The main decision you will need to make is what country, city or place you would like to conduct your studies. The world is a big place and Europe houses so many opportunities for you and your academic career. Here we have a summary of the most popular academic destinations to give you a head start on your research.
Degree course fees in France are significantly lower than in the UK and it is one of Europe’s largest countries as well as one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations. Students who decide to cross the English Channel to study in France reap the benefits of becoming part of one of the most prestigious education systems in the world. With the added bonus of a rich social life thanks to the numerous bars, restaurants, cafes, museums and galleries; French universities are renowned for attracting international students each year.
The opportunity of studying in Germany will put students at the heart of Europe and they’ll never be far from what the culturally rich country has to offer them. Germany is the most popular country worldwide for international students to go to, after the USA and the United Kingdom. Germany offers relatively low tuition fees and with it being the home to one of the ten most popular spoken languages around the globe, students are eager to jump on the plane.
Tuition fees in Spain are among the lowest in the Europe so the possibility of studying in this beautiful country is more plausible than you think. Whilst studying in Spain, you have the opportunity to learn the second most spoken language in the entire world and as it is the third most popular choice for international students, you can make a host of valuable connections around the globe.
Iceland offers a brilliant university system, a high quality of life and a stunning landscape. Its relatively low tuition fees make it a popular destination for international students as well as its reasonable cost of living. Students who study in this beautiful country have the change to explore its amazing geography and take part in activities such as ice climbing and bathing in volcanically heated swimming pools!
What countries are a part of the European Union?
Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway are a part of the European Economic Area (EEA) as well as the countries above. Switzerland isn’t a member state of the EU or the EEA but has an agreement with the EU which allows the country and the citizens to have, broadly, the same rights as if it were.
Studying in Switzerland
Swiss universities have a very good reputation for academic excellence paired with low tuition fees – not bad for a small country in Western Europe! They even had three universities in The Times Higher Education World University Rankings in 2013-2014. Switzerland is multilingual and depending on where you choose to study you may find yourself picking up phrases in French, German, Italian or Romansh! Each linguistic area is shaped by the cultural and historical influences surrounding it, so it is best to conduct research before you dive straight in. Due to the Bologna process, institutions in Switzerland generally follow the cycle of a Bachelor’s Degree; then Masters Degrees; and followed by Doctoral (PhD) degrees.
Education in Switzerland is made up of a dual system including the higher education sector and the professional education and training sector (PET). The higher education sector is made up of 10 Cantonal universities (the word canton means district in French). There are 26 different cantons in Switzerland, and they each have their own courts, laws and governments.
Universities of Applied Sciences offer practical and vocational training in business, engineering, IT, health and social care and many more. Universities of teacher education provide education, and training and research opportunities for future education professionals. Lastly, the Federal institutes of Technology, of which there are two, are made up of Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETH) Zurich and École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL)
What is Erasmus?
Erasmus+ is a part of the EU and is a programme that offers education, training and is designed to bring together opportunities for students and staff to study, train, volunteer and teach abroad. It offers fantastic chances for students to spend a full academic year or shorter studying in another country as a part of their degree programme at home. To find out if your UK institution is a part of this scheme you can check here.
If you are not sure about where you want to study, whether it is abroad for the entire degree or in the UK with the opportunity of studying abroad, you should contact direct universities about their Erasmus+ programmes so you don’t miss this amazing opportunity. Erasmus offers UK students the chance to gain the experience of studying abroad without the pressure of studying their entire degree course in another country.