Chinese students’ applications to UK universities up by 30%

Jul 11, 2019 by

UK higher education is benefitting from tensions between US and China, say experts

Applications from Chinese students to study at UK universities have gone up 30% since last year, with numbers exceeding those from Northern Ireland for the first time, according to official statistics.

The Ucas university admissions agency revealed on Thursday it had received almost 20,000 undergraduate applications from students in China this year (19,760, up from 15,240 in 2018), compared with 18,520 from Northern Ireland. The real figure will be higher as not all Chinese applications are made via Ucas.

The number of students from mainland China studying in UK higher education has more than doubled in the last decade. Commentators say however that recent tensions between China and the US are further benefitting British universities as Chinese students look at destinations other than America for their studies.

Welcoming the figures, the universities minister, Chris Skidmore, said: “International students bring huge cultural and economic benefits to the UK. These figures show we are making good progress in our ambition to open up world-leading higher education to anyone who has the potential to benefit from it and I’m confident that we can go even further.”

The Ucas figures also revealed an increase in the number of British 18-year-olds applying for places, up 1% on last year to 275,520 despite a 1.9% fall in the overall 18-year-old population of the UK. EU applicants have also risen 1%, to 50,650 despite the Brexit uncertainty, and Ucas reported a record number of applicants from outside the EU at 81,340, an increase of 8%.

Source: Chinese students’ applications to UK universities up by 30% | Education | The Guardian

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