Can you recommend some good universities/colleges for me?
April 28, 2015 2:24 PM   Subscribe

I am a 26 year-old Chinese girl who is living in America now holding a permanent resident card. I can speak very good English. I graduated from a university in China and my major was English and literature. I worked for a UN Wetland Project in China for a year as an interpreter and project assistant. Now I am considering to further my study and enjoying college life again. I would prefer to do my Master's Degree. But i am totally fine to just be an undergraduate student again. And the subjects or majors do not really matter too much. Subjects like languages, psychology, medicine, international relations and anything related to culture and the environment are fine with me.

I am trying to find a tuition-free university in a city in Europe or Australia (or somewhere else ) with warm climate and relatively low cost of living. I've lived in a tropical city for the past ten years so i do not like long cold winters. If the cost of living is not low, it would be much better if I can apply for a scholarship. I traveled in some countries in Europe before. I know that in those countries like Germany and Finland, the education is really good and usually it is free for domestic and foreign students.

Let me clarify that the factors that are most important to me (in order of importance) are: 1. Free to foreign students 2. A place that isn’t super cold (preferably warm most of the year) 3. Has good program with something I’m interested in.

I highly appreciate your advice.
posted by denimchair to Education (12 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Hmmm, I imagine the free part will be the hardest problem to solve! There are universities in the United States that offer funding even to international students -- (even full funding, I believe, in the case of schools like Harvard and Yale if your family really could not afford to pay tuition.) But these will be the top schools, and hard to get into, and may otherwise not be accessible or appealing! Good luck!
posted by caoimhe at 2:29 PM on April 28, 2015

You will not find any universities in Australia with free tuition. Domestic students pay fees, international students pay even higher fees.
posted by kinddieserzeit at 2:29 PM on April 28, 2015 [3 favorites]

Apply to a university in Canada and only accept a masters program where they will offer you a research or teaching assistance package. About 1/3 of my TAs were from Mainland China when I was in university (in Canada). Vancouver and Victoria have mild climates.
posted by Chaussette and the Pussy Cats at 2:34 PM on April 28, 2015

PhD programs in the US are sometimes funded, though it's much harder to get a funded position in the humanities than in the sciences.

Even a school like Harvard that would meet your full financial need, even though you are an international student, would almost definitely not provide that level of aid for you to pursue a second bachelor's degree.

Some colleges and universities in the US allow their employees to take classes for free or very cheap. That's probably your best bet for taking undergrad courses cheaply if you were to stay in the US.
posted by telegraph at 2:35 PM on April 28, 2015

Also, in Canada, international students can take part in co-op programs. That means you can go on paid 4- or 8-month work terms while you are in school. You might make $1500-$3000 a month for 2 terms, so another $12k - $24k. See
posted by Chaussette and the Pussy Cats at 2:35 PM on April 28, 2015

If free tuition and a low cost of living is your goal, I recommend Germany! It does get cold in the winter but not as cold as many places in the US. Perhaps you'd like Freiburg or Konstanz since the former gets a bit more sun and the latter stays a bit warmer. They even have degree programs entirely in English! This official page would be a good start.
posted by smorgasbord at 2:38 PM on April 28, 2015

The problem with most universities in Europe is that it is hard to find enough courses taught in English to put together a full degree program. There are usually some, but not everything. Can you clarify whether you are willing to learn another language? Also, of course it will take a few years of language classes to get you to the level where you can handle university study in it.

Seconding that you will not find free universities in Australia.
posted by lollusc at 4:28 PM on April 28, 2015

Came in here to recommend Germany as well. The DAAD is a good source of funding but most universities are pretty much free (around 600 EUR student fees depending on where you are). LMU is a good university with some degrees taught entirely in English.
posted by gemutlichkeit at 5:49 PM on April 28, 2015 [1 favorite]

The Netherlands is fairly friendly to foreign students. Almost every major university offers degree programs in English. The fees for non-EU students vary by institution and degree program, but you can look them up here. There are also scholarships that you can apply for. I find it to be pretty warm during the summer, especially because the humidity is usually high in most parts of the country. You can see average temperatures here.
posted by neushoorn at 11:48 PM on April 28, 2015

Check out the Endeavour Scholarships in Australia
posted by superfish at 12:10 AM on April 29, 2015 [1 favorite]

Try New Zealand. I understand University of Auckland charges international PhD students the same rate as domestic and that there are scholarships etc. available so that if you publish a bit (which you would need to do anyway) it is close to free.
posted by Gotanda at 12:18 AM on April 29, 2015

Some MA programs in the states will pay you to go. You'd work as a TA or RA. But consider California. Just off the top of my head, but CSULA is warm, has MA programs, and is near some amazing food and culture.
posted by persona au gratin at 3:14 AM on April 30, 2015

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