More than ever before, African students are thinking globally when it comes to their education. International student mobility has risen sharply in recent years, and thousands of prospective African students are now looking to pursue study opportunities abroad. Research indicates that students leaving Africa do so to broaden their cultural horizon and build skills that will give them an edge in the job market.
Studying abroad can provide this alongside much more, but there are several important issues to consider when selecting a study destination and making an application. Higher education search engine educations.com conducted a study of prospective African students to find out among other things what their biggest concerns are, and how the importance of these concerns has changed compared to previous African students. The findings of this study is illustrated in the image displayed above.
Research shows that language barriers are less of a concern today than in the past. An increased number of institutions now offer their programs in a variety of languages, allowing African students to gain education abroad more easily. Students can also benefit from free language courses alongside study to help them adjust to their new country quicker.
Concerns about getting a Visa are up 8%. Visa rules and processes vary from country to country, but an increase in competition for places on programs and stricter entry conditions have led to higher fees and longer waiting times.
Overall, the biggest concerns for prospective African students are grounded in the financial side of studying abroad. Tuition, accommodation and living costs have emerged as much bigger concerns today than they were before.
Economic shifts and competitive housing markets have led to higher living costs and greater difficulty finding suitable accommodation. Many popular study destinations for African students are undergoing these problems, and understandably, being held back from a dream program due to financial uncertainty is a frustrating concern.
Tuition fees in particular make up the biggest concern for prospective African students. Depending on country and qualification, fees for international students can be very high, and have risen in recent years.
Fortunately, financial aid and a wide range of scholarship options are open to African students..