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How to Study Abroad Complete Guide

Thinking about how to study abroad and planning to continue higher education in a foreign country is exciting for everyone. If you want to do so, spend a reasonable amount of time planning everything. This way, you can turn the excitement into a meaningful experience you remember for the rest of your life. This article helps you with excellent tips on how to study abroad for free or with a small amount of money. Let us get to them.


In this guide:

Two Happy Student Who Study Abroad

How does Study Abroad Affect Our Lives?

The world has a lot to discover! If thinking about living, learning and having new experiences in another country excites you, you should consider studying abroad.

Studying abroad offers a unique chance to go deeper into your coursework and discover more about yourself while doing both.

The popularity of study abroad programs is growing for a variety of reasons. The appeals for the majority of overseas students include:

  • Gaining a global mindset;
  • Gaining a high-quality education;
  • Experiencing immersion in a new culture;
  • Expanding future employment prospects.

Leaving home sweet home and going to a foreign country can be unsettling for some people, but studying abroad is also an exciting challenge that frequently results in improved professional prospects and a brighter future.

Your time abroad will differ depending on where you go, so to maintain a healthy work/life balance, pick a study destination based on your interests and the country’s academic reputation.

One opportunity to seek higher education abroad is through a study-abroad program offered by their home university or by attending lectures or conducting research at a foreign university.

International students typically live in a dorm, an apartment, or a homestay with a local family.

Some students choose to study abroad for a semester or a whole year, while others decide to complete their entire degree in a different nation.

What Types of Programs to Study Abroad?

Study abroad programs come in many different types. You should choose the one that suits your situation and goals.

The followings are the most common types of programs. Of course, there are other options like internships or unique programs, which we did not consider below.


University-Led | Study Abroad for Free

Many colleges and universities usually run various study-abroad programs.

They either operate their study-abroad centers in the host country or have arrangements with some foreign institutions where international students can enroll.

Universities may provide students with a course timetable, while students must arrange for other times.

This alternative typically entails asking instructors to authorize these foreign courses for the international credits to transfer back to a student’s home university effortlessly.

These encounters frequently involve prepared housing and group excursions across the nation or continent.

Professors from the US occasionally travel to nations where English is a second language to give classes.

Students can engage in non-English-speaking classes if they desire to acquire a foreign language.


Third-Party Programs | Study Abroad for Free

College students can choose from some programs offered by organizations like the Council on International Educational Exchange and IES Abroad.

These opportunities are typically planned such that participants attend the required courses and travel on weekend getaways and cultural excursions with their cohorts of peers.

Additionally, these programs typically arrange for student housing and pay a large portion of daily expenses through mandated fees.


Direct Enrollment | Study Abroad for Free

Students can better acclimate to their native culture by using other chances.

If they travel to a place like England or Australia, they enroll in classes with locals in a foreign language.

Students also organize their housing and financial affairs. It is the path taken by students who choose to complete their degrees at a foreign university, while occasionally, students can enroll for a semester or an entire year.

How to Study Abroad

Now, if you wonder how to study abroad and where even to start, you should know it needs a lot of planning to go into a study abroad application.

The following is a step-by-step guide on how to study abroad and get ready for one of your most exciting experiences in life.


1. Start by Planning Everything

Although the path from first selecting a program to arriving on campus may seem complicated, careful planning and a positive outlook can help immensely.

The most significant decisions you must make are when and how to study abroad and pay for it.

It may also be challenging to convince many parents to let their dear child live and study in another country.

The other hurdle, and maybe the most challenging, is to pay for studying abroad. Many students neglect such an opportunity because they are worried about the studying and living costs in a foreign country.

If you are concerned about studying and living costs, you should know that many financial aids and scholarships for international students make international programs more affordable for you.

There are many options, especially if you are looking to study abroad at the bachelor’s level.

Which financial aid, for instance, will still be used to support your study abroad program if you now get financial help to attend college? Obtaining a student loan or accumulating scholarships are other options.

Even if you cannot pay for a full year of study abroad, you can still have that transformative experience through a summer program.


2. Search for Helpful Information | How to Study Abroad

The fun part starts once you have your parents’ approval and know roughly when you are going and how you will pay for it.

Maybe you already know the institution you want to attend or even which continent or nation you want to study in.

Alternatively, you might be genuinely interested in studying abroad in various locations, but since you are a pre-med student, you also want to enroll in a top biology school.

If you want to know how to study abroad for a brief time, find out if your home institution collaborates with other colleges overseas.

If so, transferring credits might be your most practical choice. Since many colleges have affiliations with a variety of universities all around the world, inquire at the study abroad office.

