With spiralling tuition fees, moves to leave the European Union and rumours that the UK may start to limit the number of student visas issued annual, this week we decided to look at other options across Europe where you might get better value for money. The Netherlands is the largest provider of English-language courses in mainland Europe, with over 2,100 international study programs. The country is also famed for its low cost of living, exciting contemporary cities and reasonable tuition fees of £1,656 (HK$15,909) on average. English literacy levels are incredibly high, so you don’t need to worry about being able to speak Dutch. You are also likely to experience smaller classes, and perhaps even a range of course not available in other countries.
Germany offers very low fees, or even free tuition in many cases. English taught-programs are rare at undergraduate level, although they are more common at a postgraduate level. Learning a second language, especially one as useful as German, is never a bad thing. Clearly many feel the same way, as international students make up 12% of the student population. Again, most cities have a far lower cost of living than many UK or US locations, and German urban culture is a global byword for cool.
If you are happy to learn another language in order to pursue your studies at a more reasonable cost, then Spain is an excellent option. Most courses are taught in Spanish, although there are a handful available in English. Tuition fees run to an average of £577-£1,086 (HK$5,543-HK$10,433) for undergrads and £1,120-£1,273 (HK$10,759-HK$12,229) for graduate courses. France ranks amongst the cheapest destinations in Europe, with public universities charging as little as £160 (HK$1,537) for an undergraduate courses and £217 (HK$2,084) for a Masters course. However, private universities do charge significantly more. Again, most programs are taught in French, but there are over a thousand programs taught in English. Living costs in Paris are relatively high, but there are other provincial and equally prestigious institutions throughout France.
In Norway tuition fees are free (with the exception of some specialist courses), although living costs here and in other Scandinavian countries can be high. However, Norwegian cities are amongst the safest and most beautiful in Europe. There are also around 250 masters programs taught in English and an equal number of bachelors courses. Lastly there’s the Czech Republic, where those who wish to study in English can do so for around £3,500 (HK$33,547) a year in locations with comparatively cheap living costs. Travel is also a huge bonus in each of these locations, with international train travel in Europe a cheap and affordable way of exploring the Continent as students often enjoy special discount prices.
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