Look Good and Look After your Eyes when Traveling and Working Abroad

When was the last time you had your eyes tested? Or gave your eye health a seconds thought? Most optometrists recommend eye checkups every 1-2 years depending on your requirements. So, if you’re planning on heading abroad to travel or to work then you need to take your eye health seriously.

Its easy for things like eye tests and vision check-ups to take a back seat when we’re on the other side of the world, however keeping on top of your eye health and looking after your vision will ensure that your trip abroad won’t be cut short by eye-pressure issues, changes in your glasses prescription or even glaucoma and cataracts. Discover more information about looking after your eyes when traveling and working abroad below.

The Importance of Glasses
Wearing contact lenses is fine, however, it’s important to give your eyes a break from time to time and wear a good pair of glasses. If your job abroad involves lots of staring at a screen or going through important paperwork, then a high-quality pair of reading glasses is crucial to protect your eyes from strain. Having an additional pair of glasses is also a good idea, in case you damage your contact lenses, or you lose your other pair of glasses. No one wants to be stranded abroad and not be able to see properly!

These days, glasses aren’t just great for protecting your eyes and helping you see properly, they’re also great fashion accessories that can complement your look and style.

Protect your Eyes from the Sun
When we think of sun protection it’s normal to think of sun cream, sun hats and drinking plenty of water but when you’re traveling and working abroad protecting your eyes from the sun is just as important. Invest in a good pair of sunglasses to keep your eyes safe from damaging UV rays, sunglasses are ideal if you’re working outdoors in the sun for long periods.

Don’t worry, you can still get UV ray protection with elegant and statement sunglasses, so if you’re feeling a little fashion conscious then you’re sure to find something to match your style.

Stay Protected in the Water
Working at a water park? Or spending some time in the pool on your day off? Chlorine and saltwater can play havoc with your eyes, leaving them dry and irritated. Always remember to wear goggles when engaging in work or play at the waterside.

How Learning A New Language Can Make You A Better Entrepreneur

Some of the most successful business owners in the world are multilingual, including, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg and Michael Bloomberg, Entrepreneur reports. This is no coincidence: learning a second language equips budding entrepreneurs with a host of skills essential for business success. We live in a globalized world, and language skills are vital for networking and building a solid client or customer base that spans multiple geographical locations. Moreover, they also help you to develop strong active listening and problem solving skills, enabling you to thrive in even the most high-pressured business situations.

Improve active listening and problem solving skills

Learning a language involves maintaining focus for long periods of time, closely watching and listening, and replying deliberately (even if you make mistakes). In turn, this develops and strengthens your ability to actively listen. This skill is crucial for forming strong business relationships and boosting productivity. Additionally, learning a language is essentially an “exercise in cognitive problem solving,” a study in Massachusetts found. It also increases cognitive flexibility and higher order thinking skills, which further strengthens your ability to solve problems in other areas. Effectively solving problems and making business decisions are crucial skills for any entrepreneur.

Support your employees

In addition to impressing clients and customers, learning a second language also helps support your employees. By being able to form strong relationships and make effective business decisions, you’ll boost overall morale and confidence in the workplace. Your employees will therefore be happier and more loyal to your organization as a whole. It’s important to provide your employees with as much support as possible to retain their loyalty and succeed commercially. Investing in workers’ comp insurance is another great way to do this. Unfortunately, a worker is injured on the job once every seven seconds. When accident strikes, workers’ comp insurance protects you as the employer from legal repercussions, as well as protecting your employees financially from potentially devastating wage losses and medical expenses, Cerity Insurance advises.

Build a bigger client base

Roughly 20% of the worldwide population speak English — and most of those aren’t even native English speakers. Being able to speak at least a second language opens you up to a plethora of communication and networking opportunities that would otherwise be inaccessible. You’ll have the skills to communicate with potential foreign business partners all over the world, whether in-person or online. Additionally, if you want to set up your business in a foreign country, knowing the local language is essential. Certain requirements like paperwork may not be in English, for example. You’ll also appear more professional, trustworthy and respectful to the natives when you communicate your brand message in their language.

