Advantages of Choosing the Right Course for Study Abroad

study in abroad

As your results are out, this question must be in your mind – should I choose to study abroad? This article may help you to decide whether you should go for it or not. Studying in foreign universities can help an individual to grow both personally and professionally. It can be one of the most interesting experiences of your entire life. Today, there are many study abroad opportunities in almost every country. Still worried why study overseas? Read on this article…!!!

Top-Quality Education

Today there are many programs that are specially designed for the students who plan to fly abroad. You will get chance to select from wide range of subjects and streams. You must choose a program that fits to your goals and interests.

Some of the most popular study abroad options available are Engineering, Business, Medical, Information Technology, Computers, Science and Technology etc. These courses are further divided into lots of sub categories from which you can choose any subject.

Foreign culture

With your study abroad experience, you will learn how to socialize in a better way as you will interact with the students of different culture and lifestyle from all around the globe. You have plenty of things to learn.

Better Employment Opportunities

The best part of studying abroad is a good fortune. Most of the universities offer career support services for the students during their study which means you will be employment ready after your course. Most courses include co-ops and industrial training where you get an easy exposure. This experience lets you find job easily, after completion of your studies.

This list will go on! Thus, choosing the right course for study abroad will give you better career opportunities on graduation, else it will be a waste of your hard-earned money and precious time.

For more help and guidance, you can visit the best Study Visa Consultant in your region.

abroad study consultants, best study visa consultants
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5 REASONS TO STUDY in Poland

study in poland

1. TRADITION

Poland’s traditions of academic education goes back to 1364 when King Casimir the Great established the Cracow Academy, known today as the Jagiellonian University. The Cracow Academy, being one of the oldest in the world, took after academies in Bologna and Padua, and was the second university in Central Europe after Prague. About two centuries later, in 1579, King Stefan Batory transformed the existing Jesuit College in Vilnius into the Vilnius Academy and in 1661 Jan Casimir, King of Poland, transformed the Jesuit College into the Lvov Academy. Thus, by the end of the 17th century, the Poland and Lithuania Kingdoms had three flourishing universities providing academic education to both national and international students.

2. MODERNITY

Today, the Polish higher education system is developing rapidly. Poland holds fourth place in Europe (after the United Kingdom, Germany and France) in terms of the number of people enrolled in higher education. The total student population at over 400 university level schools is almost 1,5 million. Each year almost half a million young people begin their education at universities and colleges. Most schools offer courses in foreign languages.

3. BOLOGNA PROCESS

Poland plays an active part in the Bologna Process. Owing to the introduction of three-stage education modelled on Bachelor/Master/Doctoral studies as well as the European Credit Transfer System, both Polish students and foreigners studying in Poland stay fully mobile and can continue their education elsewhere in the European Union. Within just the Erasmus Program that has been going on for over 20 years now, over 43,000 foreign students have come to study in Poland while almost 100,000 students from Poland have taken part of their education in another country within the European Union. Foreign students coming to Poland can expect the most attractive and diversified education opportunities meeting high European standards. They can study medicine, biotechnology or engineering, but also art and business. The diploma awarded to them upon graduation is recognised not only Europe-wide but also in key countries of the world.

4. HIGH QUALITY OF EDUCATION

The Polish higher education system is well developed. The quality of the education provided is monitored and regularly evaluated. The main Polish institutions in charge of quality assurance in higher education are: the Polish Accreditation Committee, the General Council for Science and Higher Education and the Conference of Rectors of the Academic Schools in Poland. There are over 5000 courses available in Poland and each of them has had to gain the Polish Accreditation Committee’s approval. Among them there are a number of fields of study that have received the grade: excellent. The list of excellent fields of study is available at the Polish Accreditation Committee website: http://vatslya.com

5. COMPETITIVE COSTS OF LIVING AND STUDYING

Compared to other EU countries, the tuition fees in Poland are highly competitive and the costs of living are a fraction of what a foreign student would have to spend in other European cities. More information is available here and here.

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Choose the Perfect European Country for Your 2018 Study Adventure

study in europe

All of you who ponder on the idea of studying abroad should definitely consider a country from Europe, even if you’re a European yourself. Why? Because Europe is one of the oldest continents, each country is quite unique, stepped in history, and there is always something new and interesting to discover, regardless of the study destination you will choose.

In addition, if you will study in Europe, you will inevitably learn a new language, uncover the secrets of a new and different culture and what’s probably most exciting than anything, visit some of the world’s most appealing and iconic attractions.

