Studying Abroad: Challenges And Strategies

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INTRODUCTION

Doesn’t studying abroad sound very exciting? In an increasingly globalized environment and economy, study abroad programs offer considerable potential to benefit students. Studying abroad can be defined simply as going to another country and learning — taking classes there and pursuing whatever academically you are interested in. but otherwise, Studying abroad means moving to another country with the real intention of much more than just seeing the sights off the bucket list and checking places. In an immersive environment, it’s a great way to learn. Studying abroad in a classroom is so much more than what you learn. Studying abroad gives you the chance to take classes in a new context. Students studying abroad can face several restrictions, many of which are not faced by their student colleagues in the majority. Studying abroad is the term given to a program that usually runs through a university that allows a student to live abroad and attend a foreign university. In most scenarios, two universities have an agreement that encourages them to exchange students (thus the word ‘ exchange student’) so that they can learn about a foreign culture and expand their horizons. Typically, the program provides credit for foreign university programs and some also allow for a work-study or internship arrangement. Survey results have shown that studying abroad can have a significant impact on the life of a student. The survey results indicate that studying abroad had a positive influence on the personal development, educational engagement, and career paths of the students involved in studying abroad programs .The involvement of multicultural students in studying abroad programmes has a lot of challenges to overcome some of which are language barriers, homesickness, cultural misunderstanding, Currency Differences & Finances etc. strategies were used to cope with the challenges.an example of one of the most commonly used coping strategies for these students was having trust in others who could help them work through their adaptation struggles. They joined international student societies, went to writing and training centres, spoke to professors during working hours, consulted with the foreign student counsellor, entered study groups and developed relationships with other international students. The purpose of this study was to recognize the challenges faced in foreign country by international students during their studies. The research reflects on factors that may affect the performance of international students in their academic and social life, which are of great importance for international students.

Literature review

The Language Barrier

The language barrier is the main problem abroad. It can be very isolating to live in a country where no one speaks the same language as the person. It is impossible to be intentionally made to feel insecure or unwelcome in most nations, but at first, it can still be tiring, trying to get to grips with new cultural expectations.

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Communication barriers are the fact that foreigners live abroad to make sense of their lifestyle It suggests that many foreign students can feel lonely and homesick.

Cultural Differences

Cultural transitions will be difficult. Every nation has its own culture and it is hard to integrate. This can be particularly challenging when dealing with roommates. The roommates ‘ acts may seem odd and bad but those activities are quite common in the new residence.

The intense feeling of alone continuing. Surrounded by other people, fashion, the inability to communicate in the country’s language or the general presence is different. A sense of disconnect is likely to occur.

Finances–Running low on cash

Even with all the attempts being made to the schedule, prepare, and track expenditures throughout the year, there may be some unplanned spending. Like all graduates, financial control issues occur from time to time. Living abroad can be more difficult to come to terms with the cost of living and learning. Financial concerns will slow the person down and make him / her feel alone or stressed out.

Academic Difficulties

Having trouble starting a new career or university courses. The language barrier can only add to this difficulty because maybe the classes are taken  in a language the person has difficulty in understanding,  

Homesickness

homesickness  can be a real problem for many students abroad. separated from  friends and family who could be thousands of miles away, brings the feeling of being alone. Universities around the world face homesickness issues for graduates, which demonstrates how the phenomenon is common.

But then, becoming homesick is completely healthy and normal, just don’t let it become a crushing part of the overseas experience.

Time zone annoyances

It can be frustrating to try to navigate two time zones at opposite ends of the world. the person must constantly check the appropriate time for each time zone and make it a habit to call early in the morning or late in the evening.

Getting used to currency differences

It’s  a difficult process to get used to currency differences. In Costa Rica, for example, the person has to remember that 500 colones in Costa Rica are equal to one dollar. And  will have to note that anything that costs € 1 actually costs $1.40 in continental Europe.

Like most global education difficulties, currency discrepancies are some of the issues that don’t really affect  if it’s just staying for a short time, but if staying for at least one semester or longer, they have a big impact.

