be a tough job. It requires plenty of research and planning. You might think of comparing school locations, degree programs, tuition costs, and campus life at a variety of schools. It is seen that many Indian students are finalizing their school selection just on the basis of a parameter called ‘University Ranking’ !!!

What are University Rankings?

University Rankings are list of Universities / Schools put out by publications like U.S. News, World ReportForbesNewsweek, and Times Higher Education. These lists summarize ‘best’ Colleges and Universities as per their subjective criteria.

How are these Rankings Determined?

These rankings are not standardized and varies across all publications. So there is no specific answer to this question. Moreover none of the publications is endorsed by any of the US Government Departments. So probably, the Rank of University / School published by such publications is not always the best tool to determine which school to select. However most of these publications are highly respected by stake holders, so you can consider such Ranking as one of the parameters to conclude your decision instead of relying solely on it.

Criteria Used in the Rankings?

There is no set standard to publish these University Rankings, so the criteria depends on who or which publication is ranking the school. This is the reason why there are variety of lists available to summarize best ranked Universities / Schools.

According to the recent report of one of the US publications, top schools are determined based on criteria such as Student Retention, Faculty Resources, Student Selectivity, The University’s Financial Resources, Alumni Donations to the University, etc.

Whereas other renowned US publication describes its criteria as based specifically on what the students get out of their study experience. They include various criteria like Student Satisfaction, Student’s Success after Study, Student Debt, Graduation Rate, Student Academic Success, etc.

So you can see that University Ranking varies a lot and may or may not include criteria which are important to you when choosing a University / School.

How can University Rankings help you Select a School?

This can be one of the parameters in your overall research, but to decide if a school is right for you, it can often be more effective to make a list of parameters that you require in a School / University, and then narrow your search based on your own list of criteria.

Every individual has different perception ! So you should make your decision according to your check list and parameters ! It is You who will be studying at a University / School, so prepare your own checklist of parameters to conclude your decision / selection of University / School in your plan of Study in USA.

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Overview on Education In Canada


Education In Canada

Citizens Education System In Canada:

Canadian children attend kindergarten (pre-nursery education) for one or two years at the age of four or five on a voluntary basis. All children begin Grade One at about six years of age. The School year normally runs from September through the following June but in some instances, January intake dates are possible. Secondary Schools go up to Grades 11 or 12, depending on the province. From there, students may attend University, college or Cégep studies. Cégep is a French acronym for College of General and Vocational Education, and it is two years of general or three years of technical education between high School and University. The province of Québec has the Cégep system.

Post secondary education (Higher Institution in Canada):

Postsecondary education in Canada is available in both Governments supported and private Institutions, which offer Degrees, Masters, Diplomas, Certificates, and attestations which depends on the nature of the Institution and the length of the program for which one is interested in. In Canada, the Postsecondary environment has advanced during the past few years, as Universities are no longer the only degree-awarding Institutions in some jurisdictions. A recognized Post Secondary Institution is a private or a public institution that has been given full authority to award degrees, diplomas, and other credentials by a public or private act of the provincial or territorial legislature or through a Government-mandated quality assurance mechanism.
Degree-granting Institutions in Canada focus on teaching and research. In 2004–05, Canadian Universities performed $8.9 billion worth of research and development, close to 35 percent of the national total.

In Canada, degrees are obtainable at three consecutive levels:

  • Students enter at the bachelor’s level after having completed the Secondary School or the two-year cégep program in Quebec successfully. Most Universities also have special entrance requirements and paths for mature students. Bachelor’s degrees normally require three or four years of full-time study, depending on the province and whether the program is general or specialized.
  • A master’s degree normally requires two years of study after the bachelor’s degree in Canadian universities. This also depends on the course of study.
  • For a doctoral degree, three to five years of additional study and research plus a dissertation are the normal requirements.

Please Note: Canadian universities and colleges are very flexible.

  1. If you want to change programs later, usually you can.
  2. If you want to combine two programs, there are hundreds of possibilities like communication studies and computer science or biology and psychology, or business and economics, usually you can.
  3. If you want to get two degrees at the same time, that is possible too!

Canada World Ranking in education

Canada is now the most educated country in the world, according to a recent report by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).Canada is the only nation where more than half of all adults had a tertiary education (Postsecondary education.) in 2010. After Canada comes Israel ( 45 percent) and Japan ( 44 percent).Other countries in the Top 10 bracket and the percentages of their citizens with Postsecondary education are: United States (41 percent), New Zealand (40 Percent) and South Korea (39 Percent). Norway, United Kingdom, Australia and Finland run neck and neck with 37 percent of their citizens having attained Postsecondary education.

Institutions Count in Canada:

Canada has about 163 recognized (well known)public and private Universities (including theological Schools) and 183 recognized public Colleges and institutes, including those granting applied and bachelor’s degrees.  In addition to the recognized Institutions, there are 68 Universities-level Institutions and 51 college-level ones operating as authorized Institutions, in which only selected programs are approved under provincially established quality assurance programs.

