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Issues Overseas, Solutions and Advice, Student Debt

“Save £25,000 at university and join the ‘tuition fee refugees'”

A good website too find bachelor/master and post grad degrees abroad is: http://www.bachelorsportal.eu/

You can also find some in English

Welcome to the £9,000 tuition fee refugees. The number of British students applying to Dublin’s Trinity College has jumped by 20% to nearly 2,000 this year. At University College Dublin (UCD), applications from students with British A-levels have surged 37% from 800 to around 1,100. The University of Groningen in the Netherlands, where many courses are taught entirely in English, has seen the number of applicants from Britain quadruple in the last two years alone.

British 18-year-olds are fleeing the prospect of a £50,000 bill for studying at home – and finding they can save as much as £25,000 over three years by studying abroad as well as enjoying a life-changing experience.

In Denmark, tuition fees for students from within the EU are zero. In the Netherlands, they are around €1,700 a year (£1,330), and it’s even possible to access Dutch state grants worth around €500 (£390) a month (see page 5). Irish institutions such as Trinity and UCD, ranked among the top universities in Europe, charge just €2,250 a year (£1,760) to EU citizens.

It has also emerged that a significant number of UK students have applied to universities in the EU as an “insurance” against failing to achieve the grades they want and having to go through clearing. Many British “Russell group” universities now demand A-level scores of AAB and above, while similarly-ranked Dutch universities accept lower grades – though they are much tougher (almost brutal, say some) about weeding out underperforming students in their first term.

“It’s not exactly a flood of students fleeing the new tuition fees in Britain, but we are seeing much more interest,” says Mark Huntington, who runs astarfuture.co.uk, which has since 2006 offered a free advisory service to British students and parents considering higher education opportunities abroad. There are now more than 1,200 degree courses in Europe (not including Ireland) taught entirely in English, while in the Netherlands alone 20 universities are teaching in English.

“The overall cost of a three-year course in Holland, taking in tuition fees, accommodation and living costs, will be around £24,000 compared with the £50,000 or so it now costs in the UK,” says Huntington. But, as he warns on his website, “we don’t believe you should go abroad just to save money and there are lots of other reasons why studying abroad is a good idea.

“It is also worth bearing in mind that even though a degree abroad may be significantly cheaper than an equivalent qualification in the UK, you will possibly have to pay out more up front than if you were to study at home.”

Not being able to speak a word of Dutch, Danish or Flemish does not seem to be a problem. “You could survive the whole way through a course in Holland without learning a word of Dutch,” says Huntington. “I wouldn’t recommend it, but it is possible.”

Hania Thurlow, 18, from Norwich, left for Maastricht University yesterday a day after learning she had got A*AB in her A-levels. She initially planned to go to the University of Exeter, anticipating three A grades, but was deterred by the costs.

“The fees really put me off,” she said. “I know you can take out loans and don’t have to repay them straight away, but it’s still a huge debt. Accommodation costs are lower too. In Maastricht I will pay €375 (£293) rent a month for a room, but Exeter wanted £125 a week (£540/month). Even travel is cheaper – I can fly home from Eindhoven for around £30 on Ryanair, less than the cost of going to Manchester.”

 

Read More: http://www.guardian.co.uk/money/2012/aug/17/save-25000-university-tuition-fee-refugees?newsfeed=true

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