Academic Qualifications

September 23, 2022

If you plan to study abroad, before you decide what universities to apply to, make sure you’ve got the required grades. You don’t need straight A+s to get a place abroad – unless you want to go somewhere like Harvard. With decent grades, you’re eligible for a strong choice of excellent universities. Just make sure your grades mean you’ll have a good chance of an offer from the universities you apply to.

A high school diploma is the starting point. Some universities may also require entrance exam results. If you’ve already completed part of your university studies in your home country, make sure the universities you’re applying to abroad will give you credit for the courses you’ve taken if that’s something you want. Some programmes may also require a portfolio of your work: art, design and writing are some examples

If you want to study abroad and think you’ve got the grades and financial means, contact one of Global Study’s advisors to find out how they can help make the process quicker and easier.

English Language Proficiency

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This article is aimed at students who want to study abroad at an English language university. If English isn’t your first language or you’re not fluent, you will need to make sure your language skills meet requirements. Universities will likely require the results of your IELTS (International English Language Testing System) test. You will need to take the Academic version of the test. It tests you on your reading, writing, speaking and listening skills. Results range from 1 to 9 (1 is worst, 9 is best) and each of the four skills are tested. You will be expected to achieve a result of at least 6.0 in each skill – the requirement varies among universities.

English language proficiency is essential if you want to get an offer. It can also make a huge difference to your performance when you study abroad. If this applies to you, make it a priority. If you want to study abroad and think you’ve got the grades and financial means, contact one of our Advisors to find out how they can help make the process quicker and easier.


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You’ve chosen your country of study and at least one university in that country. The next question is can you afford what studying there will cost. You have to consider all costs:

  • Tuition
  • Rent and utilities
  • Health insurance
  • Local transport
  • Entertainment
  • Regional travel
  • Other expenses
  • Food

And you have to consider how long you’re going abroad. You might be eligible for a scholarship. Look into this, to get an idea of costs, do an Internet search on the cost of living for students in your destination of choice. Once you have an understanding of the costs, create a budget – a realistic one you can stick to.

It’s also best to determine how you can get the best foreign exchange rates so when you transfer funds from your home country’s currency to the currency where you’ll study you get an optimum rate. Currency exchange rates can vary considerably and your bank probably will not offer the best rate you can get.

Trustworthy specialist foreign currency exchange services operate in most places. Seek referrals, get quotes from different companies and make your decision accordingly. This can make a big difference, especially when you transfer larger sums for tuition fee payments or to make advance rent payments.

It’s also a good idea to decide which bank is best in your destination country. Open a local account where you’re going to study.

This makes managing your local spending much easier. You can generally expect a good choice of banks with a good range of online services.

Ask for recommendations from people you trust, If you want to study abroad and think you’ve got the grades and financial means, contact one of our Advisors to find out how they can help make the process quicker and easier.

Key Services

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When you study abroad, you’ll need to rely on some key services as part of your journey. Three of these are health insurance, foreign exchange and travel arrangements.

Health Insurance

Make sure you get a health insurance policy that covers everything you want covered. Get trusted advice on this or reliable referrals. Policy requirements can vary from country to country so make sure your policy is well suited to the country you choose.

Some colleges and university will require you to enrol in the policy they use for international students. In that case, you won’t have a choice but you should still make sure you understand what the policy covers – if something you need is missing, ask what it would take to have it added.

Foreign Exchange

To cover your tuition and living costs, you will be converted a considerable amount of your country’s currency into the currency of the country where you’ll study. When you do this conversion, make sure you’re get the best rate possible. Relying on your bank could mean spending much more than you would by using a competitive foreign exchange service.

Again, get recommendations and compare rates. Go with a reliable, reputable service that is going to give you the largest amount of foreign currency for the funds you’re converting. If you’re studying abroad for a year or more, the difference can be substantial.

Once At Your Destination

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Study hard, keep up with your workload, do what it takes to get the best results you can. With that understood, you’re in a new country so experience it.

New Friends

If you have strong interests, join a relevant club or group. This is a great way to meet others with interests you share. There may also be a club for other students from your country. These clubs offer an instant group of people you are likely to have much in common with. But do make an effort at extending new friendships beyond your fellow citizens.


Get to know the town or city where you’re studying. And travel further afield. If you’re in the UK, the rest of Europe is in easy reach. If you’re in North America, there are lots of places to go. Make the most of the time you have in the wider region beyond where the university is located.


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You will need to be eligible for a visa in your preferred country. It should be easy to find out if you are. For example, if you want to study in the UK, there is a government website to let you know what’s required: Other countries have similar websites.

You will need an offer to study before you’re eligible for a student visa but it is good to check your eligibility ahead of time to make sure that if you get an offer you want to accept, you’ll be able to get the necessary visa.

Some things to consider. Find out what the rejection rate is for students with your nationality when it comes to student visa applications to your country of choice. If it’s high or if there are any special requirements, it’s probably worth getting professional help with your visa application.

Make sure you check the credentials of whatever service you engage. Does it specialise in a particular country? Does it have a track record of successfully helping students?

Immigration lawyers are not always the best choice. Some top-quality services engage former consular staff whose job was processing visa applications for the country where you want to study. They know exactly what requirements are and can accurately advise on your chances of getting a visa and on what you can to do to improve your chances.

Other things can also help such as independent document vetting services that can check your transcripts, bank statements and any other documents needed for your application to confirm they’re authentic. This can help university and visa application staff when they consider your applications.

These services can incur costs but those costs will be a fraction of what you’ll need to study abroad and if they help you get your visa, they’re worth it. If you want to study abroad and think you’ve got the grades and financial means, contact one of Global Study’s advisors to find out how they can help make the process quicker and easier.

What To Pack

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A general guideline on what to pack is as little as possible. Ideally, you can take everything you need as checked baggage when you fly. An extra suitcase shouldn’t cost too much but if you want to bring a lot of stuff, excess baggage charges are not cheap. And if you’re going to be in standard student accommodation, you won’t have much storage space.


You should know what kind of weather to expect. Take your favourite clothes that suit the climate at your destination. If you live in a warm climate and are travelling somewhere with cold winters, you might be best off buying appropriate clothing where you’ll be studying. This will keep the weight of your luggage down and you’ll likely have a better selection of appropriate clothes where you’re going than you will at home. Especially if the weather is a lot different. If you exercise regularly, take the gym kit you normally use unless it needs to be replaced.


You will need a good laptop and mobile phone. Consider a remote speaker for your music. You might need a printer but these are bulky and best bought at your destination. Your best option for your phone will be a local sim card service with competitive call, text and data charges. Search for the best deals.