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The First Hurdle of Studying Abroad - Choosing the Appropriate Country

Last week we have looked at the needs and processes of studying abroad. There are many steps that include in the path of studying abroad that leads to your bright future. This week we will look at the decision-making process of choosing the appropriate country for your higher education. There are definitely numerous factors that affect your decision like the course that you desire to do, the University of your interest and many socio-economic factors.
Education is something that needs an intact plan as the decision you make in this sector has a large impact on your life. With so many study abroad program types and destinations available to you and the long checklist of tasks you need to complete before actually heading overseas, it can be difficult to decide where to start. So, these are the things that you should keep in mind before you begin your preparations to fly abroad.

Make the choice depending on your student profile.
There are so many destinations to choose from when deciding where you want to study abroad that it can be an overwhelming choice. It might be helpful for you to first analyze your profile and then list down the countries that match with your profile. The very noted trend among the engineering students is - the first country of choice for their studies abroad is always the US. But again, it always depends on your profile. So, it would be advised if you initially ask these questions to yourself and choose the country based on the answers you get.
  • Which country is known for the course you chose?
  • Do you want to be in an English speaking area or somewhere you need to speak a foreign language?
  • Do you fall under the criteria that the country requires a student from a foreign country?
Based on your answers, you probably have a good idea about the qualities you want in your study abroad destination. Now it's just a matter of finding it!

Check whether the country has good University rankings.
Rankings cannot be the sole base of your decision, but there are many good reasons they can untie some knots. Rankings are usually given based on the quality of teaching, research, innovation and global outlook of the universities in a country. A student seeking for a premium academic experience can choose from the highest ranked universities in the world. But sometimes it is better to single out the best universities by using their relevant subject rankings. Thereby the chances of you ending up in a university known for the course you chose are higher.
Another important reason to follow the rankings is, at the end of the course the chances of getting a job in the same country is not always easy. But in cases, if the student is from a top university in the country employers will sometimes sponsor your visa. Also, there are many study-abroad scholarships from the governments to the students who study at a university in their top 15.
The rankings also indicate about the international environment in the campus. As an international student, it is easier for you to integrate with the new culture where there are fellow international students already present. The presence of them in more number ensures a tolerant and diverse atmosphere.

Research about the economic factors
Depending on the country, the tuition fee, living expenses, and the funding opportunities vary. So, be smart and take this into count while choosing the country for your higher education. Countries like Germany, Denmark, Norway, Finland, and Sweden do not charge foreign students for graduate studies in their country. Also, take into consideration the lifestyle expenses as well. They can vary greatly from one city to another city be it in the same country.
To make this situation better, choose a country where the universities or governments offer scholarships to their international students. Some of them are available on the basis of the region they come from, the course they study, their ethnicity, gender, and academic achievements. The cost factor should play a major role in your decision-making process.

Check for the country's Visa eligibilities.
Different countries have different considerations factors to issue a visa to an international student. Those factors include your age, educational background, availability of funding, skills in their language, and the course you intend to do. There are also restrictions on the duration of your stay in their country before and after your studies and also whether you can work during the course and after your course.
There is nothing to worry if you're uncertain about your plans after the finishing of your degree. But if you're sure about remaining there and work, pay keen attention to their visa eligibility requirements before you make the decision.

Check your eligibility for admissions to the university
Some universities would require you to demonstrate academic merit and good language skills for any application to the English-speaking countries. But the acceptance rate depends on various factors like how competitive the university is and the status of the university in academics. Meaning, the top universities are harder to get in, even for the brightest of the lot. But one good thing is some universities have a policy about the number of international students that can get admission in different courses. It is a must to look into the acceptance rates for international students and consider the entry requirements you have to fulfil before you zero down on a country.
Considering all the above factors, make a wise decision in choosing the country for your higher studies.
All the best! Fight on!
Mohamed Abdullah
Chief Executive Officer –ConduiraOnline
Published date : 08 Dec 2018 02:26PM

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