Language skills have multiple benefits for budding entrepreneurs, whether you’ll be working in your home country or abroad. They provide you with the confidence and knowledge required to understand all your markets. Not only is learning a second language fun and rewarding; you’ll find it also empowers you with skills and attributes needed for commercial success.

Your How-to-Guide on Printing and Binding a Thesis

Picture this. You have been successful in creating your Bachelor’s thesis, research paper or any other final paper and spent a lot of time researching and writing. Just when you are about to submit it, you realize it needs to pass through printing and binding.

The questions any student is likely to ask when it comes to printing and binding a thesis are as follows:
“How should I print and bind my thesis?”

“Where should the printing and binding take place?”

Given that many students have not gone through the printing or binding process for their research paper before, it may be challenging to choose the right configurations. Here, we present to you all the information you need to know, telling you what to focus on when printing and binding your dissertation.

For tips on what you need to factor in, keep reading.

What you need to Watch out for when Printing your Thesis

Students tend to have the same questions when it comes to the printing process of a thesis:
– Color or white/black?
– Which paper is right?
– How should I get a fair deal when printing my thesis?

That is why we take the trouble to give you advice on how to print your thesis.

Considerations when Printing your Research Paper Tip
Color Printing: You only have two options when printing your research paper, including color or white/black. Note that printing in color can be costly. When the printing of your thesis is colored, it is likely to have pizazz. However, understand that having too much color in it may negatively impact the seriousness of your paper.
Paper: The printing shop you approach may most likely suggest 80 g/m² paper. Understand that this measurement is thin and could make your paper weak. This will cause the print on the reverse side to shine through. Be sure to get all the right details first, steering clear that the type of paper used could also affect your final mark. If your paper is 100 g/m², the quality of your thesis improves immediately. This is why some providers use 100 g/m² of their paperweight as the default.
Price: Several factors determine the printing price. That includes the color printing, the weight of the paper and the actual printing. Begin by comparing the prices offered by different providers. For instance, if you would like a color-printed paper, pick the service provider who does not demand a surcharge. You can also look for further benefits, like free shipping.

What you Must Watch out for When Binding your thesis

One of the questions a lot of students have about this step is “how”. That’s because most of them are unaware of the type of bind needed for a research paper. Understand that it all depends on the type of final paper. For instance, your thesis will require a lot more work and extensive research, while a regular term paper does not take as much time to write.

What differs between the two is the weighting. The regular term paper embodies just a small part of your overall grade while the final thesis, including the Bachelor’s and the Master’s thesis, takes the largest portion.

It means that if the final research paper is major, and you want to be sure about your dissertation, it would be very wrong to pick a simple binding, like spiral binding, as your ultimate choice. The best option, in this case, would be leather book binding because it is sturdier and more suitable for the final paper.

You need to first understand that there is a large binding selection available. Here, we shall discuss each of them to help you understand better.

Tip!
A lot of universities and post-secondary institutions have specific requirements for binding. Before printing or binding your thesis, find out if the institution has any guidelines.

That is why we would like to guide you through on the best type of binding to use, which will be entirely dependent on the final paper type being submitted.

Leather book Binding

The highest quality binding any thesis can go through is leather book binding. It comes with a leather-look solid cover, which makes a thesis appear chic and stylish. You can choose between a bookmark, corner protectors or customized embossing. Either of them should make your paper look more sophisticated.

 

 

Recommendation: The following are some of the final papers perfect with leather binding

• Dissertation
• Research paper
• Master’s thesis
• Bachelor’s thesis


Thermal Binding

Thermal binding happens to be the most versatile among all bindings. Its front cover is transparent, causing the title of your research paper to be brought to the forefront instantly. More so, it also comes with a leather-look at the back of the cover, in the color of your choice.

