The UK is a country in north-western Europe. It is bordered to the south by the English Channel; to the east by the North Sea; to the west by the Irish Sea and the Atlantic Ocean.
The UK is situated north-west of the European continent between the Atlantic Ocean and the North Sea. It has a total land area of 244,100 square kilometres, of which nearly 99% is land and the remainder inland water. From north to south it is about 1,000 kilometres long.
Students apply to UK universities, through the University and College Admissions Service (UCAS), a central government agency that coordinates applications for every university.
Wide ranges of degree courses are available at Scottish universities, which tend to emphasize breadth across subjects and students typically do not specialize subjects until the third year.
- A Bachelor’s degree is a 4 year program at university.
- During the admissions process universities evaluate the students’ Highers results among other criteria.
- Students may take a sandwich course, a year of study abroad or work before courses are completed
- Traditionally, Scottish universities award a Master of Arts (MA) degree, which is equivalent to a Bachelor’s degree
- The Honours degree is awarded after an additional year of research at the university.
A Masters degree in the UK may be research based, a taught course or a combination of the two and will prepare students for a particular career or for a doctorate qualification, and are offered in a variety of fields
- Requires the successful completion of an undergraduate degree.
- Typically a 12 month program
- Taught masters qualifications include: Master of Arts (MA), Master of Science (MSc) and Master of Business Administration (MBA)
- Research masters qualifications include: Master of Research (MRes), Master of Philosophy (MPhil)
Doctorate programs require students to undertake an original piece of research
- Generally requires a Bachelor’s or Masters degree
- Minimum length of three years at a university
- Typically students work on a single research project or dissertation
- Types of degrees: Doctor of Philosophy (Phd or Dphil)
Culture and heritage
The UK has an extraordinarily rich and diverse artistic heritage, with British poets, playwrights, musicians, sculptors, painters and filmmakers enjoyed and admired all over the world.
The UK's contribution to the visual arts is immense and there are treats to be found around the country, from striking architecture to paintings, ceramics and sculptures which can be found in our many art galleries and museums.
The performing arts are also thriving. Music, theatre, filmmaking, dance and opera are all performed enthusiastically in theatres, concert halls and studios all over the country every night of the year.
The richness of our cultural life is largely down to our diverse history. For many 100s of years different races and cultures have had an influence on the UK and consequently played a role in creating the society we live in today.
There is much to see and enjoy, from the history of the Royal Family to the striking skyscrapers of the City of London, from Guy Fawkes night celebrations to Hadrian's Wall on England's northern borders.
Science and technology
The UK has one of the most creative and productive scientific and research communities in the world. From 17th century mathematician, Isaac Newton, who discovered gravity, to Watson and Crick, who unravelled the structure of DNA in the 20th century, British scientists have always been up there with the world's best.
The UK Government sees science and innovation as a key export in today's highly competitive global economy. Because of this, its investment in research and development (R&D) has increased substantially over the past decade.
People and politics
There are nearly 61 million people living in multicultural Britain and about 5 per cent are from a minority ethnic group. You can find out here about the UK's amazing diversity and how our cultural life here has been affected and enriched by people who have settled here.
The UK government believes that each UK citizen should enjoy basic human rights. The Human Rights Act 1998 sets out people’s social and economic rights. We can help you find out what this means in everyday life.
The UK Government also works to promote human rights in countries around the world.
The UK has a long history of working to reduce poverty in the underdeveloped world by promoting international development. Our aim is to bring people in poorer countries out of poverty by making them less dependent on overseas aid by, for instance increasing trade and improving health and education.
Charities and voluntary bodies play a big part in UK life. Around 500,000 people are employed in a range of organisations - from self-help groups to multi-million pound global organisations. Some run specific campaigns to help raise public awareness of an issue, while others provide practical help to people in need.
The UK is made up of 4 countries. You can see how different parliaments and assemblies operate both nationally and locally. You can also find out about law and order and the legal system, how the political parties operate, the way we work with Europe and the European Union and how the Royal Family and the monarchy functions.