As the political landscape continues to evolve in the US, American and international students are considering broadening their horizons beyond US borders.
Each year, we have some students who decide to apply to colleges and universities in the US and abroad, and if this might be a consideration for you, you should begin to weigh the options of different possible paths. Some of the primary factors students consider when deciding to study in the US or abroad include:
Language: While it may seem obvious, it’s necessary to study in a country where the language of instruction is a language that you have already achieved native or high-level proficiency in. This is why the most popular destinations for American students is often the UK and Australia. While the native language of the country does not have to be one you speak, you should check that the language of instruction is still English (such as in Sweden).
Clarity of Intended Major and Career Goals: Colleges and universities in the US usually offer students more flexibility to explore different subject areas, and even after declaring a major, some offer freedom to choose additional courses or even build your own major. Typically in other countries, students must choose a field of study even before applying. For example, in countries like the UK and Germany you apply to a specific degree program, so you must have a clear sense of purpose by Grade 12. If this sounds like you, you can research the top universities in the world by major here.
Cost: The tuition of US universities is generally higher than that of other countries. Throughout Europe, tuition is subsidized by the government, and even international non-EU students enjoy generally lower tuition.
Application & Entry Process Differences: The college admissions process in the US is complex and the process and factors considered in how highly selective colleges and universities make admissions decisions is rather obtuse. In other countries, admissions decisions are typically fairly black and white, and are based on your transcript, and if required, standardized test scores. In the UK, students must complete an application through UCAS, and different systems use different application processes, so it is important to notify your high school counselor if you are considering universities abroad to ensure you do not miss any deadlines and meet all of the necessary requirements.
Perks of studying outside the US:
Finish in less time-- You can graduate from university in the UK and Europe with a Bachelor’s degree in three years, meaning one less year of tuition.
Much more affordable-- The UK and Europe tuition is much more affordable, and in some countries even free- Germany and Norway don’t charge tuition, even for international students.
Differentiate yourself-- In an increasingly global world, obtaining a bachelor’s degree abroad stands out, and indicates that you have a higher level of maturity, independence, and an ability to adapt
Culture and language immersion-- If you attend a university where there are other languages spoken, you will have the opportunity to immerse yourself and expand your worldview well beyond the culture you grew up in.
Increased Network and Travel Opportunities-- You will likely meet classmates and friends from all over the world. Similarly, travel opportunities to many other countries and cultures in places like Europe and Asia are also close at hand.
Curious to dive deeper into the options at home and abroad? Get in touch with us to start a conversation about domestic and international university options, and how to track your course to successful college admissions.