 

 

Recommendation: Generally, minor research projects are best presented in thermal. If you will also need print-outs of the final paper, this type of binding is perfect.

Softcover

Are you looking to make your paper more attractive and standout? If so, softcover will be the ideal choice. This type allows you to design your cover however way you desire. It enables you to use different logos, fonts, wild designs and pictures of choice. When you choose this type of binding, you can let your creativity flow in any direction. Given that it is a research paper, you want to keep it less cluttered and completely professional.

Recommendation: Use Softcover for any thesis. Note, however, this type limits you to a specific number of pages. For a comprehensive dissertation, it may not be an ideal choice.

Spiral binding

This is the simplest form of binding. It is closely similar to thermal, given that its back cover has a leather-look and also comes with a transparent front cover. The difference is that spiral binding is not glued. Here, your paper is held with spirals. Note that spiral comes in two types: metal and plastic.

 

 

 

Recommendation: For small projects, spiral is the perfect choice. It is not considered right for major papers such as research papers or dissertations.

Overview of Bindings

Below is a table for all bindings, designed to offer you an overview to help you decide on the best one for your thesis or the final paper.

  Research paper Bachelor’s thesis Master’s thesis Term paper Dissertation
Leather book binding
The most elegant and sophisticated way to bind is leather. For a major final paper such as Bachelor’s thesis, Master’s thesis or an essay, it is the perfect choice. We do not recommend leather for smaller final papers.
Thermal binding
Of all the types used to bind, thermal is the most versatile. It is the best for final papers. If you are also looking for several print-outs, it is the sleekest and most cost-effective choice.
Softcover
Because Softcover allows you to design your cover any way you wish, it is the best for creative study programs. Understand, however, that it has a limit to the number of pages you can bind, meaning it is not always the absolute choice for final papers. For a dissertation, you will have to look for another option.
Spiral binding
If you are looking for the perfect binding choice for smaller projects, spiral is your go-to solution. It can also be used in final papers such as the term papers or the research project. However, if yours is more substantial in length, think around another option.

Printing and Binding your Thesis: but where?

When it comes to printing and binding your thesis, you can choose between your local copy shop or an online service provider. We recommend beginning by looking for an online printing provider. Doing so allows you to make your orders from your comfort zone and saves you valuable time, plus, they usually have good offers. Understand, however, you are exposed to winning and losing on the online platform.

How do you benefit?

• Free shipping
• 3D preview
• Look-inside-function to browse through your thesis
• Affordable prices and high-quality paper

In our research, BachelorPrint stood out. We found the service providers to be the go-to authorities in printing and are perfect if you also need to bind. It is an online printing service for students known to offer high-quality bindings. Because they offer free express shipping, you can be sure to get your thesis soon after printing and once it has been bound.

Ensuring nothing Goes Wrong in your Thesis Printing

Because writing and printing a thesis is a major investment, the tips provided here should ensure that everything goes smoothly. Where you will have your paper printed and bound is all up to you; whether you choose to go to an online printing service or identify an actual copy shop. However, if what you need is a high-quality work and a stress-free process, then BachelorPrint is what you need.

Good luck with your thesis!

Unique Ways to Learn While Studying Abroad

The many advantages of studying abroad are well-known to most people. It is an ideal way to travel and explore a new country and simultaneously study their culture from within. Going abroad for a semester or two allows students to gain independence, while it also challenges them to improve their interpersonal and communication skills. Lastly, it is an escape, from the mundane routine of college life back home, that many a time leads to people discovering new talents and career possibilities.

However, living and studying abroad can, at times, be a little too overburdening for students. With so much to do and see, in addition to visiting one of many countries known for their study abroad programs, students miss out on what matters the most; enjoying a once in a lifetime experience. So, here are ways through which students can continue to learn and still have fun while studying in a different nation.

Stay with a Local

A lot many universities have residential options on campus. These dorms are great for when you want to live with people your age and interact with students from across the world. Still, when studying in a different country, opting to live with a local host has far more benefits. Not only do you get an inside view of how residents live but also get to experience regional food, festivals, and traditions intimately. Best of all, staying with a local also doubles up as the perfect way to practice your language skills.