General Admission Process Requirements:

Though admission process and requirements vary from institution to institution in Canada, here we’ll discuss about the most general procedures and requirements to get admission in Canadian universities.
Undergraduate requirements
Undergraduate requirements depend on the type of institution one chooses, this is usually in form of prerequisites and assessments guiding the processes involved in a certain university to offer an academic degree, which varies in different ways depending on if the student is a foreigner or a permanent resident.
For admission in undergraduate level, student must have completed twelve years of academic education, but for postgraduate level it is sixteen years.
Below you can find undergraduate requirements for most Canadian Tertiary Institutions.
All applicants to undergraduate programs must submit:

  • A completed application form;
  • An official high school transcript (or attested copy) (if applicable);
  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended (if any);
  • A detailed chronological résumé to demonstrate educational achievements, work experience, progression, community involvement, volunteer experience, and other related experience; and
  • A Letter of Intent (LOI) that clearly explains why the applicant is applying and outlines the student’s academic intentions.

Applicants who completed high school or any post-secondary studies outside Canada must also submit:

  • Documentation confirming their high school completion was awarded, if not already indicated on official transcripts; and
  • Proof of English language proficiency as specified in the “English Language Proficiency” section.


Finally it is important for you to know that major languages used in Canada are English and French. But most of the universities offer courses in English language. So you need to show your efficiency by means of English Language tests. IELTS is most widely recognized and accepted English language test in Canada, however, some universities even accepts TOEFL. The score that you must obtain in these language tests vary from institution to institution and course of study students choose. Some universities even seek for other medium of English language test assessment. For management students, students may be asked for two years of work experience before being admitted to the university. In most of the cases GMAT is compulsory for MBA students.

Graduates Requirements

Graduate requirements depend on the type of institution one chooses, this is usually in form of prerequisites and assessments guiding the processes involved in a certain university to offer an academic Master’s degree or further studies, which varies in different ways depending on if the student is a foreigner or a permanent resident.
Below you can find the general graduate requirements for most institutions.

  • A completed application form;
  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended;
  • Official documentation confirming professional designations, where applicable;
  • Two (2) letters of academic reference attesting to readiness for graduate studies; For those without recent academic experience, letters from employers attesting to management level experience and analytical writing skills will be acceptable;
  • A detailed chronological résumé clearly outlining educational achievements, work experience and progression, and other related experience; and
  • A Letter of Intent (LOI) that clearly explains why the applicant is applying and outlines the student’s academic intentions.

Applicants who completed undergraduate studies outside Canada must also submit:

  • Documentation confirming their degree was awarded, if not already indicated on official transcripts;
  • A credential evaluation from a recognized service confirming equivalency if the applicant submits a credential from an unrecognized institution or if additional analysis is required by the Admissions Committee; and
  • Proof of English language proficiency.

Note: Where transcripts are in a language other than English, the applicant must provide a notarized English translation of the original transcripts from a certified translator or on official letterhead stationery from the secondary school plus an official original transcript from the institution to the UCW Registrar.

scholarship programs in Canada

Canada is committed to participation in international study and research partnerships that build understanding among peoples, develop global citizens and leaders, and contribute to the development of nations.

Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (DFAIT) is responsible for the Government of Canada’s participation in major International Scholarship Programs. DFAIT provides support to international scholars in Canada, which is often reciprocated by foreign governments which support Canadian scholars in their countries.

Work and Study In Canada

It is possible to work in Canada, while you are here as a student, under any Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s (CIC’s) work programs for students. In most cases, you will need to apply for a student work permit. Working in Canada can go a long way towards helping you establish business contacts for the future and can even help you immigrate after graduation.
You may work on campus at the institution where you study without a work permit if you are;

  1. A full-time student at a public post-secondary institution, such as a college or university, or a collège d’enseignement général et professionnel (CEGEP) in Quebec.
  2. A full-time student at a private post-secondary institution that operates under the same rules and regulations as a public institution, and receives at least 50 percent of its financing for its overall operations from government grants (currently only private college-level educational institutions in Quebec qualify).
  3. A full-time student at a Canadian private institution authorized by provincial statute to confer degrees..

Off Campus

You can also work on campus if you have a valid study permit, You can also work off campus but you must have a work permit. The work permit authorizes you to work up to 20 hours per week during regular academic sessions, and full time during scheduled breaks (for example, winter and summer holidays, and spring break). A work permit does not guarantee that you will find a job. It is your responsibility to look for work. Even if you work off campus, your studies must be the main reason you are in Canada.

