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What are the advantages and disadvantages of studying abroad in another country?

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brandih | eNotes Employee

Posted April 20, 2010 at 2:40 PM via web

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What are the advantages and disadvantages of studying abroad in another country?

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besure77 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

Posted April 20, 2010 at 2:50 PM (Answer #2)

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There are many advantages for sure. First of all you get to see another culture first hand. You will have exposure to new languages, customs, etc.

The biggest disadvantage I see are language barriers unless you speak the other language very well.

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 20, 2010 at 4:19 PM (Answer #3)

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Immersion is definitely a great thing for learning another language.  I don't speak any foreign language better than the one I got immersed in...

I think another issue is that you lose some amount of opportunities if you study abroad.  If you spend a whole year abroad, that's a year of networking and such that you lose -- it gets to be harder to apply for internships, etc.

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bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 20, 2010 at 6:46 PM (Answer #4)

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I only wish I could speak from experience, but being a world traveller, I know it can give you the opportunity to see other parts of our great planet while you complete your education. You can also get a greater feel for the culture of the country where you plan to study, and it's a great way to pick up a second language. If you have the opportunity, do it while you're young. Your native land will always be awaiting your return.

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drmonica | (Level 2) Associate Educator

Posted April 20, 2010 at 7:20 PM (Answer #5)

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Studying in another country is a wonderful opportunity to observe and participate in a foreign culture. It can also provide the chance to practice language skills by immersion if you are in a country where English is not the native language. Being a student in a foreign nation is far different from being a tourist. The long-term nature of study offers the opportunity to really see the day-to-day life of the people there.

Among the disadvantages are the potential lack of protection from terrorism and kidnapping, a very real risk for American students in some countries. Expense can also pose a barrier to international study in some nations.

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g23 | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 20, 2010 at 8:11 PM (Answer #6)

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First of all you are in another cournty so it is going to be hard at first. The cultural difference will be hard. You would bea ble to know what was wrong with the person the hospital and know hoe the people are feeling about the so called mahcines.
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krishna-agrawala | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

Posted April 20, 2010 at 8:15 PM (Answer #7)

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The advantages and dis advantages could really be same depending on individual cases: For example:

  • The level of education could be better or worse depending on quality of education in the institute attended.
  • Cost could be more or less depending upon comparative fees and other cost in two countries.
  • The education will be more or relevant to the environment where the students finally settles down depending on where the student finally settles down. Many student who go abroad for study, settle down there.

However one clear advantage of studying in another country is the wider exposure available not only in terms of study but also in terms of knowing and living among people of the other country. And one clear disadvantage is being far away from one's home.

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brettd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted April 20, 2010 at 8:40 PM (Answer #8)

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There are way more advantages than disadvantages in my opinion.  Besides learning possibly another language and culture, you broaden your perspective in terms of the world and your home country.  It's FUN!  In 17 years, I have yet to hear from a student that they had a bad experience.  You also gain self confidence, starting over in an unfamiliar place and society.  If you can succeed doing that, what can't you do?

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ask996 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

Posted April 21, 2010 at 8:58 AM (Answer #9)

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While the exposure to other cultures is nice, I’m not sure that students always get an accurate picture of the culture. What the get is a very selective exposure in terms of housing, socio/economic situations, and etc. Don’t get me wrong--this is what we want for them, but is it an accurate representation of the culture?

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lrwilliams | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

Posted April 21, 2010 at 12:43 PM (Answer #10)

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I would agree with the other posters that an advantage is being exposed to another culture. I think that a disadvantage would have to be that you lose a year of high school with your friends and miss out on all those activities associated with high school.

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nusratfarah | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted April 22, 2010 at 1:47 PM (Answer #11)

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As a student myself, I can say both about some disadvantages and advantages at the same time.

