Do you want to travel for college credit? Yes! But you don’t want to pay huge study abroad fees to attend classes instead of exploring the world!
Here’s how to travel for college credit and never attend a class or pay for tuition while abroad!
Travel in a Country with a Different Language
By exploring a country who has a different language than your own, you will pick up on the language so much quicker than if you were sitting in a class room! Study Abroad requires that you pay tuition in addition to housing and other fees, which can stack up quickly! By simply traveling throughout the country, you can learn the language without paying any tuition fees!
Immerse Yourself in a New Culture
Most language classes have a culture component too, and if you really want to learn the language and culture, you must be open to full immersion. This means staying at less youth hostels and more home-stay type places (like Airbnb, where you meet locals). It also means skipping out on McDonald’s! Try to find out what the locals are doing, and what their favorite things are in your country. You can learn their culture beside them rather than as a student in a classroom study abroad program.
Stay for an Extended Period of Time
Just one or two weeks in a city means you’ve only hit the touristy (aka language friendly) places! In order to pick up on the language and make friends and language partners in your destination, you must stay for longer than a normal tourist! Once you make friends, you will gain more insight onto the culture and language of the place! That is something that a study abroad program may keep you from doing.
Think of it this way: if you only have one week, you will only eat at the places closest to the center of town. This is where the waiters speak your native language. If you stay longer, you’ll eat at the local’s favorite spots. Doing this will challenge you to speak the language you are trying to learn in the first place!
Claim Your College Credit!
By speaking to your local foreign language/international studies departments, you can find out what tests you can take in order to prove that you have gained your foreign language skills and are worthy of your credit!
Another option is to approach those departments to enroll directly into an upper level class, without the prerequisite. By doing this, you will be able to gain the credits from the prerequisite classes once you pass the upper-level class!
I enrolled in an upper-level class and gained 6 credit hours after passing it. All because I spent two months in France. But I did NOT study abroad!
Where will you go? And when?! Why wait when there are so many ways to travel (like being an au pair!), and so much to benefit from it! These benefits now include college credit, which is something that will please your parents! (A little more than a story about a drunkin night!)
Don’t be scared of study abroad prices, just travel!
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