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Scottish Language and Culture

Study in Scotland: Language and Culture

English is the most spoken language in Scotland. It is spoken with a range of different accents and dialects. However, the Celtic language of Gaelic (considered the founding language of Scotland), as well as Scots are still spoken regionally in Scotland. 

Scotland has succeeded in retaining its own distinct culture and traditions even though it has been part of the United Kingdom since the early 18th century. It has done so by maintaining its connection to the many European cultures that make up its background. No doubt, the hospitality of its universities to international students and faculty has also helped.

The Great Highland Bagpipe is perhaps the first kind of music people typically associate with Scotland. Scottish holidays and festivals include the traditional Burns Supper, Hogmanay and St Andrews Day celebrations, while the 'Auld Lang Syne', immortalized by national poet Robert Burns, is the second most popular song in the world.

Scotland is considered the birthplace of golf, and is of course famous for its golf-courses. It is also the home of Highland Games, curling, and shinty (a stick game similar to Ireland's hurling). 

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Traditional meals include fish and chips, haggis, porridge, the Arbroath Smokie, salmon, venison, shortbread and cranachan (dessert of cream, fresh raspberries, oats and whisky). However, Scotland's contemporary cuisine now elevates its natural and seasonal produce - including beef, venison and seafood – on the fame of super-chefs like Gordon Ramsay, Nick Nairn and Andrew Fairlie. Scotland is also known for its Scotch whisky distilleries, Scottish beer and the soft drink Irn-Bru which outsells major brands in its home country.

Notable figures in Scottish culture include authors Robert Louis Stevenson, Arthur Conan Doyle, J. M. Barrie, actors Tilda Swinton, Alan Cumming, Ewan McGregor, Sean Connery, Rose Leslie, musicians Annie Lennox and Calvin Harris and the rock band AC/DC.

Scotland retains its own unique legal system known as Scots Law. It combines features of both civil law (based on Roman law) and common law (based on English law). 

Must see tourist sites in Scotland include: Edinburgh Castle, Loch Lomond, Loch Ness, Isle of Skye, Golf at St. Andrews, Ben Nevis and the Burns Heritage Trail. 

Scotland's national animal is the unicorn (yes, really!), and its national plant is the thistle.

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The Higher Education System in Scotland

Thinking of studying abroad in Scotland? Its fascinating history and culture make for a unique study abroad destination. Find out more about the education system in Scotland!

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Tuition Fees In Scotland

Tuition fees for higher education programs in Scotland can vary. Many international and domestic students pay different tuition fees, depending on where they are from. In this section you'll find all the information on how this works in Scotland.

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Living Costs In Scotland

No matter where you study abroad, it’s important to create a budget in advance so that you’re prepared. Therefore, we’ve detailed average living and housing costs so that you can get a better idea of what you would be paying as a student in Scotland.

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Entry Requirements for UK Universities

Learn more about the United Kingdom's national application portal and how it applies in Scotland. This section covers what you'll need to do when applying as an undergraduate and postgraduate.

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Scholarships

Don't let international student tuition fees stop you from studying abroad in Scotland. Find out more about some of the scholarships available to international students here! 

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Student Visas for the UK

Do you need a visa to enter Scotland to study? Learn more about the student visa process, and what you need to enter the country, depending on your citizenship. Don't worry! We've gathered the information you'll need to make it happen.

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Programs in Scotland

Ready to browse higher education courses in Scotland? Use our search engine to find and compare top programs in Scotland today!

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Photo of Buchanan Street, Glasgow, United Kingdom by Jason Briscoe on Unsplash.

Last update: 07 Oct 2020

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