This is how dependent your uni is on cash from international students

Some unis get over a third of their income from international students


Rishi Sunak is considering banning foreign students from certain uni courses to lower immigration numbers in Britain. But – and this will come as a surprise to no one – your university is likely to be extremely dependent on fees from international students.

Your uni’s business model, probably, has shifted towards attracting as many international students as it can. They’re lucrative, paying way more than the £9,250 you’re forking out.

While a more diverse campus and uni experience is undoubtedly a good thing, this shift has led to dire warnings for unis and their business models. It’s an unsustainable pursuit of expansion! Unis are in trouble!

And at some universities, it’s become a bit of a dependency. For some Russell Group unis, fees from international students make up nearly a third of their total income.

Outside the Russell Group, some unis are relying on international students for almost half their income. Non-UK fees make up 46 per cent of UAL’s income, 42 per cent at SOAS, and 41.87 per cent for Heriot-Watt.

Unis across the board have a growing proportion of international students – but that only tells part of the story of how financially dependent they are on those students.

One MP, Tom Tugendhat, told the Sunday Times: “Educating the best and brightest from across the world in Britain can only be a good thing. But I’m cautious when that relationship tips into overreliance.”

And another expert has speculated that international students are the reason unis won’t rush back to in-person teaching.

“By keeping lectures online, universities are enabling overseas students to continue to study for UK degrees from home until January or February when they might be able to travel,” professor Alan Smithers of the University of Buckingham told the Sunday Times.

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