In terms of the educational benefits, many countries from Europe are home to some of the top-ranked universities worldwide, students benefit from a highly supportive and multicultural academic environment, you can find a plethora of English-taught programmes and in some cases, you don’t even have to pay tuition fees.

12 popular countries where you can study in Europe

Except for UK universities, known to offer only English degrees, along with the increasing number of international students worldwide, many other European universities deliver study programmes that are either partially or entirely conducted in English. The good news is that each year, more universities from many European countries introduce English-taught courses.

Check out this list including some of the most popular countries and cities from Europe where you can enjoy your international study adventure:

1. Study abroad in Germany

Whether you want to study in Berlin, Munich, Koln, Frankfurt, or in any other German city, you are guaranteed to receive a high standard education combined with world-class research. German universities are well-known for their academic performance, modern student facilities and graduates’ high employability rate. Germany has some of the highest ranked universities worldwide in terms of excellent teaching as well as student satisfaction.

In addition, an important factor that adds to the popularity of Germany among international students is the fact that no public university charges tuition fees.

Check out student life in:

  • Berlin
  • Munich
  • Koln
  • Frankfurt

2. Study abroad in the Netherlands

Netherlands is one of the European countries that is truly committed to welcome a large number of international students. In the Netherlands, you will find more English-taught degrees than study programmes conducted in Dutch and many universities use the same grading system as American colleges and universities.

Higher education in Netherlands is based on innovation, creativity and study degrees integrate a curriculum that is 100 % adapted to the current events, issues and discoveries in the field; so whatever you study, you are bound to receive a proper training that will make you an expert in your chosen field. Many of the Dutch universities hold high positions in international rankings.

Some of the most popular university cities in the Netherlands are:

  • Amsterdam
  • Maastricht
  • Delft

Find out more about living costs in the Netherlands.

3. Study abroad in Austria

If you want to live and study in one of the safest countries in the world, take advantage of low or even no tuition fees, embrace a unique mix of German, Italian and Hungarian cultures, then Austria is your answer. In Austria, your study experience at some of the best universities in the world will be enriched by the overall high class and elegant environment.

Whether it’s Vienna, Salzburg or other city in Austria, you will be surrounded by exquisite architecture, embrace the typical coffee culture and can even attend one of the famous dance balls. In Austria, you can pursue a degree in music, especially in Vienna – nicknamed the music capital of the world, psychology, since Freud laid the foundations of psychoanalysis here, business and more.

4. Study abroad in Spain

study in spain

Spain is known for its friendly environment, warm climate, affordable living expenses and tuition fees. Although many students who choose to come to Spain are highly interested in acquiring Spanish language, you will find numerous Bachelor, Master and even PhD degrees that use English as medium of instruction.

The largest number of international students can be found in big cities like

  • Madrid
  • Barcelona
  • Marbella

You can study social sciences, journalism, hospitality and of course, business, as Spain is home to some of the most distinguished and renowned business schools.

5. Study abroad in Italy

One of the most popular European destinations, Italy welcomes thousands of foreign students and tourists alike any time of the year. If you’re interested in arts, architecture or world history – some of the most searched study fields in this country, Italy would definitely be the ideal spot for you.

There are so many reasons to choose Italy to pursue your degree abroad, such as excellent teaching, fantastic cuisine, low living costs and the numerous and remarkable attractions.

Check out some of the most thriving student cities in Italy:

  • Roma
  • Milano
  • Bologna
  • Florence.

6. Study abroad in Scandinavian countries

Universities from Scandinavian countries – Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland are some of the most prestigious worldwide, known for their study programmes that focus on problem-based learning and state-of-the-art research work.

Study in Denmark and you will love finding yourself lost among more bicycles than people, choose Norway and you can combine studying with plenty of interesting outdoor activities, or go to Sweden and experience teachers’ friendly approach.

Regardless of which of these countries you will select, you will enjoy a vibrant multicultural environment, study for free and even get to see the amazing Northern lights.

Apart from the fact that you can study in English, in all of these countries you can easily communicate with anyone by simply addressing in English.

Check out how you can apply to a university in Finland, Denmark, Norway and Sweden.

Get more details about what it’s like to study in:

  • Copenhagen
  • Stockholm
  • Helsinki
  • Oslo
  • Uppsala
  • Goteborg

7. Study abroad in Poland

study in poland

Poland is a top European country in terms of the literacy rate of the population, the number of people enrolled in higher educational institutions exceeds 1,5 million.

Polish universities hold a long tradition and reputation in terms of quality education and particularly medicine, engineering, architecture and information technology graduates are highly appreciated by employers worldwide.

