Studying in a Different Country: The Rising Concern Over Tuition Costs

A recent study found that students throughout the world are more worried than ever about the cost of a university education. Read on to learn how these concerns compare globally and how students can squash them.

Studying abroad can be an exciting and daunting undertaking for any prospective student. With the abundance of choices and opportunities only matched with the endless things to consider and organize, it can quickly become an overwhelming task!

A recent report by, which tracked trends in student behaviors and concerns, found that one of the main concerns for students wishing to study abroad was the financial aspect. Not surprisingly, tuition fees and securing the funds to study in a different country is among the highest-rising concerns among students throughout the world today.

Related: The Complete Guide to US Financial Aid for International Students


The increased concern over tuition fees in prospective students around the world

Global trends in tuition concerns

The report showed a global trend toward increased concern about the affordability of tuition for study abroad. All regions, from South America to South East Asia, reported a 20%+ increase in concern compared to previous figures. The largest growth in concern was reported in students from Northern Europe who are looking to study abroad

While students from this region are less influenced by cost when choosing where to continue their studies (compared to those from other regions), a 46% growth of students expressing concern about how they would cover the costs of their study abroad is alarming. The region’s relatively high household income and the ease of access to free tuition at home may be an influence.

This growth comes in second to their main concern of facing issues when securing their visa to study abroad. However, for a student body that has five of their top 10 dream study destinations within the European Union, this concern may in actuality affect a far smaller number of prospective students than the growth may indicate.

These concerns are mirrored, to a lesser extent, throughout other regions of the world. Tuition is an ever-present growing concern, but to North American students, the most sizable growth in concern was the ease of access to student housing, which saw a growth of 50%. Tuition concerns grew by a third, showing a an insignificant increase, while in Western Europe, South America, and Southeast Asia, concerns about the cost of university have grown by over 20%.

Financial aid is available

The growing global concern relating to tuition costs reflects the instability in economic certainty that has become ever-present throughout the world. But it’s important to remember that financial aid exists for those who are willing to look for it.

Sites such as CollegeXpress aim to assist students with their study abroad expenses, offering scholarship search tools and other resources to help a student’s dream of higher education become a reality. Prospective students are encouraged to research the countless scholarship opportunities available as well as the “how to” guides offered online that can prepare them to apply for scholarships with the greatest odds of success.

Related: Great Scholarship Opportunities for International Students

While studying abroad will always be a sizable financial investment and students’ concerns are warranted, the use of these resources as well as other financial aid options can ease one of the biggest worries when a student decides to attend a university far from home.

Learn more about studying abroad, financial aid, and more in our International Students section.

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