20 May 2019 | Student Life

If you’re thinking about going to university in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland you will need to consider how much it is going to cost you in tuition fees and other living costs.

To help you out with your money, we’ve broken down the main costs, which will help you understand where you will be spending most of your allocated budget on a monthly basis.

Tuition Fees

The Difference Between ‘Home’ And ‘International’ Students

The cost of your tuition fees depend on whether you’re a ‘home’ student, which is an EU resident able to study in other EU countries, or if you’re a ‘international’ student, coming to the UK to study from outside the EU.

Other factors include whether you are studying in Scotland, if the course is undergraduate or postgraduate, or if you are eligible for any helpful loans or grants which will ease your financial commitments.


Home Students

English universities can charge home students up to £9,250 for an undergraduate degree, while Welsh universities can charge as much as £9,000. Northern Irish universities can charge home students up to £4,030 and £9,250 for students from elsewhere in the UK.

Universities in Scotland don’t charge Scottish students for enrolling on undergraduate courses, while students from the rest of the UK are currently expected to pay tuition fees of up to £9,250. The government has provided details on loans and available bursaries.

Postgraduate study costs vary depending on the university and subject. There are loans of up to £10,609 available, while funding is also available for home students from research councils or the universities themselves. Some employers also offer postgraduate study sponsorship.


International Students

International students from outside the EU pay tuition fees depending on their chosen university and course. Fees range from £10,000 to £38,000, with social sciences and humanities courses costing the least, and laboratory-based clinical courses costing most.

How Will Brexit Affect Universities And Students?

Things look unclear beyond the 2019/20 academic year, although the Russell Group is working with the government to secure the best possible outcome for UK universities, research faculties and students.


Cost of Living


The average cost of university accommodation in the UK depends on the location. For example, the Complete University Guide from Times Higher Education revealed students living near Imperial College London were found to be paying £700 a month more than those studying at Durham University.

In 2018, Hull came first in the Natwest Student Living Index, as the UK’s most cost-effective university city. Cardiff came second, where undergraduate rent averaged just £124.26.

The 2018 Save The Student National Student Money Survey revealed the average UK student pays £406 rent per month, and an additional £37 for utilities, such as water and internet.



Food is the third biggest student expenditure behind tuition fees and rent. The National Student Money Survey revealed that in 2018, the average student in the UK spends £108 per month on food, which works out at around £27 per week.



Students spend an average of £47 per month on travel costs. Savvy students benefit from a range of discounts, including the Young Persons Coachcard, or using the Virgin Trains best fare finder tool.


Going Out

Socialising is a big part of the university experience, with the Natwest Student Living Index revealing that UK students spend an average of 29.7 hours a month socialising, compared to 90.3 hours studying. The National Student Money Survey revealed the average UK student spends £64 a month on socialising.


Other Essentials

Other costs include books and your mobile phone. Also consider how much money you’ll likely spend on clothing. Start as you mean to go on, putting together a rough budget to keep on top of your expenditure, whether that’s on a weekly or monthly basis.

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List of References

Find a Masters
Times Higher Education



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