Why Indians Should Consider Studying in Northern Ireland


Subhashri Roy
Updated on Jun 29, 2023 09:38 PM IST

From flexible immigration policies to a wide range of start-ups and job opportunities, Northern Ireland has emerged to be one of the leading study destinations. Find out why you should consider studying in Northern Ireland, especially if you are from India and also check out their top universities.

Why Indians Should Consider Studying in Northern Ireland

Why Indians Should Consider Studying in Northern Ireland: Indian students frequently have a wide selection of options when considering higher education prospects abroad, including the UK, the USA, Canada, Germany, Australia, and more. Northern Ireland, a location recognised for its great colleges and universities, beautiful landscapes, and dynamic cultural experiences, is one such lesser-known treasure among Indian students. Northern Ireland has become an alluring alternative for Indian students looking to extend their horizons because of its unique combination of rich history, cutting-edge infrastructure, and friendly people.

Many prestigious universities in Northern Ireland provide top-notch education and a welcoming atmosphere for international students. Numerous international university rankings routinely place top-tier institutions like Queen's University Belfast, Ulster University, and Belfast Metropolitan College among the best. These universities provide a wide variety of academic courses in various fields of study, high-quality education, and access to industry partnerships, giving Indian students a competitive advantage in their chosen professions.

Additionally, Indian students in Northern Ireland benefit from a host of advantages, such as reasonable tuition costs, scholarships, options for part-time employment, and a friendly multicultural community. In this article, we will go into further detail about the benefits of studying in Northern Ireland for Indian students, emphasising the academic advantages, lifestyle advantages, and amazing opportunities that are available. 

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Flexible Immigration Policies

Studying in Northern Ireland for more than three months requires you to get a UK study visa and not an Irish visa. Given that the UK is committed to welcoming more students from India, the country introduced new immigration rules that will work towards increasing the number of international students to 600,000 by 2030.

Recent statistics also reveal that the number of student visas in the UK issued to Indians increased by 42% amounting to over 53,000 amounting compared to 2020. The new graduate route lets highly skilled migrants holding a job offer from a recognised employer qualify for a visa without any sponsorship or third-party endorsement.

The new route will not have restrictions on salary requirements or caps on numbers which paves the way for you to work flexibly, switch jobs and move up the career ladder as you deem necessary. In addition, the new UK post-study work (PSW) visa will permit you to live and work in the UK for up to two years after completing your Masters and three years after you are done with your PhD.

In addition, The British Councils Tier 5 sponsorship lets students studying technology and related subjects remain in the UK after graduation to find work in the fields of STEM. The program aims at providing Certificates of Sponsorship and supporting international applicants' Tier 5 Visa applications.

Planning to Study Your Masters in Northern Ireland?

Big Tech Ambitions

Despite the global pandemic, Northern Ireland broke a record and raised 45.6 million in the sector of technology, beating the 2018 record of 30.4 million in 2018, according to the data released by Tech Nation and Adzuna.

For the last 12 years, Northern Ireland, as a region, has been able to draw significant attention from the likes of global teach and management companies across the world. These include PA Consulting, Deloitte and IBM, and PwC which chose Belfast as the primary location for its blockchain development. Apart from these multinational companies, recent investors such as security software service provider Proofpoint and US-based web security specialists, WhiteHat and Imperva have also shown imminent interest in the region and its skilled workforce.

Notably, universities such as Ulster University and Queens University in Belfast work with large companies and investors to train their students with the required industry knowledge and skills.

The technology sector in the country further offers employment opportunities with workers asking for up to 10,000 more in wages compared to other jobs. The data pointed out that 806 tech roles were open in the entire region with 516 in Belfast alone which represents 64% of the country's tech vacancies.

Beyond tech, sectors such as healthcare and nursing, accounting and finances are also looking to have roles 521 and 457 roles filled respectively.

Research-Intensive Universities

Universities in the region are known for their excellence in research and innovation across global issues and themes. Queens University Belfasts The Institute of Electronics, Communications and Information Technology (ECIT) and Ulster University The Intelligent Systems Research Centre (ISRC) are named among the world's most recognised and technologically ahead research centres.

International experts have claimed that Ulster University is among the top 25% of universities in the UK with leading global research based on research power. Also, 72% of its research activity is considered world-class and internationally matchless. The university is aimed at moving further ahead in the journey of undertaking interdisciplinary research across the themes of social renewal, healthy communities, sustainability and creativity and culture.

Queens is also recognised as one of the leading research-intensive universities in the UK and has a global reputation for excellence. In fact, the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF)ranked the university 8th in the Uk for research intensity. The university also boasts having acquired 100m between 2016 and 2017 in new research awards and ranked #1 in the UK for entrepreneurial impact in the Entrepreneurial Impact Ranking, Octopus Venues 2020.

World-Class Campus Facilities

Alongside an extraordinary education system, Northern Ireland's universities are also known for their safe and state-of-the-art facilities. The multi-campus public university - Ulster University hosts over 27,000 students across its four campuses in Belfast, Jordanstown, Magee and Coleraine. The university is uniquely placed in the midst of local communities letting students naturally become a part of the community and contribute to its social, economic and cultural development. Courses are also offered at its branch campuses in Birmingham, London and Qatar.

Queen's University Belfast (also known as Queen's or QUB) is also located right at the heart of Belfast's culture. With an investment of 700m over a 20-year capital development program, the university has some of the best facilities on campus across the business, health sciences laboratories, engineering and computing. It also has an award-winning library - McClay Library, on which Queens has invested 50m to blend traditional features and the latest technology.

