If you’ve decided you want to study abroad but haven’t done much else, our guide will help you take those first, very important steps.
1. You’re an individual
When it comes to college, there is no one-size-fits-all plan, so you need to think about your own goals, interests, and skills first.
Why do you want to go to school abroad? What do you want most from a college? What languages do you speak well, and what are your long-term goals for school or work?
Do you care more about something else in school or in your culture? Do you have strong interests outside of school? What sort of life do you want to live?
And, of course, how will you pay for your school? Do you need to look for a cheaper place to study or a university that will help pay for your education?
2. Find out
With a clear idea of what you want to do, you can start to look into the countries, universities, and courses that are available. There is no one list of all the thousands of universities in the world, but you can start with international and regional rankings. The QS World University Rankings by Subject may also be helpful if you know what you want to study.
3. What country is it?
To study abroad, you have to want to spend time in a different country. If you can narrow down or name your country, you can start to think about universities you might want to apply to.
Once you have chosen a list of countries, you can find some national organizations, like UCAS in the UK, that can help you find scholarship providers and more information to narrow your search.
4. In person
Face-to-face contact with people from a university is the best way to find out if it’s the right fit for you when you’re looking for schools all over the world. Obviously, it won’t always be possible to visit the school before applying. But each university has an alumni association, which is often an international network. Look for alumni who might be willing to meet you closer to home and tell you what it’s really like to study at their university.
Both the QS World University Tour and the World Grad School Tour give you the chance to meet university representatives from all over the world in your area.
5. Open mind
Lastly, you need to keep an open mind if you want to find the right college and course for you. Set your priorities, do research on your options, and talk to people, but be open to new ideas in case you missed something. You are about to start one of the most important and exciting things you will ever do. Start the search!