Advantages:

  • Students going overseas get opportunity to know the people of other countries. A global network is created.
  • Students, very often, go abroad to study by spending money for a good education. And, this education helps utilise their knowledge for the betterment of themselves as well as their homeland.
  • Students can manage to work while studying, and can send money as remittance to the country.

Disadvantages:

  • They have to bear huge pain regarding allotment of inhabitation.
  • They do not get part-time jobs easily as they are foreigners; and if can not manage jobs, they become mentally frustrated. Studies get hampered since they remain concerned about paying the fee.
  • They have to adjust with the sudden change of things like weather, food, social system, and most importantly with the peers.
  • If they are not that at home in the F1 language, they may face communication problem.
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kapokkid | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted April 23, 2010 at 9:16 AM (Answer #12)

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One of the advantages that has been mentioned but perhaps not in a lot of detail is the fact that in many places, unlike here in the US, higher education is often funded by the state, even for foreigners.  You could be a citizen of the United States and attend classes at a University in Germany for free.  Of course you will need to get a visa, find a place to live and cover living expenses, but it can actually turn out to be a good deal, particularly if you speak the language or can be able to pick it up in a reasonable amount of time.

Along with that, I think the advantage of having your eyes opened to a new culture and new ways of looking at the world can be invaluable.

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mstultz72 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted April 27, 2010 at 5:52 AM (Answer #13)

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For Americans, the experience is invaluable.  So many American students (and their teachers for that matter) think their country is the only free, democratic, and open society in the world.  Little do they know that it can be a closed-minded and rather Puritanical place.  If a student studies abroad in Europe, for example, his eyes will be forever opened to the plurality of its society in terms of liberal education, diversity of languages, and confluence of culture.

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arzuka | College Teacher | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted April 28, 2010 at 3:46 AM (Answer #14)

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I have studied abroad when I was young, so  I have  some real-life experiences to share...  disadvantages first. well, it costs a lot most of the time. This wouldn't be  a problem if your family's wealthy enough or you're going to a country where currrency is much cheaper than your hometown. Moving into another country would cost housing, new and perhaps more expensive insurance(as a foreigner), and other stuff you might need settling into your new life. Another problem is that you have to part from your family, and that is sure harder than it sounds... especially when it's your first time living apart from them. Getthing used to the culture and the environment is also hard..food, especially since you can't go without that. Advantages also exist- you might be able to learn things that you can't in any other countries.. For example, if you're wish is to become a cartoon-drawer it might be wise to consider studying in Japan.

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ako6777 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Associate Educator

Posted April 30, 2010 at 11:35 AM (Answer #15)

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The biggest advantage to studying in another country would be learning the culture and language.  Being able to imerse yourself in another culture would make you more marketable to a perspective employer, especially in business. 

The disadvantage would be being away from your family and comfort zone.  You would have to learn a new way of behaving so you would not be seen as rude. 

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ali001 | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted May 2, 2010 at 12:29 AM (Answer #16)

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What are the advantages and disadvantages of studying in another country?

What are the advantages and disadvantages of studying in another country?

there are many advantages and disadvantages of studying in over seas school.

ADVANTAGES ARE

New experients

adventures

new firends

language(also can be a problem)

 And MORE

DISADVANTAGES

Language

firends

getting around

culture and addapting to culture

ect ect my source is life experience

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lfawley | College Teacher | (Level 1) Associate Educator

Posted May 10, 2010 at 2:08 PM (Answer #17)

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The major advantage is that you get the chance to experience an entirely different culture from food to religion to social structure and language. This is an experience that you will carry with you for the rest of your life. The disadvantage is that you are away from home and you may have a hard time learning the material in your classes if it is not presented to you in a language with which you are familiar.

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted May 11, 2010 at 7:56 AM (Answer #19)

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For Americans, the experience is invaluable.  So many American students (and their teachers for that matter) think their country is the only free, democratic, and open society in the world.  Little do they know that it can be a closed-minded and rather Puritanical place.  If a student studies abroad in Europe, for example, his eyes will be forever opened to the plurality of its society in terms of liberal education, diversity of languages, and confluence of culture.

