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Scottish University Places for EU students

(27 Posts)
Fionnbharr Mon 16-Oct-17 11:45:44

Friend’s DS is an EU student who wants to study law in UK. Parents are asking whether Scottish Universities limit the number of offers they make to EU students - given the fact that EU students do not pay fees there.

They are wondering whether their DS should limit his applications to UK universities so as not to disadvantage him.

Any advice appreciated.

titchy Mon 16-Oct-17 11:51:10

Not sure what you mean by limit to UK universities? Do you mean limit to English (or Welsh) universities?

Scottish universities DO have limits on the number of Scottish and EU (non-rUK) students, but that's not a reason a reasonably qualified applicant shouldn't apply. He has five choices after all.

Fionnbharr Mon 16-Oct-17 12:12:20

....sorry yes, I meant English and Welsh.

ttlshiwwya Mon 16-Oct-17 12:54:33

You can usually find out the offer rates per subject for Scottish/EU students to help your friend's DS make an informed decision e.g. Edinburgh offered to 17% of applicants (288/1686) in 2016.

reallyanotherone Mon 16-Oct-17 12:58:16

Bear in mind scots law and english law are different. He needs to look into where he wants to practice and any subsequent conversion courses he may need. When i studied scottish law graduates couldn’t work in england without further study.

So if my dd has an irish passport, she can study in scotland for free?

WaxOnFeckOff Mon 16-Oct-17 13:02:38

I think the rules is about residency rather than what passport you have. SCottish students I think have to have 3 years of residency in Scotland to count and I would assume the same would apply to EU students. Don't quote me on the timescale though as it's been a while since I checked. My niece spent a few years in England before returning to Scotland and we were trying to work out her entitlement.

WaxOnFeckOff Mon 16-Oct-17 13:04:26

And was going to make the same point about the law. A funny subject to study in a country where you don't live (or intend to live in) if you intend to practice law rather than just wanting a law degree for generic purposes.

Fionnbharr Mon 16-Oct-17 13:13:19

Thanks. They actually have strong Scottish connections so it is not as odd as it sounds..and I think he would envisage studying in England as well at some stage.

But I think what they are really trying to understand is whether there is some kind of quota for EU students. And whether that is smaller than it is for fee paying students.

WaxOnFeckOff Mon 16-Oct-17 13:19:05

I haven't looked at the stats (DS1 is currently aout to apply though so I really should) but the general conversation seems to be that the Unis do set a tarrif for non paying students as without it they simply couldn't survive as they wouldn't have enough income. They need foreign and English students to keep the uni running I think.

I've heard of requirements for offer being a bit higher for non payers too, but as I say I haven't personally done any research.

I think I remember being told that Scots law is still pretty close to French law so again may not be that odd if they are in France smile I'd imagine most countries would need some local qualifications to practice but a law degree would be useful for many professions

titchy Mon 16-Oct-17 13:39:00

But I think what they are really trying to understand is whether there is some kind of quota for EU students. And whether that is smaller than it is for fee paying students.

Well the answer is that yes there is. However it is the wrong question to ask... If he likes the course and is likely to get the grades, apply, he'll probably get an offer. You can't really 'play' the system by estimating the likelihood of an offer based on fee status.

(And yes fee status is determined by domicile not nationality - otherwise mine would be in Edinburgh!)

eatinglesschocolate Mon 16-Oct-17 13:42:10

I think Dundee do a dual English/Scots Law degree if that is any use?
Places are capped but I don't know if there is a separate Scottish cap and EU cap, but to give examples… a friend and her daughter asked at a recent open day how many places for Scottish students they 'approx' had on a Geog course…Think I've got the numbers roughly right... out of 130ish places on course…they had 12 places for Scottish students.
My DD is Y12 (does A levels at a Scottish independent school) and has just started looking/narrowing down options. She enquired about a course at a Scottish uni and was told by admissions that while they asked for A*AA for other A Level applicants, they would ask for AA*A for someone in her position! Needless to say we are looking at English unis and will probably only put 2 out of 5 down as Scottish options when the time comes!

WaxOnFeckOff Mon 16-Oct-17 13:43:26

Also, I remember reading that residency whilst a student doesn't count. So you can't do a 4 year course and claim residency for the last year since you've been living in Scotland for 3 years, but having said that I've also ready that some 4 year degrees operate in a way that means Non Scot/EU students only pay fee for 3 years. Obviously still have the living expenses for 4 though.

eatinglesschocolate Mon 16-Oct-17 13:44:03

Make that 3 x A* not AA*A!

Needmoresleep Mon 16-Oct-17 14:05:29

EU students have to be treated the same as Scottish students. It's EU law. Overall Scot/EU places may be capped. But still worth a try if he meets requirements and wants to go.

