Things To Consider Before Applying To Tertiary Education
As a student you should be asking some questions that are unique to your status as well as some questions that are applicable to any student before applying to tertiary education.
I will start with the rather broad philosophical issues and then try to address some very specific things you need to consider.
The first thing you want to do is ask yourself why do you want to go abroad? What specifically are you looking for that you might not be able to find at home?
Are you looking for a different approach to teaching and learning? If so, are you ready for the adjustment it might take for you to do well? For example, if you are in an educational system in which tests and exams matter far more than anything else are you prepared to enter a class in which class participation, group work, or research might comprise a significant part of the grade>
Do you have not just the linguistic fluency but also the cultural fluency necessary to make a relatively smooth transition? Are you prepared for culture shock? Have you traveled and seen much of he world or have you been limited mostly to your country?
Are you prepared to be an advocate for your education? Are you willing to go see your professors and teachers? Are you going to join activities that will enrich your education and skills sets?
What do you hope to do after you graduate? Do you plan to return home immediately? If so you should begin to research whether the schools you attend and the degrees you will ear can help you find placement back home.
If you plan to try to get experience in a job I a country like the US are you prepared to do well academically. There are far too many international students studying in the US for the small number of work visas issued by the US government. You have to be a star in order to get a job offer as few companies hire internationals and those that do tend to exceptionally competitive.
Do you have the money to pay for your education? In the US there are only a tiny number of schools that offer need based aid for international undergraduate students. The same can be said for most Masters programs as well. Total cost at most universities will be above $50,000 a year for 4 years. Are you motivated enough to work very hard knowing what a sacrifice this amount of money would be for your parents or anyone supporting your education.
Are you prepared to get outside your comfort zone? Do you want to make friends from all over the world, have professors challenge your views of things, and have some of the best facilities for education anywhere, then you will many of these things in places like the US, UK, Canada and many other places too.
Will you promise yourself to try new things—foods, films,
activities, clubs etc. etc. Are you willing to become someone who will be
different from those who stay home?
I could go on for quite a long time but these are a few of the things you should consider long before you ask the question “Which schools should apply to and which should I enroll in.
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