Studying abroad is a wonderful opportunity that not everyone can experience. Many dream about studying abroad and at the same time, they are also apprehensive about studying outside India. Along with advantages, you need to be prepared to face the challenges of venturing into the unknown as well. A holistic understanding of what entails if you aspire to study abroad will equip you to take advantage of the opportunities and overcome the challenges.
Advantages of Studying Abroad
- You become a better communicator: Studying abroad will improve your communication skills in terms of you vocabulary and diction since you interact with colleagues from different nations. Based on the country you study and the friends you hang out with, you can also learn new languages such as Mandarin, French, German, Spanish etc.
- Explore new academic opportunities: Studying abroad will expose you to new academic options in terms of teaching pattern and courses to study. A desire to pursue research in an area of interest is better fulfilled due to the facilities and funding available to the universities. You also have an opportunity to work in the university as a teaching assistant or tutor while still enrolled as a student.
- Wide career Options: Graduates from international universities are considered for good job roles due to their exposure to work in multicultural environments. The worldwide financial sectors, business giants, MNCs, start-ups want to work with candidates who have a high-valued degrees. You can also pursue a career in teaching in reputed institutions due to the knowledge acquired along with your global exposure.
- Opportunity to Travel: Studying abroad offers you with opportunities to travel and explore new places and cultures along with a sense of adventure. It’s an opportunity to understand people from different backgrounds and traditions. This will help in making new friends from around the world, being independent, making better decisions and facing challenges.
Challenges of Studying Abroad
- Financial challenges: Studying in good foreign universities doesn’t come cheap. There is a lot of expense involved in tuition fee, boarding, lodging, travel expenses and other living expenses. The financial aspect drives people away from their dreams most times. However, you can plan better with educational loans from good banks at a low interest rate, working on-campus and also by frugally managing your expenses while studying.
- Communication Challenges: Communication is one of the major hurdles for local students studying abroad. Lack of knowledge and understanding of the unique accent of the host country along with their local parlance will lead to challenges for an interactive conversation or while presenting academics. A crash course on the spoken language and vocabulary of the host nation before joining in the foreign university will definitely help.
- Cultural Misfit: Universities abroad contain students from various nations and cultures. Not being able to fit in with peers from different backgrounds will make students uncomfortable and shy to express themselves. Being well read about the demography of the university and the cultural diversity of the student community will help in avoiding the cultural shock.
- New environment: While most students achieve their dream of studying abroad, not everybody can study in a new environment in a different country. Because of this, students tend to become homesick, thereby avoid social gatherings which in turn makes them lonely. It is better to interact with students who are joining the university through social media to make friends even before joining the university.
Best Countries to Study Abroad
Education programs to study abroad
- Pathway programs: These are pre-master’s program that provides international students a direct path to various graduate degrees at a university. The program gives students the academic foundation, essential language skills and GRE/GMAT test preparation to successfully move on to the Master’s degree.
- Bachelor’s degree: A Bachelor’s Degree also called undergraduate degree is attained after receiving a post- secondary (high school) education and generally spans four years. Students who pursue these degrees are commonly referred to as bachelor or undergrad students. A Bachelor’s Degree is usually offered by universities which are institutes of higher education.
- Master’s Degree: A Master’s Degree or post graduate education involves learning and studying for academic degrees in various areas. A bachelor’s degree is prerequisite for Master’s. The Master’s degree generally takes two years to complete. Students who pursue these types of degrees are commonly called as masters or grad students.
- MBA: Master of Business Administration (MBA), is a Master’s Degree that deals with business related topics such as accounting, finance, marketing, human resources, operations and statistics to name a few. Most MBA programs are offered as a two year program but some schools can offer an accelerated version that takes only one year to compelte. There are also executive MBA programs for experienced job holders.
- PhD: Ph.D. is the highest academic degree that a student can earn in most countries. These doctoral programs allow students to focus their research on an area of interest and can prepare them for careers as consultants, researchers, teachers and scholars.
The world is full of new opportunities and adventures. Studying abroad will always increase your knowledge, skills and helps you to develop your personality in a holistic way. You can make your dream into reality with sheer determination and persistence.
Good luck and all the very best!