The general assumption is that it is very costly to study abroad. But there are ways to subsidize this cost if you havea good academic or extracurricular profile. This is by way of being awarded various forms of Financial Aids from foreign universities.
The availability of financial aid varies widely depending on country, university, field of study, funds allocated for that semester, distribution policy, etc.
The different types of Financial Aids are : -
- Scholarships / Grants / Fellowships : - Students may be given a direct tution fee waiver in the form of partial or full scholarships / Grants / Fellowships. These are the most prestigious awards for which a student is not required to offer any services in return. Such scholarships are highly competitive and student should possess an outstanding academic track record. These also differ from university to university based on their available funds.
- Bursaries: - This form of aid is available mostly in UK. Bursaries may be of 2 types : need-based or merit based. Need based bursaries are provided to students coming from specific countries(developing / underdeveloped) or from specific families defined under low-income group. Merit-based bursaries are like academic scholarships and are provided based on academic achievements of the student. Bursaries are normally partial in nature.
- Teaching Assistantships : - These involve delivering lectures to undergraduate students, correcting class work, grading papers, supervising laboratory sessions, etc. In return for the services rendered, the student is either paid a stipend or the University waives off the amount from the tution fees. Interested students should contact the department officials in charge of appointing teaching assistants.
- Research Assistantships : - These involve assisting the faculty in research activities being conducted by them. This could involve working on a research project or publishing it. It is awarded by the respective department in the University. A student should clearly demonstrate his aptitude for research. Compensation is paid either in the form of a stipend or tution fee waiver. Research Assistantships not only provide practical experience but also provide excellent academic training, besides the much needed financial support.
Note : - A student planning to take up any assistantship position must demonstrate higher English Language Proficiency and superior subject knowledge. Normally there is an interview process involved before being awarded any Assistantship position and one must remember that these are very competitive.