Top tips for studying abroad

Every year hundreds of students consider signing up for courses and programs that take them around the world. Sure, it can seem a little overwhelming in some cases, but we polled a group of experts living the dream right here at FIU to help take out some of the sting.

These students, who recently led a panel on the differences of studying and learning abroad, are majoring in psychology and international business. They hail from China, the Dominican Republic, Egypt, France, and Syria. Here are their Top 7 tips for having a successful experience studying abroad:

Get Involved!

Being successful abroad is more than just going to class, studying hard and getting good grades. Take advantage of everything your host university has to offer.

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Break out of your shell!

Make it a point to get to know your fellow classmates. There’s no better way to start a good study group that will help you study for exams.

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Immerse yourself in the culture 

Explore your new temporary home and take in the culture of the people around you. Check out museums, go to the big game, or take in a movie.

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Subtitles can be a lifesaver

Sometimes, no matter how hard you try you can’t quite train your ear to understand certain accents. Our panel suggests turning on the subtitles when you watch movies at home as a quick, easy way to get accustomed to local speech.

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Ask lots of questions

Don’t be afraid to raise your hand in class. If something from the book or the lecture is unclear, professors will help you understand key concepts.

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Don’t just memorize

In some universities, exams revolve around memorizing information from the textbook but in most places you’re better off studying from both the textbook and your notes from the class lecture.

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Do your research 

If you’re staying abroad for an extended period, study up on the culture and the city where you plan on living. Some places like car-crazed Miami may not have the best public transportation systems.

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