Student Finance For EU StudentsDr Shafiq
Students from 27 European Union member states studying outside their home states are called EU Students. EU countries provide student finance to support these students in their studies, helping them pay tuition fees and living expenses.
But students must understand what student finance options are available to them and the criteria. So, let’s jump right in to learn more about student finance for EU students.
Overview of EU Student Finance
Tuition Fees for EU Students
Tuition fees are not the same in all the EU member states. Different countries have different tuition fee structures for higher studies. Besides, tuition fees may also vary based on the nationality of students. For example, EU students generally pay less tuition fees than non-EU students.
EU Countries with No Tuition Fees for EU Students
Some countries in European Union do not charge any tuition fees for EU students. Many countries offer government-subsidized tuition fees, while others offer free higher education for home and EU students.
The following countries offer no tuition fee for EU students:
|Finland||Parts of Germany|
As a result of their tuition-free policy, students and countries have hugely benefited, and many of these countries have achieved a higher standard of education because of this policy.
EU Countries with Lower Tuition Fees for EU Students
Many universities in the European Union charge lower tuition fees for EU students. It’s because some EU member states have a policy to offer lower tuition fees to EU students compared to non-EU students.
Again, some EU member states generally have lower tuition fees than other EU countries. It’s because of the affordability and lower living expenses in these countries.
Countries with lower tuition fees for EU students are as follows:
EU Countries with Higher Tuition Fees for EU Students
Several countries in the European Union charge higher tuition fees to EU students than domestic students. Although it’s a controversial issue throughout the EU, proponents argue that a higher tuition fee is charged to maintain a higher standard of education.
Here are the countries charging higher tuition fees for EU students:
Scholarships And Grants For EU Students
EU-funded Scholarships for EU Students
EU offers several scholarship schemes for EU students. These scholarships are awarded to eligible EU students who want to pursue higher education within the EU countries.
Here are some prestigious EU scholarships for students from EU member states:
|Scholarship Name||Level of Study|
|Erasmus Programme+||Undergraduate, Postgraduate, Ph.D.|
|NN Future Matters||Postgraduate|
|Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions||Doctoral and Postdoctoral|
National Scholarships and Grants for EU Students
Besides EU-funded scholarships, almost all EU countries have scholarship schemes to provide additional financial support through national scholarships and grants. These are generally need-based scholarships and grants provided to meritorious students and can vary from case to case.
Student Loans For EU Students
EU students can avail of student loans while studying at a university or college in Europe. Most EU countries offer student loans for EU students. Types of student loans will vary depending on which country a student chooses. For example, EU students are eligible for tuition fee loans and living expenses loans from the UK government.
In many European countries, both government and private lenders provide student loans for EU students.
The eligibility criteria and application process for student loans for EU students will vary based on the country. But there are some general rules and common criteria across all countries. For example, to apply for a student loan in any EU country, you must have a certain residential status and a bank account in your host country. Plus, you must also be accepted to a university or college in that country.
As part of the application process, you must fill out and submit an application form and provide necessary documents, such as proof of your income or bank statements. You have to research the available student loan options and the application process beforehand.
While taking up a student loan, you must consider the repayment options and interest rate. As a general rule, EU students can make repayment every month over a period of time. Some lenders may allow you not to make any repayment until you graduate. The interest rate depends on the loan provider, but it is generally between 5 to 7%.
Changes To EU Student Finance After Brexit
The United Kingdom was a significant part of the European Union until Brexit. Like many other factors, UK’s leave from European Union has significantly changed EU student finance. Student finance for EU students after Brexit has become much more difficult.
Impact of Brexit on Tuition Fees for EU Students
After Brexit, EU students in the UK are classified as international students. It has a direct impact on tuition fees. Although EU students now pay the same tuition fee as UK residents, some universities have removed or reduced tuition fee discounts for EU students since the academic year 2021/22. As a result, they now have to pay higher tuition fees than before.
Changes in Scholarships and Grants for EU Students
Brexit has also changed the scholarships and grants for EU students in the UK. After Brexit, the UK government has announced that Erasmus+ funding will no longer be available to UK students as well as EU students studying in the UK.
The UK government will no longer provide any EU-specific funding and scholarships to UK and EU students studying in the UK. However, the government still offers some scholarships and grants for EU students, but in reduced numbers.
Access to Student Loans for EU Students After Brexit
Although Brexit has caused many changes in scholarships and student finance, student loan UK for EU students is still available to some extent. Government-backed student loans have become more expensive now than they were before Brexit. Moreover, getting student loans from private lenders has become more difficult for EU students because private lenders now focus on providing student loans to UK-based students.
Financial Considerations For EU Students
Cost of Living for EU Students
The living expenses of EU students will vary depending on which country they choose to study. But students must consider major expenses while studying, such as accommodation, transportation, health insurance, and medical expenses.
Students generally have multiple options for accommodation, including university-run halls of residence, privately rented houses, shared apartments, etc. Apart from what type of property you choose, the accommodation cost will also vary based on its location, quality, and available facilities.
As an EU student, you must also consider transportation costs as a part of your living expenses. You may not have to worry about it if you live on campus. But you must keep a separate budget for transportation if you plan to live outside the campus.
Health insurance and medical expenses are also significant in your living expenses. You will need medical insurance while studying in an EU country. Plus, it’s wise to keep a little budget for medical expenses in case you need medical care.
Budgeting Tips for EU Students
A budget plan will help you understand and distribute the expense as well as track where your money is going. As a student, having a budget plan will be pretty handy. While making a budget plan, you should include the cost of food, accommodation, transportation, and other necessities.
Creating a budget plan is not enough if you do not manage your expenses well. You must manage your expenses according to the plan. Always track your spending and adjust the budget when necessary.
Many EU students choose part-time employment to earn extra money. It will help you offset your living cost and study expenses. EU countries allow students to work in part-time jobs. But you should know the rules and regulations and how many hours you can work weekly.
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Additional Resources And Support For EU Students
Student Support Services
Universities in the EU countries are very concerned about a student’s overall well-being. They provide various student support services. You can take help from counseling and guidance services at your university when you face difficulty in your personal or academic life. They will help you cope with your mental health issues.
Most, if not all, universities have academic and career support where you can seek assistance like mentoring programs, skills workshops, and career counseling. If you have any disability, you should take help from disability support services. They provide access to adaptive technologies, disability-friendly accommodation, and other necessary resources.
EU Student Networks And Associations
You will find many EU student networks and associations. Being a part of these networks has some perks. For example, you can connect and forge relationships with alumni and faculty members.
You can feel a sense of community and meet industry professionals by joining networking events. Most importantly, these organizations advocate and represent EU students and their rights and interests. So, you can raise your voice over different issues there.
Almost every European Union member states provide access to student finance for EU students in the form of student loans and grants. All you have to do is research the application process and eligibility criteria and file an application with due process. Contact us to learn more about student finance or universities in Europe.