Studying IELTS Abroad
If you have the time and the money, you might wish to consider traveling to an English-speaking country and enrolling in an IELTS exam prep course while there. In fact, thousands of students from around the world visit the US, Canada, England, and Australia with this very idea in mind.
You receive two major benefits by going this route:
- you improve your English communication skills in general by immersing yourself in an English-speaking environment
- you improve your IELTS exam score specifically by registering in a specialized skill-development program
If you choose to study IELTS in a language school abroad, you will need to consider:
- Which country?
- Which city?
- Which school?
- How many hours of training per day?
- How many days/weeks/months of training?
- Which program? Only IELTS or also General English courses?
- What are the fees?
- Where will I live?
- How much does it cost to travel there?
- What is the monthly cost of living?
Most likely, there are language travel agents or educational consultants in your country who specialize in advising students about such schools and programs. It is worthwhile to visit a few of them. It's also beneficial to talk to friends and ask around. There's nothing like the first-hand experience of someone who has already traveled abroad for the same purpose. Ask many questions to help with your own decision.
Remember that you may feel homesick while abroad and that you could experience culture shock, in spite of all the Western movies and TV shows you have seen. If you travel in winter, it will be cold and dark. Your favourite foods may not be available. Your friends, family, and existing social support structure will be missing.
Still, many international students feel this is the best decision of their lives – not just in terms of their English language skills but also in terms of broadening their horizons to the rest of the world. Most students bring home treasured memories of their time abroad and often make friends for life with others from different cultural, religious, and socio-economic backgrounds. More than just IELTS exam prep, the experience is good life preparation.