Anywhere you’ll go in Poland, you can easily live on a low budget. In Poland, you will embrace a fascinating culture, blending a medieval, fairy tale like atmosphere with a bustling city life.

Popular Polish student cities are Krakow and Warsaw.

8. Study abroad in Portugal

Similar to Spain, Portugal covers a lively, friendly and laid-back atmosphere, enough reasons for many internationals to come study here. Additionally, Portugal is home to some of the oldest universities in the world, particularly hunted by students who prepare for a career in social sciences, journalism, law and even medicine. Lisbon and Porto count for the largest number of international students.

See how you can apply for an undergraduate or graduate degree in Portugal.

Take advantage of low fees and costs, listen to fado, and delight your taste buds with some of the best wines and delicious cuisine in the world.

9. Study abroad in Switzerland

Switzerland is not just the land of the finest chocolate, luxury watches and home to some of the highest mountain peaks in Europe. Swiss universities are incredibly career-focused and due to Switzerland’s reputation in groundbreaking research, the country manages to always attract numerous talented scientists.

Bern and Zurich are the most popular student cities.

Applying for a degree in Switzerland is quite easy, but you will have to carefully manage your monthly living costs.

10. Study abroad in France

The typical cliché about studying abroad in France is living “la vie en rose” or experiencing a truly Bohemian lifestyle. While that may be true, France is still home to several worldwide famous universities, present in international rankings.

French business schools are also greatly acclaimed for their exceptional teaching style and unique features and if you’re interested in specializing in fashion, you should give French institutes and universities a serious thought.

Apply for a degree in Paris, Bordeaux, Marseille or anywhere in France, prepare to become an expert in your study field and visit some of the greatest and outstanding museums in Europe.

11. Study abroad in Belgium

study abroad

Located in the centre of Europe and home to the United Nations headquarter, Belgium covers for a high multicultural environment. Although French, German and Dutch are equally acknowledged official languages, many Belgium universities still offer English-taught programmes. So it is no wonder that Belgium counts for a significant number of foreign students, over 100,000 annually.

Belgium cities that cover a large part of the international student population are:

  • Brussels
  • Gent
  • Liege

Check out more reasons why you should consider studying abroad in Belgium and have a look at the average tuition and prices.

12. Study abroad in Ireland

Ireland is one of the obvious choices when it comes to study destinations in Europe that provide English programmes. Ireland is known as one of the countries with the friendliest locals, and universities are truly focused on helping foreign students adjust easier as they integrate many student services and student organisations.

Recently, Ireland has announced clear intentions to enlarge the number of foreign students attending its universities. EU students who apply to undergraduate degrees in Ireland are exempt from paying tuition fees and some of the most popular degrees are information technology, business, and life sciences.

Find out more about student life in

  • Dublin
  • Cork
  • Galway

Widen your study perspectives from Europe

The list may continue as there are many other countries in Europe where you can have a both intellectually and culturally enriching study experience. You can also take into account Slovenia, Estonia, the Czech Republic, Greece, Romania and other. Just search thoroughly and take note of all the advantages and disadvantages you will have to deal with in a certain country. Choosing the perfect university is very important, as well as overall tuition and student living costs, but don’t forget to take other factors into consideration.

So start browsing, take notes and see how the search will guide you through selecting the best place in Europe where you can begin an exciting chapter of your life.

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WORKING IN POLAND

WORK WHILE STUDYING

You can help pay for your education by working part-time while you’re studying.
International students have the right to work while studying in Poland as long as they are enrolled in an Institution. Students who are not nationals of EU member countries must also hold a valid residency permit. The right to work applies to all students, including those who are in Poland for the first time, those who are enrolled in the first year of a university program, and those who are enrolled full-time in a language school.
20hrs work permitted during studies as well as 3 months of full time work during holidays.
Full time work is permitted for Residence Card holders.

 

WORK AFTER GRADUATION

Students from member countries of the European Union may work in Poland without restriction after they graduate. It may be really hard to leave such a beautiful country after you complete your education here. Don’t worry if you prefer to stay and work in Poland. As a graduate of a Polish higher education institution full-time program, you don’t need a permit to work here. Just make sure your stay permit is in order. You can stay back for further 2-3 years as long as you can prove that you can financially support yourself without seeking any government benefits. Students who obtain a job or accept employment can obtain a Work Permit.

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Study in Latvia

study in latvia

For a country of just over two million inhabitants, Latvia has a wealth of both public and private higher education opportunities – 59 universities and colleges. Programmes taught in foreign languages (mainly English and Russian with a few German and Scandinavian language programmes) cover a wide range of fields, from architecture to social sciences. In particular, medical studies and qualifications in the aviation industry are the most popular study options in the country. Find the best information about what it’s like to study in Riga, including degree course offers, career opportunities, student life, living costs, and more.

