The UK left the EU on 1 January 2021. This means that postgraduate fees, funding and visa requirements will change for EU students in the UK and for UK students in the EU.
But these changes don't mean you can't study abroad in the UK or Europe and funding is still available for you to do so. Here's a quick explanation of what Brexit does and doesn't mean for Masters degrees and PhDs.
How much it costs to study in the UK as an EU student now depends on when you came to the UK and when you will start your course.
If you start a Masters or PhD before 1 August 2021 or apply for settled status before 31 December 2020 you will:
If you start a Masters or PhD after 1 August 2021 and have not applied for settled status before 31 December 2020 you will:
All EU students will be eligible to apply for full UKRI PhD studentships for programmes beginning after 1 August 2021. You will also be able to access other international Masters funding or international PhD funding.
EEA and Swiss students in the UK are subject to the same changes as EU students. Irish students are still covered by the Common Travel Area. See our guide for more detailed information.
The EU Settlement Scheme allows EU citizens who already live in the UK to start applying for settled status and keep some of the rights they had before Brexit. The deadline for applications was 31 December 2020.
There were two statuses you can receive through the scheme:
Both settled status and pre-settled status allow you to live and study in the UK as you do now, though there are some limits on the amount of time you can spend outside the UK. See the UK Government Website for more information.
If you want to take part in the EU Settlement Scheme you must apply before 31 December 2020.
UK students will no longer count as EU students when studying abroad in Europe. This might affect the fees you pay for a Masters or PhD and the funding you have access to, but it won't necessarily do so. Some EU countries don't charge extra for international study; a few don't charge anything at all.
The best place to find more information is in our detailed and regularly updated guides to postgraduate study in Europe.
Students can still travel between the UK and EU for up to three months without a visa, but you'll need to spend longer than this to complete a Masters or PhD abroad.
New EU students coming to study in the UK should apply for a visa through the student route.
UK students coming to study in the EU should check the visa information in our detailed guides to different countries.
We've tried to make the information above as clear as possible and that’s meant leaving aside some other questions. These are covered below, along with some extra clarification for anything that’s confusing about Brexit (. . .).
The UK will no longer be a part of Erasmus from the start of the next cycle (2021-2027). Instead it is creating its own replacement Turing Scheme to support UK students studying abroad across the world. It isn't clear whether this will cover postgraduate study, or whether funding will be available for EU and international students in the UK.
We'll have more details and explanation as soon as we can – and we'll make sure we update you.
No. You’ll still be able to study abroad in the UK or EU (as plenty of other ‘international students’ do already). It’s just that your fees, funding and entry requirements have changed.
EU students already studying in the UK before Brexit are covered by fee and funding guarantees. UK students studying in the EU are likely to be covered by similar guarantees. Check with your university if you aren't sure.
Brexit has now happened. The withdrawal period ended on 31 December 2020 and the UK left the EU on 1 January 2021.
It's easy to get swamped with news, information and, of course, opinion, about Brexit.
The thing to bear in mind is that not everything you read will be relevant to students – and a lot of what is hasn't been confirmed yet.
If you are looking for good sources of further information, we'd recommend the following:
You can also get in touch with us using editor[at]findaphd.com if there's something you're not sure about. We can't explain everything about Brexit, but we will do our best to answer questions about postgraduate study.
Our newsletter will make sure you receive the latest information about Brexit and postgraduate study
Considering a Masters abroad in the UK, EU or elsewhere? We've put together a few useful tips, based on one student's experiences.
Looking for more information on future EU fees and funding? We've explained the latest announcements and guarantees.
Don't let Brexit put you off discovering what European universities have to offer postgraduate students.
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