Adding to the "Ugly American" point, traveling and staying overseas is, indeed, a humbling experience.  For, many Americans do believe their country is the best.  e.g.The standard of living and quality of life is much better in the Scandinavian countries and Switzerland, where there is, per capita income, a higher standard of living and FAR less violent crime than the United States.

Traveling and studying abroad teaches students the lesson of Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird about walking around in other people's shoes.  One learns to objectively perceive one's own attitudes and values.

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Michelle Ossa | College Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

Posted May 12, 2010 at 7:41 AM (Answer #20)

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I do not see any disadvantages other than the possibility of having to uproot after having been comfortably settled somewhere with friends and neighbors.

Other than that, the cultural exposure, the history, the mannerisms, the customs that one learns from traveling and meeting others is pure richness.

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted May 12, 2010 at 3:44 PM (Answer #21)

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I am all for studying in a different country, especially if it is in a radically different culture, where you can learn a new language in context rather than in the safety of your home culture and experience a completely new way of looking at life and the world. Such an experience, as long as it does not detrimentally effect your ability to re-enter your old education system, is worth far more than gold.

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geosc | College Teacher | (Level 3) Assistant Educator

Posted May 25, 2010 at 6:05 AM (Answer #22)

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In my opinion, an educated American needs several courses of study:  To understand the U.S., especially the history of its government, I think; to understand your own culture, a good tool for learning which is to read some historical and some creative fictional literature produced by members of your culture; to understand the ancient Greek and Roman influences on Western civilization which again may be had by reading their own historical and imaginative literature; and to understand that other cultures than our own are in some respects better and in some respects worse, and almost always different.  I lived five years in a foreign country; the first year I hated it; they did everything "wrong."  Then after about a year I began to appreciate that some aspects of their culture were better than my own, and those aspects that weren't, well there were 50 million of them and one of me so it was up to me to accommodate; 50 million of them were not going to accommodate to me.  After that I enjoyed my stay there very much.

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hnystrom | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Assistant Educator

Posted June 12, 2010 at 1:59 AM (Answer #23)

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One important experience to be gained from living abroad is empathy for other people who are different from us, especially those who come to visit or stay in the US.  In 1991 I viist Thailand for two weeks.  I had tried to learn some Thai before I went there and thought I was pretty good.

The first feeling I recall is what it felt like to be in the racial minority.  I was strongly aware of what it was to be different from everyone else.  I looked different.  I was taller than most people on the street.  I wasn't always acknowleged in a store or at the train station.  I wasn't used to the hot tropical climate. I was aware how my eyes, hair, and skin color were different.  In the US I walk around without thinking about this at all.  In the US I'm a member of the "dominant culture".  I don't think about such things. I don't have to.  There I was not.  It gave me insight how a visitor or immigrant mast feel walking aound the US.

My command of the language was woefully inadequate.  The is not one way to say something, there are many ways. I had only learned one.  The pronunciation was different.  People spoke faster.  The alphabet is different and it made my head ache just to try to read a simple sign.  There were many little things I could not do because it required reading and speaking.  However, being there I couldn't escape having to make an effort.  It made me realize the challenges others have when trying to come to the US.  I wonder about those who insist that foreigners use English only.  How would they fare if they went to live in another country.

To really appreciate another country you have to go there for a period of time.  We are a rich people even if we don't necessarily feel that way.  After all we could afford to go to their country.  This made most ofthe people I had contact with try to serve me or sell me things.  I was frequently bombarded with offers to buy things like gems or even prostitutes of either gender.  I was overcharged by unscrupulous merchants and taxi drivers.  I am not saying this to discredit Thailand at all.  This goes on everywhere, even here in the US too.  This is a totally different experience than living in a house, walking to school every day, buying you food from alocal store and talking with neighbors on the street, as I did in Japan several years later.  It took me several weeks to shed my status as a wealthy visitor and to begin to live like a local.