University and College Programs

In Canada, there are more than 11,000 undergraduate and graduate degree programs offered in Universities, as well as professional degree programs and Certificates. Most Institutions provide instruction in either English or French; others offer instruction in both official languages.
In Canada, Colleges and institutes offer a range of vocation-oriented programs in a wide variety of professional and technical fields, including business, health, applied arts, technology, and social services. Some of the Institutions are specialized and provide training in a single field such as fisheries, arts, paramedical technology, and agriculture. Colleges also provide literacy and academic upgrading programs, pre-employment and pre-apprenticeship programs, and the in-class portions of registered apprenticeship programs. As well, many different workshops, short programs, and upgrades for skilled workers and professionals are made available for students.

Guide Lines to Applying for Admission in Canadian Universities

If you want to apply for admission in any Canadian Universities or Colleges! It is advisable you ask yourself these questions;
a.    Have I made the necessary researches I needed to?
b.    Are the people I contacted really professions and would be willing to help me all the way?
c.    Have I selected a course of my choice?
d.    How long is the duration of my course of choice? As many courses may last longer than you expect.
e.    What are the necessary steps to obtaining my Visa or study permit?
f.    Where is Canada Located in the world?
g.    What is the climate (weather) condition of the country
h.    How much do I have in my bank account?
i.    How will I sustain myself when I get there?
j.    What is the type of food they have over there?
k.    What is my source of income?
l.    How can I cope with the standard of education there?
m.    What language do they instruct with?
n.    If my primary language is English, how fluent am I in it?
o.    What is my qualification?
p.    What is my academic assessment?
q.    Where can I get expert advice or counseling on all my dealings?
r.    Have I really decided?
s.    What do I need to know about the country?
t.    How is my country going to assist me in all my processes?
u.    Will my age determine my studies?
v.    What is the cost of living there?
w.    Which institution is the best I can afford?
x.    Do I have attitude problems?
y.    What do I think will be my major challenge when I get there?
z.    And finally how and where do I start now?

If you have answers to the above questions, then you are likely to be on track. Please contact us for the for more information because we are here to guide you through the whole process.

More on Work and study in Canada:

Studying in Canada means you can also work while studying. You can even get a three-year work permit after graduation if you apply for it. The basic fat is that it is not too difficult to become a permanent resident after graduation. If you want, it is also possible to become a Canadian permanent Citiizen as soon as 2 years after your graduation!
You may be able to work on or off campus in Canada while you are there as a student. There may also be limited employment opportunities for graduate students, such as teaching assistantships or research assistantships; if you are studying for a master’s degree or a Ph.D., You may be able to work at your Institution as a teaching or research assistant. You should inquire about this possibility when you apply for admission.

Distance education:

There are many Canadian Universities and Colleges that offer courses and programs online. This is for the advantage of those who would not afford going to Canada for studies or those who would want to acquire extra Knowledge about their chosen profession without having to travel all the way to Canada. If you are not able to go to Canada, you can earn a recognized Canadian degree, diploma, or certificate without leaving home. More information about on-line and distance education is available at Canadian Universities.

Working in Canada after Graduation

If you want to work after completing your studies in Canada, you may be eligible to apply for a post-graduation work permit. The following programs can help facilitate this process for eligible candidates:
The Post-Graduate Work Program
This is the program that allows international students who have graduated from a participating Canadian post-secondary institution (University or College) to gain valuable Canadian work experience through a special work permit issued for the length of the study program, up to 3 years.
You will be Eligible if you:

  • Studied full time in Canada.
  • Graduated from a public post-secondary institution, a private post-secondary institution, or a private institution authorized by provincial statute to confer degrees.
  • Studied in a program that was at least 8 months long.
  • Applied for the work permit within 90 days of receiving written confirmation that you have completed your academic program.
  • Have received notification that you are eligible to obtain your degree, diploma or certificate.
  • Have a valid study permit when you apply.

The Canadian Experience Class
This program allows international students who have graduated from a participating Canadian post-secondary institution (University or College) to apply to permanently stay in Canada. In order to qualify, you must already be familiar with Canadian society, be able to communicate in English or French, have qualifying work experience, and also be able to contribute to the Canadian economy.
You will be eligible if you:

  • Plan to live outside of the province of Quebec.
  • Graduated from a Canadian post-secondary institution with at least 1 year of full-time (or equivalent) skilled work experience in Canada.
  • Gained work experience in Canada with the proper work or study authorization.
  • Submitted your application while working in Canada – or – within 1 year of leaving your job in Canada.
  • Have completed an independent language assessment (from an agency designated by Citizenship and Immigration Canada)

For more information, contact us.

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Study abroad in Australia: Tuition Fees and Living Costs

Study Abroad Australia

Australia is one of the countries that charm international students through its impressive natural landscapes, high quality of life and efficient educational system. Australia is home to several high-ranked universities, offering a welcoming and supporting environment and teaching and living conditions that students often praise.

