FAQs about Studying in UK Universities - COVID Update January 2021
We address some commonly asked questions about studying in the UK during the Covid-19 pandemic. Be sure to read this before you submit your UCAS application for the autumn intake!
Check back often as we keep this article updated!
Frequently Asked Questions
How does the January 2021 National Lockdown affect students?
In January 2021, a strict National Lockdown was imposed and will be in effect until mid-February 2021. Exams have been cancelled and all classes have been moved to remote learning until at least the middle of February 2021.
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How does the November 2020 lockdown of England affect students?
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a four-week lockdown of England which starts in November 2020. Under new restrictions, students are allowed to attend school.
Am I allowed to travel to the UK to study?
Yes, you may still travel to the UK to study with a valid visa. While the admissions process and other arrangements may be slightly different due to Covid-19, UK universities are still accepting students at this time.
Do I have to quarantine if I travel to the UK?
At the date of publication, quarantines are not obligated for Malaysian students travelling to the UK. However, certain schools may impose a blanket 14-day quarantine for all international students to ensure student safety. Be sure to abide by the guidelines set by your university.
What are the precautions that UK universities are taking to ensure student safety?
Student safety is the utmost priority for UK universities and all of them adhere to the national guidelines – self-isolation will be required for some students, hand sanitiser will be provided and temperatures will be taken on campuses. Additional safety measures such as providing socially distant spaces, reducing the number of students in the university, and providing contactless options for payments also contribute towards making UK universities safer for students.
Are classes taught on-campus or fully online?
At the moment, many UK universities are still planning to reopen for the next autumn intake. Universities are also offering mixed methods for teaching which include partial or fully online classes to reduce the number of students on campus. Depending on the course and university, classes may be taught fully online.
Should I opt for a distance learning programme with a UK university?
You may miss out on being on-campus, but many students find that it’s a good trade-off for safety amidst the pandemic. Distance learning programmes also offer students better flexibility and financial savings.
However, most universities are offering classes that are taught fully online for the time being which is also a good option for students who wish to enrol this year and stay in Malaysia until it is safer to travel.
Need advice about applying to a UK university? We are here to help. Book a free appointment with us now!
Does the NHS provide services for international students?
Full-time students who are taking courses longer than 6 months are eligible for access to NHS services. As part of your visa fees, you have to pay a fee of £300 for an NHS surcharge which grants you access to the UK healthcare system.
Can I still apply for the UK Tier 4 Student Visa?
Yes, student visas are still being issued for the time being. Some special provisions have been made available to international students studying in the UK. After a visa application has been approved, students will typically receive a visa vignette which is a sticker in your passport which allows you to travel to the UK within 30 days of your intended date of travel. This period has been extended to 90 days, which means that students now have a longer travel period with their temporary visa. Additionally, if you’re unable to travel within this 90-day window, you will be able to change the visa vignette date for free until December 2020. You can also make visa applications up to 3 months in advance, which gives you ample time to apply after your UCAS application.
Do I apply to a UK university using my provisional A-Level results?
As the summer 2020 exams were cancelled for AS, A-Levels and GCSEs, students were given calculated grades based on their previously attained grades. Students were also given the option to take the exams in autumn (September 2020) if they were dissatisfied with their calculated grades. Both calculated grades and grades from the autumn exam are formal grades and will be accepted by all UK institutions.
How To Apply To Study In The UK?
Step 1: Choose A University
The first step is to look for popular and high-ranking Universities in the UK that offer courses you are interested in. Refer to the table above to start your search. Here are some things to consider when applying:
- Employability/Graduate prospects
- Entry requirements
- University Ranking
Step 2: Preparations
Once you have narrowed down the search to your top five universities, the first step is to prepare necessary documents and forms. This includes school leaving certificates, exam results, the UCAS application form and a written Personal Statement, among other documents that may be required.
Step 3: Submit UCAS Application
The application process for UK universities differs from local universities as applications go through an organisation known as UCAS, the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service. UCAS handles all admission applications to UK universities, including those submitted by international candidates like you.
To ensure a better chance of getting accepted, it is important that you prepare all the necessary documents and fill out all forms correctly. We also recommend that you apply for multiple universities simultaneously to ensure that you get your preferred offers. Read our full guide on UCAS here.
More about UCAS
The entire application process might be daunting and lengthy for some, so let us help you. Make a free appointment with us today for professional assistance in submitting applications to your prefered UK universities.
UK University Entry Requirements
Here are some of the common entry requirements and tests a student has to pass before being accepted at a UK university to study.
- English Language Test requirement – such as IELTS or TOEFL.
- Criminal records declaration (DBS/Disclosure Scotland for Scottish Universities)
- Health checks.
- Entrance interviews.
- Personal statement. This is a supporting document and part of your application to a UK university. Usually, you will write about what you hope to achieve studying at the course, what you plan to do after graduating and why you are applying for this specific university.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, you may still travel to the UK to study with a valid visa. Admissions and other processes may be a bit different for now but UK universities are still accepting students.
All UK universities adhere to the national guidelines and have implemented additional safety measures to reduce contact between students and reduce the number of students in the university.
At the date of publication, Malaysian students do not have to quarantine after travelling to the UK. However, universities may impose a blanket quarantine for all incoming international students. Do abide by your university guidelines.
Yes, full-time international students have access to the NHS.
The UCAS deadline for most programmes is 15 January on the year of admission. The deadline for applying to Cambridge and Oxford is 15 October.
Get Free UK University Application Assistance
If you would like a free consultation on any step of the application process, contact us today or come visit us at our office in Mont Kiara, Kuala Lumpur. Book an appointment with us now!