Living abroad is a challenege!  For me, it has also reaped great rewards.  It has made me realize what is truely valuble about my own culture and to not take it for granted.  It has helped me become more patient and empathic with others, and not just with foreigners.  Each trip abroad made me more skilled in adapting to new and daunting situations.  Thailand was hard - sometimes day by day andminute by minute.  Now I can walk into anentirely new place - Russia or China for instance - an know how to handle all sorts of things more quickly and easily.  I heartily recommend it!

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oosa | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted June 18, 2010 at 10:09 PM (Answer #24)

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Advantages of studying in another country are:

*you get to explore other countries

*you will acquaint new languages, cultures and religions

*making new friends from different countries

*and learning new ways of doing things

Disadvantages of studying in another country are:

*language barriers can be a problem unless you are able to speak that particular language

*Being away from home can be uncomfortable and hard to get used to.

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zumba96 | TA , Grade 11 | (Level 2) Valedictorian

Posted June 30, 2014 at 6:14 PM (Answer #26)

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If you study abroad then you have a chance to experience a new life and new opportunities as well as make new friends and have an experience of a lifetime. However, you will be very far from home and there is a chance you could be caught up in something and regret going abroad for the rest of your life. If you need help there is a chance it will not be possible to reach your family and friends in time either. 

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Wiggin42 | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 2) Valedictorian

Posted July 15, 2014 at 1:07 PM (Answer #27)

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There are a plethora of advantages. Travel broadens the mind because it exposes you to other cultures, ideas, and people vastly different from your own. Study abroad programs can be invaluable in shaping your ideals. They can also be downright fun and exhilarating: the sense of freedom and adventure.

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jess1999 | TA , Grade 9 | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted July 19, 2014 at 3:35 PM (Answer #28)

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The advantage is that you'll be able to experience new cultures and lifestyle that is different from your own country . For example , american and asian schooling are really different . 

Now the disadvantage is probably the language . If you have no clue about the language then you're definitely going to have a hard time there .

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arrellbelle | Student, College Sophomore | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted July 26, 2014 at 6:57 PM (Answer #29)

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Advantages to studying abroad:

  • Learning about different cultures
  • Meeting different people
  • Learning a new language
  • Exposure to different customs and traditions
  • Companies may become interested in you
  • Widens your perspective on life and the world

Disadvantages to studying abroad:

  • Maybe a language barrier
  • Missing your family and friends
  • Spending too much of your own money to live comfortably
  • May feel isolated since you may not be able to relate with others
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crystaltu001 | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted August 1, 2014 at 6:20 AM (Answer #30)

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Advantages

  • Learn a new culture.
  • Meet new people.
  • Learn a new language.
  • Go one more adventures

Disadvantages

  • No friends or family will be with you.
  • May not be used to living in a new environment.
  • Spend too much money.
  • Language Barrier
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ali001 | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted May 10, 2010 at 11:21 PM (Answer #18)

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Yeah that what i missed in my post ity really gooooodd work

that  is golden .

NO MUM or DAD to help or give you resources

 

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melissa1106 | TA , Grade 11 | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted August 13, 2014 at 6:16 PM (Answer #31)

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The advantages of studying abroad are that you get to meet new people and experience a new culture. You also get to explore a country you may have never been in before and learn new things that may not be available to you in the country you live in.

The disadvantages of studying abroad may be the language barriers, feeling home sick and adjusting to the new culture and way of living the country may have.

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zumba96 | TA , Grade 11 | (Level 2) Valedictorian

Posted December 24, 2014 at 11:13 PM (Answer #32)

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Advantages include having a whole different experience that no other college kids will experience. In a whole different country you have no choice but to be independent and you can experience a completely different culture. However, being a part of a completely different country leaves you far away from home and if something happens to you it will be hard to reach your family in short notice. 

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