Academic structure

There is academic and professional higher education in Latvia. Most of the institutions of higher education offer both academic and professional higher education qualification.

Academic higher education programmes  are focused on preparing graduates for independent research, as well as to provide theoretical background for professional activities. Academic education programmes are implemented according to the national standard of academic education. They usually comprise a thesis at the end of each stage and lead to a Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree.

Professional higher education programmes  focus on providing in-depth knowledge in a particular field, preparing graduates for design or improvement of systems, products and technologies. Students are prepared to be able conduct creative, research and teaching activities. In total, the duration of professional/vocational study programmes is not less than 4 years after secondary education and not less than 2 years after college education.

General Application Requirements

Admission office of the perspective university will assist you during the application process and will inform you about specific application requirements and necessary documents.

While applying for studies the following documents shall be sent to the admission office of the chosen university:

  • Education/ Degree Certificate or Diploma
  • Transcripts of records/marks (all education documents shall be translated into English)
  • English language proficiency certificates (IELTS, TOEFL or equivalents) or the perspective University exam (if applicable)
  • Copy of ID or passport
  • Motivation Letter or/and CV

Although each university has slightly different application and registration procedures, the general steps you take during the application procedure and registration period are as follows:

  • Apply by sending your documents for evaluation. Once eligibility is confirmed you receive your Conditional Acceptance Letter followed with the positive AIC approval.
  • Once you pay the tuition fees stated on your letter, you can simultaneously apply for Resident Permit and Study Visa.
  • Make sure you inform the University about your flight details at least 3 working days before your arrival for the airport pick-up.
  • Register the very next day after you arrive in Latvia, get your student ID, start selecting your courses, and register at accommodation halls if you are staying on campus.

Find more information about how to apply to a university in Latvia.

Academic degrees

The objectives of academic higher education are to prepare graduates for independent research, as well as to provide theoretical background for professional activities. Academic education programmes are implemented according to the national standard of academic education.

  • Academic programmes leading to a bachelor’s degree take 3 to 4 years.
  • Academic programmes leading to a master’s degree are 4 semesters long (2 years) and requires at least 5 years total length of bachelor and master studies.

The objectives of professional higher education are to provide in-depth knowledge in a particular field, preparing graduates for design or improvement of systems, products and technologies, as well as to prepare them for creative, research and teaching activities in this field.

  • Professional programmes leading to a professional bachelor’s degree require 4 years of study.
  • Professional higher education programmes leading to a professional master’s degree require 1-2 years of study.

Student experience

When choosing to study in Latvia, you can study in capital city Riga or other cities in the country. You will experience one of the safest and greenest countries in the world. Universities in Latvia offer an advanced education system. Institutions of higher education are small enough to operate functionally and effectively, ensuring each individual student approach to each student.

Language of study

Although the official state language is Latvian, international students can easily get around with a command of Russian and English, as a large part of the population of Riga is Russian speaking, and English is used in the bigger cities.

In public universities, the language of instruction is usually Latvian, but also include courses in English for foreign students. There are almost 200 international study programmes (Bachelors, Masters and PhDs) and courses taught entirely in English for those who want to study abroad in Latvia. You can usually find Russian-taught courses in private universities.

There are no unified language requirements aimed at foreign students in Latvia. An advantage of studying abroad in Latvia is that most higher education institutions do not strictly define the need for internationally recognized language tests (although some schools ask for IELTS or TOEFL). Language skills are usually checked during the interview process of prospective student. It is possible that the higher education establishment organises its own formal testing for language skills.

English language preparation for studying in Latvia

Develop your academic English language skills in order to meet the English language requirements at Latvian universities offering degree studies for international students. Choose an English language school anywhere in the world and pick your preferred English exam preparation course from diverse language course options.

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Life of Student in Poland

stydy in poland

It is seen that the student life in Poland is much different when we compare it with ours. Their education system, the life after graduating from the school is all different. A student life in poland is like they start their schooling at the age of six and at the age of seven they reach to class 1. Before six, they are taught at home or can say, home schooling. Still they are much more qualified and talented then the students of the rest of the countries. Students from all over Europe reach to Poland so as to get better education from the prestigious and old universities situated in Poland. Most of the courses are taught in English, French, German and Polish. Even most of the people communicate in English making easy the living and studying of the students there.

