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    I have a friend in Kentucky, USA. Shes just about to start 11th grade (Year 11 basically).

    I asked her if she would consider having her college education in the UK. She said she would love it, and asked me all about how to go about it and how much it would cost, but of course I just do not know and I cannot find any information about it.

    Can anyone help?
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    Everyone applies through UCAS, so she might wanna look at this. Not sure about tuition fees though, apart from the fact they're higher for overseas students than home ones. Ask PQ for more info .
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    Thanks, can anyone provide an insight on the american system? DO they have the tuition fees aswell? THis is so i can explain to her in terms she understands..
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    yes they do. big fees. ours are smaller. but if she comes as a foreign student they are expensive. tell her to stay where she is.
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    Wont she receive any kind of help like we do? From either the American or British system?
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    Wait a minute, are you talking about a-levels or uni? "College" is free over here, university will be uber expensive.
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    think its universities not colleges that he/she means..

    tell your friend that if she can go to a good university (eg. an Ivy League university) in the states, to stay there. What system does she do though, normal american one where SATs and SAT II exams are taken, or an international one?
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    portugal, profiles are there for a reason its HE.

    Anyway I am talking about university. She isnt especially bright, its hard to judge but she is probably a C student in most subjects in UK terms.

    So basically to be an international student here, you have to be rich? That really is a shame..

    Yes she doing the normal American system.... she is american after all...

    Any more help will be very much appreciated.
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    Please..........
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    Well, I think even as an international students fees are less over here than in america? Although Im not sure. Also, for international students grades tend not to be so important, after all theyre providing the Uni with alot more money than the students from the UK do..
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    What about student loans? are they entitled to this?
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    well if she can afford the prices of unis in america, she can almost for sure afford them in the uk!

    and yeh with grades there is a big speculation (if u can call it that as its almost for sure true everywhere) that they are more lenient...

    as for the student loans..nt sure how it works..sorry!nt much help there

    (and sorry cudnt be bothered to golook at ur profile)
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    I think loans are only for home students.
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    Thanks!! Excellent info PQ
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    Well, I'm winding down on the process right now. ( from New Jersey, going to UCL in the fall provided my AP scores satisfy the conditional)

    Well to the questions on the edu. system in the US:

    - we call your "Universities". Both colleges and universities overe here. What distinguishes between the two is that universities usually have a higher volume of students.

    - Oh dear lord do we have tution fees! Fees have raped many a students' pockets and have caused fear and loathing to those accepted. The state Universities though give substantially lower fees for citizens of their own state whereas out-of-state students are charged higher fees (not to mention the added burden of dorm expenses). A good example is the University of California, Berkeley.
    In-state student tuition fees: $5,858
    aka about 2,929 pounds
    Out-of-state tuition fees: $14,690
    aka about 7,345 pounds

    Total In-state budget (living in dorms): $20,066
    Total In-state budget (living at home): $12,128
    Total out-of-state budget: $34,276

    This is actually considered a cheap university. The Ivy Leagues and Liberal Arts Colleges are above $40,000 (20,000 pounds per year). Plenty of American students would throw themselves at a UK uni for cost alone. Some have gone to Canada where the tuition is free even for us.

    -we don't have anything like UCAS in America. Tell your friend that an advantage to applying to the UK is that she can apply 6 slots with one flat price. In the US each college application costs about $65 (32.50 pounds) to make. And also, many colleges (unless you're using your college app) require their own unique essays to be written. And all the colleges usually ask for more than one large (over 500 words) essay and several essay prompts (below 250 words). So your friend should be prepared to do A LOT of writing her senior year/12th year, better to tell her to start writing while she's a junior/11th year! Here are some of our essay topics for each college so you guys get a feel.

    Johns Hopkins University: If you had only $10 to plan a days adventure, where would you go, what would you do, and who would you take with you?
    Princeton University: -Tell us about a person who has affected your life in a significant way.
    -if you were given a year to spend in any way you wish, what would you do?
    -describe an experience that defines who you are.
    - Describe the accomplishment that has given you the greatest satisfaction to this point in your life.
    University of Chicago: -Think about how your favorite food is prepared, packaged, or served, and by whom. Do you eat it in a distinctive manner? At a special time? In a certain place or with a select company? Most importantly, explain how this everyday food sustains you in a way no other meal can not.
    - if you could balance on a tightrope, over what landscape would you walk? (no net)

    The essays are a VERY important part of the app, and we often find ways to make ours extremeley unique and clever. These are mostly to gauge or individual personalities than if we're suitable for a course. Because frankly, unless you're applying to a special 7-year med program or the engineering school you're not expected to have declared a major (what you call, subjects or degrees) yet.

