Considering University Overseas? Some of the Most Popular Expat Student Destinations

Contributed Article, 16 January, 2014

There are a number of reasons why studying abroad may appeal to people who are college age. It can offer a chance to experience a new country and learn another language while at university, it can save significantly on the cost of getting a degree, and can also serve as a way of getting a foot in the door if you want to live in another country long term.

Many countries offer special visas for university students, and some offer scholarships and other incentives for students from overseas in certain fields, too. However, when deciding where you might like to spend the three or four years of your college course, there are other things to weigh up. How well respected are degrees from a given country? Will you be allowed to work while you are studying? What will your situation be with regard to staying or going when you have graduated? Here are some of the most popular countries for students, and some of the facts about studying in each of them:


Annual tuition costs in Canada are around $15,000, and as an American on a student visa, you will be permitted to work while you are at college, and can stay and work for up to three years without the sponsorship of an employer after you graduate. Students from other countries will have different terms to their visas, so it is worth researching this if you are considering applying to a Canadian college. Canada's universities offer the same level of diversity in their courses as American or European colleges, so whatever field of study you are interested in you should have no trouble finding somewhere that offers it.


A good choice for those from English speaking countries who do not speak a foreign language or want to learn one as part of their college education, Australia has a number of prestigious universities, including the University of New South Wales, Sydney University and the University of Melbourne. Costs are not especially low, with annual expenses ranging from about $14,000 to $35,000 (American dollars), however there are some very good scholarship schemes aimed at attracting strong international students, particularly in science related degrees. One of the main reasons why Australia is a good choice is that it has been relatively unaffected by the global recession, and still has a strong economy and job market. Emigrating to Australia is notoriously difficult, but expat students who graduate there are often recruited by companies in the local area through government labor initiatives. This means if you'd like to live and work there, and even gain citizenship, studying in Australia gives you a huge advantage.

The UK

As with Australia, England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales are not cheap places to study, but can give you a lot of advantages once you graduate if you would like to live and work in the UK. British degrees are very highly regarded around the world, particularly if you attend a top tier university like Oxford, Cambridge or St Andrews, which are looked on as favorably as American Ivy League universities by most employers. The law in the UK does require you to either get a job or return home immediately after your course ends, however, so there is some pressure in terms of getting a graduate position if you want to remain in the UK for any time at all after you graduate. Good courses to consider are English language studies, mathematics, finance and business, and STEM subjects. Liberal arts courses can be harder for international students to get onto in the UK, with only Kings College in London offering this as an option.  


One of the big draws of studying in Germany, is that there are no tuition fees. German universities are also very well regarded in certain fields, particularly engineering and business. The main hurdle for most students is that a high school education from a lot of countries doesn't always qualify you for the course you may want to take, so you may have to do some other studies in between, and you will also have to pass a proficiency test in the German language. Being fully bilingual is not essential, but you will need a passable level of German to get through this stage. When you graduate in Germany, you have one year in which to find a job or take on an internship if you want to stay.

Studying abroad can offer a whole host of benefits and experiences, and can give you more options when it comes to finding a job after you graduate. It is, however, important to know the requirements and laws around studying in the countries you are considering applying to, so you don't end up faced with any complications further down the line.

Tags: business | interest | Students | Europe | Study | economics | Canada | Germany | Ireland | Australia | law | education | fees |



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