When you're studying abroad, there are lots of things to be careful about. You're careful who you hang out with, you're trying to see as many sights as possible and learn as much as possible while you're there. You have to become the master of budgeting, too. Before you get to those worries, you have a more important one on your mind: what program do you choose? There are few things to consider:
- Does that course fit into your vision for the future?
- Will it be useful in the country where you intend to work?
- Will it be fun?
- And, finally: is it the right choice for you?
- We'll give you 6 simple tips that help you choose the right course for your studies abroad.
1. Do Your Research!
If you were studying in your country, it wouldn't be that difficult to figure out what a certain program involves. You're part of that educational system, so the high-school curriculum prepared you for college-style courses. Now, you'll have to learn about the new educational system you're becoming part of.
- How challenging is that course?
- What kind of technology will you need to use?
- What qualifications and achievements are required?
- Are there any tests involved? Will you have to write projects? This is a very important issue, since it means you'll have to get essay writing help if you haven't mastered the language yet.
When you see the number of choices offered by the institution you chose, you might be overwhelmed. You'll have to answer these questions about each course that gets your attention. Then, the choice will be easier.
2. Pay Attention to the Entry Requirements
When you're attracted to a specific program, you have to see if you meet the criteria for admission. First of all, you'll need minimum language proficiency. Each course calls for certain qualifications, so check if you can meet them before applying.
If you don't, you have two solutions:
- Take a year off to improve your language skills. Then, you can safely apply.
- Try a different course, whose requirements you can meet.
3. How Relevant Is This Course to Your Plans for Future?
Where do you intend to work when you graduate? Will you try to stay in the country you chose for your studies, or will you return home? Each course gives you different perspectives. You have to check and see if those perspectives fit into your plans for the future.
If you intend to stay in the country where you'll study, explore the career options for foreigners. If you plan to get back home, find out if the employers would appreciate this degree. It's important to know if the things you learn and skills you gain are relevant for the job market in your country. Law, for example, is a discipline that demands localized studies. If you study it in France, the program won't cover everything you need to know if you want to practice law in the USA.
4. Estimate the Costs!
Each country imposes its own costs of living. How much will it take for you to graduate? What are the tuition fees? If you rent out an apartment, how much will it cost? What are the prices of food? How much money would you need over a month?
Be very realistic! It's easy to apply, get accepted and head out for the adventure of your life. If you can't cover all costs, however, it will be a huge struggle and it will probably end unsuccessfully. Estimate the costs and check your part-time employment options.
5. Connect With Native Students
You can easily find relevant online forums and Facebook groups, where students from your chosen university connect. You can see how they review the courses and the professors. Their tips and experiences will help you make a decision.
Keep in mind that admission to a top program will be very competitive. Ask these students how the letters of recommendation, projects and internships made a difference, so you'll know what points to emphasize in your application.
6. What Are Your Scholarship Options?
As an international student, you won't have access to the same scholarship opportunities as native students. Plus, your tuition might cost more. Find out what your scholarship options are before you send your application.
Check out Erasmus and other programs that provide financial support to international students. Your own country may also support people who decide to study abroad. Crowdsourcing is another great option. Many people from all around the world will be willing to fund your studies if you share an inspiring story.
You have to be very careful with the choice you make. It will set the track of your future. Hopefully, the tips above will lead you on the right path.