Studying abroad can be a rewarding educational experience, but it can also be expensive. Know what to consider when applying to universities, and what financial support may be available.
Funding study abroad
In order to secure a visa, many universities or immigration departments require you to show you have enough money to support yourself during your studies. This doesn’t just apply for tuition fees, but also for general living costs like food, bills, or trips back home.
The most popular study destinations can often be the most expensive, and as an international student it’s likely you’ll be charged more than home students for your program.
Tuition fees vary for all universities and may also vary per subject and program, and is the aspect of studying abroad that students find most difficult to finance. Fees often need to be paid upfront, adding to the struggle.
Popular ways of covering the cost of tuition fees include through a sponsor such as a parent, a loan or with a scholarship.
As an international student, you won’t always be entitled to work with a visa. It’s worth checking out what kind of work you’ll be allowed to do on a country’s student visa, and any extra steps you need to take to make that happen. Having a small income from part-time work could help significantly with living costs and help towards any course costs such as books and equipment.
Not all scholarships would cover the cost of living expenses like accommodation on top of tuition fees, so it’s important to have the money to support yourself in part.
Scholarships for international students
Many universities or organizations offer scholarships and bursaries for students. These can be on the basis of academic achievement or financial need. Scholarships specifically for international students do exist, but there is a high level of competition to be awarded one.
Finding study abroad scholarships
Scholarships can depend on your home country and where exactly you’re planning to study, so it’s always a good idea to have in mind a country and some university options you’d like to choose.
Check universities fees and funding information to see if any of their scholarships apply to international students like you. Some countries or universities may be actively seeking to increase the number of international students — increasing the availability of these kinds of scholarships.
Organizations offering international scholarships
Some organisations are able to provide funds for international students from a wide variety of countries, including:
- ADB Japan Scholarship Program
- Aga Khan Foundation International Scholarship Program
- Commonwealth Scholarships
- EACEA Scholarships
- Fulbright Foreign Student Program
- Heinrich Boll Foundation Scholarships
- Joint Japan World Bank Scholarships
- MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program for Africa
- OFID Scholarship Award
- Open Society Foundation Civil Society Leadership Award
- PEO International Peace Scholarships
- Rotary Foundation Global Study Grants
- UNESCO Fellowships Programs
- Wells Mountain Foundation Scholarships for Developing Countries