Are you keen on studying business abroad but are having trouble deciding between studying in the USA or the UK? Both countries are known for their excellence in education and the quality of their higher education institutions. Here we outline the main differences between applying to the United States versus the United Kingdom so you can determine which best suits your wants and needs.

Entry Requirements

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United Kingdom

To gain admission into a UK undergraduate course, students need 13 years of prior education or a CBSE plus a two-year academic certificate.

For a postgraduate course, students need to have completed a three-year undergraduate degree. Students who are applying for a Master’s Degree in a business subject need to also sit for the standardized GMAT exam. Some universities may look for work experience and an English proficiency exam such as the IELTS or TOEFL.

United States

In order to earn a place in a US undergraduate program, students need to finish 12 years of schooling and take the standardized SAT exam.

For entry into a US post-graduate program, students need to complete 16 years of schooling and if you are applying for a business program, you will also need to take the GMAT exam. Some universities require some work experience. International students also need to take either the TOEFL or IELTS to show their English proficiency.

Tuition and Cost of Living

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In both the US and the UK, school fees and general cost of living vary depending on which university you choose, which course you take and even the city where you live.

United States

The undergraduate international student tuition fees in the US can range from anywhere between USD 20,000 to USD 60,000 per year for four years. Room and living expenses can range from USD 8,000 to USD 15,000 depending on which part of the country you live in.  

United Kingdom

International student tuition fees in the UK are usually cheaper than in the United States. Students can expect to pay between GBP8,000 and GBP 16,000 per year in the United Kingdom for three years for the undergraduate education. Room and living expenses can range from GBP 12,000 to GBP 15,000.

Obtaining a Student Visa

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United States

A full-time student visa in the United States is called an F1 visa and it costs USD 160. Students must attend an interview and will also be required to provide their biometrics. With a F1 visa, students can stay in the US for up to 60 days after the length of time it takes to complete their education program. On an F1 visa students can work only on campus and for not more than 20 hours a week. Some students may obtain approval for Optional Practical Training (OPT) and can then stay and work after their graduation for a specified period of time.

United Kingdom

In the UK, full-time international students need a Tier 4 General student visa that costs GBP310. If you are applying for a diploma course the maximum duration of the visa will be three years, and for a degree course it is four years. Applicants are sometimes called for personal interviews. With a Tier 4 General visa, students are allowed to work part-time on campus for up to 20 hours a week and full-time during vacations.

Work Permit After Graduation

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United States

The United States offers students temporary employment visas post-graduation, called a Optional Practical Training (OPT) visa.  With OPT, students can work in their field of study for up to 12 months.

United Kingdom

Post-study work visas are no longer offered in the UK. To be able to work in the UK after they graduate, international students need to apply for a Tier 2 visa for Highly Skilled Workers. In order to be eligible for the Tier 2 visa, the minimum wage at the new job should be GBP20,500. The Tier 2 visa is valid for a maximum of 5 years.

Plenty of Opportunity

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There are many differences between attending business school in the United States and the United Kingdom; however, both places will provide you with a wonderful learning experience and plenty of academic opportunities.

If you are interested in applying to a business school in the UK then read more about INTO City University – London, with its award-winning Cass Business School. Or if the United States suits you better, learn more about INTO Illinois State University; Illinois is ranked 4th in the US for having the most Fortune 500 company corporate headquarters.

About the Author: Muneeza Kizilbash grew up in the United States and Pakistan and was active in her university’s International Student Council. Now settled in Dubai, she loves to inform, educate and entertain her readers through her writing.