New study destinations

first_imgStrict visa regulations and falling employment opportunities in UK are now prompting Indian students to look towards alternative institutes in Europe.Here is our list of the top emerging study destinations.Between 2000 to 2009, European universities saw the number of Indian students increase from 3,348 to 51,556 with the UK alone,Strict visa regulations and falling employment opportunities in UK are now prompting Indian students to look towards alternative institutes in Europe.Here is our list of the top emerging study destinations.Between 2000 to 2009, European universities saw the number of Indian students increase from 3,348 to 51,556 with the UK alone logging a rise from 3962 to 36,105 students. Today however, strict visa regulations and falling job opportunities in the UK along with an increase in initiatives to attract foreign students by universities on mainland Europe, are prompting many Indians to experiment with new destinations for their higher education. For example, instead of taking the traditional route of completing her studies in England, Judith George, 17, decided to look for course options in Poland. “I wanted to study in Europe but in a country which was both affordable as well as unique.I found out about Poland through an education fair held in my school. The beautiful campuses, interesting programmes and lack of fierce competition immediately prompted me to apply there,” says George, who completed her schooling in Delhi.In the last few years French universities have received nearly double the number of applications from students in India, while Ireland has clocked a 120 per cent increase to date in interest from Indians for higher education opportunities in the country. “While cities like London, Manchester and Birmingham still continue to attract a fair share of students, many Indians are also considering fresh options.Most of them feel that it is easier and cheaper to study on mainland Europe, Scotland or Ireland while getting the same quality of academics and professional exposure,” says Ajay Singh, a Mumbai-based education consultant. So whether it’s to experience a new culture or simply explore the rich academic heritage of the region, there are plenty of new options to choose from in Europe today.advertisementPolandOne of the youngest members of the European Union, Poland serves as a geographical and cultural crossroads between Eastern and Western Europe. With over 1 lakh international students coming to pursue various degrees here, the Polish education system has quickly been expanding over the last few years. The number of higher education institutes in the country has quadrupled in the last ten years.Interestingly, the Polish education system dates back to over 650 years ago. The magnificent Jagiellonian University in Krakow, for example, was founded in the 14th century, and today is recognised as one of the oldest universities in Europe. Similarly the University of Warsaw can trace its roots back to 1795. Today the university has been consistently ranked as one of the top 100 higher education institutes of the world by QS and the University Web Ranking system. “When I visited universities in England, I felt as if I was back in India because of the large number of students from back home. Having to study with such large concentrations of international students was not my idea of higher education. I wanted to be someplace where I could truly experience European culture and history. Poland was a perfect choice.The professors are warm and helpful and universities are not overcrowded. You get time to really enjoy the country and experience a relaxing yet stimulating approach to academics. It is also much cheaper to study here than in other European countries,” says Abhijeet Patel, student from Warsaw University. “My parents were skeptical at first because they didn’t know much about the country. After visiting the university, they too were bowled over. The campus is so picturesque and facilities for students are of top quality.The libraries and architecture in particular are phenomenal both because of their history and design,” he adds. Currently there are over 400 courses offered in English in Poland, many of them at the undergraduate and postgraduate level. Poland’s medical schools, in particular, have been attracting the attention of many international students. “Many students are now looking towards foreign countries to study courses that are difficult to get through in India.Engineering and medicine have both witnessed an increase in interest over the last five years, especially as these programmes are now being taught in English,” adds Singh. The Polish higher education system is generally divided into three levels: the undergraduate level (Licencjat, Inynier), postgraduate level (Magister), and doctorate (Doktor). This system applies to all fields of education in the country except for law, pharmacy, psychology, veterinary medicine, medicine and dentistry, which involve only a two-stage system (postgraduate and doctorate).Top institutes1. Warsaw University,2. Wroclaw University of Technology,3. Jagiellonian University,4. Medical University of Warsaw,5. Wroclaw School of EconomicsAverage cost of living: Euro500 – 600 per monthAverage tuition fees: Euro2000 – 3000 per yearadvertisementFranceWhether its infrastructure, social life, affordability or heritage that you are looking for, French universities have something to offer every international student. Here students are guaranteed to enjoy themselves both inside and outside the classroom. The country’s standing in global rankings reflects its commitment towards education with a total of 35 French universities making it to the 2012-13 edition of the QS World University Rankings; 22 of