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  1. study abroad Start dates

    Which start dates and course duration?


    There are many things to consider when you’re thinking about study abroad in a language school – which language to study, which destination to study it in, what type of course, what type of accommodation you want. But before you decide on most of these things you need to decide on your course duration and start dates.

    How to Choose Your Study Abroad Course Duration and Start Dates

    You may be surprised at just how many options there are available to you when it comes to choosing your study abroad course duration. Here are some hints and tips to help you decide on your course duration…

    Coping with being away from home

    First and foremost you should decide how long a period you are happy to be away from home for. If you’ve never been away from home for more than a weekend, spending months or years away from your family may come as a shock and be difficult to deal with. Don’t let this put you off though, everybody gets home sick at some point, but you’ll be able to keep in touch by telephone and email, and will have friends around you to support you if you’re feeling a little lonely one day.

    If you’re unsure of how you’ll cope, try a short language course initially – maybe a summer study abroad program. If you enjoy this, then perhaps you could sign up for another language course next year and make this one longer term.

    Different foreign language schools offer different course durations and start dates

    Don’t expect every foreign language school to offer the same course duration, as they can differ hugely. Some foreign language schools only operate during the summer, offering summer study abroad programs to language travel students. Others operate all year round and start their language courses each term for enrolment. With these you would arrive at the beginning of term and study for one term or longer, depending on which level of foreign language course you want to study to. Then there are others still who allow you to start pretty much whenever you want to, but there will be minimum periods for which you’ll need to sign up for!

    The cost of study abroad will vary with the course duration and start dates

    Another factor to consider is the cost. Foreign language schools have peak times i.e. their most popular times for enrolment. During peak times you’ll probably find that the prices are more expensive, so if you want to save some money, choose a time when the language school is usually quieter as you may get a getter deal.

    If you need more advice on budgeting, see our "How Much Should I Budget ?" article.