Visit a Casino

Since gambling and casinos are still not legal in all countries, it is worth going into one if you get a chance while living abroad. Now, it is extremely essential to gamble responsibly and stick with only the best casino destinations in the region to avoid any issues. It is equally vital that besides playing the games, you also use this time to watch how the locals behave and act in this rather complex environment. Typically, you will meet people in classrooms or homes, but when in a place like a casino, you can really study their mannerisms for a better understanding of the local ethos.

Join Local Activity Groups

No matter your location, there are always activity groups to join for indulging in favorite pastimes. Books, sewing, hiking, photography, music; there are typically a variety of options available if you look for them. Not only are these groups often welcoming to outsiders, but they are also another brilliant excuse to get introduced into the local community. You can always make new friends at these groups and get the low down on the hidden gems of the city, which others might miss out.

Be Friendly

A slightly extrovert experiment that can lead to surprising discoveries is being frank enough to strike up a conversation with strangers. If you are wandering around the town and a local helps you with directions or a recommendation, ask them out for a cup of coffee as a goodwill gesture. You’ll find that by doing this, you can create lifelong friendships and also might have someone local to help you should a need arise. Taking the initiative to mingle with residents when overseas can go a long way, as it lets you make the most of your study abroad experience.

 

An Important Study Regarding the Impact of Intercultural Educational Exchange Programs

A recent publication reports on the impact of educational exchange and study abroad programs conducted by the Federation of The Experiment in International Living. The work, by Dr. Alvino E. Fantini, Professor Emeritus, SIT Graduate Institute, titled: Intercultural Communicative Competence in Educational Exchange: A Multinational Perspective (Routledge, 2019), is based on two extensive research projects that explored the nature of intercultural communicative competence (ICC), its development during intercultural exchange (summer, short term, and semester programs), and the impact of such experiences on the lives of both students and hosts up to 20 years later.

Conducted in eight countries — Brazil, Ecuador, Germany, Great Britain, Ireland, Japan, Switzerland, and the United States — the research involved over 2,000 students plus over 200 host families, exploring the significance of exchange experiences in transforming people’s lives. Based on both quantitative statistics and qualitative narratives, the study also identified program components that most promote intercultural development, highlighting host family home stays and host language proficiency as most significant.

This important contribution to the intercultural communication literature, bases its multinational perspective on an extensive literary search in six languages spanning 50 years in order to identify ICC’s multiple components, to develop comprehensive assessment tools, and to assess ICC development and its impact on exchange participants.

For further information, click on the following link: https://www.routledge.com/Intercultural-Communicative-Competence-in-Educational-Exchange-A-Multinational/Fantini/p/book/9780815369677

Assessment instruments in multiple languages used in this research can be obtained on this website (click on “Instruments”): https://alvinoefantiniphd.godaddysites.com/.

New Years Eve Traditions Around the World

While the New Year’s Eve parties, dancing and fireworks are known and participated in around the world, you might be surprised at a few of the lesser known customs. Studying abroad in another country is a great way to find new holiday routines and if you happen to be visiting in one of the following countries be sure to keep your eyes open for a few fascinating traditions.

Eating Grapes in Spain

What could watching fireworks, a clock striking midnight and eating grapes have in common? If you are in Spain it means you are celebrating New Year’s Eve. Friends and families eagerly await New Year’s Eve to share in the music, fun and excitement of country wide parties. It’s a great time to be together and experience the hope for the coming new year. At midnight on December 31st the tradition of eating grapes begins. You have 12 grapes to eat one by one, one for every time the clock bell rings. Everyone joins in and if successful, it is thought, you will have good luck through the coming year.

If Spain sounds fun to you, perhaps try a study abroad program in Madrid. Abroad101.com has over 150 programs in that city alone.

https://www.studyabroad101.com/cities/spain/madrid

Casting Tin in Finland

Similar to Spain and wishing for good fortune is the Finnish tradition of trying to guess your future and good fortune by casting tin.