Brexit and Beyond

Brexit or the UK's EU Exit has also resulted in further attention on Northern Ireland as an attractive destination for investment. Consumers and producers can now retain custom-free access to the EU market and EU businesses would also benefit from Northern Ireland in terms of future investment. In such an ideal business environment where both sides benefit, more job opportunities across fields are likely to crop up.

Between January and November last year, investors announced 36 projects in the region, a 5.9% increase from 2019. The region's IT and software services alone saw a 46.7% increase in projects than in 2019.

Overall, Northern Ireland continues to play a global role with its business infrastructure, skilled workforce, government support and technological development.

Start-up Dynamic

Like other parts of the world, the start-up scene in Northern Ireland has also seen immense growth over the past few years. It has drawn the youth to start interesting and new businesses or work for them. A Global Entrepreneurship Monitor report said that around 30% of the respondents were of the view that Northern Ireland had good opportunities for start-ups. Another report released by the Enterprise Research Centre pointed out that 3% of the start-ups in the region were able to cross turnover of GBP 1 million in the first three years, compared to 1.9% nationally.

This rise in start-up interest could be attributed to a series of initiatives that the country offers to early-stage start-up founders. Some of these include the nine-month-long Proper Program for founders, the Development Grant, the Interim Manager Grant, the Innovation Voucher, and more.

Top Universities to Study in Northern Ireland 

Indian students pursuing higher education abroad can consider visiting Northern Ireland, which is known for its vibrant student culture and rich academic history. The leading institutions in Northern Ireland that offer top-notch instruction to overseas students are included in this table along with their locations and approximate tuition costs. These universities are well known for providing an extensive selection of undergraduate and postgraduate degrees across many fields, ensuring students have plenty of options to achieve their academic and professional goals. 

Here are the top universities in Northern Ireland where you can pursue your higher education:

Name of the University/College


Tuition Fee Range

The Open University in Northern Ireland


INR 6,99,018 - INR 19,48,232

Queen's University Belfast


INR 17,42,421 - INR 25,62,384

Ulster University

Belfast, Coleraine, Jordanstown and Magee

INR 4,64,304 - INR 18,84,275

St Mary's University College


INR 13,83,687 - INR 16,86,049

Stranmillis University College


INR 9,623 - INR 14,434

Belfast Metropolitan College


INR 6,00,000

It is time for Indian students to seriously consider studying in Northern Ireland owing to its many advantages and distinctive chances, as we have addressed the most commonly asked question on why Indians should consider studying in Northern Ireland, in this guide. The best colleges in the area provide top-notch instruction, a wide range of academic options, and first-rate student support services. In addition to providing academic advancement, studying in Northern Ireland gives students the chance to immerse themselves in a dynamic environment, form international friendships, and hone skills that will help them in both their personal and professional lives. Students from India should start thinking about Northern Ireland as an attractive place to pursue higher education.

You can write to us at abroad@collegedekho.com and clear out your doubts regarding higher education in Northern Ireland or admissions to its universities.

Choose the Right Course and University Abroad?


Why choose Northern Ireland for international students?

International students have a compelling option for their study in Northern Ireland. It guarantees a high-quality educational experience because of its prestigious universities, varied academic offerings, and student support systems. Also contributing to the area's dynamic and inclusive atmosphere are its gorgeous natural surroundings, rich cultural legacy, and inviting people. Studying in Northern Ireland offers the chance to expand one's horizons, create networks, and acquire knowledge that will help one succeed in the future.

Is it worth studying in Northern Ireland for Indian students?

Yes, Indian students should think about studying in Northern Ireland. The country is home to renowned colleges, top-notch quality education, and an encouraging learning atmosphere. Indian students can gain exposure to a varied cultural setting, good student support services, and a variety of academic programmes. Studying in Northern Ireland provides excellent chances for developing personally, making connections throughout the world, and learning skills that can help one succeed both academically and professionally.

Is it easy to get PR in Northern Ireland for Indian students?

For Indian students seeking Permanent Residency (PR), the government has established a set of requirements and rules. The particular requirements may vary, but they usually entail satisfying standards related to the job, domicile, and language ability. Consult our study abroad experts at https://www.collegedekhoabroad.com/experts/ if you want to learn more about the eligibility criteria and particular PR procedures for Indian students in Northern Ireland. 

Is it cheaper to study in Canada or Northern Ireland?

In terms of comparison, studying in Northern Ireland is typically less expensive than studying in Canada. In general, Northern Ireland has cheaper living costs and tuition fees than Canada. It is important to keep in mind, nevertheless, that costs might vary based on the university, programme, and location within every country. To make an educated choice, it is advised to look into and compare the expenses of certain colleges and programmes in both countries.

Is Northern Ireland different from Ireland?

Yes, Northern Ireland stands apart from the rest of Ireland. While Ireland, commonly known as the Republic of Ireland, is a sovereign state, Northern Ireland is a component of the United Kingdom. While Ireland has its government and runs autonomously, Northern Ireland has a devolved government and adheres to UK rules. Despite sharing a border, the two areas have different governmental, judicial, and educational systems.

Is it easy to get a part-time job in Northern Ireland for Indian students?

It might be difficult, but not impossible, for an Indian student to find part-time employment in Northern Ireland. Part-time employment options may be found depending on the local job market, rules governing student visas, and personal credentials and talents. On-campus employment options, internships, and part-time jobs are available for students in industries including hospitality, retail, and customer service. For part-time job postings and networking opportunities, it is a good idea to check out university career services, local resources, and employment portals.

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