The 'internationalisation' of universities has recently become a keyword in many countries. With the progress of globalisation, the mobility of students and academic staff at universities has drastically increased in the past few decades. As a result, more universities are now trying to bring an international dimension to their institutions. While some universities are focusing on internationalising their curricula to meet the needs of a globalised society, others are emphasising the establishment of new collaboration agreements with foreign universities to raise their profiles further. These changes have made universities main players in the age of global knowledge competition, and consequently it has been important for universities to create solid international strategies in order to survive. In this context, the United Kingdom has probably been one of the most proactive countries in this field. This paper will examine the underlying concepts of internationalisation of universities in England. The aim of the research is to examine the different attitudes towards internationalisation between pre-1992 ('old' universities) and post1992 (former polytechnic) universities, and to explore what kind of factors influenced their international strategies. This paper will also attempt to provide a possible explanation as to why higher education institutions in England are heading for internationalisation.