    - US schools consider International Baccalaurette scores, but they really base admissions on the SAT Is above all. Secondary, they'll look at SAT IIs. And if she applies to the insanely competitve Ivy-Leagues, Liberal Arts, or the top 20s, she should make sure here AP scores are very high. The GPA and class rank (where you stand amongst your peer grade-wise, are you in the top 10 students in your class? etc)

    -some truths to the American system:
    * out-of-state students are at an unfair disadvantage to in state students. State run colleges are by law required to put thier own students first on the list no matter how much better qualified the out-of-stater is. So if you're from New York and you want to go to a California school, good luck with that, really.
    * If you're rich, a college, Ivy Leagues are guilty of this, would be more willing to take you in (for obvious reasons)
    * If a relative of yours has attended the same University you're applying to, it'll give you a considerable edge over the other students. If that relative has donated money to the college recently, oh wow, the admissions committe willl DEFINITELY pay more attention to you.
    * If you're intelligent, and you're from a working-class background or had numerous financial hardships and had to do a lot of work to support your family, the Ivy Leagues adore this and will often overlook lower grades.
    * GPAs (grade point averages), are an important factor. Even if one high school grades noticabley easier than another high school some other part of the country, the colleges would usually be none the wiser. Say if high schooler 1 is an A student. high schooler 2 is a B student. But if high schooler 1 transfers to high schooler 2's school, she'd be a C student, it wouldn't matter. high schooler 1 would get the college slot as long as it says "A" in her high school transcript (list of classes that she took and the grades recieved for her entire High school career).
    * colleges do "Athletic recruiting". If you're a star athlete on your sport team, and the college needs more kinds of those athletes. You can get into the college no matter how low your grades or test scores. Case in point, Columbia University mistakened me for a fencer and was going to offer me a place until I set them straight. Sucks doesn't it?
    * The faculty will NEVER interview you. They won't waste their time on you as long as you're not accepted yet. You'll get interviewed by alumni instead. These interviews hold very little bearing on acceptances. They're really there just to "make sure the applicant isn't an axe-murderer". Hehe, it's a common saying among alumni interviewers.
    * getting accepted into the Ivy Leagues, is NOT as easy as you think. For an American, it's probably harder to get into these schools than Oxbridge. The competition is unbelievably fierce because aside from test scores you'd have to have some really awesome extracurricular activites (like building bridges in Peru for a non-profit, conducting scientific research with professors at an Institute, winning Intel -yes the computer company- competitions and have your work patented, etc). And have to contend with a lot of rich prep-school kids who'd be let in with low scores, ethnic minorities (blacks, hispanics, native americans) who'd be let in with low scores, and the athletic recruits who will be taking your spot. If your school doesn't practice grade-inflation like the rest of the US (the practice of giving an A when you don't deserve it just to keep school standards up), you're screwed!!!!! If you blew it on the SAT I, you better believe you're screwed! And no amount of 700s on the SAT IIs, 5s on the AP, and As on summer college-courses will ever help that! Think about it, even being valedictorian (ranked 1st in the class) and salutatorian (ranked 2nd) it won't be enough! There are 7 ivy leagues. You're applying to 1 of them. Think about how many High Schools there are in the US, and they all have valedictorians and salutatorians. Now think about how many of those kids have 4.0s, especially factoring in grade inflation when your school has none. Then think about how many have 1500s on their SAT Is, there's plenty! Not to be pessimistic, but no rational US teen should be sure they'll get into the Ivy Leagues. I've known way too many top-10ers students from my school whose Ivy League dreams were crushed and cried over attending their in-state colleges. It's not a pretty sight
    * Like there are plenty of top Unis in the UK outside of oxbridge, there are a lot of good colleges outside of the Ivy Leagues. MIT, UC-Berkeley, UCLA, Duke, Georgetown to name a few. And the Liberal Arts colleges are good too, Williams, Reed, Amherst, etc.
    * beware of the US News and World Report listings. Colleges play a petty game of politics to get mentioned in this list. Look at their methodology tables and you'll see why this list should be regarded with extreme suspicion when choosing a right college for you. ex) Alumni giving rates. Really now, who gives a f*ck? Some schools are going to have richer alumnis and some schools will have alumnis not hesitant to reach out of their pockets and hand some money their way. Colleges have been bumped out of the top 10 just for critisizing the editors. (example: Reed College critisized the rankings. Stanford University even voiced a complaint on Reed's removal from the list).
    * interesting sources: College Confidential (a book), and A is for Admission. Both written by former admissions officers from Duke University and Dartmouth University.
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    ::drum roll:: American student financing in the UK!

    - Warn your friend that she will never get as much aid in the UK as she ever will in the US! US colleges are willing to help out their students A LOT provided that they have the grades or the financial need. The UK is hands off when it comes to US students financial-wise. They wouldn't touch us with a 10 foot pole!

    -If she needs UK financing, the only feasible way for the Uni to help her out is if she applies for the essay-scholarships. Other than that she's going to have to rely on filling out the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Students Aid). FAFSA's only used in the US, so no confusion there.

