Before you rush off to the first country that comes into your head when you think of studying abroad, take your time and research your options. A country where you wish to further your career should be weighed on both pros and cons. We know choosing a study destination can be overwhelming, so we’ve created this handbook for your convenience.
What is your dream destination?
The best way to shortlist destinations is to consider the countries or cities you’ve always dreamt of visiting. There is a good chance you have already thought about a particular place you would like to study and move to. While earning a top-quality education, you can check these places off your travel bucket list. It is even possible to end up working and living in this country when you graduate. While you’re deciding whether to go traveling or head straight to university, studying abroad offers the best of both worlds.
Do you have a particular course in mind?
The first step is to identify your preferred course of study based on your interests and strengths. The universities and research centers in various countries are well-known for their expertise in specific fields and industries, so you’ll know where to find world-class teaching and research. Ensure you thoroughly research the modules, program, and duration of the program for your preferred subject. Furthermore, while you’re at it, make sure to explore employment prospects and long-term benefits.
Each university has its own requirements for admissions, just like any other admissions process. The university’s entrance exam is one of the primary requirements, so students are required to know all the requirements before applying and to be prepared to submit when needed. It is also important to make sure that you know the requirements for entering the country you’re interested in visiting. Visa processing can sometimes take longer than expected due to the differences between each country’s rules. Each country has its own visa processing fee as well.
How broad is the course scope at your chosen destination?
Learn about different industries that you can explore once you have completed your program and are looking for a job. Find out how strong the destination is in the industry you are interested in, and check if any training programs are offered. In order to make the most of your career opportunities, consider the options available in different countries, regardless of whether you’re planning to stay abroad after earning your degree or return home.
As an example, Austria is one of the best countries to study psychology if you aim to become a psychologist. In addition to social psychology and counseling, there are study abroad programs that focus on research methodologies, counseling, and research methods. Hospitals and private practices are the Austrian firms with the highest published employment and wages for psychologists.
Is your desired destination an expensive place to study?
By figuring out your budget, you can narrow down your study abroad choices. It is imperative to take into account the total costs associated with studying in a particular country. Be sure to consider the additional expenses such as accommodations, utilities, and transportation when calculating your costs. Considering the duration of your course is crucial, as it will impact your overall study abroad costs. You might consider some more affordable cities and countries if the costs of your first choice location would wipe out your savings. As a student, you’ll often have to submit proof of sufficient funds when applying for a visa, so be honest about what you can and cannot afford.
Check whether any scholarships are available in the desired destination at the government and institute level. Many countries even offer students the opportunity to study abroad for free, while others offer generous scholarships and grants. Research can lead to a big payday if you take your time. Some affordable study abroad destinations include Norway, Germany, France, Mexico and Poland.
What is the climate like?
The climates in different places differ greatly, so you can narrow down your search by indicating which climate type you prefer. If you enjoy warm weather, you’ll love the hot temperatures of countries such as Italy, France, Spain, and Australia. Meanwhile, Finland, Russia, and Lithuania are always bundled up in sweaters. These winter destinations are worth checking out if winter is your favorite season. When picking your study abroad location, you need to avoid places that are extremely hot or cold. It is important to consider the climate in advance, especially if you plan to stay for a few years. You will have an easier time surviving. As an example, for many international students, Spain is one of the most preferred study destinations, and the climate plays a major role in this decision.
How valuable is your degree back in India?
Since Indian students will spend a lot of money, effort, and time, it’s only natural to calculate the return on investment (ROI). Will the destination provide you with the return you’d like on your investment? Are you more prepared for a job if you have it? Plan your move to another country based on the opportunities and monetary gain. If you plan to return home, consider how your degree will be valued back home. If you are taking a niche course, you should consider this aspect as well.
As an example, Research degrees from internationally recognized universities in the teaching field will be greatly preferred.
How does the lifestyle and culture of your country differ from yours?
During your studies abroad, you will gain a deeper understanding of the world, but some countries’ social, cultural, and political values may be wildly different from yours. Despite the fact that they are not significant, being an Indian student entails a few considerations. There will be a huge difference between life abroad and in India. You will have to adapt to new languages, cultures, foods, and ways of living. You will also notice a drastic change in your response to various situations. Make sure you research each destination’s lifestyle to assess whether it matches your own. You can travel to any destination you wish, as long as you feel safe and comfortable. Still, it’s a good idea to do some research first, so you can make an informed decision and know what to expect when you arrive.
What support network will you have?
It may be difficult to adjust to a new country, but having a friendly support system can help. In a country with a high number of international students, you can be sure of finding people with similar experiences and interests. If you have friends and family living around the world, you may choose their home country. The best thing about it is that it can help you celebrate good times and support you in hard times. Even if they don’t live right next to you, you can have the assurance that they are always available for you if you need them.
Let’s wrap up!
These days, international education is a very popular option. However, choosing a study abroad destination can be a challenge for students. Therefore, it is highly advised that students consider the above criteria when choosing their international destination, as this will make the choice process easier.
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