The universities in Poland are best for higher studies as they grant better skills through their qualified teaching staff. Poland has a mixture of German, Czech, Austrian, Jewish and other cultures and also has highly efficient film and food festivals. They even organise a festival for students called the Juwenalia in which they give three days off from school and parades are organised.

Student life in Poland is not that easy. They are provided with good and highly efficient services but for that they really need to work hard. They often have to follow full timetables that requires time and hard work. The education system of Poland creates a great environment for those students who are eager to learn and discover. It provides a rich environment for those who love to debate. They teach the students to fearlessly speak about politics and religion. Through their debates they bring out the things infront of the public that are sometimes negative for the politicians but still they accept this challenge.

Student life in Poland is full of enjoyment too. Students, outside the university, have a totally different lifestyle. Lifestyle of students in Poland, along with hardships, is quite social too. The nightlife there is full of fun. This is so because the country is safe with a low crime rate. It is a much famous place for those who prefer an active lifestyle.

The place is attractive having student bars and pubs that are widespread in this city. Then too, Poland is one of the cheapest countries in the world, making it an important attraction for the students.

The city is open to the students belonging to any religion, culture or background. Poland also has a rich and interesting history making it an attracting place for the students who love studying about different religions and cultures. Lifestyle of student gets better here as after grabbing better qualification they get better jobs with good status. They grow as a new individual with a new identity that is far better from the earlier one. In an overall aspect, student life in Poland is much interesting, full of skills, knowledge and enjoyment.

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New Zealand Visas: Guide for Indian Students

study in newzealand

Find out what Indian students need to know when applying for a student visa for New Zealand.

New Zealand may not be the most well known of destinations, but it is highly regarded among international students for its high class education and desirable lifestyle.

Currently, New Zealand attracts as many as 90,000 international students every year. By 2025, the nation’s government intends to double this intake to 180,000.

What type of visa do I need?

If you need to stay for longer than three months in New Zealand for your educational program, you’ll need a Student Visa. International full-time (more than 20 hours a week of classes) students should apply to Immigration New Zealand (INZ) for a student visa.

It is worth noting that that certain criteria must be met before anybody can study in the country. To see if you qualify, check the INZ website.

How long will it take to process?

In August 2011 New Zealand restructured its visa application process, making it more efficient and student friendly. As well as improved standards of service, authorities now aim to deliver 80% of student visa applications within 30 days.

They aim to improve this to 90% within 25 days by August 2012.

How much does it cost?

A student visa will cost you US$185 (INR 8,463.29). The INZ, New Delhi, does not accept cash or credit cards – you will have to pay through a bank cheque or a draft.

Can I work while I study?

Full-time international students are permitted to work for a maximum of 20 hours in a week while they are studying. They can also work full time during holidays.

Foreign students who wish to work while they study must apply for a variation of the conditions of their student visa. This can be done either while filling out the initial application or later – as long as their student visa is valid.

Can I work after graduation?

To encourage international students to stay after completing their courses, the New Zealand government, allows those with no job offers in hand to get a visa for up to 12 months, and work at a temporary job while they search for job in their chosen field. The set of rules under which this is allowed is known as the Graduate Job Search Work Instructions.

Students who secure a job offer upon the successful completion of their degree need to apply for a Graduate Work Experience visa under the Study to Work Instructions. This allows them to work for two years in New Zealand, in order to gain some practical work experience relevant to their qualifications.

The Graduate Work Experience visa can be granted for three years in the case of eligible overseas students who intend to gain a membership or register with a New Zealand professional association which requires more than two years of relevant work experience to join. For more information, you can visit www.immigration.govt.nz.

What about immigration opportunities?

Candidates who meet all the requirements are eligible for a Work to Residence visa. The category of visa you will get will depend on whether your occupation is on the Long Term Skills Shortage List or not.

Bear in mind…

•    If you apply for a visa through an immigration adviser, be sure that they are licensed. The INZ may decline your visa application if it has been filed on your behalf by an adviser who is not licensed. Visit the Immigration Advisers Authority for more details.
•    New Zealand defines full-time students as those attending a private training establishment (PTE) for at least 20 hours each week; studying at least three papers, or the equivalent, each semester at a tertiary institution other than a PTE; or attending a primary, intermediate, or secondary school for at least one school term.
•    You can also apply for a student visa when you are already in New Zealand. A student visa granted onshore will usually include travel conditions allowing multiple journeys, so you can travel out of New Zealand and back in before the expiry of the visa.
•    Students Online is a service that makes applying for student visas easier, coming into being through an arrangement between Immigration New Zealand and selected education providers. If you are studying with an education provider that is part of Students Online, you can apply for your student visa at the international office on campus. For a list of education providers that are part of Students Online, see www.immigration.govt.nz/sol.
•    If you are aged 17 or under you may have to be accompanied by your parent or legal guardian.
•    Foreign students can also bring their car or household items to New Zealand without having to pay any customs duty. Visit www.customs.govt.nz for more details.