Small horseshoes, which are symbols of good fortune on their own, are sold throughout Finland around New Year’s Eve. As everyone is shopping for random party items and food for the festivities you will notice the horseshoes are available to buy.

 

After the fireworks the usual custom is to give everyone you are with a small tin horseshoe. The horseshoe is melted in a pan and then quickly poured into a bucket of cold water. The shape that forms in the cold water is said to predict your future and hopefully good fortune. Just hope for no broken pieces. That, unfortunately, would mean bad luck.

Find a study abroad program in Finland https://www.studyabroad101.com/countries/finland

 

 

Brazilian Goddess and Colored Underwear

Get ready to wear white on New Year’s Eve in Rio. You not only will be surrounded by white outfits but will notice that everyone also is wearing colorful underwear. The luck you want to attract for the new year will be determined by the color of your underwear. Would you like to have money and luck? Wear yellow. Go with pink if you are looking for love and purple for inspiration. For good health a nice green will do. There are more color choices of course and when midnight strikes and everyone runs into the sea you’ll understand why picking a nice outfit and colorful underwear is so important.

The offerings for the sea

On New Years day, in Rio de Janeiro, people wear white to celebrate the Festa de Iemanjá where they run into the ocean and try to jump over seven waves. Many people also will light candles on the beach and throw flowers into the water. All of this is to honor the Brazilian godess lemanja, who it is said to have control over the water.

Study Abroad programs in Rio de Janeiro https://www.studyabroad101.com/cities/brazil/rio-de-janeiro

 

Ecuador Dummy Burning

Have you ever wanted to just leave all the bad things that happened the year before behind you? In Ecuador they celebrate New Year’s Eve by literally burning up the bad memories. It’s an unusual tradition which involves making dummies , called “Año Viejos”, of famous people or characters that represent bad memories and burning them at midnight. There is a great variety in what the dummies look like. Some are small and homemade, others are cartoon characters and some are giant dummies that are part of competitions. A list of people that have treated you badly are sometimes put inside the dummy and then when everything is burnt at midnight you can start the new year with a clean slate.

Find a Study Abroad program in Ecuador https://www.studyabroad101.com/countries/ecuador

Breaking plates in Denmark

The New Year’s Eve tradition in Denmark of throwing plates at the doors of your friends and family is pretty unusual. In the weeks leading up to New Year’s people will start to stockpile old plates. When the clock strikes midnight get your throwing arm ready. This is not looked at as vandalism but as a way to wish good luck for the coming year. If you wake up New Year’s day and have a large pile of broken dishes all over your step, you must have a lot of friends and will have much luck in the coming year!

Find study abroad programs in Denmark https://www.studyabroad101.com/countries/denmark

Wherever and however you celebrate New Year’s Eve have a wonderful time!

 

5 best places to study abroad in 2020

In the United States, there are enough higher education institutions that can provide the highest quality education. At the same time, many young people are interested in receiving education abroad. This will allow them to get acquainted with another culture, see the world and break away from their parents, completely plunging into an independent life.

Therefore, often, before choosing a specific place, it is worth taking care to choose for yourself best credit cards for students, which will support the development of financial independence far from home. Also discover card for college students when you decide exactly what you want and will study abroad so that you can understand how you will meet your needs if you do not have enough cash.

Among many options, Europe remains one of the most popular study regions abroad among young Americans and students from around the world. However, Europe is a rather large and diverse region of the world, where each country has its own advantages and features, so it is often difficult to decide exactly where to go to study. If you are worried that you have never used credit cards and have never taken a loan before, then credit cards for college students with no credit history will be your answer that will reduce your anxiety. Here we have selected 5 best places to study abroad in 2020, the most interesting and popular options among American students.

