If you are considering seeking higher education, one of the main concerns is the high price tag that comes attached to it. Most colleges across the world charge very high tuition fees, which makes it difficult for some international students to pursue higher education if they do not have adequate financial resources. Although there is a growing trend to obtain loans to pay your way through college, the fact remains that you are going to be in a lot of debt before you even land yourself a job. Student debt is a very stressful factor, and some people take years and years before they are able to pay off their student loans in full. Of course, it also depends on the country from which you are applying, and whether or not you are even eligible for a loan in the first place. In short, this might not be a feasible option.
The good news, however, is that there are several countries that offer free tuition programs. This means that even those students who do not have enough financial resources or have been unable to obtain scholarships can now pursue a world-class education.
Let’s take a look at the five countries where government-funded or university-covered educational programs are offered to international students.
Austria offers plenty of programs for students to choose from. It is also a great pick since the living expenditures for the average student is lower than in other places. This is because the Austrian government has prioritized attracting brilliant students from all over the world. Students should keep in mind that all non-EEA and non-EU students who apply to public or federal universities are still charged approximately up to 726 Euros as tuition fees for each semester. In addition to that, students also pay 19.20 Euros as a membership fee for the student union, as well as an insurance fee that covers any potential accidents.
This is another country where the government prioritizes higher education and recognizes that it is an important stepping stone towards success. Therefore, a tuition fee for non-EEA and non-EU students is in place since fall 2017.
UAS and all other Finnish universities offer scholarships for exceptional students who have non-EEA and non-EU status and wish to apply for undergraduate or graduate programs. For students applying to doctoral programs, EDUFI also covers living expenses.
State universities in the country are free of cost for all their local and international students. This is also applied across all programs, which includes Bachelor’s degrees, Master’s degrees, as well as Ph.D. programs. However, the universities do charge an amount that ranges from 300 to 600 NOK per semester as a semester fee.
Germany has been a very popular destination for international students, with many choosing to relocate there to pursue various academic goals. Even if students cannot get scholarships, this still remains a great option because, with the exception of one university (Baden-Wurrtenberg), all other places are free of cost for local and international students. This includes both undergraduate level and graduate-level programs. A few federal states do, however, require students to submit 50 Euros as semester fee and an additional 50 Euros as administration fee.
For students who have non-EU and non-EEA status and do not belong to Switzerland or any other Nordic country, a tuition fee and application fee is charged for both Bachelor’s degrees and Master’s degrees. The Swedish Institute and several universities also offer scholarships offering varying levels of financial coverage (which are usually given as tuition waivers). International students are also eligible to apply for these scholarships.