Indian students drop English universities

| | Updated on: Apr 02, 2014
image caption

Fallout of strict visa rules

The number of Indian students taking up places at universities in England has fallen significantly, highlighting the adverse impact of the British Government’s tightening of the student visa regime.

The Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) found in its latest report, ‘Global Demand for English Higher Education’, that there was a notable decline in the number of entrants from South Asia, particularly India and Pakistan, at both undergraduate and post-graduate levels.

The number of Indian students fell from 18,535 in 2010-11 to 13,250 in 2011-12 and further to 10,235 in 2012-13.

In 2010-11, the number of Pakistani students was 4,580, which fell 38 per cent to 2,825 in 2012-13.

The report said the fall in overseas students was particularly noticeable in post-graduate courses. The reduction in entrants since 2010-11 from India was a whopping 51 per cent, or 7,000 students, while from Pakistan, it was 49 per cent, or 1,400 students.

The report also found a corresponding hike in the number students from India going to the US and Australia, indicating a clear case of flight-away from the UK.

“International students enrich our universities and colleges — and our society — academically, culturally, and through their contribution to the economy,” said HEFCE Chief Executive Madeleine Atkins.

“Supporting high quality international education is a crucial part of ensuring that the UK continues to engage with, and benefit from, the increasingly inter-connected world,” she added.

Under Britain’s current Tier 4 student visa regime, students face tougher questions about their destination, limits on their ability to work and tighter rules on their English-language capability. Critics of the rules, including Business Secretary Vince Cable, have warned that they would discourage international students who are worth as much as £3 billion a year to UK universities.

A spokesperson for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills said: “International students make a huge contribution — boosting our economy and enhancing our cultural life. That’s why there is no cap on the number of legitimate students who can study here. By working with other countries, we will continue to attract international students and promote the UK’s expertise in education.”

However, Nicola Dandridge, CEO of Universities UK, said the Government needs to do more to attract qualified international students to the country.

“This should be supported by a welcoming climate for genuine international students, with visa and immigration rules that are proportionate and properly communicated,” she said.

Published on April 02, 2014

Follow us on Telegram, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Linkedin. You can also download our Android App or IOS App.

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

You May Also Like

Recommended for you