Overcoming the challenges of studying abroad

For many in the developing countries, especially in Africa, the desire to study abroad has a lot of appeal. This is because the western world’s educational facilities and environment present better learning conditions and experiences.
Also, the programmes are structured in such a way that helps to produce better, balanced and fulfilling individuals unlike what obtains in most African countries.
However, despite the pull and appeal, many students are frustrated and cannot make a meaningful headway in their bid to study abroad. Their parents equally suffer emotionally too because one obstacle or the other keeps thwarting this desire. Studying abroad in itself requires a lot of resources, planning and thinking.

Resources are not only monetary as many have the means but still do not know what to do, where to go and how to go about it. This is why many easily get frustrated when they see others without ‘all’ the resources moving ahead yet they remain stuck. The way around this is knowing who to talk to from inception.

Studying abroad requires beginning with the end in mind and identifying the purpose or the ‘big picture’. The joy of going abroad to study could become a burden if the right purpose is not established. Some questions many families fail to address are:

* What is the best course to study and what is the aim?
* Where is the right study destination for the course to be studied?
* What are the basic requirements to start with and where do I start?

We would be addressing one of the issues today. It would be discussed briefly and would be explained in more details in subsequent blogposts

How do I prepare for international education?

For every endeavour, there is need for adequate preparation. You must first consider if you have the resources and are prepared to invest these as occasion demand. Let us consider some of these needs:

a. What programme or course do I want to study?

You may need to sit down with a professional who can help you with a thorough assessment of your potentials. Based on the result of this assessment, the professional can suggest possible areas of your strength alongside possible courses you may pursue with ease.

b. What standardized exams would you require?

For many foreign schools, there are basic international test of language exams like English, German, Portuguese etc. that non-native speakers must sit before their applications can be considered.
Since Many Nigerians or other Africans often consider schools in the UK, US and Canada being popular study destinations, exams like TOEFL, SAT and IELTS may be required. IELTS exams are also specific to different countries such as the UK. The United Kingdom ‘sometimes’ accepts a Grade ‘C’ in English for West Africa Examination Council (WAEC) for most of its undergraduate studies.

c. How well would you study?

Knowing how to study and prepare for these exams is essential if the aim is to pass at one sitting. Many students try and fail many times and eventually give up because they had not spoken with the right person from the initial stage.

If you are looking at studying abroad, then do not miss the next post. It promises to be equally insightful.

I-excel is a full-fledged professional education consulting firm with offices in Nigeria and the United Kingdom. It prides itself in professionals with tested and global experience in providing qualitative educational advisory services, visa guidance and counselling as well as local and foreign school placements.


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