13 Personal, Academic & Career Benefits of Studying Abroad

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13 Personal, Academic & Career Benefits of Studying Abroad

We know it says studying in the title but relax, did you notice that when read completely, it says “Studying Abroad”? Well, either way, gear up for a discourse on the benefits of studying abroad for Indian students. Read on to know why it’ll make you reach the pinnacle of your success career wise while simultaneously having a good time exploring the places (the incredible vistas!), experiencing the culture (The Carnival of Rio de Janeiro) and the exotic cuisines (Xiaolongbao dumplings, China) of a foreign land!

Academic Benefits

Foreign universities like those in the U.S, generally have a holistic approach to learning that involves :

1. Importance to practical learning

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Developing hands-on experience or experience in the field of your study through the application of the concepts learnt. The stress here is on the practical use of the knowledge and not just learning the theory. Their practical approach coupled with the Infrastructure and world class facilities means that the universities are transformed into centers of educational excellence. In fact, discoveries and inventions are still made at university laboratories there. This practical setting creates an atmosphere of “interest to learn things”, for the students.

2. Being up-to-date with current trends

In the majority of Indian Universities, the importance is on learning by heart and reproducing the content during an exam. The double whammy here is that usually the content that students learn is outdated. In foreign universities,  the subject matter is taught with an eye on current developments in the field and not just mugging up an outdated syllabus. At times the people setting these trends may be the very people we are studying or working with as innovation is very high in foreign universities, especially in US and China.

3. Focus on an Individual way of thinking

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A strong focus is given to the way an individual thinks and forms his opinions. The strengthening of critical thinking is done by way of seminars, assignments and essays where an individual is expected to come up with their own thoughts on the matter. Plagiarism is discouraged and is considered a serious offence.

4. Academic Freedom

The freedom to choose from a  range of subjects, sometimes majoring in two courses (dual major) and option to choose additional minor and free elective courses. There is also the system of transferring credits from one semester to another that endears foreign universities to students. In India, the rules relating to a particular course are generally rigid and seldom flexible.

5. Research oriented

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Students are actively encouraged to research and gain new insights into their subject matter. Academics is touted as a creative thought process rather than a dull job of learning facts and figures by rote.  One of the key differences between studying in India and abroad, lies in the attitude surrounding teaching. Students are prompted to come up with concepts of their own, which makes them  take a good look at the concepts already in existence and then postulate on different theories.
The highest mark of academia that can be associated with an educational organisation is when it motivates students to learn, to be intrigued, to have curiosity,  for there can be no substitute to that crucial aspect and also self-effort, from the side of the students and this is where foreign universities excel.

Personal Benefits

6. Experiencing a new country & culture

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You get to experience the melting pot of different cultures. The customs, quirks and idiosyncrasies of a whole new type of people. These little things in itself can make up for a memorable stay outside and give you a horde of stories to tell when you go back home. There are also the scenic and breathtaking places that you might find in your country of study. The feeling, as one watches the Niagara falls gushing out millions of gallons of water every minute or that of being dwarfed when standing next to the Eiffel tower would be unique. Moreover, you may be able to try your hand in different thrillers that are not easily available back home like Skydiving, Bungee-Jumping, Paragliding, WindSurfing etc. That would make your study trip an unforgettable experience.

7. The gastronomic delights!

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This section would be my personal favourite. For all you foodies out there, the chance to taste a totally different concept of a dish or food item than the one we are used to would be a welcome opportunity indeed. “Chicken Rice” of Singapore or the “Gelato of Italy”,  the choices are plenty. Select one and dig right in!

8. Broadening your Worldview

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Getting inundated with different ideas on a day to day basis, would increase your horizons and broaden your mind. Coming across people and students of different cultures and backgrounds and also having the opportunity to interact with a global community of thinkers and academics, these experiences would shape up your worldview. We would not only be able to think the way people do in our country but also, because of our exposure to the people of other nations, we would be privy to their way of thinking too.

9. A Global Network of Friends

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Studying abroad helps us make friends with students from different parts of the world, in fact, these friendships may last a lifetime. Travelling together and studying together makes us develop a knack to deal with multicultural situations. While studying outside, we can make friends with students from different countries. In addition to rewarding personal relationships, these friends can also be an important means of networking later down the road. We must remember that nations are nothing but boundaries that are drawn on a map and that we all belong to the same family in the end, the human family.

Career Benefits

10. Going Global

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In a world where each society is progressively becoming more global, a well-travelled and well-read person is an invaluable asset. Being in a foreign land would teach you to interact with a range of people who have completely different background than yours. This gives you the experience to handle multicultural situations with finesse. On top of that, you would be attuned to the global trends prevalent in your area of study and also in the geopolitical sphere, thus having an edge over others who haven’t been outside their country.

11. Personality Development

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The development of an individual academically and personally, both are encouraged. You get to develop as a person with increased confidence in your own analysis of situations and subjects as individual thinking is promoted. Leadership skills, Interpersonal skills, etc, are nurtured.

12. Increased Employability

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Nowadays the competition within India and globally in the jobs sector is very high. It is within this setting that students with a foreign university degree tag emerge as victors. They are seen as more independent beings and calculated risk takers who have backed upon the risk they have taken by managing a degree from a  foreign university. Also, it shows their commitment and drive towards personal development. Companies are on the lookout for such people. In places like the US, there are various opportunities to work while studying and to procure internships at prestigious corporations and institutions. Such an exposure enhances the ability to handle responsibilities and also looks good on one’s resume. A person’s chance for employability gets boosted manifold.

 Companies give more preference to students with an international background. This is also in part, owing to the fact that societies are becoming more global and businesses/commercial establishments are at the forefront of this phenomenon.

13. Chance to learn an Extra Language

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An opportunity to learn a foreign language is in the offing. While it is true that majority of Indian students head off to the English-speaking countries, there are also other study abroad destinations of choice like China, Germany, France, Russia, etc. It’d be to a person’s advantage to have the ability to converse in multiple languages as they can express their ideas and thoughts to a wider reach of people. It can come in handy for negotiations and for translating and conveying ideas during an international business transaction or deal.

These benefits should have provided a clear image as to what you stand to gain by going abroad to study. Keep in mind that such a decision would require hard work on your part and also mind the financial aspects. There is scope for scholarships and part-time jobs which can ease your financial burden. One must take a look at all these facets before coming to a decision.
All the very best for your future.

Also Read: How much would a degree cost in the top 10 study abroad countries for Indian students?

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