FirstStep.me spoke to the team at Global Education about what’s trending in the world of Studying Abroad and how to prepare and handle challenges for an overseas education adventure.
The Studying Abroad experience with Global Education
Should you not meet the entry requirements of a university or college - why is a bridging, pathway or foundation program so important for an individual looking to study in a foreign country?
Most Universities offer a pathway,bridging or foundation course should a student who has not met the admission requirement to obtain direct entry. Global Education will advise if further qualifications are required. However in terms of South Africa, all the Universities in partnership with Global Education are aware of the South African Matric system and are willing to accept South African students directly into their University if the student applies through Global Education and meets the entry requirements. This is because Global Education has worked closely with these Universities for over 8 years and has kept the universities they represent up to date with the requirements on the South African School leaving system.
With that being said, some students don’t graduate from high school with enough points or high enough marks which doesn’t allow them direct entry into a University. This is where the “Pathway” and “Foundation” programs come in. Global Education represents 3 companies called Navitas, INTO and Study Group. These companies have gone into partnership with high ranking universities around the world and their aim is to help students who don’t have the results to gain direct entry into the University.
The pathway option is great for students who have just missed entry by a few marks. The pathway option is still regarded as First year University however the student has more attention, is helped with adjusting to a new environment/culture and is monitored closely. Students on this pathway program have to keep a certain average for the year and upon completion of the course they are guaranteed direct entry into Second year at the affiliated University. Please note there are a number of pathway programs associated with different Universities Global Education represents in the UK, USA, Canada and Australia.
The foundation option offers all the same benefits to the student as the pathway. However the foundation option is for students who have not passed with good enough marks for the pathway option. The foundation option is an added year which is used to bring the student up to speed and make sure they are strong in all the subjects that they will need for their course.
Why is there drive for individuals to seek an international based education as opposed to a local one?
International degrees are extremely diverse and unfortunately, with the example of South Africa there are not enough places at various institutions which makes studying overseas an attractive option. The strength of having a degree from a university overseas helps put students ahead of those who have studied locally in the job market.
One of the advantages of studying overseas is that most of the universities (as is the case in the UK) offer work placement to students within their field of study in their third year. This means students are gaining work experience while they study. Secondly the variety of degrees that are available to students vastly out numbers what is offered locally.
Thirdly studying overseas allows students to network on a global scale, students will make friends from all corners of the world and be exposed to different cultures.
Is studying abroad relative to studying locally in terms of expenses?
Unfortunately studying abroad is far more expensive than studying locally, and the fluctuation of currencies influences the cost. Studying locally, an individual is subject to their local currency and the transition is of course an easier one in terms of culture, local knowledge and support.
How should individuals make sure they are getting a quality education and that the institution they are studying at is properly accredited?
No one can lie to a student anymore, social media, the internet etc are examples that all institutions need to be totally transparent in how they operate and administer their courses. All universities Global Education represents have signed contracts with them and you can find Global Education’s contact details on the universities website. All institutions Global Education represents are accredited with their governing bodies in the specific countries.
Which countries offer the best platforms for international students to study in?
This really comes down to the student’s individual needs. Each university specialises in something different. Each country offers something different. Therefore in order for the student to go to the best place that offers his/her selected course, the student needs to do their research on which University specialises in those specific courses and where they want to be. Global Education prides itself in giving the best possible information and guidance but will never tell a student where to go!
What are the various processes for studying abroad with Global Education?
Global Education’s Application Process:
After you have been counselled by a Global Education Consultant and you have decided on a course, diploma or degree, and the university or college that suits you, you need to:
• Complete an application form relative to the particular university or college that you are interested in attending.
• Submit a valid certified copy of your passport.
• Certified copies or originals of your final academic certificates and any other certificates of merit.
• Proof of adequate financial support (tuition fees and living expenses).
• IELTS (International English Language Testing System) - (Where necessary) may be required either by the university or college or for student visa purposes, depending on the passport that is held.
• Medical examinations and or TB Testing (confidential) (Where Necessary) May be required for a student visa depending on which institution you are attending.
• 1000 ZAR administration fee (Global Education's ONLY fee and is used for all the processing of documents).
Once you have completed your application form, return it to our offices, along with your education certificates and administration fee. We will then submit the application to the relevant university or college and notify you as soon as you have been offered a place.
Global Education’s Visa Process:
Global Education prides itself with keeping up to date with the latest information pertaining to the student visa requirements. We have extensive training on student visas and are extremely proud of our track record in obtaining student visas. Global Education provides you with the correct application forms, a list of approved doctors and radiographers and a detailed list of what must be done in order to obtain a student visa for the country you would like to study in.
In preparation you will need to provide the following documents:
• 3 passport photographs (where necessary)
• A photocopy of your letter of offer
• A certified copy of your birth certificate
• Certified copies of all your academic certificates
• Visa fee (this is subject to change fairly frequently due to the fluctuation in foreign currency) so please contact us for the latest information
• Bank statement (where necessary)
Find out more about Global Education: Globaleducation.co.za Facebook.com/GlobaleducationSAZIM