All you need to know about studying abroad
Studying abroad is one of the best yet daunting experiences for students of all ages. If you ask any student who has studied in another country, it is more than likely that he will answer that the experience was unforgettable, that in some way, that stage changed his life.
In this article, the following points will be thoroughly discussed;
- What does studying abroad entail
- Factors to consider if you want to study abroad
- How to study abroad for free
- Cheapest countries to study abroad
- How to source for scholarships abroad
What does studying abroad entail
Before going to study abroad, you will have to complete a series of procedures. These procedures depend on your age, the type of study, and even the duration of your study program.
The best place to go to inform you of all the legal procedures is the embassy of your destination country. Many countries and universities have an Information Agency or Office for Foreign or International Students, where you can also find a lot of information about the procedures to be carried out.
It is also essential that you have the following legal documents;
- Student Visa
- Medical Insurance
- Residence Permit
- Work Permit; Incase you want to combine your educational experience with a job abroad
10 Factors to consider if you want to study abroad
For instance, if you are a Nigerian wishing to study in a French-speaking country, let’s say France, it is expected that you will have language difficulties, as French is not your first language.
So, you have to start building your foreign language skills, even before you travel.
You could also take foreign language courses in your destination country, so that you can learn the language faster, and communicate with your fellow students, tutors, and the local community effectively.
The cost of studying abroad can vary significantly from one school to another, so you will have to consider their tuition fees and other expenses before applying.
You could seek scholarships and grant opportunities to help mitigate the cost of studying and living abroad. It’s vital that you have a reliable source of funding
- Type of Program/ Course of study:
You also have to consider if your destination institution offers your kind of program; it could be Bachelor’s, Master’s, or even Doctorate program. That said, you will also have to enquire if your destination institution offers your desired course of study.
- Duration of study
Study abroad programs are generally classified into one of three categories: short term, semi-annual, and a full year.
You should explore programs that will allow you to finish school and obtain your degree within a reasonable time frame, especially if you will be studying with the aid of a scholarship.
If you want to study abroad, you will have to decide if you are going to live with a host family or in a dormitory.
Most educational institutions around the world offer accommodation to international students, particularly during their first year of study. Nevertheless, you could also apply at the embassy, to stay with a host family until you ‘find your feet’ in that country.
Food may seem trivial, but you will have to ask yourself if you can get by with the local cuisines of your destination country. Since you might be unfamiliar with their delicacies, it may seem hard to adapt at first, but it gets easier with time.
You’ll need to be certified healthy before you can undertake any study program abroad. You could also contact your health insurance company so that you can find out what you’ll need to stay healthy overseas.
- Conditions of the Destination Country
By conditions, I mean the geography, climate, political status, and academic reputation of your destination country.
Every country has a unique experience for students. So, it would be best if you chose your destination wisely.
Since you will be leaving your home and all other comforts that you have known, it’s best you learn how to adapt to this situation quickly. Making new friends and socializing will certainly help you adjust and become independent quickly.
- Get your Paperwork in order:
To ensure that your study duration is seamless, it’s best you get all your passport early before your program commences. Also, ensure that your visa will last you well beyond your semesters abroad.
How to study abroad for free
You could study abroad for free by;
- Choosing a country known for it’s free-education policies
- Choosing a course that is free to study abroad
- Applying for scholarships and grants
Cheapest Countries to study abroad
The following countries offer free education for international students;
How to Source for Scholarships to Study Abroad
The primary way of sourcing for abroad scholarships is to research extensively about them.
Scholarships such as the Chevening Scholarship, Ashinaga Scholarship, and even the DAAD Scholarship to study in Germany, are available for Africans to apply.
So, do your research, ensure you will all the criteria, then apply.
Studying abroad equips you with vast amounts of skills and knowledge. It also guarantees employment after school.
Rest assured that studying abroad becomes easy when you ease into it.