  1. Paris, France

Paris is one of the most attractive and popular cities in the world. It is so diverse that it can sometimes be overwhelming with its contrasts. It is beautiful and it would seem well-known, in Greater Paris there are many foreigners of various affluence, as well as thousands of students and tourists from all over the world. You can also learn French, which many find very romantic.

It has beautiful architecture, many legendary places, people of art and more. Here you will always find what to do and what to see in your free time. Here you will also need one of the best credit cards for students with no credit, if you have never used loans before.

  1. London, UK

For American students, as well as for students from other English-speaking countries, London becomes the choice of the month of study abroad in half of all cases. However, Great Britain in general, and London in particular, is not limited to English-speaking tourists and students, it is a modern Babylon, where you can meet people of any nationality and culture.

It is also attractive to wealthy people and students from all over the world.

Here you will find some of the most prestigious educational institutions in the world, capable of providing training in many specialties, as well as plenty of entertainment for every taste. Here you have to try very hard to get bored.

At the same time, London is one of the most expensive cities in the world, so good credit cards for college students will be more relevant than ever.

  1. Amsterdam, Netherlands

Amsterdam is known for its canals, bicycles and free views on different manifestations of life and different people. Here everyone can feel comfortable, regardless of their appearance, tastes and preferences. This city attracts students and tourists from all over the world due to its liberalism, club nightlife, coffee shops and the red light district. Credit cards for college students here will be necessary in order to be able to try different entertainments presented in the capital of the Netherlands and attend many events.

However, in addition to noisy entertainment, there are plenty of cozy parks, cafes and promenades that are conducive to a quiet pastime and leisurely walks. Here you can feel at ease in any setting, especially if you have one of the best chase credit card for students with you. Many education courses are often taught in English, which in Amsterdam is second only to Dutch in terms of distribution.

  1. Prague, Czech Republic

Prague in the historical center looks almost like a fabulous city. Medieval tiled roofs with spiers fascinate and attract millions of tourists every year, as well as thousands of students to study. Best credit cards for college students with no credit will not let you stay away from Prague’s entertainment and tourist destinations.

One of the oldest universities in Europe – Charles University is able to provide a high level of quality education received here. There are no problems with the English language in Prague, many people speak it here.

In addition to studying, there is always something to do. Many cultural events and festivals are chilled here every year. Nightclubs are fully operational and are a very popular pastime. The prices here are lower than for example in London or Amsterdam, so even credit cards for college students with no income will be sufficient financial support for a full student life.

  1. Berlin, Germany

Berlin is not only the largest city in Germany and its capital. This city is rich not only economically and historically. It is very diverse and can sometimes seem a little crazy. There are many bright unusual people, many different unusual cultural events and flash mobs. Take one of the best credit cards for college students with no credit history with you if you do not already have a loan, but be sure to take a walk in Berlin. It is a very diverse city, both architecturally and culturally.

Here, students from different countries will see various manifestations of life on the positive side and will be able to choose for themselves something close and suitable. There are many high-ranking universities that provide education in many specialties. In addition, the famous German craving for order is an additional guarantee of quality education.

Choose best cards for college students to study abroad today

Credit cards for college students with no credit can help students just starting their independent life away from home build their credit and learn how to handle their money correctly. A high credit score, as well as a good credit history give you significant benefits in life.

On the other hand, best debit card for college students can also help young students figure out how to manage their personal finances, and also help not to create the big debt that can be formed on credit cards for students with bad credit or credit card for students with no income.

Oceania Study Abroad Programs

Oceania is an area of the world that spans the South Pacific Ocean and includes several countries and territories. This includes Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and French Polynesia Islands.

Students have written so many positive comments in their reviews, which explains why this destination is a very popular study abroad choice.

