Giving the UK a competitive edge in the international student market 2020/21

20 May 2020

The UK is a top destination for students from all over the world who want to study at the best universities. Around three in 10 students at Russell Group universities are from outside of the UK. Those international students bring huge benefits to the country – culturally and socially, in terms of new ideas and skills, financially through their tuition fees, and in terms of soft power and networks that are vital to our future international relations, trade and investment potential.

The impact of Covid-19 is wide-ranging but will inevitably see fewer students studying abroad, and the global competition for those students will be fierce. It is critical that universities and the Government work together to make sure the UK retains its competitive edge in attracting these students by:

  • marketing the UK and its world-class universities as open for business and emphasising that the UK is a safe destination to undertake a degree or postgraduate degree
  • continuing and enhancing visa reforms so as not to deter top talent 
  • making agreements with other countries to recognise the value of each other's online courses and degrees

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A competitive edge for the international student market

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