which were ranked in the top 500. “Universities frequently organise conferences, seminars, field trips, projects and outdoor activities.There really never is a dull day when it comes to living here. Speaking of academics, there is little to complain about either. Professors here are all extremely knowledgeable and always willing to help you gain access to the best resources and infrastructure. They also encourage a lot of independent thinking and never dissuade you from trying your hand at a new topic or sub-discipline,” says Vineet Mehra, 26, a student at Institut Superieur de l’Aeronautique et de l’Espace (ISAE) in Toulouse.Small tutorial sizes and heavy instructor intervention are additional highlights of pursuing your studies here. The smaller class sizes and involved instructors seek to ensure that every student has the time and the attention needed to learn, ask questions and clear their doubts. “It’s common to find students and teachers catching up after lectures are over. It actually helps you perform better as a student when you have such a high level of interaction and engagement with your professors,” he adds.Nuclear, space and aviation programmes in particular are very popular amongst Indians. Those who attend universities in France often do so because of the technology they offer. “The emphasis laid on university infrastructure and resources is admirable. No matter what subject you choose to study, you will be guaranteed the best reading material, lab resources and equipment for your studies. Some institutes even go out of their way to procure special books and journals for their students,” adds Mehra.Other upcoming disciplines include teaching, languages, art, history, medicine and law. Today international students in France also have the chance to study a wide number of courses in English. Universities also offer add-on courses in French for those looking to learn the language alongside their studies. “It’s not compulsory to learn but it will make living here easier. Also, if you want to work in France after your studies, you will need to know the language.Fortunately when you are living here, it is much easier and faster to pick up the language because you always get a chance to practice,” says Mehra. With special Campus France offices across India ready to help students with their applications alongwith a number of attractive scholarship opportunities and visa benefits being extended to Indians, it’s little wonder then that student interest in French institutes has steadily been on the rise.Top institutesl. Ecole Polytechnique,2. Ecole Normale Superieure,3. ParisTech,4. Institut superieur de l’aeronautiqueet de l’espace,5. INSEAD, HEC Paris, Sorbonne UniversityAverage cost of living: Euro1000 – 1200 per monthAverage tuition fees: Euro170 – 2500 per year( Euro3000 – 10,000 for business and management programmes)advertisementIrelandAll it took was one trip to the University College Cork for Sanya Kapoor, 19, to fall in love with Ireland. From the ornate Tudor Gothic quadrangle to the variety of specialisations available in the field of law, Kapoor could think of no better institute to attend for her undergraduate degree. “My only criteria was to study at an institute where my choice of programme was available. But when I visited Cork I realised how important quality of life is as well. From the food to the living conditions to the various extra-curricular opportunities, students here have just about nothing to complain about. You need to have a fun and comfortable life in order to focus on your studies,” she explains. The anticipated growth to over 2,000 students from India in Ireland over the next 18 months, coupled with a dramatic 120% increase in Indian student visa applications last year, is evidence enough that Ireland is rapidly growing its share of the huge Indian education market.This mission coincides with the various Education in Ireland fairs conducted over the last few years in Chennai, Bangalore, New Delhi and Mumbai. These fairs have all focused on promoting the country’s various education qualifications and rich cultural experience amongst prospective students in India. “Ireland’s education institutions are already making a name for themselves in the Indian market, and are successfully building a very strong brand under the Education in Ireland banner.The overall aim is to position Ireland as a quality and respected education destination for Indian students,” explains Kevin Sherry, Enterprise Ireland, Head of International Sales and Partnering. Education in Ireland is the international brand promoted by Enterprise Ireland for the Irish international education sector. Nearly 17 different Irish higher education institutions and colleges attend the fair each year to enhance their links and partnerships with India.”International students have a significant impact on the Irish economy. In the short term they deliver fee income, local expenditure and job creation in Ireland, and in the medium-to-long term, they build strong strategic relationships with future key influencers in India which can deliver major benefits in the form of trade and investment over future years,” says Richard Bruton TD, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Ireland. “On the jobs front, we can anticipate over 650 new jobs on the basis that approximately 13 new jobs are estimated to be created for every 100 international students that come here. These Indian students also play an important role in deepening the business, cultural, education and research ties between India and Ireland,” he adds.Top institutesl. University of Cork,2. Trinity College Dublin,3. University of Limerick,4. Dublin Institute of TechnologyAverage cost of living: Euro800 – 1000 per monthAverage tuition fees: Euro9000 – 20000 per yearScotlandWith a population of around five million, Scotland retains its own, distinctive culture within the UK. The country is famous around the world for its breathtaking Highlands scenery, tartan, whisky and friendly inhabitants. It is also home to a number of cosmopolitan cities, international festivals and a thriving education scene. With 19 universities, Scotland is credited for having more world class institutes per head of population than any other country in the world. Additionally, all these institutes have embedded employability into their learning and teaching strategies.As a result of which graduates from Scottish universities have the highest rate of employment and enjoy high starting salaries six months after graduating than anywhere else in the UK (according to HESA, 2011). Today there are over 4,000 international students at Scottish universities and together they represent 180 different countries. “I was keen to live and study in a country where I felt right at home but at the same time would have exposure to different cultures and people from various walks of life.Scotland was the right choice for me because it offered all this and at the same time I was able to gain admission in a programme and university of my choice,” says Mihir Pathak, 27, a graduate of Edinburgh University. Scots are also quickly making a niche for themselves in the fields of medicine, engineering and science, politics, history, arts and sport.Scotland’s legacy of great innovators includes John Logie Baird, an alumnus of Scotland’s universities, who invented the television and Professor Higgs, who first posited the existence of the Higgs Boson particle while a professor at the University of Edinburgh. Interestingly, Scotland was the first country in the world to introduce universal school education and was one of the first European countries to establish a quality assurance system for its educational institutions. “While universities in Scotland have long been recognised for their excellent academic facilities and quality of research, it’s still taken a while for Indians to realise their potential.This is mostly because access to information used to be limited five or ten years ago. Today there are offices and centres of various Scottish universities in India itself who are available to help students with their applications, living arrangements and visas,” says Pradeep Sra, an education consultant from Delhi. “Many institutions have also tied up with their Indian counterparts for various student and faculty exchanges.This has also helped familiarise students with the various programmes and support available at Scottish universities,” adds Sra. With its significantly lower cost of living than the rest of the UK, strict student safety measures and plans for reintroducing a poststudy work visa for students, this is one country certainly worth checking out for your higher studies.Top Institutesl. Edinburgh University,2. University of Glasgow,3. University of Aberdeen,4. Robert Gordon University,5. Queen Margaret University,6. University of Dundee,7. University of St. AndrewsAverage cost of living: Euro800 – 1000 per monthAverage tuition fees: Euro13000 – 25000 per yearGermanyAfter completing his PhD studies in the UK, Avinash Patel had no doubts about which country he wanted to pursue his post-doctoral studies in. “I really admire both the German passion for research as well as the support given to academics in the country. I knew for a fact that I wasn’t ready to go back to India. Germany was the best choice for me,” says Patel, who is currently a postdoc at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology. “The institute feels like home. You are encouraged to interact and engage with your colleagues and everyone is very approachable.The facilities are of the highest quality. Furthermore, living in Dresden, one of the most picturesque and historic cities in the country, is an additional bonus,” adds Patel. Be it medicine, science, humanities or management, German institutes have a wide variety of programmes to offer international students. Interestingly, both national as well as international students are charged nominal tuition fees at all public universities here. Students and researchers can also apply for scholarships and grants from various German funding organisations such as the German Academic Exchange Service and the DFG, German Research Foundation.”There are some great opportunities for pursuing your higher studies and research here. Institutes do take the application round very seriously. It’s important to find a research group or programme that matches your interest and to demonstrate long term interest in your application,” says Dipthi Somesh, who is pursuing her doctorate from the Berlin Bradenburg School for Regenerative Therapies. The number of foreign students in Germany has doubled since 1995, from 140,000 to 280,000 at the start of the 2013 academic year and that number is only set to increase in the years ahead. “Students are quickly realising the potential of studying in Germany.Not only are the living costs and tuition fees more affordable but the country is also home to some of the best research institutes and universities in the world. Additionally these days one no longer needs to know the native language to study in Germany. There are several programmes that are taught in English,” says Naveen Chopra, Director, Chopra Consultants.Top institutes1. Max Planck Institutes,2. Heidelberg University,3. Free University of Berlin,4. University of Cologne,5. University of Munster,6. Dresden University of Technology,7. University of BonnAverage cost of living: Euro600 – 1000Average tuition fees: Euro200 – 15,000last_img

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