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8 Steps to Study Abroad in 2024

Updated on 18 March, 2024

upGrad Abroad Team

upGrad Abroad Team

upGrad abroad Editorial Team

Whether you want to study abroad after 12th or aspire to study abroad after graduation, the path will be both thrilling and transformative for you. But are you wondering about how to study abroad and embark on this exhilarating odyssey? This article will provide you with a broader perspective on the treasure trove of such an invaluable experience. 

The alluring journey of studying at a university abroad will not be limited to classrooms and textbooks but will also offer you a lifetime experience to travel and blend with new cultures while pursuing high-quality education. Let’s look at the comprehensive step by step guide to understand how to go abroad for studies.

8 Easy Steps for How to Study Abroad

Studying abroad after 12th or graduation is a dream that millions of Indian students have. Pursuing and completing your undergraduate or postgraduate degree from a foreign university can be beneficial to you academically and in terms of life skills. Studying abroad can help you become more self-reliant while improving your language and intercultural communication skills. You also enhance your skills of leadership and independent management. All these qualities will help you get a fair edge in the job market globally. Getting into an international university can be difficult; however, it can be quite simple if you know the right steps to follow. 

Listed below are the steps that can guide you in your journey of study abroad after 12th/graduation.

1. Identify your field of study:

This is the first step if you plan to study abroad after 12th. You will get a wide range of choices for subjects you can pursue at the undergraduate level, but you need to be wise and choose the right subject that perfectly suits your interests and aptitude. Some of the major options you will get at the undergraduate level are listed below-

  1. Natural Sciences that consists of courses in Math, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, and other pure science subjects
  2. Engineering or Technology specializing in subjects like Computers, Aeronautics, Mechanical, Electrical, Chemical, and many other fields
  3. Business Administration, Marketing, Finance, Sales, HR, and others 
  4. Graphic Designing, Fine Arts, Architecture, Drama, Music, Theatre, and so on
  5. History, Cultural Studies, Sociology, International Relations, Communications, and Psychology

2. Choose right destination for your study:

This is the second-most crucial decision, as choosing the perfect country and the ideal university is essential if you want to make the most out of your degree. Your study abroad destination can be influenced by considerations of culture, language, expenses, opportunities, and many other reasons. Some of the most popular destinations for students to study abroad are Australia, Canada, Germany, the UK, and the USA.

3. Select best university for your studies:

Once you select your field of study and destination, you need to choose the best university depending on the course availability, research opportunities, and fees. Be sure to keep in mind the application deadline and the prerequisites.

Therefore, university ranking becomes an extremely important factor that you should consider. Similar to India, some universities abroad are not as recognized as others. You need to consider the various parameters on which the ranking of a University depends. Research thoroughly into the range of academic programs offered by the university and the student-teacher ratio, quality of faculty, industrial tie-ups, acceptance rate, student outcomes, financial aid, internship placements, alumni network, and many other factors. 

4. Taking standardized tests:

To qualify for admission to the course you have selected, you will have to appear for standardized tests. Depending on the course and university of your choice, the test scores and requirements will vary. 

The common tests asked for international exams are listed below:

IELTS, TOEFL, PTE and Duolingo are exams that test your proficiency in English language. Depending on the country you are moving to, you might also be required to take proficiency tests for other languages like Chinese, French, German, and so on.

SAT, ACT, GRE, or GMAT will test your quantitative aptitude, verbal and nonverbal reasoning, and subject skills. Applicants should also note admission deadlines and intakes for the different universities and plan the procedure accordingly. 

5. Application process: 

Apply to all the universities you select and complete all the formalities within the stipulated last date. While filling in your applications to these international universities, you will be required to submit some supporting documents such as your academic mark sheets, standardized test score reports, english proficiency proof, financial capability certificate, statement of purpose, recommendation letter, application essays, curriculum vitae, passport, and photograph. Only if you submit all the documents correctly, you stand a chance to get favorable responses from the universities.  

6. Student visa application: 

After your admission is confirmed, the next thing you do should be applying for a student visa. To enter a foreign country and attend classes there, you need a valid student visa. The application for a student visa can be made online or through the embassy. For a successful application, you will need to fill the form along with all the required documents such as a valid passport, an identity proof, financial capability certificate, proof of a bonafide student, language proficiency score, and university admission offer letter.

7. Study expense:

The amount of money required to study abroad after graduation or 12th will differ from one country to another. Just as there is no one specific admission requirement for all universities, there is no fixed cost for studying abroad. Your expenses will depend completely on the course you are studying, the university, cost of living, and various other factors. If you think that the expense of studying abroad can be expensive for you, it is always possible that you apply for a scholarship. Exploring the financial aid option provided by most foreign universities for their international students can help you realize your dream of studying abroad without spending a fortune. The criteria for financial aid vary from one university to another, and you need to be well aware of those parameters before applying.

