There has been a sharp rise in the number of students going abroad for higher studies in the last couple of years. As per figures provided by the Institute of International Education, more than 6 million students are currently enrolled in foreign universities. Unlike traditionally, when only Masters programmes were popular among foreign students, Bachelor programmes abroad are steadily interesting these students. Engineering, of course, continues to be the hot course among students who eye foreign degrees. It is, in fact, the most sought after course for international students in the USA, the UK, Singapore, New Zealand, Australia and Canada. The Best Engineering Colleges in the World Ranking conducted by Times Higher Education, Academic Ranking of World Universities, and QS World University Ranking also place the universities from the above mentioned countries on the top of the list.
Ranking by citations- Essential Science Indicators from Thomson Reuters (2010)
Top UG engineering study destinations for international students
Fierce competition to get into the top engineering colleges in their home countries is not the sole reason for students going for higher studies abroad. Access to world class education with latest technologies, research opportunities and global exposure also attract the students to top universities abroad. While the US and the UK remain the top priorities for international students to pursue undergraduate engineering courses, the countries like Singapore, Australia and Canada entered the list due to the diversity of the courses they offer and the post-study work opportunities.
The United States
The US is the all-time favourite of international students for engineering courses. According to the IIE, over 90,00,00 international students are enrolled in various US universities out of which more than 4,00,000 are pursuing undergraduate courses. Majority of them study Business and Management, followed by engineering and Math and computer science. Increasing job openings in the land of opportunities coupled with the provision for the STEM course students to extend their Optional Practical Training (OPT) visa by 17 months post-study have increased the demand for engineering degrees in the USA.
Look out for: Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Material Science and Engineering
Duration: Four years
Degree Awarded:Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
Eligibility: 10+2, SAT and IELTS/TOEFL Score
A student planning to apply for an undergraduate engineering course in a US university must start the preparation at least 15-18 months prior to the commencement of the course. The application process includes shortlisting the universities and course specialisation, taking the standardized test, submitting the application, receiving the acceptance letter; exploring the financial opportunities and getting the visa.
Best US universities for UG Engineering
Name of the Institution
Tuition Fee per year
California Institute of Technology (Caltech)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
Georgia Institute of Technology
University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
Carnegie Mellon University
Johns Hopkins University
* The amount is the international tuition fee for undergraduate engineering applicable in 2014-15 academic year
Andrew P. Disbury, Director of International Office, Leeds Beckett University
The United Kingdom
Engineering is the second most sought after course in the UK. While international students in the US look for conventional streams, in UK , students are known to explore unique courses in areas such as design engineering, advanced materials and manufacturing that provide them the opportunity of research and innovation.
“Maximum number of Indian students at our university apply for engineering courses, especially undergraduates. In order to give them better study opportunities, we are recently developing courses in Science Technology and Maths stream apart from the conventional streams such as integrated course in Computer Engineering, Electronics, Food Engineering, Audio Engineering,” says Andrew P. Disbury, Director of International Office, Leeds Beckett University, UK.
According to the UK government data, the country ranks fourth in the world for academic excellence in materials science, green engineering and plastics and advanced composite materials. The most common courses opted by international students are aerospace engineering, chemical engineering, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, structural engineering, marine or biomedical engineering.
Look out for: Automotive Engineering, Aerospace Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Structural Engineering
Duration:Three years for BEng and four years for MEng
Degree Awarded:Bachelor of Engineering (BEng)
Eligibility: 10+2 and IELTS Score
The main intake into the UK universities is in September every year and the application deadline is June. However, the international students must not wait till the deadline as they have to obtain the Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) from the university and get the student visa. Like the US, the UK application also needs the students to start well in advance right from appearing for the required tests to obtaining visa.
Best UK universities for UG Engineering
University of Cambridge
Imperial College London
University of Oxford
University of Manchester
University College London (UCL)
University of Edinburgh
University of Nottingham
University of Leeds
University of Southampton
University of Bristol
Arvind Gupta, President and Vice-Chancellor,The University of British Columbia
Being an immigration friendly country compared to the UK and USA, Canada attracts many international students. According to statistics from the Canadian Bureau of International Education, the number of international students enrolled in Canadian universities is above 2,50,000.
