Studying abroad is becoming very popular. It’s a way for students to continue their education all the while fulfilling their dreams by exploring and living in a destination they’ve always wanted to visit. Not a bad life, ey?
There’s no set way in which you should plan your year abroad studying – everyone’s different, with different interests, and different needs. Therefore, there may be a certain time when studying abroad works better for you than it does for someone else. Before college? After college? During college?
Be open-minded. There’s pros and cons to each decision. So here’s a summary of all the factors you need to consider.
What about freshman year?
Freshman year could be the perfect time for you to start college well. Refresh your mind, and rejuvenate your body. Ready in time to start!
However, a downfall in this plan is that the majority of universities don’t offer freshman year as a year abroad. Plus, do you want to miss out on the joys of your very first year? How about going on a gap year instead?
How about sophomore year?
Studying in sophomore year is a great time for you to fit in your traveling around your studying, and most university courses will offer this, too.
On the other hand, some courses require a certain amount of classes or points to be completed. It’s always a good idea to make sure you’ve done everything you need to do before you head off.
What about junior year?
This the most common choice for students, and for good reason. By junior year, you’ve haven’t quite hit the real hard work of the last year madness just yet, so what better time to get away from it all? Plus, a lot of colleges structure their courses to encourage students to study abroad. Do you really need to be told twice?
However, some courses are slightly stricter and have a much tighter schedule. Will you be required to be on campus for something? Always double check before you book your flights.
How about senior year?
Some courses are the perfect fit to study in senior year. If you find the main bulk of your course is completed by your final year, then why not take this time to take a well-needed breather? Then, by the time you’re back, it’ll be time to graduate.
Saying that, senior years are more often than not full of long nights in the library and tough exam periods when you feel your head is going to explode. Will you have the time to go abroad when your thesis is taking over your life?
Is there anything else I should consider?
It’s always important to plan your studying abroad around your responsibilities back at home. However much it’s going to be an incredible experience for you, you need to ensure you aren’t compromising anything.
Programs for studying abroad can range from just a month to a whole year – so always consider what you truly want to get out of your big move. Perhaps a shorter trip will be a safer option? Or maybe a longer trip is exactly what you need to get away?
The key is to be organized! Do some thorough research and open your mind to the different options available to you. Studying abroad isn’t just a vacation. You need to plan your trip sensibly and be responsible. Good luck!