EU Students Turn Away from British Institutions Amid Drastic Tuition Fee Hikes
Ever since the UK voted to leave the EU in 2016 in a decision known as Brexit, there have been several consequences for higher education. One of them has been a drastic reduction in the number of EU students studying in the UK.
HIGHER TUITION COSTS
According to a survey conducted by Study.EU, British universities are expected to lose as many as 84% of potential EU students, due to the ‘home student’ status and access to loans now being revoked. The numbers are dire indeed, projecting an approximate loss of 120,000 enrolments, or 25% of international students following the drastic hike in tuition fees. With a recent announcement declaring student loans no longer being accessible to EU students, around 56% of prospective students will not be able to commence their studies for financial reasons.
Brexit is changing the landscape of higher education in the UK. International students coming to the UK from August 2021 onward will see higher tuition costs than those paid by domestic students. With the 2021/2022 academic year soon approaching, higher tuition fees and an average fee increase of around 99% will become a significant deterrent for EU students, thus pointing to even steeper declines in future applications. What does this mean in numbers? While current European students at British universities are required to pay an annual tuition fee of up to £9,250, international fees for undergraduate students start at around £10,000 and go up to £38,000 or higher for medical degrees according to The Reddin Survey.
However, on a more positive note, EU students who would still like to pursue postgraduate education in the UK may find the weak pound sterling soften the blow of higher tuition costs. If the country’s currency remains weak, studying in the UK can stay somewhat affordable for international students.
"We shouldn't be trying to build up barriers to access education; we should be trying to break them down," comments deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland Michelle O'Neill in light of the strong competition British universities now face on the continent.
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