Is studying abroad on your mind, but you’re not sure what it involves? What to look for? and how to find a good consultant agency? We must admit, the entire process might seem a bit difficult. But if you know each step that needs to be taken and how to prepare everything you need, you’ll find yourself studying a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree abroad in no time.
This is part 2 of our comprehensive and easy-to-follow guide on studying abroad. We’ll go through it step-by-step, and by the end, you’ll have most — if not all — the information you need to prepare for an international study experience.
Read the part 1 here if you haven’t.
6. Pass your English language test if you haven’t already
To study an English-taught program at a university abroad, you’ll first need to provide evidence of your English language proficiency. Most universities accept one of the following English language certificates:
- IELTS Academic
- TOEFL iBT
- PTE Academic
- C1 Advanced
You’ll need to pass one of these tests before your university enrolment. Depending on your current English level, you might be able to pass a test with only a few days or weeks of preparation. But if your English could use some improvement, take at least a few months to prepare.
International English exams evaluate 4 main skills:
The format of each test is different, but it involves listening to speakers with various accents, answering multiple-choice questions, writing letters and essays, answering questions based on different types of texts, and many other types of tasks.
The best advice we can give you is not to treat these tests superficially. They will evaluate your grammar, vocabulary, understanding, and many other abilities. As long as you become familiar with the test format and practice long enough, you should be able to ace any test.
7. Apply for scholarships
This step is related both to your budget and to the university application part. Why? Because in some cases, you apply for a scholarship during your university application. In others, you apply for the scholarship afterwards or after your place is confirmed.
What you need to know is that there are different types of financial aid programs:
- student loans
- military aid
Some are awarded based on academic achievement, others based on financial need, others for research purposes. Don’t hurry up to apply if you don’t meet the criteria. Chances are you won’t even be considered.
8. Confirm your place after receiving the letter from the university
You’ve found the right university and chosen the right program for you. But what if you’ve been accepted to multiple universities? You’ll need to look over your options carefully and decide which one is best for you, here are some tips on how to choose the right one. If you already have a favorite, it’s easy. If not, don’t hurry up and answer immediately. Take at least 2 or 3 days to clear your mind and see what option is best for you. Afterwards, send the confirmation to the university and make sure they receive it.
9. Apply for a student visa (if required)
Not all students going abroad need to apply for a visa. But if you do, do your research properly. There are many documents necessary, and the visa can take from a few weeks to a few months. This is why you should apply early on so that you won’t miss the beginning.
10. Choose an accommodation option and make arrangements
It’s important to decide where you’ll live abroad because it will have a major impact, both on your expenses and on your experience. These are the most popular options, together with their pros and cons:
- They are also called ‘student halls’ or ‘university halls of residence’.
- Student dormitories are by far the most affordable option, but you’ll often have to share a room with 1, 2 or sometimes even more students.
- The costs of utilities are usually included in the monthly fee.
- Private student dormitories (not owned by universities) are often more expensive than university student dormitories.
- The conditions and facilities of each dormitory are different from one university or country to another.
Renting a private flat
- This is the second most popular type of accommodation among international students.
- Renting is more expensive than living on-campus, but you can reduce the costs by sharing a flat with other students.
- The closer you get to the city center the higher the prices get.
- Utilities aren’t always included in the monthly fee; this is something you need to discuss with your landlord.
- You’ll need to pay a deposit that’s worth 2 or 3-months’ rent. This is to cover potential damages or problems you might create. Based on your contract, you should get the deposit back (or a part) when you move out.
Living with a local family
- This is not as popular as the other two options, but it’s chosen by students on a very low budget or by those who want a hands-on experience of the local culture and lifestyle
- It’s usually very cheap, sometimes cheaper than student dormitories. But this often depends on how you negotiate and what is included in the overall price. For example, some families even offer one meal a day in the monthly fee.
- You need to speak the local language to live with a family, You can encounter language barriers.
- You’ll have to share the kitchen, possibly even the bathroom and other utilities. If you’re not comfortable with this situation, living with a local family isn’t for you.
11. Decide how you’ll travel abroad
How will you get to your study destination? Will you travel alone or do you need to exchange the means of transportation? Some students might choose to travel by train or bus. For Europeans who move to another European country, taking a car ride is a valid option.
Tips and tricks for traveling
- Based on the start date of your studies and when you can move into your new place, plan accordingly, so that you’ll get there early on; it’s ideal to have a few days to accommodate your new surroundings.
- Check the cancellation or change policy for tickets, especially if you travel by plane.
- If you need to change the means of transport, think about what you’ll do and where you’ll stay during the layover/waiting period.
12. Decide what you’ll pack and the size of your luggage
How much luggage you’ll take will mainly depend on your means of transport. But no matter how you travel, here are a few items that are essential:
- Laptop, power adapters and converters
- ID, passport, birth certificate and copies
- Medicine or prescription drugs, especially if you have an allergy or other medical conditions
- A regular backpack for daily use
- A photo or something to remind you of your home/dear ones
- Headphones, perhaps 2 pairs in case one stops functioning
- Toiletries, clothes for different types of weather, towels, and any other items that you use on a regular basis
If you’re moving abroad, you might need to take some winter clothes with you. If you don’t, you can have your parents send them via post or a specialized courier firm. Don’t bother to take all your clothes abroad, though. You’ll find plenty of shops where you can buy new ones.
Finding your correct consultant agency to get support for your higher studies
Deciding your future is not easy, there are a lot of things on your plate and it can be overwhelming for you to consider all the options within a short period of time. That’s where a consultation agency is coming. There are a lot of agencies to choose from in Sri Lanka. You can select an agency by considering several factors such as knowledge, experience, budget, succession rate. Kloudac Global is a such agency with knowledge, experience, affordable budget and success stories for students going abroad for higher studies. We will support you to choose your dream destination by understanding your budget, what you want to study, where you want to study, compare study programs, compare universities, guide you to pass the English language tests, apply for scholarships, apply for a student visa, choose an accommodation option and make arrangements. You only need to sign up on the website.
If you are looking for opportunities to go abroad for higher studies, contact Kloudac Global.
Call: +94 777 870 464 / +971 5043 53515
KLOUDAC Global is a dedicated expansion of KLOUDAC, a recognized accounting firm with branches in Dubai, London & Colombo with 15 years of service experience. KLOUDAC Global mainly focuses on back office accounting with a whole package of services such as Financial Consultancy, Business setup, Audit and assurance services, Taxation services, Recognized accounting software, and more.