Grants, loans, scholarships...which is which, how do you find them, who's qualified to receive them?
More to the point....how can you get one??
A grant is the sum a university gives towards the cost of your education. A grant may also cover living expenses, depending on your circumstances, and any other needs. Grants can be given on the basis of need, merit or a combination, and some will allow you to use the money in the best way you see fit.
Check our scholarships page for a starting list of universities that have good grants of some kind available for international students.
Another great resource we've found is US Scholarships for International Students, which spells out specific financial offerings for international students from 100 of the top universities in the US.
Some universities offer loans to international students. It may also be possible to arrange a loan in the UK before you go — rare, but not unheard of. Additionally, if you have a US citizen who would act as a co-signer, many US banks and financial companies will grant loans to international students. Just remember, if you do take this option, bang! goes coming away from university debt-free.
The prototypical University of Europe exists as a collection of old, pretty buildings sprinkled through the historic centre of your average, fairy-tale European town, indistinguishable from all the other buildings around them but for a discreet plaque by the door.
Europe is the land of exchange. It seems like every student in the world who wants to take a year or term out to study abroad descends on Europe with high hopes of self-discovery and Broadening of Horizons. Within the continent itself, the ERASMUS program generates thousands of criss-crossing exchangers every semester.
If you want to escape our Island, why look further than across the channel?
You'll see mention of the Bologna Process cropping up in a number of our European uni write-ups; it matters to you for all kinds of reasons if you want to study in one of the 47 countries that have now signed up to it. Simon Sweeney's explanation of this fairly complicated new educational development is the clearest and most succinct we've seen.
Germany’s educational reputation is perhaps the best in the world after the US and UK. The snag is that all international students must pass stringent German language tests to study at most good universities in Germany. This has lead to the bizarre contradiction that the country is among the most popular destinations for exchange students, but one of the least popular for full degree-taking students.