Those who have studied abroad know that just one trip can change the course of your life. And, seeing how so many schools are on board with the idea of accepting international students, there is really no need to be restricted to study your Master’s degree on the same campus for another couple of years.
Most colleges want their students to graduate feeling like they not only learned something from their classes but also knowing they changed as a person. This means everything, from learning how to take care of yourself, to shifting your worldview as you learn more about other cultures and people. There’s no better way to do that than by immersing yourself in new environments.
For instance, some of the most popular new environments international students flock to are:
- Master’s degrees in Canada
- Master’s degrees in the U.S.
- Master’s degrees in the Netherlands
- Master’s degrees in Germany
- Master’s degrees in the U.K.
There are many reasons students feel pressure around their study abroad admission interview, and, sometimes, it’s easy to let nerves and fear overwhelm you.
But try not to worry! Focus on these important factors before you go in for your interview and you’ll do just fine.
1. Arrive on time
College students are known for never being on time. People joke that they oversleep because they partied too much the night before or just don’t know how to be responsible, so don’t let yourself fall into that negative stereotype.
Set your alarm earlier than you normally would on the morning of your interview. Give yourself the time to get ready, take a deep breath, and head out the door. You’ll thank yourself later when you don’t have to worry about having rushed out without your keys or ID.
2. Be enthusiastic
What person wouldn’t be excited about having the chance of studying abroad? There are easy ways to convey enthusiasm in an interview, like using your interviewers’ name and not leaving the room without saying ‘Thank you!’ for the opportunity of the interview.
They’ll appreciate that you don’t take this lightly since some students might see studying abroad only like a chance to go on a longer vacation.
3. Dress appropriately
Even if you have your interview scheduled during your busiest day of the week, you need to dress professionally and show up in the appropriate clothing.
If that means you attend your morning and afternoon classes in a business suit, so be it.
Learning what to wear for an interview isn’t hard, especially when you can read about how to dress appropriately online. Your clothes should convey that you’re viewing this interview seriously, so avoid casual clothes like torn-up jeans or baggy sweatshirts.
4. Use good body language
Body language can matter more than what you say in an interview because you’re trying to communicate with new people. They’ll read what your body language is saying and take that more than words because anyone can say the right thing, but not everybody can hide their true feelings.
Always shake hands when you enter the room, sit up straight and don’t cross your arms. You can also convey confidence by not fidgeting with your hands or tapping your feet during the interview.
5. Be informed
Your interviewers are going to ask you things like ‘Why is this particular programme so important to you?’ or ‘What are you looking forward to?’.
So really think about it: Is this programme going to help your career? Do you want to learn more about cultures? Things like that are what they’re looking for, so research the programme to find what you’ll experience and learn, and then figure out how it will better your life or career.
6. Have questions answered beforehand
You’re going to be asked about how you chose the programme you’re interviewing for and what you want to get out of your experience, and, in the end, you might be given the opportunity to ask questions of your own.
That moment is not the right time to be asking something like how much it will cost you! That question and a couple of others are questions you should ask your advisor or research by yourself before your interview.
And, honestly, those answers might help you decide if you’re able to interview at all.
Getting prepared for any interview is going to make you nervous because there will always be that chance that anything could happen. Sure, you know you’re going to walk into a room and talk to people, but everything else is up in the air. You don’t know what you’ll be asked, and you may not be sure what exactly your interviewers will be looking for.
That’s okay! Even if you can’t find answers to these questions, you can still be confident when you walk in the room.
Make sure that you look nice, present positive body language and know a thing or two about the programme you’re interviewing for. The goal is to look knowledgeable and composed. Consider what inspired you to sign up for the programme, how will it change you, what will you gain from studying abroad compared to studying back home, and you will be set to answer any difficult questions.