Cheap Universities in Scotland

Here is the list of all the affordable universities in Scotland. We will first go over the list of cheap bachelor's colleges and universities in Scotland. Then after that, we will go over the list of cheap master's colleges and universities in Scotland. Location, tuition fees, and some of the degrees offered will be available for each institution.

Cheap Bachelor's Colleges and Universities in Scotland for International Students

Here is the list of affordable institutions in Scotland ordered by their tuition fee for international bachelor's students.

1. Scotland’s Rural College

Scotland’s Rural College is an institution focused on research and education in the fields of agriculture and life sciences. The school aims to develop the knowledge and skills of students for their contributions to improving the agricultural sector. Its vision and mission are centered on Scotland having a natural economy that is sustainable.

Scotland’s Rural College is the most affordable educational institution in Scotland for undergraduate studies. Incoming international bachelor’s students are required to pay as low as 2,500 GBP.

2. Robert Gordon University

The next university on our list of cheap universities in Scotland is Robert Gordon University.

Scotland’s Robert Gordon University offers a wide array of courses, many of which are well-ranked and highly-regarded. The institution itself is well-esteemed, placing high in teaching quality, course satisfaction, student experience, academic support, learning opportunities, and employability of graduates. The university is also committed and invested in its campus, facilities, innovation, research, and entrepreneurship initiatives. All these things and more have no doubt made it a sterling university.

International students planning to study for a bachelor's degree at Robert Gordon University must prepare a tuition fee of 4,640 GBP to 17,150 GBP.

3. Queen Margaret University

Named after Queen Margaret of Scotland, Queen Margaret University was established to help women and working families. Dedicated to its original purposes, it continues to help the community by establishing itself as a campus without borders, open and working closely with its locality. Nationally, the university is included in the top 100 universities based on several ranking sites. These rankings and other awards like the e-Government National Award show the institution’s commitment to excellence.

This public university has a tuition fee range of 7,000 GBP to 15,500 GBP for international students studying a bachelor’s program.

4. University of Stirling

Another cheap university to consider in Scotland is the University of Stirling.

The University of Stirling is a modern university whose mission is to provide education with a purpose. It has won multiple awards for its excellent curriculum, impactful research, and strong support for athletics. The university is also known for its iconic campus situated within the 18th-century Airthrey estate, with a castle and loch just within walking distance. Students benefit from the inspiring study atmosphere made possible by the exotic fauna and cutting-edge facilities found on campus.

As a first-year international student here, you will be required to pay a tuition fee of 9,250 GBP to 18,800 GBP. This is really affordable compared to other schools in Scotland.

5. University of Edinburgh

Joining the cheapest universities in Scotland is University of Edinburgh.

The University of Edinburgh is a public research university located in Scotland, a picturesque country known for its castles and whisky. It is one of the nation’s oldest centers of excellence as it was founded in the year 1583. Due to how highly regarded it is, many students choose to pursue their tertiary education at the university. With that, it has a long list of noteworthy alumni such as renowned psychologist and neuroscientist May-Britt Moser, molecular biologist and biophysicist Richard Henderson, as well as economist Sir James Alexander Mirrlees.

With its affordable rates, you can have world-class education without breaking your wallet. To give you an idea, international undergraduate students pay 9,250 GBP to 32,100 GBP for bachelor's studies at University of Edinburgh.

6. University of the West of Scotland

The University of the West of Scotland (UWS) is a public institute of higher studies that is regarded as one of the best universities all across the globe in terms of education quality and research. This institution has campus locations in Ayr, Dumfries, Lanarkshire, Paisley, and London. Moreover, UWS specializes in learning areas such as engineering, biological sciences, communication, and many more.

7. University of Aberdeen

The University of Aberdeen is one of the oldest institutions in the world. Its establishment dates back to 1495, and it classifies as an ancient university. Today, it is known for its unique blend of tradition and innovation, boasting an iconic campus that houses modern facilities and historic buildings alike.

8. Heriot-Watt University

Heriot-Watt University is a specialist school that focuses on providing education in the fields of design, engineering, business, and science. It started as a mechanics institute – the first in the world – and it continues to be a leader in finding practical solutions to contemporary problems today. Because of its strong reputation in these highly-technical fields, Heriot-Watt is considered one of the most elite universities in the UK.

9. Glasgow Caledonian University

Inclusivity and diversity are evident in one of Scotland’s most prominent universities, Glasgow Caledonian University. Students from many countries have experienced a Glasgow Caledonian University education, and you might be the next! The institution takes pride in its excellent teaching, grounded on experience since 1875. The university’s training and strong industry connections have allowed high employability rates. Moreover, it has fared well in various rankings and performance assessments, even ranking 4th in the United Kingdom for learning experience.

