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Which intake should I consider?

Several countries offer study intakes for indigenous and international students in different periods. Many international students find it difficult to wrap their minds around these intakes and why some are preferable to others. This post introduces the different intakes for some major countries with opportunities for international studies.


Study intakes in Canada


Fall intake

Fall intake in Canada is considered the primary study intake for international students to study in Canada. A lot of universities open to international students in the fall season. Normally between September to December, this intake is most preferred by international students. This is a result of the large availability of courses in this intake as compared to others. It also allows students to adapt to the study environment and weather conditions. The weather in fall is much more favorable, compared to the winter period.

Here are some Canadian institutions with study intakes in May:

  • Queen University
  • Western University
  • Lakehead University
  • McMaster University
  • University of Montreal
  • George Brown College
  • Columbia College

Winter Intake

This study intake is usually between January to April. It is generally not a much-preferred intake period for international students. The reason is that international students find it difficult to adapt to the cold weather in this season. Winter intake is known to be a continuation of the fall intake, therefore, only a few seats are made available in schools for this intake. The deadline for applying to this intake is usually between September and November.

Here are some institutions in Canada with intakes in January:

  • Fanshawe College
  • Centennial College
  • Lambton College
  • McGill University
  • Carleton University
  • Ontario University
  • Cape Breton University

Summer/Spring Intake

The summer intake in Canada is considered the least preferred intake for international students to study in Canada. Usually, between May to August, this intake is the least popular in Canada. This is the time most international students decide to go on vacations in their home countries. Only a few institutions are open for admission (with limited seats) to this intake due to the period of the intake. The deadline for this intake is usually in February.

Here are some Canadian Institutions with intakes in May:

  • New York Institute of Technology
  • University of Alberta
  • Mount Saint Vincent University
  • Brock University
  • Ontario University
  • Lakehead University
  • University of the Fraser Valley

UK intake for international students


Fall/Autumn intake

The fall/autumn intake usually happens in September/October for UK schools. This intake is considered the major intake for all universities in the UK. Institutions in the UK get the largest number of study applications in this season for both Undergraduate and Postgraduate study. International students interested in this intake are advised to submit their admission application as early as possible to get early consideration. 

Here are some Top Uk Institutions that offer intakes in September:

  • Sheffield Hallam University
  • Birmingham City University
  • Coventry University
  • University of Brighton 
  • University of Westminster
  • University of Chester

Spring Intake

For institutions in the UK, spring intake is usually in January/February. Students who may not be interested in the first intake or who missed out on the first intake can always apply for this one. The downside of this intake is that some courses become unavailable in some schools. International students are advised to get full information on the study intakes available for their course of choice. It is important to note this before choosing a school.

Here are some institutions in the Uk with intakes in January:

  • Birmingham City University
  • London School of Economics (LSE)
  • Bangor University
  • Manchester Metropolitan University
  • Aberystwyth University
  • Brunel University

Summer Intake

Only a few schools offer this intake. Comes in May every year. The number of colleges and universities offering admissions to international students in this intake is very little. Courses in institutions usually get filled up in the first two intakes (Fall and spring). As much as this intake is being offered by some schools, international students are advised to speak to an advisor before applying for this intake. Applications to this intake usually end a few months before the intake period.

Here are some UK institutions that have intakes in May:

  • Coventry University
  • Northumbria University
  • Keele University
  • Salford University
  • Sheffield Hallam University
  • University of Chester

U.S international intake


Fall Intake

This intake marks the start of an academic year. Usually between September to December. Scholarship and funding opportunities are usually at its peak during this period. International students looking to get funding for their studies are advised to apply for the fall intake. Institutions open admissions to several programs during this intake. Applying for internship opportunities is easier for fall students as they most times meet the 9months criteria before applying for an internship. Students also get to work on campus as a researcher or teacher assistants.

Here are some U.S institutions that have intakes in September:

  • University of Illinois
  • Stanford University
  • George Mason University
  • University of Massachusetts
  • California Institute of Technology
  • Auburn University

Spring Intake

The spring intake is from January to April. Little or no scholarships are available during this period as most of them would have been disbursed at the beginning of the academic year. A limited number of courses are offered in this intake and the opportunity to work on campus or as a teacher assistant is slimmer. Only a limited number of job offers are available to spring students. Students in this intake face the eligibility problem of 9 months before enrollment to intern in a company.

Here are some U.S institutions that have intakes in January:

  • University of Dayton
  • Massachusetts university
  • Auburn University
  • Arizona State University
  • George Mason University
  • Adelphi University

Summer Intake

This is the study intake for institutions in the U.S. Summer intake comes between May and June, which is immediately after the spring intake. Only a few universities open some courses for students to apply for this intake. The primary programs offered to students in this period are cultural programs and language programs for non-English speakers. 

Here are some U.S institutions that have intakes in May:

  • Florida Atlantic University
  • Georgia Southern University
  • Indiana University Bloomington
  • Southeastern University
  • Regent University
  • University of Nebraska-Lincoln
  • Southern Illinois University

Australia study intake for international studen


Autumn/Primary Intake

Also known as February intake or semester 1, is the first and primary study intake in the Australian academic year. This intake is extremely competitive as universities offer their major courses, scholarship, grants, and on-campus jobs during this period.

Here are some Australian institutions that have intakes in February:

  • Charles Sturt University
  • Macquarie University
  • The University of New England
  • The University of Newcastle
  • University of Technology Sydney
  • The University of Melbourne
  • University of Canberra

Spring/Secondary Intake

Also known as July intake or semester 2. This intake is also very competitive for international students looking to study in Australia. The deadline for applying to this intake is usually between April to May. Scholarship offers and grants will still be available to students applying to this intake.

Here are some Australian institutions that have intakes in July:

  • Western Sydney University
  • The University of Newcastle
  • RMIT University
  • The University of Melbourne
  • The University of Queensland
  • University of South Australia
  • James Cook University

Summer/Minor Intake

The summer intake is also known as the November intake or semester 3. Although autumn and spring are the major intakes in Australia, some universities offer minor takes in November. Online courses, vocational courses, and a limited number of other courses are available in this intake. The intake is also less competitive for students.

Some Institutions in Australia offering intake in November:

  • UNSW Sidney
  • University of Southern Queensland
  • Central Queensland University
  • University of New England
  • Monash University

Certain factors must be considered when applying to study in any of these countries listed above. The available study intakes are provided under the study sessions of the country and the intakes offered by your school of choice. These two should be the top priority.

 International students are advised to put into consideration the weather of the intake period for proper preparation. You wouldn’t want to apply to the January study intake and travel with skimpy clothes thinking it’s the same weather as where you are coming from (if Africa).

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