The UK is the most popular study abroad destination followed by Canada and the USA. Based on the applications for the year, the most popular country is the UK at 49%, followed by Canada at 36%, and the USA at 18%. The UK is also home to many highly-ranked universities offering an excellent student experience. Indians prefer to study in the UK because of the numerous scholarships and financial aid that are granted to students. Now in 2023, from new T-level vocational courses to Reduction in the maximum fee that UK universities can charge, here are the changes the Rishi Sunak government is making and how they will impact Indians.
UK PM Rishi Sunak promises to crack down on “rip-off” degrees:
Rishi Sunak has promised to crack down on “rip-off” degrees that don’t lead to graduate jobs. The Government has said limits will be imposed on courses that have a high drop-out rate or low proportion of graduates getting a professional job. The Prime Minister, Education minister, Robert Halfon, and Education Secretary, Gillian Keegan, have related the term “rip-off” to courses they consider as “poor quality”, which have poor employment outcomes, and don’t benefit the economy.
New T-level courses have been introduced each academic year since 2020. But a recent report urged the government to pause plans to pull funding from other vocational courses, like BTecs, until T-levels are fully ready to replace them. The idea is that T-levels cater for students who want an alternative to A-levels but do not wish to take an apprenticeship, which usually requires as much as 80% of a student’s time to be spent with an employer. T-level grades are based on a combination of exams, coursework and completion of the industry placement.
Reduction in the maximum fee that UK universities can charge:
The Rishi Sunak-led UK government announced that it would reduce the maximum fee that universities can charge for classroom-based foundation year courses from the £9,250 (approximately Rs 9,93,853) currently to £5,760 (Rs 6,18,875).
Drop foundation courses:
In the UK, a foundation course is a preparatory program designed for international students or students who may not meet the entry requirements for direct entry into an undergraduate degree program at a university. The foundation course helps bridge the academic gap and provides students with the necessary skills and knowledge to succeed in their chosen degree program. Foundation courses are usually required for study in medicine and veterinary sciences but this has been found to be not necessary for studies in subjects like business. Foundation courses will be discontinued for business.
UK Visa fee:
Applicants for visas from around the world, including Indians, will be charged higher health surcharges and fees to support the UK’s state-funded National Health Service (NHS). This development was revealed by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak. Teachers, police officers, junior doctors, and other public sector workers will receive a pay hike between 5 and 7 percent, acknowledged the British Indian leader who was under pressure to accept the recommendation of an independent pay review.
“If we’re going to prioritise paying public sector workers more, that money has to come from somewhere else because I’m not prepared to put up people’s taxes and I don’t think it would be responsible or right to borrow more because that would just make inflation worse,” Sunak told reporters at a Downing Street press conference.