British Culture

More than 60 million people live in the UK, creating a multicultural society with people from all over the world.

Migrants from the Indian subcontinent, the Middle East, Africa and the West Indies mingle with mainland Europeans, especially those who have arrived since 2004 from the 12 countries (mainly in eastern Europe) who then joined the EU.

Multicultural Uk Multicultural Uk 2 Countryside

Some basics

  • The British have a reputation for tolerance and fair play. The media are independent and frequently critical and outspoken, and there is a strong belief in justice, law and order. Generally, the British are polite and deferential.
  • The British sense of humour is subtle and sometimes difficult to understand. Being on time for an appointment is expected. Being late for a lecture or a doctor's appointment is considered rude.
  • Aim to get involved in sport, voluntary work or one of the many student societies on campus or perhaps act as a mentor or a student representative. This is a great way to improve language skills and offer a good insight into British culture.
  • One of the many benefits of living and studying in another country is to experience other ways of doing things, so take advantage of every opportunity to meet people.

Students from your own country and culture may provide help, information and support, either before deciding whether to study in the UK or after arrival.