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25 Things You Did Not Know About Studying In India

India is thousands of years old, with rich culture, religious diversity and hundreds of languages. India is fast becoming a choice study destination for international students. The country is also home to an ancient education system and one of the oldest universities in the world – The Nalanda University, which was founded in the 5th century and was revived in 2010.

If you are planning on going to study in the world’s second most populated country, there are things you may not know about the country. Before you decide on moving to India to study, here are 25 things you probably did not know about studying in India.

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1.     India has four classes of Universities

India has four major types of university: central universities, state universities, private universities, and religious minorities’ institutions. Generally, the institutions run by the central government are the best for international students. These institutions offer scholarships and have a high quality of education.

2.     University education is regulated by the UGC

 India has a centralized agency, the University Grants Commission (UGC) that regulates university education. Technical and professional education is controlled by the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE). Medical education is regulated by the Medical Council of India. Be sure to find out if your university of choice is recognized by one of these agencies before you apply. It’s best to avoid institutions without any affiliation with the central agencies. There may be a risk that your degree will not be recognized by your home country when you return.

3.     India has the highest number of universities in the world

With an estimated 4,004 universities, India does not only have the highest number of universities in the world, but beats the next country on the list, USA with almost 700 universities.

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4.     Indian universities rank well globally

There are six Indian universities in the best 500 universities. 35 Indian universities are in the global best 1000. The best university in India tie between the Indian institute of Science and The Indian Institute of Technology Ropar according to Times Higher Education.

5.     Health insurance is recommended

Student health insurance is mandatory in most international universities in India. However there are few universities that do not require it.

6.     Working while studying is illegal

Indian law prohibits international students from working while studying in the country. International students can however, take up internships related to their field of study.

7.     You should learn the basics in Hindi to get around easily

Despite being a former colony of Britain, majority of Indians do not speak or understand English. You may want to learn the basics in Hindi to get around outside campus.

8.     Indian universities require TOEFL or IELTS

To study in India as an international student you need to provide proof of your proficiency in the English language. TOEFL or IELTS will cover this.

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9.     Indian Universities have a high acceptance rate

Universities like the University of Hyderabad, Jamia Millia Islamia University and Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur have some of the highest acceptance rates at 97% each for qualified students.

10. Tuition fees are cheap but vary

The tuition fees for universities in India are cheap. They however, vary depending on the university. For instance tuition fees in government funded schools like Jadavpur University which is the 12th best in India cost around $300-$500 per year. A degree at SRM University in Tamil Nadu will cost you around $6200.

11. Cost of living is cheap in India.

With a yearly budget of around $3200 you should be able to foot your accommodation, food and utility bills in India easily.

12. University campuses are often well equipped

Most of the good universities have a vibrant campus culture and amenities such as cafeterias, hostels, mini-markets and even basic health facilities. Some even have international hostels, which are very useful in confirming the presence of other international students.

13. Scholarships are available to international students

There are number of scholarships available to international students, most funded by the Indian government. Some of the scholarships include; General Cultural Scholarship scheme (GCSS) which is open to international students from Asia, Africa and Latin America, Commonwealth Fellowship plan, ICCR scholarship scheme amongst others. Visit www.afterschoolafrica.com to explore more opportunities to study in India.

14. Medicine and Computer science is the Holy Grail for international students

The bulk of international students coming to study in India opt for medical related courses and computer science. This should come as no surprise given India’s reputation in leading research in Medicine and pharmaceutics.  

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15. There are 48,000 international students in India.

There are over 48,000 international students studying in India in 2019. There are however over 300,000 Indian students studying abroad.

16. You can remain in India after graduation to work

Unlike the restrictions to work during study in India, international students can work in India after the completion of their programs. This is on the condition that they are offered employment. Employment visas are usually granted for a year and can be extended. However, there are two major limitations to the employment visa; first, the foreign national has to be employed at a skilled position i.e., as a senior executive or at a managerial position. Second, the visa holder should be earning at least USD $25,000 annually.

17. India is the second most populated country in the world and the seventh largest.

With a population of 1.3 billion people, India is the second most populated country in world after China and the seventh largest country in the world.

18. India has a hot tropical climate

Most of India is hot and rainy for most of the year. Northern states of Himachal Pradesh and Jammu & Kashmir have a cooler, more continental influenced climate. The monsoon season which brings torrential rains and flashfloods begins in June and lasts till September.

19. Campus accommodation is best for international students

Generally, the international hostels, if available, are the best places for international students. They offer not only complete safety inside the campus bus also a wide network of friends and a good atmosphere for learning. Shared residential apartments, close to the campus are also popular with international students.

20. Indians love spicy food

Indians love their food spiced up! Ginger, cinnamon, cumin, coriander, turmeric; you will love it!

21. Bollywood is the world’s largest film producer

With an annual production of almost 2000 movies, India has the world’s largest film producing industry and the second oldest.

22. India is also the world’s largest democracy

With a population of 1.3 billion people, India’s parliamentary democracy is the largest democracy in the world.

23. India offers you an enriching cultural experience

India is a very diverse country, with more than 1.2 billion people. Different regions have their own distinct cultures. Language, religion, food and the arts are just some of the various aspects of Indian culture. Take your time and enjoy the rich and ancient cultures that abound in India.

24. Cows are sacred in most parts of India

You’ve heard the idiom, “Sacred cow” right? Well it has its origin from the Hindu religion in India. In Hinduism, cows are thought to be sacred, or deeply respected. They are held in high esteem and Hindus worship cows. Cows are seen as a ‘caregiver’ or maternal figure. One Hindu goddess, Bhoomi, is usually shown in the form of a cow. She represents the Earth. Hindus who eat meat will avoid eating beef.

25. India has some breathe-taking landscapes

India is a land of landscapes for travel. There are stunning lakes and endless rolling plain. The snow-capped Himalayas in the north is also a sight to behold. It’s also home to wild festivals, romantic mausoleums and some of the most hectic cities in the world.

There you have it, the 25 things you did not know about studying in India. Which one of the points struck you the most? Tell us about it in the comments section.

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