As a developing country and emerging economy in Asia, the Philippines continues to welcome thousands of international students and is equally a very popular tourist destination – not surprising when you visit those exotic tropical and sunny beaches. However, the Philippines offers more than just an attractive coastline; those who choose to study on low tuition in the Philippines will have the opportunity of exploring the country’s fascinating mix of Islamic, Malay, Spanish and American influences on Filipino culture.
How to Apply to universities in the Philippines
There are currently two intakes for admission into universities in the Philippines, one in June and the other in November. Go on and apply directly to your chosen university, submit academic transcript that are relevant to your level of study. Based on the university and program, you may be required to provide letters of recommendation and/or sit entrance exams.
Since the language of instruction at most universities in the Philippines is English, you’ll be expected to prove your proficiency with a standardized test such as IELTS or TOEFL if you’re not a first language speaker.
Applying for a Philippines visa
All international students need a student visa, which they can apply for at the local Philippine embassy or consulate in their home country after they’ve gotten admission into a Filipino university. You’ll have to submit the right documents (which are stated on your embassy’s website) and then attend an interview at the embassy or consulate. Note that your Philippines visa will be valid for a year and can be renewed each semester. The documents you’ll typically need are as follows:
- Your international passport, which has to be valid for at least six months after your intended period of stay;
- Completed visa application form;
- A valid medical health certificate (DFA Form 11) with life-size chest x-ray and laboratory reports;
- Three photographs of yourself;
- A police clearance certificate;
- Your letter of acceptance to study at a university in the Philippines;
- Proof that you have sufficient cash to support yourself during your stay, or a scholarship;
- Receipt of visa fees.
Fees and funding
International students wanting to study in the Philippines will be delighted to read that living expenses are very affordable – you’ll only need roughly US$4,200-6,000 per year. Tuition fees are equally on the low side. Universities determine their own fees and they vary across programs, but expect to pay an average of US$1,000 per year at public universities and US$1,200 to 2,500 at private institutions.
It is important to note that your student visa will not allow you to find part-time work in the Philippines while you study, so you can’t supplement your expenses when you are there.
Health and safety
Do well to secure your health insurance before you travel to the Philippines. You are able to acquire this from the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, which sells cheap health insurance for all citizens. However,do well to check the options available in your home country. It’s also great to visit your health professional before your visit to check if you require any vaccinations before you travel out to the Philippines.
The Philippines’ is located on the Pacific ‘Ring of Fire’ and that makes it prone to earthquakes and typhoons, the latter of which can be expected during the rainy season between June to November. There are equally tons of volcanoes in the Philippines. It’s important to read up on what to do in case of any natural occurrences. Starting April 2016, the island of Mindanao and the Sulu Archipelago are considered dangerous due to terrorist activities so visitors are not allowed to visit these places.
Ateneo de Manila University
The Ateneo de Manila University is a popular private research university which came 551-600 in the world rankings and joint 95th in Asia. It has four campuses located in the Metro Manila region, with the main campus found in Quezon City. It was founded sometime in 1859 by the Society of Jesus, and is one of the country’s oldest universities. Ateneo is one of the top 200 low tuition universities in the world for English language and literature, and its arts and humanities faculty is ranked one of the top 350 in the world.