10. University of the Highlands and Islands

One of the newly established universities in Scotland is the University of the Highlands and Islands. This modern university provides a unique approach to teaching and research. Its degree programs are highly concentrated on academics, training, and industry-specific skillset as the institution’s primary goal is to produce qualified and readily employable individuals.

11. Edinburgh Napier University

The Edinburgh Napier University was firstly founded as Napier Technical College in 1964. The name originated from John Napier, a Scottish physicist, mathematician, and astronomer. It was then renamed to Napier University in 1992 by inauguration of Lord Douglas-Hamilton. After a variety of acquisitions and mergers, it then became Edinburgh Napier University in February of 2009.

12. Abertay University

Abertay University offers a range of academic programs, but it is widely known as one of the best technology universities to obtain a degree in video games education. The university is located in Scotland, where tuition fees are relatively low compared to other institutions in the UK. Its lively environment is comprised of students and academic staff from across the globe, assuring them that inclusiveness on the campus is heavily advocated.

13. University of Strathclyde

The University of Strathclyde may be the perfect university for students dreaming of studying in Scotland. This public institution is highly-esteemed, even earning the title of the University of the Year in 2012 and 2019. It has welcomed and honed thousands of students for over two centuries, ranking 5th in the United Kingdom for student satisfaction. Moreover, it is located in Glasgow, one of the most vibrant and welcoming cities worldwide.

14. Glasgow School of Art

As an art school, the Glasgow School of Art has general and specialized courses in different subjects like design and fine arts. It consists of five departments divided into architecture, design, fine art, innovation, simulation, and visualization. The university has its own share of notable alumni, and it has also received recognition in international rankings for its performance among art and design schools.

15. Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland is one of the best universities when it comes to performing arts. The institution is specialized in the following subject areas: dance, drama, education, film, music, and production. They have notable alumni who have made an impact in their own fields, such as acting. Students are thoroughly trained through specialized teaching and other opportunities with the school’s national and international partners.

Cheap Master's Colleges and Universities in Scotland for International Students

Here is the list of affordable institutions in Scotland ordered by their tuition fee for international master's students.

1. University of St Andrews

The University of St Andrews, or St And for short, is the oldest of the four “ancient universities of Scotland,” while it is the third-oldest in the English-speaking world, following Oxford and Cambridge. Initially founded by an assembly of Augustinian clergy in 1410, Antipope Benedict XIII bestowed the school ‘university status’, due to Bishop Henry Wardlaw’s petition, on August 28, 1413. Since then, the University of St Andrews has been comprised of three different institutions: United College, St. Leonard’s College, and St. Mary’s College. St And has also been dubbed as “University of the Year” twice by The Times and Sunday Times, and the first university ever to surpass Cambridge and Oxford in British rankings after being ranked as the best university in the UK in the 2022 Good University Guide.

If you're looking to save the most on your graduate studies abroad, University of St Andrews should be at the top of your list. International students here pay only 4,950 GBP to 25,450 GBP annually for their master's degree.

2. Robert Gordon University

One of the universities you should definitely check out for practical reasons is Robert Gordon University. Here, you can finish your master's degree with minimal stress on your finances. After all, the tuition rate for graduate studies at Robert Gordon University is 5,300 GBP to 18,230 GBP.

Scotland’s Robert Gordon University offers a wide array of courses, many of which are well-ranked and highly-regarded. The institution itself is well-esteemed, placing high in teaching quality, course satisfaction, student experience, academic support, learning opportunities, and employability of graduates. The university is also committed and invested in its campus, facilities, innovation, research, and entrepreneurship initiatives. All these things and more have no doubt made it a sterling university.

3. Scotland’s Rural College

Scotland’s Rural College is an institution focused on research and education in the fields of agriculture and life sciences. The school aims to develop the knowledge and skills of students for their contributions to improving the agricultural sector. Its vision and mission are centered on Scotland having a natural economy that is sustainable.

The tuition fee at Scotland’s Rural College for incoming international master’s students is 6,000 GBP to 15,750 GBP. With its cheap rates, you can guarantee you’ll get a quality education without breaking the bank!

4. Glasgow School of Art

Another affordable university to consider in Scotland is Glasgow School of Art.

