UK sees 54% surge in Indians applying for study visas

Indian students now possess nearly seven times the number of study visas granted in 2019.

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The UK Home Office has disclosed a substantial 54 percent increase in the number of sponsored study visas granted to Indian students compared to figures from 2022. This notable increase underscores a significant preference for the UK as a destination of choice for Indian students pursuing higher education.

The detailed analysis and presentation of these findings have been carried out by Gradding, a study abroad platform.

Remarkable surge

The numbers unveiled a remarkable surge, signifying how Indian students now possess nearly seven times the number of study visas granted in 2019. More specifically, the UK issued approximately 500,000 sponsored study visas, with the noteworthy revelation that nearly one-third of these were granted to Indian students.

Key insights

The data indicates that a total of 142,848 sponsored study visas were awarded to Indian students, reflecting a remarkable surge of 49,883 visas or 54 percent compared to the previous year ending in June 2022.

Significantly, the Graduate Route, which permits students to extend their stay in the UK after finishing their studies, witnessed Indian students receiving 42 percent of these extensions.

Moreover, it’s noteworthy that 20 percent of students whose visas expired in 2022 made the choice to transition to the Graduate Route upon completing their studies, with the trend being anticipated to persist in 2023 and is poised for further expansion in the upcoming academic year.

Changing trends

Mamta Shekhawat, the founder of Gradding, highlights that students are increasingly attracted to the UK due to its exceptional “value for money.” She asserts that the UK provides a cost-effective education, with average expenses being lower than those in countries such as the United States and Australia.

International enrollments in UK universities have experienced a notable transformation in recent years. In 2020, the majority of international students originated from Greece and Ireland, comprising 21 percent of all enrolments. However, the situation underwent a significant shift in 2021.

Nonetheless, in both 2022 and 2023, China and India have emerged as the two leading sending markets, together constituting 41 percent of all international enrollments. This shift can be partially attributed to recent tensions between India and Canada, which have influenced numerous students to choose the UK as their preferred destination for higher education.

Increasing demand

Scholarships have witnessed a significant increase in demand, with a 10 percent rise compared to the previous year. Notably, the University of Essex in the UK is offering valuable scholarships worth £10,000 for Indian students enrolling in one-year master’s programs.

The UK government has proactively taken steps to streamline the visa process for Indian students. This includes the reintroduction of the Graduation Immigration Route, which enables Indian students to work in the UK for up to two years after graduating without the need for a tier-2 visa.

Additionally, Indian students can now anticipate receiving their UK visas within 15 business days, which greatly facilitates seamless travel between India and the UK.

Immigration route

In contrast to the US or Canada, the UK presents the advantage of one-year postgraduate degrees, rendering higher education more cost-effective and accessible for Indian graduates.

The Graduation Immigration Route bolsters the employability of Indian students in the UK job market, drawing students from various corners of the world. Whether you are a working professional or a recent graduate, obtaining a postgraduate degree in the UK can notably enhance your chances of landing your desired job in your chosen field.

In the academic year 2020/21, the UK exceeded its 2030 target for international student enrollment by a decade, hosting over 600,000 international students. Among major countries, the UK and Canada have experienced the most substantial surge in international student enrollment in recent years.

Nathan Yasis

Nathan Yasis

Nathan studied information technology and secondary education in college. He dabbled in and taught creative writing and research to high school students for three years before settling in as a digital journalist.

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Nathan Yasis

Nathan Yasis

Nathan studied information technology and secondary education in college. He dabbled in and taught creative writing and research to high school students for three years before settling in as a digital journalist.

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