“We get a good number of international students in our university to do engineering courses and our programmes are among the leading engineering programmes in the world. As engineering has high demand among the Indian students, we aim to provide them the best opportunities through our various undergraduate courses and exchange programmes," says Arvind Gupta, President and Vice-Chancellor,The University of British Columbia.
Look out for: Petroleum Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Software Engineering
Degree Awarded: Bachelor of Engineering (B. Eng.) or Bachelor of Applied Science (B.A.Sc.)
Eligibility: 10+2 and IELTS/ TOEFL Score
Best Canadian universities for UG Engineering
30,000- 31,000 CAD
University of Toronto
University of British Columbia
While the US lost its sheen due to economic recession and the UK because of visa norms, Australia continued to attract international students. Australian universities offer a wide range of undergraduate engineering courses majors, double majors and minors.
Look out for: Computer Systems and Networking, Telecommunication, Environmental Engineering
Degree Awarded: Bachelor of Engineering
Best Australian universities for UG Engineering
University of Melbourne
University of Queensland
University of Sydney
University of New South Wales
Singapore has emerged as a major study abroad destination in recent years. It is one of the hottest destinations for international students due to various reasons. The major reason is the country's recognition as the financial centre of South Asia. International students usually opt for subjects like accounts, business and computer science.
Look out for: Software Engineering, Industrial and Systems Engineering
Degree Awarded:B. Eng (Hons)
Best Singapore universities for UG Engineering
National University of Singapore
Nanyang Technological University
Singapore University of Technology & Design
Top scholarships for UG engineering students abroad
There are a number of scholarships offered to international students who pursue undergraduate engineering courses abroad. The major among them are mentioned below:
ASHRAE Undergraduate Engineering Scholarship
Scholarship description: ASHRAE Undergraduate Engineering Scholarship is given to students who obtain admission for undergraduate engineering programmes in the universities recognized by ASHRAE. The course must be accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) in the USA.
Awarding body: ASHRAE
Application deadline: December
QUEST Undergraduate Scholarship
Scholarship description: QUEST Scholarship is offered to students who study ICE accredited civil engineering degree in the UK. There are two types of QUEST Scholarship:
Company Sponsored Scholarships: These scholarships are offered by leading civil engineering or construction companies.
QUEST Only Scholarships: These scholarships are offered by QUEST or the C F Lunoe Trust.
Awarding body: C F Lunoe Trust or civil engineering and construction companies
Award value:Â£2,500 per year and paid work placement every summer
Application deadline: October
Herbert Rabin Endowed Scholarship in Engineering
Scholarship description:Herbert Rabin Endowed Scholarship is awarded to students who join for undergraduate engineering courses at A. James Clark School of Engineering, University of Maryland. The selection is based on the merit of the candidate.
Awarding body:University of Maryland
Award value:The scholarship covers the entire tuition fee and living costs. The scholarship is renewed for the next three years depending on the academic performance of the award holder.
Application deadline: There is no separate application for Herbert Rabin Endowed Scholarship. The meritorious candidates who apply for the UG engineering course are considered for the scholarship.
University of Sheffield Engineering International Scholarship
Scholarship description: University of Sheffield offers Engineering International Scholarship to internationals students who undertake undergraduate courses in Aerospace Engineering, Automatic Control & Systems Engineering, Bioengineering, Chemical & Biological Engineering, Civil & Structural Engineering, Computer Science, Electronic & Electrical Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering and Mechanical Engineering.
Awarding body: University of Sheffield
Award value:Â£2,500 per year
Monash University Engineering International Undergraduate Award
Scholarship description:Monash University offers Engineering International Undergraduate Award to internationals students who commence single or double undergraduate engineering degree at the university.
Awarding body:Monash University
Award value:$5000 per year
Application deadline: N/A
Stay tuned to www.studyabroad.careers360.com for more news and updates on engineering courses abroad!
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