December 4, 2012

Top 6 Study Abroad Destinations

Studying abroad gives students a chance to spread their wings and experience life outside their country. In an increasing globalized world, having international experience on your resume is extremely important if you are looking to impress. Where you would like to study largely depends on your subject.  If you are looking to study a language, then it makes sense to study in its country of origin. Some universities have particularly prestigious courses, so it is wise to look at them if you are aiming high. 

Many companies exist to assist you in your choice of subject and country of study, whereas some universities have affiliations with many other universities across the world and offer the chance to study at one or a number of these institutions. Below are some of the top study abroad destinations:

1. Italy
Italy comes top in student’s searches for international study.  This renowned country captures all of the romance and cultural ideals of studying abroad.  But romance aside, there are many reasons to study in Italy.  Italy is eighth in world ranking of most industrial countries and is a hub of international business and trade.  It is also home to possibly the world’s first university, Università di Bologna (UNIBO), plus 90 other higher education institutions. If you are looking to study arts or languages, Panrimo Study Abroad Program offers a highly regarded scheme at Santa Reparta International School of Art in Florence, where they have on the ground staff to help with all of your needs and organize sightseeing trips.

2. United Kingdom
With the UK boasting four out of the top ten highest-ranking universities in the world (with the other six being in the USA), it is no surprise that it is a popular choice for studying abroad.  Studying in the UK has the undoubted language benefit for those who do not speak a foreign language, and with over 300 universities to choose from, there is no shortage of choice.  There are a number of ways to apply to a UK university: you can contact a particular university directly, as the majority have foreign student schemes, or you can go via an agency that specializes in study abroad programs.  The former is best if you know specifically where you would like to study, whereas the latter will be able to help you choose the right course and university for you, and possibly help with the practicalities such as visas.

3. Spain
If studying Spanish or Hispanic Studies is your ambition, then spending a semester or year in Spain will be of huge benefit to you.  This beautiful and diverse country has a rich cultural heritage and its people are known for their welcoming nature.  Many of the universities have their own foreign student programs, but if you don’t know where to start in finding the scheme for you, the API Study Abroad Program at the University of Salamanca is a well-respected one.  This program offers courses that are fully integrated with the Spanish students or in separate international classes.  They also offer the choice of accommodation in halls of residence or in the home of local families.  This program also has its own support staff on the campus and provides trips for students to get a taste of the entire country.

4. Australia
Famous for its wonderful beaches, relaxed lifestyle and diverse culture, Australia is a very appealing destination for those wanting to study abroad.  The University of Queensland offers a comprehensive program for foreign students, which can be arranged through GlobaLinks.  The University of Queensland is ranked in the top 50 world universities and offers courses across all subject areas. It is located in the St Lucia district of Brisbane, a vibrant, metropolitan city close to Moreton Bay beach.

5. China
With all of the business and industrial world looking to China for their innovations and investments, it is the ideal country to study.  The country itself is vast and is a land of both economic prosperity and hardship.  China is welcoming of international students and many of the universities offer programs for American students.  USAC has an affiliation with Shanghai University, which offers business studies and Mandarin in the world’s largest city.

6. France
The thought of studying in France may stir up images of romance, art and picturesque scenery but it is also a center of academia.  If you are fluent in French already, then there are 85 universities across France, with 5 being in Paris, that have international student programs.  For those wanting to experience France but do not have language skills, there is another option.  The American University of Paris teaches across 33 minor and 16 major subjects and welcomes students from all across the world, whilst still teaching in English.  It teaches to the American system and incorporates American style co-curricular activities, allowing a seamless transition from your home university to Paris.

Alice Norum works as a freelance writer for, quality essay writing service reviews website.

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