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From bustling cities to alluring countryside and rich history to modern significance, the United Kingdom has it all. The four countries that make up the UK - Scotland, England, Northern Ireland, and Wales - have a combined culture and history as well as their own. Choose to study abroad in the UK for a semester or year consisting of academic opportunity, cultural immersion, and experiences of a lifetime.
1) Academic Life: The United Kingdom has a very structured academic system with incoming freshman already being placed on a subject track, and education being focused on individual motivation requiring dedication to outside research. Grades are largely based on single pieces of work rather than a compilation of work over the course.
2) Language: Courses are taught in English, however the accents may throw you at first! Don't worry -most people are very understanding.
3) Housing: Most students choose to live in student housing in the form of flats or dorms. Both catered and non-catered options are available, with most return students supporting the non-catered choice. Keep in mind that international students are frequently housed with freshmen. If you would like a more mature environment, look into halls that don't usually house incoming students.
Here is some information on the top study abroad cities, by country, in the UK.
While studying abroad in the UK, take advantage of the vast history, cultural landmarks, and classic British pastimes. Activities include: viewing a rugby or football game, exploring Edinburgh's and Cardiff's castles, drinking beer in a pub, riding the London Eye, visiting Titanic Belfast, or enjoying high tea.
Luckily, the UK offers a rail card which reduced your train fare by 1/3. It costs PS28 and pays for itself in 3 trips. The UK is very easy to travel via train and studying within one UK city gives access to all of the UK in a short, comfortable journey.
One semester: For student living in the EEA or Switzerland, a visa is not necessary. For those outside these countries, you will not need to apply for a visa, but you will need to show appropriate documentation of studying at a UK university upon UK arrival. This student visa is valid for six months and does not allow you to work. Further information may be found through the UK Border Agency.
Year: Again, EEA members and the Swiss do not need to apply for this. If you plan to study for a full academic year, you will need to apply for a Tier-4 Visa. This will cost PS289 and needs to be obtained before UK arrival. Further information may be found through the UK Border Agency, as well.
Living in the UK can end up being pretty expensive, so here are some scholarships for you to explore!
An amazing opportunity awaits those who choose to study in the UK -a country rich with advancement in a vast array of academic fields and a spirit and culture to draw you into a lifestyle that will result in new friends, new experiences, and a new way of viewing the world.
K.Leigh is a senior at UC Santa Cruz who spent a semester abroad in Manchester, UK. She aspires to work in the publishing industry and hopes to find herself back in the United Kingdom. Read her study abroad articles on K.Leigh's blog.
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