Useful contacts

Vatslya Education Consultancy
Office Address: 515-516, Poddar arcade, Nr. Railway Station, Varachha, Surat.
Contact no: +91 8980883388
Email: study.vatslya@gmail.com
Website: www.vatslya.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/vatslyaedu/
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxeZ6hnyjbUrmxP6c9TNTzw

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EXPERIENCE ON YOUR YEAR ABROAD

EXPERIENCE ON YOUR YEAR ABROAD

I remember clear as day, being sat on my final plane from Sydney to Wellington after travelling for almost 30 hours, when the prospect of living in a foreign country for an entire year hit me.

I had spent the flight completely fangirling over New Zealand, a country I had been dreaming about for over a year. The moment we touched down at Wellington airport, my exhilaration and anticipation suddenly turned to nerves. What the hell had I just done? I couldn’t just nip back home now if I ended up hating New Zealand. I couldn’t just call up the family to have a quick chat due to the time difference. And things only got even scarier. What if I’d done my visa wrong? What if they didn’t let me in the country? What if this entire time they don’t actually speak English, and I wouldn’t be able to understand anyone? I think it’s safe to say this was my first instance of culture shock.

Culture shock *clears throat* can be defined as the feeling of disorientation you experience when you’re suddenly surrounded by a new, and unfamiliar culture. If you’re currently on a study exchange or year abroad and this happens to you, remember that it’s incredibly common and not a reason to panic. Here are just a handful of the hilarious (and cringe) culture shock moments I experienced on my own exchange trip to New Zealand.

Not having a clue what to do in a foreign airport

Wellington airport provided my first exposure to culture shock. Being from the UK, I was mostly used to visiting Europe, so visas are a concept I’d never had to face before. So, when I was preparing to go on exchange, I was overwhelmed by the prospect of applying for a visa. There were so many, with lots of different requirements, and I spent most of my time being completely lost and calling the immigration office up to 5,000 times a day, begging for help.

While on my last plane, the staff gave out welcome forms that we had to fill out to declare what we were bringing into the country. New Zealand is very strict when it comes to this, and if you’re found lying you can get a steep fine. I’m not sure why I struggled so much with this form. It was probably because it was my first time travelling alone, but I thought the form was solely about hand luggage. Yeah, I don’t know what I was thinking either. So, when it asked if we were bringing in any food, I happily ticked the “no” box.

So, you can imagine my horror when they placed my suitcase, containing six boxes of Jaffa Cakes and two big boxes of Yorkshire Tea (lol, “Northern lass” priorities), on the X-ray scanner. The guy in charge immediately spotted the food and proceeded to stare into my soul. All I could do was stare back, wide-eyed, attempting to plead with him. Luckily for me, my pleas were registered, and the kind gentleman allowed me to safely leave with my Jaffa Cakes and Yorkshire Tea intact. (Thank you, kind person).

Not being able to pronounce anything

I think one of the most significant cultural differences between the UK and New Zealand is that there is a widely spoken language in New Zealand other than English. Yes, of course they speak English, but I was naive enough to be unaware that most place names are in fact Maori names. My first glimpse of this was when I got off the plane to be welcomed with the words Kia ora. Maybe I should’ve done research, and learned a few basic Maori phrases.

My crappy Maori skills would be a recurring theme throughout my entire exchange. I remember, one time, I was trying to get to a city just north of Wellington, called Porirua. I happily got on the bus, and asked the Maori bus driver for a return to Porirua, only to completely butcher the name. I had pronounced it Por-eye-ru-ay, which (spoiler alert) is not how you pronounce that word. The bus driver just stared at me, trying not to laugh, and corrected me, which resulted in me cringing for the rest of the day.

I soon learnt that each vowel is pronounced entirely different in Maori. And there are several letter combinations that form completely different sounds than in English. For example, ng is pronounced as it sounds in the word singer and wh is pronounced like an f sound. I think every foreign person living in New Zealand has pronounced the word whakapapa wrong at some point. Luckily, New Zealanders tend to be sweet and get the gist of what you’re trying to say (it’s still awkward though).

My own accent made things even worse. I have quite a strong (understatement of the year) Yorkshire accent which made trying to pronounce things even worse. In Yorkshire, we don’t tend to pronounce the h at the start of a word, so hat tends to become ‘at, happy is ‘appy, and so on. So, when I tried to catch a bus to a Wellington suburb called Hataitai, you can imagine it generated a few chuckles from the driver.