    -The prices of unis in the UK are remarkably cheaper than the US. Tuition-wise atleast. She should take into her living expenses and especially the accomodation costs! Tell her to keep in mind that the British Pound is valued twice that of the dollar. So if she wants to convert costs, all she has to do is see the cost in British pounds and multiply that by 2. Then she'll know how much it costs in dollars. Shocking to see you guys have $20 pizzas , it'd be $10 over here for a large.

    - finances shouldn't be the only thing she should be thinking about. Ask her if she's willing to stay in Europe for all her summers and vacations (like me). If she is, she should always keep in mind that she's always going to have to be looking for temporary accommodation during the summer and after her first year. This would definitely mean she'll have to take a part-time job during the school year to save up the money.It won't be enough to pay, but it would help a lot. Take a job at summers too if she doesn't have an internship, let her know if she takes internships NONE are paid, so NEVER rely on an internship to pay the rent, it's an investment for the future. If she's just returning to Kentucky for her vacations, she should have no problem though.

    -The most important thing of all a VISA! What's the point of worrying about the money when immigration authorities won't let you in? Better get this done over and out, never procrastinate this. But the American embassies won't let you apply more than 2 months before their arrival point.

    Things to keep in mind, parting words

    - explain to her what a conditional and unconditional offer is. She'll have to explain this to her guidance counselors, we don't have such offers in the US. It's either the college likes us, or it doesn't. No last-minute chances to prove ourselves.

    - in the UCAS form where it asks for grades. That's where she places the SAT I, SAT IIS, APs, and College grades if she took courses over the summer.

    -UCAS deadlines are in March. That's three months after deadlines for US colleges. She can take her time.

    -UK unis are not as heavily funded as US unis. So if she's applying to the sciences, stay in the US. The facilities a lot better and the US professors are more willing to have her volunteer at the labs while they're researching. They may even be able to use her research in their next paper and she'll have a nice by-line!

    -she should really consider if all the stress, cost, and hassle to go to a UK uni is really worth it. UK unis aren't highly recognized in the states I'm afraid, unless it's Oxbridge or from London. So the job prospects if she wants to go back to the US are very cloudy and it's def high-risk if she hasn't given this some good thought.

    -A UK degree is good if she's planning to work in Europe. But immigration in many European countries are so tough you only get a break if you're an EU-national (marry an EU citizen, )

    - If she doesn't apply for a Masters program right after her bachelors, the maximum amount of time she can stay in the UK is 1 year, 2 if she's lucky and the employer gets you a special visa.

    - Pre-emptive Culture Shock buffers for your friend: Fries are called Chips. Chips are called Crisps. There is no such thing as a "Cheeto" in the UK. Foot pads are called Elevators. Elevators are called Lifts. If someone asks her for "binding plaster" they're asking for a band-aid. She shouldn't give them a strange stare, that'd be rude . (Plaster is something we make our houses with in the states! lol). You don't "Hail" a cab, you "Hire" them. You don't get weighed in pounds (that'd be the currency), get weighed in stones. Everything is military time, so get used to adding 12s. A sausage is called a banger, lol, don't laugh :rolleyes: . Most eggs are free-range. The train going to Paris is called the Eurorail. The train going through continental europe is called the Eurostar. People will refer to you as a "Yank", refrain from pommeling them . Supposedly asking for your food to be wrapped (leftovers taken home) is a very American, and therfore very uncouth thing to do. But I'm still having issues and I suspect the Brit that told me this is just a snob, so ask for it wrapped! Food isn't cheap at all. Not like in the states. You'll lose 10 pounds within a week. The Tube is the train that goes throughout London, it's not as bad as people say it is. Very easy to navigate. Always order your train tickets across the UK in advance. And the drinking age is not 21, it's 18, w00t!


    oh, and for any comments that you have to be a "rich American" to attend a UK uni. That's bull ! I've got more money worries coming here than I ever could have, staying in the states. It's def because of the fact that London is the 2nd most expensive city in the world :eek: . It's all a matter of risk-assessment when it comes to terms with your future.
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    I've always thought the class rank thing in US schools was weird. I mean, if everyone in your school was really bright and worked hard, you might be very bright too but ranked 30th say. But at another school you might be first. There is no national standardising is there?
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    Not at all. Sucks doesn't it? *sigh*. Hence the big debate on whether we should get rid of the SAT I. On one hand the SAT I is not a reliable indicator on how well a student will do in college, on the other, the GPA would be given greater bearing on admissions.
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    Thankyou kolyainamerika, I think I am way out of my depth trying to explain all that to her though.
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    (Original post by kolyainamerika)
    In-state student tuition fees: $5,858
    aka about 2,929 pounds
    Out-of-state tuition fees: $14,690
    aka about 7,345 pounds
    Im not sure if you're aware of this but the dollar (even at it's incredibly low current value) is worth slightly more than your conversion. I do realise that you said 'about' but just wanted to make sure you dont budget wrongly for your time over here! Current value is around £0.55 p/dollar.
 
 
 
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