VeryPunny Mon 16-Oct-17 14:10:53

So how do EU students get around the residency requirements? Or is it just a blatant if you've lived in England for the last 3 years you have to pay fees, no matter whether you are English or A.N other EU?

WaxOnFeckOff Mon 16-Oct-17 14:16:11

Yes Punny that's it as far as I understand. You need to be resident in Scotland for 3 years (If that's still right) or in the EU country. This applies even if you were born in Scotlannd to Scottish parents but spent some time in England and didn't return in time to get 3 years in. My DN ended up taking a year out before going as she only had 2 and a half years despite having spent the vast majority of her life here. ANd as is sometimes the case, she is enjoying working and havig money so is now unlikely to go at all in the short term. She hasn't taken up her deferred offers this year and hasn't reapplied for next year.

Fionnbharr Mon 16-Oct-17 14:21:29

Can they really make higher offers to non fee paying students than they do to those paying fees?

titchy Mon 16-Oct-17 14:40:56

They can make any offer to any applicant they want! That goes for any university - it's not unusual - dd had an AAB offer, her friend had an ABB offer for the exact same course!

WaxOnFeckOff Mon 16-Oct-17 14:44:11

I think (apart from eating's example above), it's not directly comparable as the exams will be different and the UCAS points don't really even it out as far as I can see.

Scottish students offers will most like be made on their Higher results which are 1 year exams sat a year prior to A levels. There are then different requirements if they include the exams they've done the year after that which could be more at the same level or Advanced Highers. EU applicants will again have different exams so it maybe isn't so blatant. Most Scottish honours degrees are 4 years courses and with A levels they can skip the first year depending on results/subjects as can some Scottish students with AHs.

So, it's rarely as simple and certainly not communicated in a blatant fashion.

DS missed out on the A required for some subjects by 1 mark. He is sitting an Advanced Higher in that subject and has been told a B in that will be treated as the equivalent. However we aren't sure at this point if there is any point applying at all as he may be rejected just on that point. He has enough A's to meet the minimum and expected requirements but they additionally want one of his As to be in Maths and he doesn't have that. He is likely to apply for Computing or engineering and has As in both of those.

WaxOnFeckOff Mon 16-Oct-17 14:46:28

Sorry, I meant to add that a B @ AH is more UCAS points than the A at H but even if he achieves that it's unlikely to help.

eatinglesschocolate Mon 16-Oct-17 14:46:57

Hi Fionnbharr
I know…I was slightly "what?" when she got the reply…which they'd been happy enough to put in an email! I may add that it was only one uni who admitted this. She asked three others and they didn't say they'd want more!!
Whether that is what they'd actually put in an offer or not will just be a wonder as she won't take the chance of wasting a slot on them!

WaxOnFeckOff Mon 16-Oct-17 14:49:14

At Strathclyde open day, DH says that they were told not to bother applying if you don't have the minimum requirements, it's a bit hard to know that if you are applying based on exams you have yet to sit though. All I could take from that is if your course says you need Chemisty at A and you have a B and aren't still studying Chemistry then there is no point.

wigglybeezer Mon 16-Oct-17 15:04:45

Yes there is a cap, and as a result Scottish students generally need to have more UCAS points to get a place than RUK or non-EU international students. Sometimes all the places for home students are used up and prospective Scottish students are rejected only for places to pop up in clearing but only for RUK students! It's the big downside of the free places, it's putting an awful lot of pressure on kids in the last two years of High School.
DS2 had to sit the exams he needs for uni entrance at only 16! He wants to do a very competitive course and really needed 5A's to be reasonably confident, he has had no time for fun or general teenage ups and downs and changes of direction.
On a recent uni open day we were shown round by an international student who said they felt guilty when they found out how much higher the grades were that the local students needed to get on the same course (but she did say those local students were held to be high ability and hard working by the other students).
Its in the small print in prospectuses, although I think you would need to a FOI request to get actual numbers.

chemenger Tue 17-Oct-17 08:06:57

Scottish universities are given a quota of funded students by the Scottish government. They are penalised for exceeding or falling short of the quota. They can then fill the rest of the places with RUK student, who pay fees, sometimes just for the length of the equivalent course in England, or overseas students. The limitation on RUK and overseas students is the capacity of the course; room sizes, lab capacity, staff etc. Entry requirements are set to give the right number of each classification of student. Stated minimum requirements show what is needed to successfully complete the course, if there are enough places for applicants with those qualifications. In a perfect world selection could be done on a more individual basis, because academic qualifications don’t tell the whole story, but there are not the resources to do this.

BubblesBuddy Tue 17-Oct-17 15:17:16

I really would do law in England and not have the bother of a very expensive (£10,000) conversion course. He may get sponsored for this, but plenty don't. A Law degree in Scotland is already 4 years so to get fully qualified in England, there's another 2 years to be done - GDL and professional training. That does not include a Masters. Look at all the options, costs, length of study and employability before he decides.

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