Accompanying international students in Germany to academic success
Indian students who choose to study abroad in Germany must be prepared for a complete change of environment, language and culture. If you have never traveled outside India, and if Germany is your first country abroad, be prepared to experience a whole new world.
Studying abroad in Germany, away from the comforts of your home and the familiarity of you own city, or country can be quite a daunting experience. While many students struggle to settle in, many others adjust to their new surroundings with ease. How do Indian students studying abroad in Germany make easy adjustments to achieve academic success in a new home, away from home?
At Ultimate Success Consultancy, we understand the needs of Indian students who wish to study in Germany. With our expert team of overseas educational consultants we have curated a list of five things to get started with, once you land in Germany to start your academic career.
Consider the following points for achieving academic success in Germany:
1. Make contact with key people
International students are less likely to ask German students for support, even though the latter may find it easier to navigate the university system. This suggests a segregation of friendship networks between German and international students, at least initially. Yet social integration is key to the academic success of international students. Numerous studies have shown that drop-outs have fewer contacts overall, feel less at ease and lack opportunities to communicate with other fellow students. Relatively few students take advantage of the university’s services.
Socio-cultural adaptation is considered an indicator of the ability to cope successfully with day-to- day challenges in a foreign cultural context. Here, the difficulties students experience in various spheres of life are recorded and aggregated into an index (for a differentiated breakdown by spheres of life and details of how these domains were determined.
As Figure 16 shows, the challenges involved in socio-cultural adaptation vary depending on the cultural distance of the student’s region of origin. The highest degree of socio-cultural adaptation, i.e. the least difficulty in coping with everyday life, was reported by students from Europe and North America. For these groups, a comparatively low cultural distance can be assumed, which favors adaptation. By contrast, students from Africa said they faced more socio-cultural challenges in everyday life and display a lower level of adaptation. The ranking remained largely stable over the first four semesters.
One study on the relevance of socio-cultural adaptation for the academic success of inter- national students showed that adaptation is a predictor of drop-out intentions – mediated by study satisfaction – also over a period of several semesters. Accordingly, a higher level of adaptation is associated with a higher level of study satisfaction, and thus ultimately a lower likelihood of a student wanting to drop out.
Ensure that you have the contact details of all the key people that you would need to meet upon your arrival in Germany. Email or call those contacts before you leave your home country. Ensure that they are aware of your arrival times and dates. After your arrival, make sure that you are in contact with those who are assisting you with your accommodation in hostels or apartments. Ensure that you have the correct addresses of your university and contact numbers of the department that you will be studying at. These contacts are extremely important to help you have an easy transition after a lengthy journey from India to Germany.
2. Learn the language
While your course will be taught in English and you will write your exams in English, learning the German language will help you communicate better with your peers outside the classroom, with shop assistants and with vendors. You will be able to read street signs and notices outside the campus. Learning the language of the country will help you to better navigate through Germany.
3. Stay focused
Too many times students who study abroad, upon arrival in a new country get mesmerized by everything new, they automatically become tourists and forget their academic goals. Stay focused on your academia. Create an environment of learning in your hostel room or apartment. Make contact with your classmates and create study groups that will help to remain focused. While focusing on your studies, you are also encouraged to plan trips in moderation, without missing any classes or exams. Visit new places on occasion or during your free time but do not let this become a distraction. Many universities consider absenteeism a serious offence so be careful not to jeopardise your admission.
4. Make good use of available resources
The available budget was also surveyed for each semester. A slight reduction in the aver- age budget between the first and fourth semesters is to be observed among students from most regions of origin. One possible reason for this might be that parental financial support decreases as the student progresses through their academic studies and their savings run out quickly because the cost of living in Germany has been underestimated. Students from Sub-Saharan Africa in particular have less money available on average than their fellow students from other regions. In view of the fact that data from the International Student Survey indicate that there is a delay in pursuing academic study among international students, this development appears to point to a particular problem with financing university study, though it also offers a potential starting point for measures to counter- act the drop-out phenomenon.
While Covid-19 continues to ravage through the world, most classes are conducted through online learning. With everyone working from home, more and more resources are now available online. Speak to your teaching staff and other students and find the most accredited and reputable online books that is available for your course. Use your networking skills via social media to find resources online to help you complete assignments and projects. Should you require an internship, you can search a reliable site such as LinkedIn for online internships if the country continues in lockdown. If not, you can you use the same portal to find offline internships, ensuring that you do all the checks needful to ensure that the internships are legit.
5. Deep Study
Ensure that the majority of your day is immersed in study. Do not waste the day scrolling on social media, or binge watching movies on streaming sites. To be a successful student in Germany, you must read your textbooks and make notes daily. If you find note taking boring, you can search popular ideas site, Pinterest for ideas to make creative notes. Attend classes regularly and engage with your professors and peers. As most Indian students who choose to study in Germany, are Master’s candidates, immerse yourself in your research. Read academic articles related to your study, collate your references and find ways to contribute towards the university’s research goals.
While these points may seem intimidating at first, if you stick to it, you will find academic success in Germany.
At Ultimate Success Consultancy we take pride in ensuring that all our students graduate with honor. We wish you a pleasant stay in Germany and success in your academic journey. If you are considering admission in a Germany university, contact our expert Germany Education Consultants for a free online consultation today.
We can be reached via +91-8102565123, +48-503708930, +49-17665701646, and/or +371-25723811.