UK Vs USA: Which Country Should You Choose For Your PG Studies?

The United Kingdom and the United States are both very popular choices for postgraduate students.

But what are the differences between studying as a postgraduate in the UK and studying in the US?

Tuition Fees 

For home-based students studying in the UK it’s going to be cheaper than paying international student tuition fees in the US. But, in the US there are far more private universities offering postgraduate study and these tuition fees are similar to international students tuition fee rates in the UK. This means that for many US students there is not much of a difference for tuition fee rates when they head off to study in the UK. 


In the US students are used to gaining funding via scholarships and bursaries by the time they come to postgraduate studies. In the UK, this is less common and self-funding for postgraduate studies, along with UK Government loans and grants, is a popular way to fund postgraduate courses. Many students take on private student loans in the US which have much more stringent repayment terms compared to the UK Government loans.

Living Costs

Generally, it is cheaper to live in the US than it is in the UK, especially if you live and study in London. However, once you leave London life becomes a little cheaper in the UK, although no one is going to compete with the rent you will pay in the US by square metre, homes are much larger there. 

Future Career Plans 

Where you choose to do your postgraduate study will make an impact on where you spend the rest of your working life. Universities and colleges in the US and the UK will have large and extensive connections on a local and national level. If you want your career to be global in scope, then you should consider international cities, like London where you will network with people from all over the world. 

Foreign Languages

In the UK you are mostly only going to hear English spoken, apart from a few places in the biggest cities. In the US you are much more likely to come into contact with speakers of other languages and especially native Spanish speakers. If improving your language skills is important to you, then the US is a great place to undertake postgraduate study. 

Type Of Masters

The US and the UK have highly reputable and internationally renowned universities and these institutions specialise in different subjects. If you're looking for the best place in the world to study the sciences, engineering or management studies, then the US occupies the top spots in the international rankings. However, if you're looking for social sciences or life sciences, then the UK is a better bet

University Rankings by Subject 2019

Both the US and the UK have an amazing academic reputation across all subject areas. Here is a selection of tables showing the top ranking universities worldwide across various disciplines*.

Arts & Humanities

Engineering & Technology

Life Sciences & Medicine

Natural Sciences

Social Sciences & Management



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