10 Challenges When Studying Abroad

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Studying abroad allows Chingu to earn an internationally recognized degree, get acquainted with diverse cultures, and land your dream job. From a holistic point of view, studying abroad also certainly has its challenges and advantages.

Let’s see what are the possible challenges while studying abroad.


1) Homesick

Homesickness is a very common feeling when someone is away from their loved ones, including Chingudeul. This will greatly affect Chingu when he is bored, so it is highly recommended to stay active or keep yourself busy. Chingu needs to connect with people, especially fellow students who feel the same way and expand your friendships in a new environment. The more involved Chingu is in daily activities, the less time he will need to worry about what he has left behind.

2) Overcome the language barrier

This is perhaps the most obvious of all the challenges of studying abroad. Overcoming a language ‘barrier’ may mean that Chingu has to put more effort into learning a new language from scratch, or it may be that Chingu thinks he is fluent but still can’t understand a strong local accent.

Even if Chingu studied in a country where Chingu spoke the same language, there were other hurdles to overcome. For example, trendy slang phrases will feel weird. For non-Americans (or non-California) the words “insane”, “balling”, “radical”, and “intense” have nothing in common. But for locals, all can be used for  “awesome”.

But actually, the words used by students can be difficult to learn, but language barriers can also be overcome quite quickly, once Chingu is used to it.

3) Culture shock

Chingu may also feel deeply affected by a sudden cultural change. From food and rituals to transportation systems and dress styles. All of these may differ from those in your home country. Sadly, this culture shock can constantly prompt disappointment, nervousness, and achiness to go home. If Chingu is not prepared to deal with this difference, it can cause considerable stress even in scenarios where Chingu performs normal day-to-day tasks.

4) Difficulty with time zone difference

Trying to travel and live between two time zones on opposite ends of the planet can be very frustrating. Especially, when Chingu comes into contact with the people he loves from other continents. Therefore, Chingu needs to double-check which time is suitable for the time zone and also get into the habit of calling very early in the morning or maybe very late at night. Add all relevant timezones in your timekeeping app. Try to remember the time difference.  The sooner Chingu can do this, the better it will be for Chingu to overcome time zone differences.

5) Feeling afraid of missing out

This feeling will take a drastic turn for the worse when Chingu is thousands of miles away from all the people closest to you. Chingu will feel like missing out on all the important things that are happening around you. Spend less time browsing the internet. Spend less time on social media and focus on specific hobbies. This is certainly not to detract from the interesting things that happen to your friends there or to suggest that your life is relatively more interesting while you are here.

6) Get lost in someone’s land

Regardless of how many maps Chingu looks at, Chingu may get lost in a busy market or a deserted lane. Don’t panic in a case like this. Chingu should be ready for any kind of citywide adventure with handy maps. Make sure that Chingu writes helpful phrases in the local language about your situation. For example, “Help me, I’m lost” or “Could you please direct me to the nearest hotel/university/bus stop that might help?”

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Travel guidebooks are very helpful and usually contain a section dedicated to issues like this. If Chingu likes to travel, keep some emergency cash and some local helpline numbers to avoid situations like this.

7) Uncertain climate or weather

Regardless of how much online research Chingu did before studying abroad, it is difficult to predict how the weather will be until Chingu settles in a certain place. Indoor climate control, urban infrastructure, and even regional characteristics can influence what Chingu might wear today. Make sure to only bring the minimum necessities and get the rest when Chingu gets there. If finances are your concern, look for a secondhand clothing store to get everything you need.

8)  Managing  academic expectations

New experiences will always be more interesting. Living away from home, there may be many new things Chingu wants to try. All Chingu needs to do is work hard and work smart. Take advantage of calendars, to-do lists, and planner apps to manage all your academic requirements.

9) Being away from your  support system

Living abroad is great… when everything is going well. But when fate seems to be conspiring against you, Chingu can sense it himself. Because your support system is like family and friends who will be hundreds or even thousands of miles away. Even if Chingu previously didn’t realize how important they were, now Chingu would. This challenge is perhaps most pronounced specially for the first few months of studying abroad. But then, Chingu will build a new support system and after about a year, everything will be fine!


10) Not finding the right job options

Finding the right job opportunities is not easy; it is a bit difficult to pocket your dream job in a foreign country. In addition, visa policies may differ in some countries depending on the country where Chingu wishes to apply. While some countries have very strict visa policies that require thorough documents for foreign students to work in their country. Also, finding the right opportunity is not that easy. While there are many opportunities, sometimes homesickness, loneliness, or language problems can make it difficult for Chingu to find a suitable job.

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