International Study

Studying at CI as an Overseas Student

Colchester Institute is a college of further and higher education in Essex and offers a wide range of courses to help you with your education and chosen career. Every year Colchester Institute welcomes international students from many different countries. The majority of our students are from the Essex area however we do currently have representation of over 80 nationalities within the College. Choose from the options in the menu below and find the course or information for you.
International Study – Why choose us?

International and Overseas students choose Colchester Institute for many different reasons and these include lower cost of living, smaller class sizes, one to one support from tutors, approximately 50 minutes by train to London, quiet countryside environment, beautiful East Anglian coastline and the opportunity to experience British culture and make new friends.

Colchester Institute offers courses in subjects including Art and Design, Computing, Business, Hair and Beauty, Hospitality, Professional Cookery, Management, Health and Social Care, Child Care, Music, Construction, Automotive, Engineering and much more. For more information you can search our courses here.

Further education courses are taken by students after compulsory school age, i.e. 16 years of age. Many further education qualifications are designed to enable entry to higher education courses, such as a Bachelor degree. Students take higher education courses from the age of 18, usually after completing a two year further education course, such as a BTEC National Diploma or A Levels.

Cultural Differences in the UK

Cultural Differences

It is a very exciting time, moving to a different country, meeting new people and learning about different cultures. However, it can also be a bit of a shock and you may experience many emotions during the first few weeks whilst you adjust to your new environment. Studying in an English college means that you will meet British students and will have opportunities to develop your language skills faster through regular practice. Events are organised through the Student Union and International Society so that all students socialise together. There are many facilities including on-site restaurants, a multi-gymnasium, library and computer suites where students can meet either to talk about every day life or to work on projects. Quite a few of our students progress on to British universities or continue studying at Colchester Institute.

If you live in a warm climate you may find the weather in the UK cold and wet at certain times of the year. British food may be very different to what you are used to, however, local supermarkets stock a very wide range of foods from around the world so you should be able to find some familiar food. There are plenty of places to eat on our campus, offering a variety of meals.

Social behaviours may confuse or surprise you, and you may find the relationships between men and women more formal or less formal than you are used to. British people generally have a reputation for punctuality, therefore, in business and academic life, keeping time is important; you should always be on time for classes, lectures and meetings, and should let people know if you are going to be late or unable to attend.

You may be surprised that other cultures do not share the same values and beliefs as you. Give yourself time to adjust and understand others, and remember that other people will take time to understand your behaviour too.

Guidance and Information

UKCISA produce some guidance on culture shock that you may find interesting to read and the British Council have information on their website about UK life and culture.

If you have any further questions please email the University Centre Colchester office at or telephone 0044(0)1206712152