Solutions to study abroad challenges

How to Handle the Language Barrier during Study Abroad

Before the study begins, the best thing to do is to practice more. Even, don’t be afraid to ask the locals to say the words again. Generally, they’re eager to help you. ‘In order to overcome the language barrier, it is advised to use some online tools. Duolingo provides a very handy language learning software while SpellCheck, JSpell and Reverso or similar programs help translate sentences or checks for grammatical errors.

How to Handle Cultural Differences studying Abroad

Try to get familiarised with local cultural norms and terminology. If  the host country’s mother tongue isn’t fluent, build or load the personal device with foreign language apps with a localization dictionary. Make friends and ask for advice and tips on how to be more authentic with strangers.

Therefore, the fear of offending or talking incorrectly should not prohibit  from engaging healthily within the environment of the host.

How to Handle Finance Challenges studying abroad

‘There are a few ways to ensure that you get enough money while you’re abroad,’ says Fiona Morrison, author of Best British Essays. There are plenty of scholarship opportunities available to international students studying abroad. the person may be able to work part-time depending on the regulations in the study abroad. Try to find a job that can be combined with your studies.Instead of buying takeaway food, prepare home-cooked meals.Raise money for emergencies as when an unexpected bill drops in, the student will be able to do the necessary.

How to Deal with Academic Difficulties when studying abroad

It can be a great help to balance the time. Do not allow all the social relationships to take away all of the time available. Organizing the day and making a to-do list can be a great help in schoolwork’s progress.If you have a list of projects / school work that you need to do first, then to – do list can avoid getting stuck. It’s going to help to feel less depressed when you have a lot to do.

How to Deal With Homesickness While Studying Abroad

There are several ways to calm the voices in the head, reminding  how far from home they are. In  study abroad destination, the student can engage in new interests, new clubs or new adventures, advice can be asked from your friends / family / counsellors. Many people can do yoga, mindfulness, journaling, or other practice of self-knowledge. ⠀it’s a great time to discover new hobbies.The important thing is not to spend hours on Facebook and other favorite social networking sites. It would be damaging and simply fuel rather than eradicating the symptoms of homesickness.

How to Deal with Currency Difference

Make sure to build a quick conversion system for yourself so that when the person wants to buy something he/she mentally evaluate the prices of goods and know the ‘standard’ value for the basics, that is. Ask local people how much they’re expecting you to pay. Don’t spend the euro as dollars or as naira / rand / CFA dollars!

Research objective

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study was to identify the challenges faced in foreign countries by international students during their study. The research reflects on factors that may affect the performance of international students in their academic and social life, which are of great importance for international students. This research is also meant to provide an opportunity for international students not only to draw on their own experiences and perspectives but also to help other students achieve greater success. This research explores the need for more support programs to support both the general and individual needs of international students. Furthermore, to facilitate their adjustment, foreign institutions, faculty, and students need to be made aware of the experience of international students.

Significance of the study

Using quantitative research, this study examined the challenges faced by international students in a foreign country. The results can illustrate how international students overcome academic difficulties, social interaction, and cultural adaptation. International institutions should understand the interests of students and provide relevant resources and services on the campus effectively to address these challenges. Conclusions from the research findings could help eliminate or minimize the challenges at colleges or universities that international students face.

Conclusion

To conclude, studying abroad is a great opportunity for international students. Having a foreign country degree offers an edge when applying for jobs in your home country. Nevertheless, their tenure in a foreign country may be a real challenge for international students. Understanding how to tackle academic and social challenges will help international students resolve these obstacles. In addition, participating in campus activities and using the resources of the universities on campus can help international students adapt to their new lives.

Based on analysis and discussions it can be established that while pursuing their studies at foreign universities there are some challenges faced by international students. Communication, language center, housing, climate, economic, medical, and other social interaction difficulties, family split, friends, and romantic partners, fear of student transfer loss, and learning obstacles are among the main challenges. culture appeared to be the most challenging aspect for foreign students.

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