Best Universities to Study Abroad in England – UK University Requirements

Between 2021 and 2022, almost 700,000 students were studying abroad in the UK. Of this number, 87,000 students were from India! This lines up with the historic data spotlighting England as one of the most popular study abroad destinations of all time. With world-class universities, incredible graduate employability figures, hands-on work experience opportunities, and more, this is hardly a surprise. Are you among the thousands of students keen to discover the best universities to study abroad in England? Gradstar Global shortlists some of our top picks to get you going.

Study in the UK Requirements

England, alongside Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland, is a part of the UK – one of the most popular study abroad destinations globally. While the UK university requirements of different programs and study levels will vary, you will typically need the following to apply:

  • Your most recent academic transcripts and certificates
  • Proof of identity (passport/national identity card)
  • English language proficiency test scores
  • Personal statement
  • References
  • Work history
  • Funding & finance information

At undergraduate level, you can apply for up to five programs through the UCAS platform. Once you complete the base application, UCAS sends your details off to your chosen universities. You can also apply to your chosen universities directly, at both undergraduate and postgraduate level.

After you have your offers in and confirm your top pick, you will receive a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS). You need the CAS to apply for the Student visa for the UK!  

Study in Great Britain – Our Top 5 Best Universities to Study Abroad in England

Now, for perspective, the UK ranks 90 universities in the QS World University Rankings 2024. This includes the 2nd and 3rd place for the best universities in the world, the University of Cambridge and the University of Oxford respectively!

A UK university education is synonymous with the highest degree of academic qualification. UK universities embody the highest standards of quality, spending millions each year to upkeep and exceed those standards.

It’s a pretty huge undertaking to sift through these universities for the best options to study abroad. After all, the “best” for you probably depends on what you are looking for! This could be the best in terms of location, budget, program availability, and so on.

Our shortlist of the best universities to study abroad in England takes into consideration the following criteria:

  • Academic reputation
  • Affordability
  • Graduate employability
  • Location
  • Scholarship availability
  • Minimum eligibility criteria

So, without further ado, let’s take a closer look at some of our top picks for students keen to study in the UK.

1. Coventry University

Coventry University is a public research institution dating back to 1843, originally the Coventry School of Design. It is easily one of the best universities to study abroad in England that we love to recommend to our students. This world-ranking university offers you future-focused, academically excellent degrees at affordable tuition ranges!

For five years straight, the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) named Coventry University as the top UK institution for overseas student experience. Coventry commits to providing truly global opportunities to students, from career-centered programs at home and opportunities to go beyond borders for an international academic experience.

Speaking of career-centering, Coventry’s Talent Team works with students before and beyond graduation for your professional success. The Talent Team tailors your access and exploration of opportunities to your field of study to give you a head start in the job market. These efforts are paying off, with Coventry University landing as the Guardian University Guide’s top Modern University for career prospects (2021-2022).

English Language Requirements

IELTS score between 5.5 and 6.0


  • India – HSSC 60% or above (undergraduate)
  • India – HSSC 65% or above (postgraduate)

Tuition Fee Ranges

£16,800 – £19,850 per year

Scholarship Opportunities

  • Early Payment Discount
  • International Pathways Scholarship


2. University of Suffolk

The University of Suffolk is quickly scaling the ranks of UK universities to the top. And for good reason – the university lands a top 10 spot for both Lecturers & Teaching Quality and Facilities for the WhatUni Student Choice Awards 2023!

Though much younger than many of the (at times centuries old) UK universities, Suffolk, operating since 2007, has much to offer. According to the Guardian University Guide, 92% of Suffolk graduates successfully land jobs or further education opportunities within 15 months of graduating!

This reflects the focus on employability baked into the programs at Suffolk. Experiential learning and professional opportunity are at the core of its academic instruction. Students are welcome to complete internships during their studies or during summer breaks. Typically, these can be between 4 to 8 weeks long.

To support students in their career aspirations, Suffolk hosts its very own online job board. Here, students and employers can explore part- and full-time opportunities as well as permanent employment options!

