When choosing a higher education institution, we often pay attention not to its academic reputation, but to the cost of education. The cost of education abroad is sky-high, but this is not always the case. We have chosen 7 countries with free or low-cost higher education.
7 countries with low-cost higher education
Mexico is the cheapest country to study. Foreigners wishing to get higher education in Mexico usually pass entrance exams. However, it is possible to get high-quality preparation for the university program, as well as to improve the knowledge of the Spanish language. Education in universities is divided into semesters. Since the country welcomes students from other countries, almost all Mexican universities have developed programs for foreigners. In addition to the high quality of studying in Mexican universities, foreign students are attracted by the low cost of education – about $150 per year. In addition, successful students get scholarships.
State universities and universities of applied sciences in Holland offer undergraduate and graduate programs in both Dutch and English. Moreover, the percentage of local students in English-speaking programs is high and can reach 80%. Education in Holland is charged but it has several advantages. First, the cost of education is not very high: about 6.000–9.000 euros per year. Secondly, training at the bachelor level gives students a chance to find a future employer. After graduation, students have the right to stay in the country for a year to find an employer as a qualified immigrant. Getting a bachelor’s degree in Holland takes 3-4 years. Master’s programs in both universities usually last 1 year. Many universities in the Netherlands offer foreign students scholarships for partial or full coverage of the cost of education.
In Germany, higher education in state universities for foreign students is free. They only pay a semester fee, the amount of which depends on the federal state. Basically, this applies to undergraduate, as well as some master’s programs. Private universities are charged but affordable for foreign applicants – about 1.500 euros per year. Most of the curricula in universities are held in German, so it is worth learning this language before and during your stay in the country.
Foreign students cannot qualify for completely free education in France, but the government is supporting state educational institutions. Students pay a registration fee + a mandatory contribution to the social insurance cashier, which in total does not usually exceed 1,000 euros per year. The costs of living in large cities differ significantly from the province, which cannot be said about education itself, the quality of which is no different.
Higher education in Spain is charged, but public universities are relatively cheaper than private ones. Prices for a year of study at a state university start at 700 euros but more often reach 1.500–2.000 euros. In private universities, the cost for a foreign and local student is the same. For example, the year of study in the economics department of a private university costs at least 9,500 euros. Since 2014, the entrance exam for foreigners “Selectividad” has been canceled, so the admission process has been simplified.
Education in the Czech Republic for foreign students is free but bear in mind that you need to know the Czech language. Education in English will cost 2.780-7.000 euros per year. Accommodation in the Czech Republic is one of the cheapest in Europe.
Studying in Finnish or Swedish is free in Finland. Foreign students who want to study in English must pay tuition (at least 4.000 euros per year), but universities are ready to support students with scholarships, especially if your specialty is related to environmental protection. In Finland, they are actively engaged in the environment, recycle waste, and introduce energy-saving technologies.
Education in state universities is free for local and foreign students. There are seven universities in Iceland, 4 of which are state-owned. There are few foreign students, as well as programs in English. But perhaps this is what you need. Education in Iceland is inexpensive – around $1,000 a year at universities and about $3,000 per year at an art academy. But living expenses can be troubling – an amount equal to the cost of tuition per year will have to be paid for housing per month! Many students prefer to share rent. Universities, in turn, often help students find affordable housing. Many such institutions have an agreement on discounts in hostels and dormitories.
These are not all possibilities for getting cheap education abroad. Also pay attention to scholarship programs, which also cover the main costs at expensive universities. The main thing is to move towards your goal!