General living costs may be a bit of a challenge for foreigners in Australia, but even so, the country has managed to attract a record number of international students, over 600,000 in 2015.

Read below you will find general information about tuition, overall living expenses and scholarship opportunities for studying abroad in Australia.

1. University tuition fees in Australia

Australia has around 40 public universities, two international and one private university, providing any type of study degree you can imagine, from business and engineering to history and arts. Tuition fees range depending on the discipline you choose to study, degree level and university.

Australia is one of the most expensive countries when it comes to university costs, as the average tuition fee for one year is 33,400 AUD.

Average tuition based on degree level:

  • Bachelor’s degree: between 15,000 and 33,000 AUD/year
  • Master’s and PhD degree: between 14,000 – 37,000 AUD/year
Most affordable universities in Australia

Check the list of Australian universities with the most affordable tuition fees:

  1. IPAG Business School– average tuition fees 15,000 AUD/year
  2. University of New England– average tuition fees 18,000 AUD/year
  3. University of Wollongong– average tuition fees 16,000 AUD/year
  4. Victoria University– average tuition fees 22,000 AUD/year
Tuition fees at top-ranked universities

Here is a list of average tuition fees at the top-ranked Australian universities:

  1. University of Melbourne– average tuition fees 35,000 AUD/year
  2. Australian National University– average tuition fees 36,000-37,000 AUD/year
  3. University of Sydney– average tuition fees 37,000 AUD/year
  4. University of Queensland– average tuition fees 32,000 AUD/year

2. Student living costs in Australia

Average living costs in Australian cities

Generally, students would need between 1,800 and 2,500 AUD/month to cover all their living expenses, including accommodation, food and social activities.

Check the average budget you would need for each of the most popular student cities in Australia:

  • Sydney: around 2,500 AUD/month.
  • Adelaide: around 1,700 AUD/month.
  • Brisbane: around 1,800 AUD/month.
  • Melbourne: around 1,200 AUD/month.
  • Canberra: around 1,000 AUD/month.
Accommodation costs in Australia

Most universities only provide a small number of student dormitories for on-campus-accommodation in Australia. The majority of international students find housing in a homestay with a local family, a rental property or a guest house.

Most common accommodation options for students in Australia:

  • Home stay: costs around 440 – 1,080 AUD/month.
  • Guest houses: prices are between 320 and 540 AUD/month.
  • Student halls of residence: rates start from cost 320 and lead up to 1,000 AUD/month.
  • Rent an apartment: average prices of 1,700 AUD/month

Prices also vary depending on the city; for instance, renting an apartment in Canberra can cost you between 1,400 and 1,700 AUD/month, while Sydney is the most expensive city, especially accommodation wise. Prices for rent for a single bedroom flat can reach up to 2,200 AUD/month.

Other costs associated with accommodation

Apart from rent, your accommodation requires some extra expenses, such as:

  • utilities: up to 175 AUD/month.
  • internet pass: costs around 70 AUD/month.
Food costs in Australia

Groceries are available in local supermarkets and usually require around 80 – 200 AUD/week. Save some money and do your shopping at the cheapest supermarkets, like Aldi, Coles and Woolworths.

The average cost of a meal in an inexpensive restaurant costs 16 AUD while a three-course meal for two is 80 AUD.

Due to the fact that Australia counts a large number of Asian, Greek and Italian population, you can choose from plenty of Asian, Greek and Italian restaurants and taste the specific cuisine.

Transportation costs in Australia

Some universities have a private transport supplier that helps students who stay on campus late or have to reach some difficult areas. The Australian government offers free transport to international students who enrol in the ACTION programme.

  • Depending on the area you are living in, you can benefit from other discounts from state programmes such as QLD (Queensland), SA (South Australia) or VIC (Melbourne).
  • Otherwise, a public transport pass for students would cost between 30 and 70 AUD/month, depending on the city.
  • You can also get around the city using a bicycle and Melbourne is one of the most bike friendly cities; you can rent a bicycle with around 40 AUD per day.
Extra costs

Books, supplies, and other learning materials: from 500 to 1,000 AUD/year.

Health insurance: rates start from 25-30 AUD/month

3. Funding & student support

The Australian government supports international students and grants them enough choices in aid for their studies; annual state investment exceeds 200,000,000 AUD.

Examples of scholarships for international students:

  • Australia Awards – scholarships and fellowships funded by the Australian Government that cover full tuition fees, travel expenses and part of the monthly living costs among others
  • APEC Women in Research Fellowship Program –financial support dedicated to female researchers from developing APEC economies who plan to pursue a research programme in partnership with Australian universities and research institutions
  • Endeavour Postgraduate Awards – offers financial support to international students who enroll in a Master’s or PhD degree. The scholarships include tuition fees, travel allowance, establishment allowance, monthly stipend as well as health and travel insurance.
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