Not being able to find anything in shops

It’s always confusing shopping in a foreign country, but, I had wrongly thought there wouldn’t be any issues in New Zealand. Instead, everything had a different name. Peppers were no longer peppers, they were capsicums. Courgettes were zucchinis. Heinz was called Watties…the list goes on. I’d find myself wandering around shops lost.

To make things worse, I ran out of my two massive bags of Yorkshire Tea within the first month. I ran down to Countdown (the closest supermarket to my flat) in search of England’s greatest tea (definitely not biased). Did they have it? Nope. So, I ran to the next nearest supermarket, they had it but it was $12. I didn’t want to pay for that so I had to buy the cheapest New Zealand brand I could find, which wasn’t as good as Yorkshire Tea. Fortunately, my friends all sent over Yorkshire Tea reinforcements.

Not having a clue what anyone is saying

One thing Kiwis seem to always do is mumble. I’d have to continually ask people to repeat themselves, only for me to still not have a clue what they’d said. So, I’d just awkwardly smile, hoping it would make up for the fact that I didn’t know what was going on.

At the start of lectures, some New Zealand lecturers would speak in Maori. You’re not a true exchange student if you haven’t experienced this and started shaking with fear, thinking you’ve accidentally signed up for a Maori language class.

New Zealand slang was also something I had to master. The first time somebody said, “sweet as” to me, I thought they were complimenting my body. Yes, that actually happened, and it was mortifying.

So, as you can see, culture shock can happen even somewhere as seemingly straightforward and non-threatening as New Zealand. The first few weeks in a foreign country are always the most unsettling, but remember it will pass. Culture shock may truly never leave you, but you will start to see the funny side of these moments. Not having a clue what is going on can often be the best kind of icebreaker; often locals would end up taking pity on me and looking after me.

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Hilarious Culture Shocks You’ll Experience on Your Year Abroad

Experience on Your Year Abroad

I remember clear as day, being sat on my final plane from Sydney to Wellington after travelling for almost 30 hours, when the prospect of living in a foreign country for an entire year hit me.

I had spent the flight completely fangirling over New Zealand, a country I had been dreaming about for over a year. The moment we touched down at Wellington airport, my exhilaration and anticipation suddenly turned to nerves. What the hell had I just done? I couldn’t just nip back home now if I ended up hating New Zealand. I couldn’t just call up the family to have a quick chat due to the time difference. And things only got even scarier. What if I’d done my visa wrong? What if they didn’t let me in the country? What if this entire time they don’t actually speak English, and I wouldn’t be able to understand anyone? I think it’s safe to say this was my first instance of culture shock.

Culture shock *clears throat* can be defined as the feeling of disorientation you experience when you’re suddenly surrounded by a new, and unfamiliar culture. If you’re currently on a study exchange or year abroad and this happens to you, remember that it’s incredibly common and not a reason to panic. Here are just a handful of the hilarious (and cringe) culture shock moments I experienced on my own exchange trip to New Zealand.

Not having a clue what to do in a foreign airport

Wellington airport provided my first exposure to culture shock. Being from the UK, I was mostly used to visiting Europe, so visas are a concept I’d never had to face before. So, when I was preparing to go on exchange, I was overwhelmed by the prospect of applying for a visa. There were so many, with lots of different requirements, and I spent most of my time being completely lost and calling the immigration office up to 5,000 times a day, begging for help.

While on my last plane, the staff gave out welcome forms that we had to fill out to declare what we were bringing into the country. New Zealand is very strict when it comes to this, and if you’re found lying you can get a steep fine. I’m not sure why I struggled so much with this form. It was probably because it was my first time travelling alone, but I thought the form was solely about hand luggage. Yeah, I don’t know what I was thinking either. So, when it asked if we were bringing in any food, I happily ticked the “no” box.

So, you can imagine my horror when they placed my suitcase, containing six boxes of Jaffa Cakes and two big boxes of Yorkshire Tea (lol, “Northern lass” priorities), on the X-ray scanner. The guy in charge immediately spotted the food and proceeded to stare into my soul. All I could do was stare back, wide-eyed, attempting to plead with him. Luckily for me, my pleas were registered, and the kind gentleman allowed me to safely leave with my Jaffa Cakes and Yorkshire Tea intact. (Thank you, kind person).

