Most important Crucial Factors to Consider While Choosing a Study Abroad Program
If you are planning to study abroad, your decision can become the most important decision of your life, however, you will have to choose one of the best study abroad programs for this purpose. There are unlimited study opportunities in a number of countries including UK and USA but the problem that is faced by most of the students is that they can’t decide what could be the best option for them. If you are one of those who don’t know where to get started, this article will greatly help you choose the best overseas program by keeping most crucial factors in consideration.
FOUR BASIC STEPS TO STUDY ABROAD
First of all when you decide to select a program to study overseas, there are few basic steps which you need to follow:
Step # 1: Find a Program
There are thousands of programs and you need to search by a specific location, region, subject or length of your stay. For example, you can:
Search by country
Search by Subject
- Fine Arts
- Art History
- Language & Literature Studies
- International Relations
- Business Administration
- Culinary Arts
- Performing Arts & Dance
Step # 2: Talk to the People
As a second step, you should talk to the people to get complete details about the program and how you can make arrangements for your visit, study and stay. You can talk to the following:
- Study Abroad Office
- Financial Aid Office
- Online Advisor
- Program alumni
Step # 3: How to Sponsor It
International study should not be expensive and therefore, you should look for things such as early enrollment discount or scholarships etc. Most of the students can’t afford to pay too much, however, they can look for other methods such as:
You can contact to the government agencies or other similar organizations that support education and request them to give you a grant or scholarship.
Scholarships and Loans
You can also look for scholarships and loans. There are various tools which you can utilize to find the best option.
Federal Student Aid
You can also look for federal student aid as hundreds of colleges and schools are already participating in this program.
This is another great option to get a constant financial aid from your family, friends or other people.
Step # 4: Apply & Get Ready
When you get the services of an organization, it also helps you in every steps including application, visa process, choosing courses, arranging housing, pick & drop at airports, events, excursions, health insurance and all other steps.
General Advice for Travelers
- Learn commonly used phrases of the language spoken by the people in the country you are going to stay.
- Get complete information of the family that will be hosting your stay.
- Get complete embassy information.
- Be ready to face uncomfortable situations.
- Make proper arrangements before you leave.
- Get your passport ready several weeks before you finally apply for the program.
- Visit center for disease control for proper medications and vaccinations.
HOW TO FIGURE OUT IF A PROGRAM IS AUTHENTIC OR NOT?
Everything on Site is Not Truth
The first important factor that you must keep in your mind while choosing a program is that the website of a particular program can’t show the real truth about it.You will read a lot of good things on the site and make the decision only by reading all such positive stuff supporting the program but you must not forget that on their own site they will not put anything that goes against them. Even if you read testimonials, you can’t be sure either they are real or not. Therefore, when you are thinking to choose a program, you must go through other independent resources such as reading unbiased reviews on other online places.
Find & Read Unbiased Feedback
When you want to read real customers’ feedback, testimonials available on the official website are not recommended as they might be from the site owners so you can’t really believe them. However, there are some other places from where you can start your search to get real feedback.
Explore Social Media
The best way to get the real testimonials is to use social media especially Facebook where you can find groups, pages or at least some of the students who would let you know how was their experience to go abroad through a particular program.
Explore Review Sites
As an alternative option, you can go to review sites where you can read unbiased reviews from the real users of the programs.
BE CAUTIOUS OF MIDDLEMEN & ONLINE SCAM
If you are going for the first time, you might have no idea that there are a lot of agents who are working as middlemen and when you choose a program, you might be sent through a middleman. If the agent is reliable, you don’t have to worry about reaching your destinations but you must keep in mind that in this way, you will have to pay some extra money because the agent will definitely charge some money as fees with or without informing you. If you want to save some money, you better try to find direct companies rather than middlemen.
Another major concern is online scam. A lot of people have gone through the bad experience when they paid for a program and the website got shutdown after some time and they had to lose their money. Therefore, you must look for the authenticity of the program. You can do this by using google search engine which will allow you to check out the presence of that online program on different online places. Search with the name of your program on google and you will see variety of result which will help you decide if you are going tomake a right choice or not.