Moving to a European University, Europe, the home of western civilization, is a continent that is rich in diverse cultures. Studying in Europe provides great insights and knowledge for students. If you have always been fascinated by old buildings and castles then Europe is the right place for you to study. It is full of monumental structures with a deep historical background.
Each European country has its distinctive culture. The Italians are known for their pasta and pizza, the French for their great taste in wine, and the Scott’s for their historical castles. No two countries are alike in Europe.
As a student, you may be considering moving to a European university for various reasons; better employment opportunities, a change of environment, a better standard of education or the school may have offered you a scholarship opportunity. Whatever your reason for deciding to move to a European university may be.
There are some important factors to consider before moving to a European university.
Europe is a continent with diverse languages. It is home to 24 official languages and over 200 languages in total. While English is still the major language that is spoken in Europe, over 36% of the populace now speak German and 29% speak French.
Language barrier is a major issue for students who choose to study in such countries. To overcome this barrier, you need to take up a language course before leaving your home country or you can register for the language course when you arrive at your destination.
As a student, getting part-time jobs is the way to survive. However, the language barriers restrict you from getting employed in many business establishments. Also, if you decide to offer your course in English then you will be required to pay extra on tuition fees. You will also be required to take a language course while schooling.
2. Tuition Fees
Tuition in Europe is fairly affordable. Some European countries offer free education to both domestic and international students as long as the language of study is the country’s official language and the school of choice is a government-owned institution.
Germany is one of the countries that offer free tuition. However, this is limited to only undergraduates, whereas masters and PhD students are required to pay tuition fees but it is affordable. Other countries with affordable tuition fees are; Norway, Poland, and France.
As a non-EU/ EEA student, the cost of tuition for a bachelor’s degree ranges between £727- £7500/ year for government-owned universities, and Private universities cost between £6,000 and £15,000/ year. The rate varies by course. A student of medicine and surgery will pay higher tuition than a student of nutrition and dietetics.
3. Cost of Living
The European continent contains countries with the highest cost of living in the world. With Switzerland coming first and Norway a close second. There are however countries with low cost of living like Norway, but they are very few. If you are moving from a developing and under-developed country to study in Europe then you need to seriously consider this factor.
When you are planning your transfer to a European university, you need to find out the average cost of living in your preferred countries. Then you can successfully work out finances.
4. Visa Requirements
A visa is required to travel to Europe. However, some countries are allowed Visa-free entry into Europe for a certain number of days. After which they will be required to apply for a visa.
The Schengen visa allows access to 26 European countries. The type-D Schengen visa is mandatory for every individual who wishes to study, work or live in the Schengen region. You can also apply for a visa in the consulate of your chosen country.
The general visa application requirements include;
- a fully completed and signed visa form
- A valid passport
- A travel insurance policy
- Proof of accommodation
- Proof of financial capabilities
- Proof of paid visa fee.
Depending on your country of residence, the requirements may differ. You need to find out the visa requirements of the country of your choice.
5. Cultural Values
Going to Europe for the first time, you may experience a culture shock. Especially if your destination is a culturally rich country like Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, and Denmark. European culture is deeply rooted in its architecture, film, art, philosophy, and economics among-st others.
There are some countries with traditions that are quite unusual. Some of these traditions are;
- Bear dance in Romania and Moldova,
- The Danube cross swimming in Romania.
- Bathtub Regatta in Belgium
- Pottery is thrown out of the window in Corfu Greece. And many more.
You need to prepare yourself for these unusual occurrences.
Also, some European countries consider it impolite to chew gum while in public. You also need to mind your gestures in Europe, as some things that may be accepted in your home countries are considered impolite in Europe. It is best to read up on your destination before moving. Find out as much information as you can about the country.
6. Weather Conditions
Europe is a continent with extreme weather conditions. Students, especially those who come from warm temperate zones, may find it difficult to adapt to the cold. There are however warm temperate countries on the continent like Greece and Italy.
Before you choose the country you would like to study in, you need to consider the weather and climatic conditions of each country. Because if your idea of studying abroad is a place with beaches and lots of sunlight then Russia isn’t the right option for you.
Studying in Europe is an adventure. No matter the country you choose to study in, your stay in the region is sure to be enjoyable. It is a beautiful and fascinating place to live in.
That is after you have considered the above-listed factors. These factors will help you in your decision to study in Europe.