The cost for tuition at a UK university currently stands at around £9,000 per scholastic year, the equivalent of just under eight lakh rupees.
Many overseas students can apply for grants or scholarships to help cover all or part of this cost, especially those who have previously shown aptitude in their particular area of expertise.
However, even with a completely free place there are travel expenses and the cost of living to consider, which is why most students will take out some form of loan to help fund their time at university.
In the UK, student loans are provided by the government, and are begun to be paid back when – and only when – the graduate starts to earn £21,000 per year or more.
In India the system works differently – for starters, a student loan can only be arranged with a bank, not the government. The type of course you wish to pursue and the amount of money you need to borrow will affect your chances of getting a loan.
Most banks will lend up to four lakh rupees without the student providing additional security or having to raise any cash themselves. However, many banks will favour certain courses over others depending on how profitable the bank believes the course to be.
Traditional courses such as business management, medical, engineering or some technologies will attract most banks. There is at present no funding available from Indian banks for those studying the arts.
For loan amounts over four lakh rupees, most students will need to provide additional security, usually in the form of a margin and a guarantor.
A margin is where the banks ask you to find a percentage of the loan amount yourself, usually between five and 15 per cent. A guarantor is most often a family member who agrees to take out the loan jointly with you, who becomes liable if you default.
Any student loan taken out in India will become liable for repayment beginning either one year after your course ends or six months after you get a job, whichever is earlier.