As an art school, the Glasgow School of Art has general and specialized courses in different subjects like design and fine arts. It consists of five departments divided into architecture, design, fine art, innovation, simulation, and visualization. The university has its own share of notable alumni, and it has also received recognition in international rankings for its performance among art and design schools.

The tuition fee in Glasgow School of Art for master’s program for foreign students starts from 8,100 GBP.

5. University of the Highlands and Islands

Aside from its outstanding quality of education, University of the Highlands and Islands has some of the lowest tuition fee prices for foreign students who are planning to take a master's degree here. International master's students only pay as low as 9,090 GBP yearly.

One of the newly established universities in Scotland is the University of the Highlands and Islands. This modern university provides a unique approach to teaching and research. Its degree programs are highly concentrated on academics, training, and industry-specific skillset as the institution’s primary goal is to produce qualified and readily employable individuals.

6. University of Dundee

The University of Dundee has been delivering high-quality education to Scottish locals and international students since 1967. Its excellence was recently recognized by StudentCrownd, which ranked the university as 1st among other academic institutions in Scotland. Moreover, global rankings have recognized the university’s prestige in life sciences and medicine. All these and more assure aspiring students of excellent training within its walls.

7. University of Edinburgh

The University of Edinburgh is a public research university located in Scotland, a picturesque country known for its castles and whisky. It is one of the nation’s oldest centers of excellence as it was founded in the year 1583. Due to how highly regarded it is, many students choose to pursue their tertiary education at the university. With that, it has a long list of noteworthy alumni such as renowned psychologist and neuroscientist May-Britt Moser, molecular biologist and biophysicist Richard Henderson, as well as economist Sir James Alexander Mirrlees.

8. University of the West of Scotland

The University of the West of Scotland (UWS) is a public institute of higher studies that is regarded as one of the best universities all across the globe in terms of education quality and research. This institution has campus locations in Ayr, Dumfries, Lanarkshire, Paisley, and London. Moreover, UWS specializes in learning areas such as engineering, biological sciences, communication, and many more.

9. Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland is one of the best universities when it comes to performing arts. The institution is specialized in the following subject areas: dance, drama, education, film, music, and production. They have notable alumni who have made an impact in their own fields, such as acting. Students are thoroughly trained through specialized teaching and other opportunities with the school’s national and international partners.

10. Queen Margaret University

Named after Queen Margaret of Scotland, Queen Margaret University was established to help women and working families. Dedicated to its original purposes, it continues to help the community by establishing itself as a campus without borders, open and working closely with its locality. Nationally, the university is included in the top 100 universities based on several ranking sites. These rankings and other awards like the e-Government National Award show the institution’s commitment to excellence.

11. Glasgow Caledonian University

Inclusivity and diversity are evident in one of Scotland’s most prominent universities, Glasgow Caledonian University. Students from many countries have experienced a Glasgow Caledonian University education, and you might be the next! The institution takes pride in its excellent teaching, grounded on experience since 1875. The university’s training and strong industry connections have allowed high employability rates. Moreover, it has fared well in various rankings and performance assessments, even ranking 4th in the United Kingdom for learning experience.

12. Abertay University

Abertay University offers a range of academic programs, but it is widely known as one of the best technology universities to obtain a degree in video games education. The university is located in Scotland, where tuition fees are relatively low compared to other institutions in the UK. Its lively environment is comprised of students and academic staff from across the globe, assuring them that inclusiveness on the campus is heavily advocated.

13. Edinburgh Napier University

The Edinburgh Napier University was firstly founded as Napier Technical College in 1964. The name originated from John Napier, a Scottish physicist, mathematician, and astronomer. It was then renamed to Napier University in 1992 by inauguration of Lord Douglas-Hamilton. After a variety of acquisitions and mergers, it then became Edinburgh Napier University in February of 2009.

14. University of Strathclyde

The University of Strathclyde may be the perfect university for students dreaming of studying in Scotland. This public institution is highly-esteemed, even earning the title of the University of the Year in 2012 and 2019. It has welcomed and honed thousands of students for over two centuries, ranking 5th in the United Kingdom for student satisfaction. Moreover, it is located in Glasgow, one of the most vibrant and welcoming cities worldwide.

15. University of Stirling

The University of Stirling is a modern university whose mission is to provide education with a purpose. It has won multiple awards for its excellent curriculum, impactful research, and strong support for athletics. The university is also known for its iconic campus situated within the 18th-century Airthrey estate, with a castle and loch just within walking distance. Students benefit from the inspiring study atmosphere made possible by the exotic fauna and cutting-edge facilities found on campus.


We hope that this article on affordable institutions in Scotland for international students was helpful!