8. Apply for scholarship:

Students who can not afford to study abroad due to financial crises can always apply for scholarships. There are many scholarships available for Indian and international students, which will help you handle the expenses of your undergraduate course. The criteria for each scholarship are different. While some demand an excellent academic record, others might seek a good skill-set or excellence in sports or other activities. Some scholarships are also awarded based on the student’s financial conditions. Research the topic well before you decide on how to study abroad. 

How to Study Abroad – Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible to study abroad in countries like the USA, UK, Canada, Germany, France, Ireland, and Australia, you must be able to meet the following criteria according to the universities: 

  • You must have completed high school or higher education from a recognized and affiliated institution.
  • Good academic record will increase your chances of getting selected.
  • You must demonstrate more than the minimum score in standardized college admission exams like SAT, ACT, GRE, or GMAT. 
  • You must also be able to demonstrate the minimum band score in English proficiency tests, such as IELTS, TOEFL, PTE, or Duolingo.

How to Study Abroad – Documents Required

The documents might vary in different universities abroad. However, some of the documents that every university or college will ask you to submit are mentioned below:

  • Transcript of academic scores
  • SAT, ACT, GRE, or GMAT scorecard; whichever is applicable
  • IELTS, TOEFL, PTE, or Duolingo scorecard
  • An updated curriculum vitae (CV) or resume
  • Work experience certificate; if applicable
  • One or two letters of recommendation (LORs)
  • Statement of purpose (SOP)
  • Copy of passport
  • Proof of finances  

Best Countries to Study Abroad

Based on the data and resources of our education expert, here is a list of the countries that provide quality education:

  • Study in Australia
  • Study in Germany
  • Study in Canada
  • Study in Spain
  • Study in Switzerland
  • Study in Estonia
  • Study in Holland

Frequently Asked Questions

What exams are required to study abroad?

Exams like SAT, ACT, TOEFL, GRE, GMAT, and IELTS are required to get admission to the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and Germany to study abroad.

Can I study abroad after the 10th class from India?

Yes, you can study abroad after the 10th class from India. It would help if you had good grades and active participation in extracurricular activities. It would be best to take the SAT, TOEFL, IELTS, and other exams per the university/college requirements.

What are the requirements to study abroad?

Some of the basic requirements that are needed to study abroad are that you must apply with proper academic documents that fulfill eligibility criteria for the particular course, a valid passport, proof of finance, student visa, LOR, SOP, language proficiency tests like IELTS/TOEFL, and GMAT or GRE, as required.

Which country is the cheapest to study abroad?

Norway, Germany, France, Taiwan, and Poland are among some of the cheapest countries to study abroad as they offer programs with no or minimal tuition fees.

What is the safest place to study abroad?

According to the Global Peace Index, Iceland, New Zealand, Denmark, and Portugal are among the world’s safest countries that can be preferred for studying abroad. However, before going abroad to study, many things need to be considered, like the market, quality of education, course, and finance.

How much money do you need to study abroad?

For an Indian student to study abroad, you need to plan and have proper arrangements to finance your course and living expenses, depending upon the country. In the US, USD 800-1000 is approximately for your living apart from the tuition fee, while in the UK, you will need GBP 700-1000 to sustain your living.

Which country is the best for higher studies?

It depends upon the type of course, the prospect of jobs, and the opportunities offered after completion of the education in a particular country. Per the job market standard, quality of education, and affordability, countries like Germany, Canada, the USA, the UK, and Australia are considered among the best countries to study abroad for Indian students.

How to get a scholarship to study abroad?

There are many ways in which students can get the right scholarship to study abroad. The aspirants need to submit their academic certificates, university letters, and reference letters and write a cover letter for their application. An aspirant should research as there are countries and universities that give full or partial scholarships depending on certain criteria like qualifying tests, scoring well in English proficiency tests & others.

Why study abroad?

There are many benefits of studying abroad not just academically but also socially and professionally. For instance, studying overseas can help you learn new languages, increase your ability to adapt to a different culture, make you skilled in interacting with people from other parts of the world, and be self-dependent. Apart from these, there is the factor of enhanced employability that is a natural result of having studied abroad.

When should you start applying for study abroad programs?

Given that you will have to arrange your travels to a foreign location carefully, you must always consider your application as early as possible. You should duly note down application deadlines for different universities and check them often so that you do not miss out on any. The deadlines for applying will vary, but usually, the programs start during the fall months of September/October; the application time is between January/February and June/July.

Is it good to study abroad after the 12th?

Yes, it is a great idea to study abroad after the 12th as it helps you get a fair edge in the job market from the early stages. You also develop essential life skills such as communication and leadership at the undergraduate level. You also get exposed to newer ideas and opportunities while building strong international connections, which will help you in your further studies.

upGrad Abroad Team

upGrad abroad Editorial Team

We are a dedicated team of study-abroad experts, ensuring intensive research and comprehensive information in each of our blogs. With every piece written, we aim at simplifying the overseas education process for all. Our diverse experience as journalists, content writers, editors, content strategists, and marketers helps create the most relevant and authentic blogs for our readers.

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