How to Choose Where to Study as Your Overseas Destination? – Studying abroad is a big decision that can change a student’s life and shape their future. Acquiring an international degree will open an entirely new horizon for the students and boost their career prospects. In addition, students find studying abroad fascinating because it develops language skills, learning new education methods, gaining more knowledge, offers independence, and the chance to travel.
Many aspects need to be considered while planning to study abroad — the academic course, overseas destination, college/university tuition fees, living cost, lodging, and boarding, and many more.
Here are three major things to keep in mind when deciding where to study abroad:
1. Choose the course/program you wish to pursue
Higher studies overseas are divided into two categories — Course and Program. The course usually lasts a semester or one academic term. In contrast, the program is another term that is used for the degree. To begin with, you need to choose the course/program you wish to study.
Knowing what subject, you would like to pursue can help narrow down and shortlist the study abroad destinations.
2. List out and compare the colleges/universities that offer the course/programs you wish to pursue
The second most crucial factor after selecting the subject or the course you wish to pursue is colleges or universities. College is a term used for academic institutions that offer undergraduate degrees in a broad range of academic subjects. University is a prominent institute that offers undergraduate and graduate degree programs, professional courses, and Ph.D.
Indian students generally prefer to choose the academic institution that offers courses in the English language. It is not a compulsory subject to learn the first/second speaking language of the country.
For instance, even though Germany is considered as one of the best countries in Europe in terms of studies and living, to avail a free education, the students must learn the German language. But, in recent years, Germany is actively offering study programs in English as well, but they still prefer the students learn the German language.
Thus, the USA, the UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Australia, New Zealand, and Singapore make the perfect fit for English language academic institutes. In addition, these countries have an outstanding reputation in terms of education.
While you are listing out the colleges/universities, keep these five things in mind:
● Check the international college/university rankings.
Even though the international college/university rankings can be confusing at times and can be helpful tools for comparing colleges/universities, the accuracy and relevancy of the results depend on what you are looking for. With several ranking systems, each institute has its purpose. Thus, it makes the list of top universities vary.
But by understanding the characteristic methodologies list, the prospective students can select the most suitable guide to the college/universities that suit their priorities.
● The value of the degree back in India
Indian student’s urge to study abroad has many reasons — better education and learning skills than the home country, seeing the world, taking in a new culture, finding a new interest, personal development, and many more. But what is bringing back to the home country after years of learning in a foreign country is the urge to stay attached to their roots.
Thus, the degree you will acquire from foreign colleges/universities should have value back in India.
● Affordable degrees
Amid Covid-19pandemic, many students re-think their decision to study abroad due to financial issues. However, they have a valid reason. But there are numerous affordable colleges and universities abroad that can help students earn a degree without going into debt. Moreover, many academic institutes in Canada, the USA, and the UK are offering scholarships as well.
● Others experienced studying abroad.
Our generations are blessed with advanced technology. Social media has played a vital role in shaping our world. Take advantage of the colleges and universities abroad social media accounts. Connect with the students currently studying or who have passed out from the college or universities you have chosen. You will get the real-time update that helps you in selecting suitable colleges/universities.
● Offering employment opportunities while studying
Studying abroad is not an expense, it is an investment for your future. With increasing numbers of students opting to study overseas, it is one of the critical points to know whether the colleges or universities are offering employment opportunities while studying or not?
It is a crucial consideration because it is essential for the students to connect with the market, to learn the outside world beyond their academic institutes. The strength of the employment market for degree-holders needs work experience. In addition to the work experience, the students will earn a stipend to cover their living costs.
3. Learn about the city/country where the college/university you have shortlisted
You have narrowed down your courses/programs and the colleges/universities. The next step will be to do a little more research about the city and the country where you will be traveling to study abroad.
Every country has its own set of rules, culture, language, customs, and many more. Therefore, it is unnecessary if the country you have chosen has some political issue, but the city you have chosen is safer and offers the best things you could have asked for.
● Living Cost
Even if you have chosen the college/university offering a lower tuition fee, you need to travel to the city where the living cost should fit your budget.
For instance, Georgian College in Canada, offering full-time programs for international programs, has seven campuses across the country in — Barrie, Midland, Muskoka, Orangeville, Orillia, Owen Sound, and South Georgian Bay. As per the ISB survey, Georgian College ranked #1 in Ontario and #2 in Canada.
Even though the conversation rate INR to CAD will convince you that Canada’s living cost is costly, it is an overall ranking. Georgian College Barrie Campus in Canada offers the lowest tuition fees, and Barrie city is one of the cheapest places to choose because it is affordable.
Barrie is an increasingly attractive city for newcomers to Canada because it offers a low cost of living, fair employment prospects, and a moderate climate.
Climate does play an essential role for everyone in how well you tolerate heat and cold. Everybody has a different human biological adaptability. Every human body’s response to temperature changes. Some people are sensitive to cold, while some cannot tolerate humidity.
While many people may be the most vulnerable to health risks due to climate, every student needs to be sure about climate adaptability. For instance, even though you might love the winter season, the cold weather in India is way too different compared to northern Canada or the UK, or the USA.
● Political Condition
Political stability is the hottest topic to discuss, whether for students who wish to study abroad or for people who want to travel to a foreign country. But the political condition is again dependent upon the city of the country, not the entire country. There might be political unrest in the capital city because it is where the government seat is, but the remote areas and other cities can be unaffected.
● Culture acceptance
By now, we have heard hundreds of news almost every month about the murder of the students or ragging because of cultural unacceptance. Thus, it is crucial to consider the college/university where it has a diverse culture. Avoid selecting such a city/country which you are not sure about the cultural acceptance.
● Safety and Security
Undoubtedly, safety is one of the top priorities for anyone. However, it better protects its citizens on the streets or any place in the city or even defending them against online crime.
According to the latest U.S. News site — Australia ranks 8 in safest country globally, New Zealand ranks 4, and Canada ranks 4. While Canada has been voted as the number 1 country to live in globally.
● Visa policy
While there are no major changes in the student visa policy for the USA, the UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, France, and Singapore, you must keep up to date with the current visa requirements. The global pandemic has changed major things and has added some more requirements while traveling from India. As well, with the political unrest in some countries, there might be an additional rule.
Studying abroad is one of those moments for the students and parents where both are excited but nervous because there will be so many things going on. Therefore, it is essential to keep the above things while choosing the study abroad destination, colleges/universities, courses/program.
Highly advisable to contact the study abroad consultant to save time and get a clear picture of the educational institutes because the consultant is here to help you choose to narrow down your preferences.
The study abroad consultant helps you pick up the right courses/programs, colleges/universities, and will help you in accommodation abroad, study loan or scholarship, and many things that you might miss.