It would be beneficial if you considered your major. It might not make sense for English literature majors to study in China.

Numerous nations are likely to have top-notch study programs, and certain nations are well-known for particular study fields.

Cost of Living for Study Abroad

3. Consider the Cost of Living

Your budget should be the primary consideration when figuring out how to study abroad.

Most countries with higher living expenses are found in Western and Northern Europe.

Latin America, Eastern Europe, and South and Southeast Asia have more affordable nations.

If sticking to a strict budget is essential to you, you might want to think about moving to a city with a lower cost of living.

Outside of larger cities, particularly in more expensive nations, you might locate locations to study that are more reasonably priced.

You can read more about living costs and fees in Canada here.

4. Find Study Abroad Programs | How to Study Abroad

Once you have decided on your whole plan and costs, it is time to get serious about making a list of potential universities.

While Google can be a good starting point to search for how to study abroad and find some higher education programs, specialized education resources like can help explore better programs.

You also can message universities directly and talk with current international students to find the best-suited program for you.

It might also be a good idea to look at ranking websites like THE, QS, and US News, which generate annual rankings of the best schools worldwide if you prefer to locate the appropriate institution rather than the correct country.


5. Start the Application Process

It is now time to begin the application procedure. It is not as difficult as it might seem! The procedure will probably resemble applying to a university back home quite a bit.

The process will differ depending on the type and degree of school you are applying to. However, the following are some basic requirements that may be included in your application.


Have your Grades

Whether it was a high school or undergraduate institution, most programs want to know how you performed there.

They must achieve particular minimum GPA standards set by some colleges to be accepted.

Depending on the country’s grading system, you may need to convert your grades or even get your transcript translated into another language.

Language Test Preparation

Prepare Language Test Score

English is the language of instruction in many international programs. If English is not your first language, you must pass a test to demonstrate your English proficiency in school.

Numerous institutions, including all universities in well-known study-abroad locations including the UK, Canada, Australia, and the US

The colleges you are applying to can also demand more general standardized tests, depending on your chosen nation.

For instance, many American universities demand that undergraduate students take the SAT or the ACT.

Do you know all the language tests that you may need for the admission process? Here is some useful information about them.

Write Motivation Letter

Some schools may require you to write a personal statement or a study abroad essay.

In a personal statement, you should outline why the institution should accept you for the program.

It is an opportunity for you to highlight your personality, academic priorities, and how the institution help you achieve your goals.

Although lengths for motivation letters can vary, aim for 500 words on average.

The following are the crucial factors for motivational letters:

  • Show evidence that you could succeed at their university.
  • Describe why you chose to study there rather than in your nation.
  • Describe why you wish to attend the particular university to which you are applying. Consider what you can offer them and what you can do for the school.


Provide Teacher Recommendation

Some colleges may request one or two academic references along with your application.

They frequently request that the teachers send the university their references directly. You might be required to mail them in yourself on occasion.

Choose instructors with whom you are familiar and with whom you get along well. You may currently have or have previously had these teachers.

You might want to provide them with your CV and a list of the institutions you are applying to when you ask them to be your academic references so they can tailor their recommendations.

Give them at least a month’s notice so they have time to create the reference for you, and be ready to email them follow-up reminders.

Getting Ready for Interview

Get Ready for Interview

Interviews may seem intimidating, but they are a fantastic opportunity to highlight your individuality.

They are also a fantastic opportunity to ask questions and determine whether the school is the best fit for you. The interviews are mutually beneficial!

You ought to have some questions of your own ready to ask. Do your research first and refrain from asking questions. You can find the answers on their website.

Your interviewer will know that you are serious about their program and studying abroad if you take the time to conduct a comprehensive research.

Before the interview, practising with a friend or member of your family may be helpful.

If you are well-prepared for a study abroad interview, you will undoubtedly create a favourable impression.


6. Look for Scholarships | How to Study Abroad

Scholarships can help significantly reduce the expense of studying abroad, which can be costly.

There are many international scholarships across the world. You can find your suitable scholarship by searching the internet.

Colleges give out some scholarships, while others are available to anybody who wants to continue their studies.

Some nations offer financial aid to students who want to study there. For instance, the Swedish Institute offers financial aid to international students who wish to pursue studies in Sweden.

A short Google search to see which other nations provide government-funded scholarships is worthwhile.

Also, you can check out another post about scholarships in Canada here.


According to research on how to study abroad, alumni can use their cross-cultural communication abilities and understanding of world cultures to their advantage while looking for work. Of course, studying abroad is not necessary for everyone. Consider your goals, program selections, resources, and funding possibilities. Our experts are ready to answer your question.

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