Choosing a course to study abroad is a huge, life changing decision, so it can be taken in any way but lightly. Yet, year after year, millions of young people make the choice and take the leap. And you can be one too! If you have doubts and concerns about how to select the perfect course for you, no worries.
We have prepared this article as a practical guide to decide what you should take into account when choosing to study abroad. Sit back, relax and get ready for your next adventure.
Course to Study Abroad | 8 Tips to Find the Best Experience for You
Here at GrowPro, we are experts in helping dreamers like you find the right course to study outside their home country. Therefore, we know vey well what are the biggest challenges you’ll have to face. Here are 10 keys to know how to select a course to study abroad. Take note!
Define what you want to study and your goals
Studying somewhere else implies being ready to solve unforeseen situations and identifying good opportunities. Maybe you’re afraid and that’s not a bad thing. But you must know that having clear goals is the best way to overcome the challenges that are sure to come your way.
So, when you start planning your experience abroad, you need to have a very clear image of what you want to study. Decide if you prefer to take language courses, vocational courses or if you want to go all in and enter a foreign university.
The second aspect you need to define in choosing a course to study abroad is what you expect to get from this educational experience. Maybe you just want to get the best out of your vacations in a country you’ve been looking forward to visiting. Or you are looking for a degree that gives you access to better professional opportunities. You can even have the intention to migrate. Set your goals!
Establish the duration
Another key in the process of selecting a course to study abroad is to establish your experience’s minimum duration. This choice will determine the type of course accessible to you. For example, in three months, you can take an intensive language course and vacation for a while to get to know the city.
On the other hand, a gap year is perfect for a vocational course or to prepare for a language proficiency test. Besides, you’ll have more than enough time to visit plenty of the attractions waiting for you at your destination.
But if you want to advance to the next level of education, don’t hesitate to go for a university program, either Bachelor’s or Postgraduate. They can last from two to four or five years. During this time, you’ll be able to live a complete experience: courses, a job, and traveling throughout the entire country.
Choose the country and a city
Even if it seems obvious, choosing a country and city are significant steps. If you want to study a foreign language course abroad, there is no better option than to do it surrounded by native speakers. But there is so much to take into account.
For example, you may ask yourself: How far from home is it (you may want to stay close or to go as far as possible); How expensive is the city? From what you know, will you be able to adjust quickly and comfortably?
Ask yourself these questions before choosing a course to study abroad. Once you have chosen your ideal country, you’ll have to select a city in it.If you feel thrilled about big cities, GrowPro can take you to some of the top-notch cities in the world, like Dublin, Sydney or Barcelona.
Select an academic program
What kind of program will you choose to study abroad? Will it be languages? Something work related? Will you go for a full university program?
First, there are the foreign language courses, divided in:
Preparation for certification tests
The second group are vocational courses. Although you may not believe it, they are very popular in many countries. This is due to the fact that they allow you to study and work.
Their goal is to get you ready to join the job market as soon as possible. At GrowPro, we have selected some vocational courses to study abroad. Check them out!
Other options are university courses. When you finish them, you can get a Bachelor’s or a Master’s degree.
Plan your budget
Once you’ve made the above choices, you’ll be ready to plan your budget. This is the point where you polish those Excel skills and start adding up costs for the trip, tuition, rent, monthly expenses, and medical insurance. Later, you’ll have to ask yourself if you’ll be able to cover those costs with your current savings and income.
If you don’t have enough money for the initial expenses, maybe your best option would be to delay the plan while you grow your savings account. Also, remember that here in GrowPro we are more than ready to help you plan your budget. To get it, you only have to select a course to study abroad and fill out a simple form for the experience you like the most to get it.
Living abroad implies expenses for which you cannot plan. As we said earlier, there will always be unforeseen situations you’ll have to resolve. That’s why you should also consider the possibility of working and studying at the same time at your destination.
Performing both activities is a common choice among international students. Actually, in most places, having a student visa also allows you to work, with some restrictions. This is another step for choosing your course to study abroad, which we’ll cover later.
Find an accredited institution
Do you have sufficient funds? Great! Now the time has come to do the necessary paperwork for your study trip. How exciting! Start by enrolling at the school that offers your selected course abroad. But, before you must be sure that it’s an educational institution that has been accredited by the government of the country you are traveling.
This is often a requirement to get a Student Visa. Here, you can find a directory of accredited higher education institutions, and here you can consult if a language institution is accredited. If you find a school that isn’t listed there, ask the school directly to get further information.
These credentials guarantee that it is a serious institution. However, you must not lose sight of other qualities when choosing a course to study abroad. For example, in language schools, you should make sure that your teachers have degrees and are native speakers if you will be learning languages.
You should also agree with the teaching methods and school principles. And don’t forget to ask about group size. This aspect is very important in language courses because mid sized groups are ideal to practice conversation.
Get the right visa
When asking how do I choose a course to study abroad? You may get one simple but definite answer: get the proper visa! This document will determine your options abroad. Here is a summary of the main categories:
- Tourist Visa. Usually, these visas allow you to study courses that are three months long and travel around the country. Visit the official government website of your country of interest to learn more.
- Student Visa. No doubt, it is the best choice because it usually allows you to study and have a part-time job. Besides, it lasts as long as your course of choice.
- Work and Holiday Visa. Not all countries have this one. It tends to have very specific delimitations and few numbers available. Find out if your nationality qualifies!
When your visa is approved, the countdown to your life changing experience begins! Start by purchasing your plane tickets at least three months before your departure and prepare your luggage.
Of course, you’ll have to start saying your goodbyes at home. Upon your arrival, we recommend you stay at a hostel or Airbnb, at least for the first few days until you’ve had time to get to know the city.
Then you can start looking for accommodation. Never do this from your home country! It is best if you sign your contract already in the destination, so you can get to know the area, the people, and the place before you move into it.
Do a course abroad with GrowPro by your side
When traveling abroad by yourself, you’ll have tons of doubts. Questions about paperwork are replaced by those related to living in your country of choice. That’s why a growing number of travelers look for agencies to get help through the hardest steps.
GrowPro Experience offers first class counseling so you can live an unforgettable experience abroad. When you acquire one of our experiences you have access to the best language, vocational and university courses.
We will assign to you a Student Advisor who has already gone through the experience you are about to begin. This person will assist you in anything you need before, during and after your journey so it can be an absolute success.
Upon arrival to your destination, we’ll give you a Welcome Session, where you will receive an orientation to start your new life and you will meet other travelers like yourself. And that’s not even the whole deal, you will also have access to the Grower Area, where you will enjoy exclusive discounts from our partners.
After getting to know the process to study abroad, isn’t it time you made the choice about a course to study abroad and requested your budget? You’ll have taken the first step towards the experience that will change your life!