UK students make up three quarters of Russell Group undergraduates

23 July 2020

The Onward think tank today released a report on international students at UK universities.

Commenting, Dr. Tim Bradshaw, Chief Executive of the Russell Group, said: 

“Russell Group universities have grown UK student numbers alongside international numbers, and home students continue to make up over three-quarters of our undergraduates, who will be equipped with the skills to go on to success in whatever path they choose. Alongside benefits such as boosting the UK’s soft power and increasing exports, international students enable our universities to deliver a broad, high-quality academic programme and provide wider course choice for domestic students.

“Students from around the world choose to study at British universities because of the high-quality education and experience they provide – this is a testament to our quality and should be seen as a success story. We will continue to welcome the most talented students and staff regardless of nationality and are working with the government to maintain our standing as a globally attractive destination for students from the widest range of countries. The new graduate visa will help us compete for students from around the world including from countries like India and Brazil – and from Africa, which will be a significant market for quality higher education over the coming decade.”

 Additional note: 

  • UK students made up 77% of UGs at Russell Group universities in 2018/19.
  • Universities also make up one of the most successful British exports, with spending by international students worth £10.8 billion a year to the economy.


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