The number of Nigerians wishing to study in the United Kingdom climbed from 1,620 in 2021 to 2,380 in 2022, a 47 per cent increase year on year and a 68.9 per cent increase from 2018. Since 2018, there has been an upward trend.
This year, Nigeria experienced the greatest proportional rise. Among other African countries, it is also the largest international market for British institutions. South Africa and Kenya are the second-largest markets, with 690 applicants each looking to study in the UK.
The application is only one step in the discovery process, and the emphasis must now be on providing applicants with the greatest information and advice to help them transition into successful students or apprentices, whichever path is appropriate for them. The whole education sector will maintain its strong support, especially when pupils write formal examinations for the first time in three years.
“It will be critical to support students to progress to both full-time undergraduate courses at university and college as well as degree and higher apprenticeship, as we know almost one-fifth of UCAS applicants are pursuing simultaneous applications”, said Clare Marchant, Chief Executive at UCAS.
Year on year, the number of applications from South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Kenya, Algeria, Tunisia, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Togo, Cameroon, Malawi, and Madagascar wishing to study in the UK grew. International candidates accounted for somewhat more than 111,000 applications, more than making up for the decrease in EU applicants.
Applicants from China increased by 12.1 per cent to over 29,000, while India increased by 10.7 per cent to 8,660. These are Asia’s two largest export markets.
“We project non-EU applicant numbers will continue their upward trajectory in the coming cycles – increasing by almost two thirds to be a significant factor in reaching a million overall applicants by the middle of the current decade,” wrote Richard O’Kelly, Head of Data and Analysis at UCAS, in Wonkhe.
International students will also play an important role in achieving the International Education Strategy’s target of 600,000 total international students (undergraduate and postgraduate) in the UK by 2030, a target that Myriad by UCAS, the new platform for international postgraduate students, will support.
Users can use the Myriad by UCAS app to research UK university programs and funding in the language of their choice. Jobs and housing near the university, town, or city to which they want to relocate are also listed.
With regards to visas awarded to the United Kingdom, Nigeria increased by 234.7 per cent in the first nine months of 2021, from 5,551 in the same time in 2019.
The UK government modified its International Education Strategy, which was first introduced in 2019. The update reinforces the government’s goals of increasing the value of education exports to £35 billion ($48 billion) by 2030 and hosting at least 600,000 international students.
So, it appears that the minimum target of 600,000 international students has been met, as there are currently 605,130 international students pursuing degrees in the UK.
Post-study work rights of two years for all foreign students and three years for PhD students will take effect this summer, as will a student immigration path to make it easier for international students to apply to UK education institutions, greater money for outbound mobility, and so on. These incentives may be beneficial to the UK economy, but they may result in a brain drain in Africa’s largest economy, which has yet to fully utilize its huge labour supply.
Nigeria’s current realities, such as high inflation, unemployment, and shaky economic growth, have made it a primary reason for its residents to flee to other countries in search of better pastures.
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