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Country Guides
Study in the UK

Hosting over 500,000 international students, the UK is the world’s second leading study destination (after the US), largely thanks to the strong global reputation of UK universities. An impressive 71 UK universities feature in the QS World University Rankings® 2016-2017 (again, only the US has more), and four institutions are currently ranked within the global top 10.

Despite uncertainties following the nation’s referendum on EU membership in June 2016, UK universities are united in their efforts to continuing welcoming students from across the EU and the entire world. Indeed, the country is home to many of the world’s most internationally diverse campuses and communities – and this, for many, is a large part of the appeal of studying in the UK.

Click on the tabs below for information about top universities in the UK, popular student cities, and practical information about applications, costs and student visas – including the possible impact of the UK’s exit (‘Brexit’) from the EU.

Fast Facts

  • Sovereign state with four member states: England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland
  • Capital city: London (also the capital of England and largest city in the UK)
  • Capital of Wales is Cardiff, of Scotland is Edinburgh and of Northern Ireland is Belfast
  • Constitutional monarchy with parliamentary system with bicameral legislature
  • Queen Elizabeth II is head of state, a largely ceremonial role
  • Head of government is the prime minister (Theresa May as of 2016)
  • Developed country, and the world’s sixth biggest economy
  • Was the world’s first industrialized country
  • Member of European Union and Commonwealth of Nations, as well as the Council of Europe, the G7, the G8, the G20, NATO, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the World Trade Organization (WTO)
  • 14 Overseas Territories and 3 Crown Dependencies
  • Official language: English (Welsh has resurged as a second language in Wales in recent years, and other regional languages include Scots and Gaelic)
  • Popular sports include: football (soccer), tennis, rugby union, rugby league, golf, cricket, rowing, boxing, motorsport and horse racing
  • Traditional British cuisine includes the ‘full breakfast’, fish and chips, Sunday roast, shepherd’s pie, Cornish pasties, haggis, Yorkshire pudding, Arbroath Smokie and Welsh cakes.
  • Currency: Pounds Sterling (£)
  • International dialing code: +44
  • Internet domain: .uk
  • Time zone: Greenwich Mean Time (same as UTC); British Summer Time in summer (UTC+1)
  • Cars drive on the left.