Not being able to pronounce anything

I think one of the most significant cultural differences between the UK and New Zealand is that there is a widely spoken language in New Zealand other than English. Yes, of course they speak English, but I was naive enough to be unaware that most place names are in fact Maori names. My first glimpse of this was when I got off the plane to be welcomed with the words Kia ora. Maybe I should’ve done research, and learned a few basic Maori phrases.

My crappy Maori skills would be a recurring theme throughout my entire exchange. I remember, one time, I was trying to get to a city just north of Wellington, called Porirua. I happily got on the bus, and asked the Maori bus driver for a return to Porirua, only to completely butcher the name. I had pronounced it Por-eye-ru-ay, which (spoiler alert) is not how you pronounce that word. The bus driver just stared at me, trying not to laugh, and corrected me, which resulted in me cringing for the rest of the day.

I soon learnt that each vowel is pronounced entirely different in Maori. And there are several letter combinations that form completely different sounds than in English. For example, ng is pronounced as it sounds in the word singer and wh is pronounced like an f sound. I think every foreign person living in New Zealand has pronounced the word whakapapa wrong at some point. Luckily, New Zealanders tend to be sweet and get the gist of what you’re trying to say (it’s still awkward though).

My own accent made things even worse. I have quite a strong (understatement of the year) Yorkshire accent which made trying to pronounce things even worse. In Yorkshire, we don’t tend to pronounce the h at the start of a word, so hat tends to become ‘at, happy is ‘appy, and so on. So, when I tried to catch a bus to a Wellington suburb called Hataitai, you can imagine it generated a few chuckles from the driver.

Not being able to find anything in shops

It’s always confusing shopping in a foreign country, but, I had wrongly thought there wouldn’t be any issues in New Zealand. Instead, everything had a different name. Peppers were no longer peppers, they were capsicums. Courgettes were zucchinis. Heinz was called Watties…the list goes on. I’d find myself wandering around shops lost.

To make things worse, I ran out of my two massive bags of Yorkshire Tea within the first month. I ran down to Countdown (the closest supermarket to my flat) in search of England’s greatest tea (definitely not biased). Did they have it? Nope. So, I ran to the next nearest supermarket, they had it but it was $12. I didn’t want to pay for that so I had to buy the cheapest New Zealand brand I could find, which wasn’t as good as Yorkshire Tea. Fortunately, my friends all sent over Yorkshire Tea reinforcements.

Not having a clue what anyone is saying

One thing Kiwis seem to always do is mumble. I’d have to continually ask people to repeat themselves, only for me to still not have a clue what they’d said. So, I’d just awkwardly smile, hoping it would make up for the fact that I didn’t know what was going on.

At the start of lectures, some New Zealand lecturers would speak in Maori. You’re not a true exchange student if you haven’t experienced this and started shaking with fear, thinking you’ve accidentally signed up for a Maori language class.

New Zealand slang was also something I had to master. The first time somebody said, “sweet as” to me, I thought they were complimenting my body. Yes, that actually happened, and it was mortifying.

So, as you can see, culture shock can happen even somewhere as seemingly straightforward and non-threatening as New Zealand. The first few weeks in a foreign country are always the most unsettling, but remember it will pass. Culture shock may truly never leave you, but you will start to see the funny side of these moments. Not having a clue what is going on can often be the best kind of icebreaker; often locals would end up taking pity on me and looking after me.

So, don’t worry, laugh at yourself, and embrace the culture shock. At least when you get home, you’ll have plenty of funny stories to tell.

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Importance of TOEFL

importance-of-toefl-ielts

So you are dreaming to study in an English-speaking country and you are quite passionate about making dreams come true? Among all the courses and universities, an important factor you should consider is English language test that enhances your chances of getting admission in your desired institution. Test of English as a Foreign Language – TOEFL is believed to be most reliable and acceptable for admission.

If you have an eye for overseas education, know the importance of TOEFL through this blog.

●   As it is considered by more than 8,500 universities and in over 130 countries, so TOEFL score enables you to apply to any of the top universities of the world.

●   This test helps to evaluate English proficiency accurately and so many admission officers accept TOEFL score for enrollment of the student.

●   The test centers are nearly 4500 and are spread in 165 countries which makes it easy accessible. Plus, the test can be completed in one day and it is held 30 to 40 times a year. Thus, you get several chances for taking the test.

●   TOEFL has completely standardized structure. It is divided in four steps: reading, writing, speaking and listening. So that achieved scores show that you have all the skills a student needs for a classroom environment and to live in an English speaking country.

●   Moreover, official material is easy available for preparation. It helps in having beforehand knowledge about the test and increases confidence for the exam.

If you are going to study abroad in near future and need to practice TOEFL, visit nearest branch of Vatslya Education Consultancy.

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