Starting your new semester or year overseas is a great way to learn more about yourself, make new friends and explore the world! However, you might find yourself worrying about the little things. If you feel unsure about the process involved in studying abroad, follow these ten tips to get you on your way!
1. Go to all of the meetings
If you’re thinking about starting school abroad, you’ll need to attend every meeting your university hosts! Sometimes, these are compulsory, and you’ll need to write down your name and student number to prove that you have sat down and listened to what is expected of you during the application process. Don’t worry, though! Most of the time, study abroad meetings are a great way to inform you of how to apply to different colleges and what grades you’ll need to be viewed as a strong applicant.
2. Pack essential clothing
An important tip for starting school abroad is checking what the weather will be like in your new city! If you are flying across the globe, remember to check when the hot and cold seasons are. Most importantly—don’t pack everything! Only take the essentials with you. Once overseas, you’re likely to buy lots of new clothes and possessions. Save your suitcase space for when you have to come home!
3. Be prepared for subject changes
Your home university will ask you to enrol in subjects before you arrive at your overseas college. This way, your uni can approve your study plan and make sure that your degree doesn’t have to be extended. However, when you arrive at your host university, you might find that the subjects you originally planned on doing are entirely full, or not running for the semester. Make sure that you have some back-up options to make sure you earn the right credits for your time as an exchange student!
4. Join Facebook groups
A great way to get involved with your new university is by joining Facebook groups! This will ensure that you receive up-to-date information about school sports, clubs and activities. You might even make a couple of friends before you arrive on campus! Another great tip for starting school abroad is by finding out who your housemates are and getting in contact with them. This way, your new life abroad won’t feel so strange and distant from home.
5. Get a copy of your transcript
Some overseas schools will require you to scan and upload a copy of your academic transcript. This will let them know whether or not you are the kind of student they are looking for! Make sure that you tell your academic advisers that you are going on exchange. For some universities, this will mean getting your transcript for free instead of having to pay (quite a large sum) for it!
6. Know what’s in the application
The application process for starting school abroad is time consuming. Prepare yourself for a list of tasks you’ll have to complete before you are considered for international exchange. You’ll have to write an essay to your host university about why you are a great candidate for them. You will have to represent your own university, and behave according to their study abroad guidelines. The entire application process is your responsibility. You will have to decide which country you want to study in, which university you want to attend and figure out the best subjects to enrol in. You will even have to secure your own flights, accomodation and meal plans, so make sure you keep everything organised!
7. Research your accommodation
Living on campus is a great way to make friends and memories. It is also incredibly convenient for accessing your campus and school library. However, most universities have a strict deadline for on-campus applications, as it is incredibly competitive. Usually, you will have the opportunity to choose from a range of different locations to live in. Make sure you do your research to know where you want to live and how to apply before the deadline!
8. Purchase 0-week party tickets
The first week of uni is usually fun and laid-back. This involves a lot of parties, and getting to know lots of new people! Many colleges will advertise ticket sales for parties online. Make sure you suss out these events, and if you’re interested, buy some tickets to guarantee yourself entry!
9. Learn a second language
This is an incredibly important tip for students who are starting school abroad in non-English speaking countries. If you want to immerse yourself into a different culture, make sure you have a base understanding of their language. This will make getting around the city, talking to people and understanding the requirements of your studies a lot easier!
10. Research your new city
Finally, what’s more interesting than researching your new home? You might do this to first decide where you want to stay during the academic term. Or, you might want to find out where the best bars and cafes are near your university. Knowing where you are and the best places to travel to will make your stay a lot more fun!
Did you learn anything new from studying abroad? Tell us in the comments!
Feature Image Source: https://www.pinterest.com.au/pin/427842033340950033/
Creative writing major at the University of Melbourne! One of the few arts kids drinking coffee instead of tea. Slowly crying my way through Ulysses.