English Language Requirements


IELTS Academic: Overall 6.0 with no component less than 5.5 OR Indian Standard XII (CISCE and CBSE Boards): 70% overall


IELTS Academic: Overall 6.5 with no component less than 5.5

Tuition Fee Ranges

£14,616 – £17,100 per year

Scholarship Opportunities

  • Vice Chancellor’s International Excellence Scholarship
  • Vice-Chancellor’s Global Impact Scholarship
  • International Merit Scholarship


3. University of Chester

The University of Chester is another of the best universities to study abroad in England if you’re looking to study in the UK. It lands at #5 as WhatUni Student Choice Award’s University of the Year for 2023! Students also picked the University of Chester for the #3 spot in Lecturers and Teaching Quality and #4 for Halls and Student Accommodation.If you’re keen to study in Britain, you might like to know that according to the Complete University guide, Chester is one of the top 5 UK universities in the North West of England.

One of the highlights of the university’s programs is its Work-Based Learning model. In the second year of their study, undergraduate students take a 5-week WBL module involving hands-on work experience! Chester maintains a professional network of organizations for these placements.

With this deep industry focus, the University of Chester’s 200+ programs offer a launchpad for international students into the global workforce.

English Language Requirements

IELTS Academic: Overall 6.0 with no component less than 5.5

IELTS Academic: Overall 6.5 with no component less than 5.5

Tuition Fee Ranges

£13,450 – £17,250 per year

Scholarship Opportunities

International & merit-based scholarships at undergraduate and postgraduate level

4. Nottingham Trent University

Nottingham Trent is a world-ranking university for good reason. It snagged the 2023 Modern University of the Year title by The Times and Sunday Times. It also received the University of the Year title in the student-voted WhatUni Student Choice Awards! Along.

One of the major perks NTU offers students is its incredible graduate employability support. Each of the university’s programs integrates work experience into the curriculum. With a professional network of more than 2,000 companies, NTU supports students with placements and internships, as well as part-time and graduate jobs. The RateMyPlacement Awards of 2023 rank it in the top 10 for work experience!

In fact, employability is such a core driving force for NTU that the Employability team’s support extends beyond your graduation. NTU will themselves extend you a paid internship offer if you’re not in employment or further study one calendar year after graduation!

English Language Requirements

Overall score between 6.0 and 7.0 depending on the degree program and study level

Tuition Fee Ranges

£17,150 – £17,700 per year

Scholarship Opportunities

International Scholarships

5. University of Exeter

The University of Exeter is one of the prestigious Russell Group of universities, occupying a top 160 spot for both the QS and THE World Rankings. With outstanding academic standards and leading research output, a degree from Exeter fast-tracks your professional and academic success! Understandably, it is one of the best universities to study abroad in England – and in the world.

The university enjoys a 92% graduate employability rate for students within 15 months of graduation. Its career services are national award-winning!

The University of Exeter prioritizes enhancing your higher education opportunities through diversifying your options. You can take a placement year abroad or sign up for fieldwork outside the UK. You can also mix and match your degree, by opting for modules to complement your main major. With over 400 courses spanning 40 study areas, you have plenty of options for your pathways into further education.

English Language Requirements

IELTS Academic: Overall 6.5 with no less than 6.0 in any component

Tuition Fee Ranges

£23,700 – £29,700 per year

Scholarship Opportunities

  • Global Excellence Scholarships
  • Green Futures Scholarships
  • University of Exeter – GREAT Scholarships

Rounding Up

The UK has over 150 higher education institutions, and nearly a 100 of these are world-ranking universities. Trying to pick the “best” out of this lot is a pretty challenging task – especially when “best” can be quite subjective. We hope that our picks for the best study abroad universities in England give you a starting point for your search. At the same time, we do want to preface that there are hundreds of study abroad options to explore in the UK. Gradstar can help personalize program recommendations to your needs and preferences – so get in touch today to find your ideal study in Britain opportunity!

Date Published: Nov-24-2023

Our Dream Makers are expert listeners, educators, career consultants and student supporters. They co-design your study abroad experience with you to empower you to reach for the stars. Because dreams deserve a helping hand.

About the author

This blog was written by Gradstar Global Education.