Do you dream of studying in India? But how to proceed? Find out in this article.
Since many years, India has been attracting worldwide foreign students in large numbers thanks to its prestigious universities and other higher education institutions. Indeed, studying in India has many advantages, namely quality and world class higher education, lower fees compared to many other countries, as well as access to one of the world's most powerful economies. It will also be an opportunity for you to discover new, rich and colorful cultures and lifestyles.
Moreover, having studied in India can be a real asset on your resume once you will set out on the international labor market. So if you wish to be part of this adventure, start by inquiring on the different Indian universities and on enrollment formalities.
Higher education system
The Indian higher education system is very wide, consisting of 677 higher education institutions in total as at 2014. Among these, you have 45 central universities, 318 Central Universities, 185 private universities, as well as 129 other higher education institutions, 51 national importance institutions and 4 regional institutions. Most of these are located in major cities such as the capital city, New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Ahmadabad, Bangalore, Chennai, etc.
Indian universities generally provide similar study programs to those provided in Europe. Hence, Degree courses have a three years duration (four years in the case of engineering courses) while Masters courses have a two years duration. To obtain a Doctorate (PhD), you will need three additional years of studies. Note that all courses are taught in English.
To be eligible for enrollment in an Indian university, you have to comply with a series of requirements. These vary from one university to another, but in general, you must be the holder of a baccalaureate, that is a higher school certificate. Given that the semester starts either in July or in August, depending on the chosen university, you have to start well in advance.
To enroll in an Indian university, you have to send your application file directly to the university you have chosen, either online or by post mail. The following documents will be required:
- a duly filled application form
- your secondary studies result slips, as well as your baccalaureate or higher school certificate
- result slips in the case of any first diploma or degree if you are enrolling for a Masters
- a cover letter indicating why you have chosen the university and a specific study program
- your resume (written in English and detailing your academic and professional skill)
- fees applied.
Good to know:
Foreign students can also enroll directly through the Direct Admission for Students Abroad (DASA) website which has been specially designed for them by the Indian government. This website allows you to enroll for an Undergraduate program which will be regulated by the National Technology Institute and other organizations.
University fees applies to foreign students are generally higher than those applied to local students although study programs are the same. Thus, you will pay an average of 100 euros as enrollment fees. But you also have to pay additional fees in the following cases:
- around US$ 300 for Undergraduate programs
- around US$ 400 for Postgraduate programs
- around US$ 500 for a PhD.
Note, however, that these fees are paid only once for the whole duration of the program. You will also pay annual fees of US$ 100 to your university or higher education institution.
Once your enrollment application has been accepted, you are required to apply for a student visa to be allowed to study in India. Application has to be made on the Indian Visa Online website.
You also have to produce the following:
- your passport (which has to be valid for at least six months following your arrival date in India and throughout your whole stay)
- an admission letter issued by the university where you have enrolled (which you should receive within a month following application in case you have been accepted)
- proof of sufficient funds to support yourself during your stay in the country, except if you have already landed a job and you are able to prove it
- a health certificate proving that you are not suffering from any communicable disease (including HIV, otherwise you will not be authorized into the country).
Other documents may also be requested according to your nationality.
Belgium, Canada, Spain, Portugal, Russia, Germany, among others, have an agreement with India regarding scholarships. We are here talking about the Cultural Exchange Program which allows nationals of these countries to receive a scholarship from India. You can have more information on the Indian Council for Cultural Relations website.
Direct Admission of Students Abroad – DASA www.dasanit.org
Ministry of Development and Human Resources – Higher Education Department mhrd.gov.in
Indian Visa Online – Online visa application indianvisaonline.gov.in
Indian Council for Cultural Relations – List of accredited universities in India www.iccrindia.net
4ICU – Briefs on Indian universities www.4icu.org