An unforgettable semester in Suva” – A 4 1/2 star Fiji review which includes comments such as: “So much personal growth! Go with an open mind and absorb the world around you. I learned much more about culture, the world, and myself in the last 5 months than I have in my entire life. Be willing to listen and ask questions.” or “I was able to make friends with some Fijians as well as Indo-Fijians. I would highly recommend integrating yourself as much as possible and talking with locals in class. They can be a bit shy but don’t be discouraged by that. Whenever you’re out and about in Fiji, people will make you feel like family. Also, this program includes a village stay, which was one of my favorite parts. I felt so at home and like I was experiencing the real Fiji- not just the beaches like everyone thinks!”

Students also have helpful tips about their stay. This review of a program in New Zealand had these words of advice for incoming scholars.

“New Zealand has a very different set up for gradings as there are only a few assignments which are weighted heavily, but the professors are incredibly accommodating.” Also, “We get more for our US dollar in NZ so that was always a relief when looking at the bank account.”

Abroad101.com has nearly 500 programs listed in just this part of the world. Learn more about the study abroad options available to you, read student reviews, and submit an inquiry all from our main site. There are so many options available you are sure to find the perfect program for you.

Pursuing a Postgraduate Degree Online Can be Fun

You don’t usually associate a postgraduate degree with something fun. In your mind, it entails sacrifices and changes in your schedule. You also start to think about what you need to study, and you already feel like giving up.

Before you become too pessimistic about the idea of studying online, you need to understand that it’s not the same as your experience back when you were in college. You won’t learn in a traditional classroom setting. You won’t have an angry teacher in front of you all the time. The experience is way different than what you used to have. You might even have fun while studying.

You will learn a lot of new things

When you’ve been working in your field for a long time, it feels like you already forgot what you learned back then. It also feels like you don’t get new knowledge even if you practice your profession. When you pursue an online degree, you will feel surprised with every information you get. The courses are relevant and understandable. Even when you decide to pursue an online healthcare data analytics certificate while working in the medical field, there are lots of new ideas that you can get.

You’re doing homework again

You can’t believe that after several years, you’re back to doing homework. It brings back a lot of memories when you were in college. You also have to study for tests. If your life seems to be the same each day given your work schedule, it might change this time. The break in your regular routine makes things a lot more exciting.

You feel smarter

Some professionals feel like after working with the same job description for several years, they become stagnated. They don’t learn anything new. Once you begin your online studies, you feel smart again. you learn things that you don’t get at work, but can be applicable to your job. When your colleagues ask for help, you can respond to them based on the information obtained while studying online.

You interact with more people

Even if you’re only studying online and not in an actual classroom, it feels the same in a way. You get to talk to your teacher through chats, emails and other platforms. There are instances when you have a discussion board with your classmates around. There’s always a chance to interact with many people outside work, and it expands your network. You will like you’re hanging out with the smart kids at school, and you belong to the group.

You can learn when you’re ready

The best part about online studies is that you can learn whenever you’re ready. It’s not like in a traditional classroom where you have to be present even when you’re not in the mood to study. It’s the reason why you feel like sleeping in class. You also don’t see the value of what you’re doing. When you can choose your time to study, you can absorb the lesson even more and you feel excited to learn.

Image: https://unsplash.com/photos/rH8O0FHFpfw

 

 

Image credit: https://unsplash.com/photos/rH8O0FHFpfw

 

Spanish dialects around the world while Studying Abroad

So you want to study abroad to grow your Spanish skillset? Learning the second most spoken language in the world will be great for your future career, building deeper relationships, and is an extremely marketable skill. There are at least twenty countries in the world where Spanish is an official language. If you can’t visit them all, how do you choose just one? Hopefully, this blog will help you decide which one is best for you! I have studied abroad as a student, and have participated in site visits as an employee of a Spanish immersion-focused study abroad program Sol Education Abroad (SOL). At SOL, a question I often get asked is how the Spanish accents vary. In this blog I will focus on dialect and the main reasons why I have loved my time in each of the Spanish-speaking locations I have been to.

”Buenos Aires is full of public parks with art installations everywhere, like this giant bench!”

My study abroad experience took place in Buenos Aires, Argentina during the summer of 2015. When deciding which country to study abroad in, my study abroad advisor told me that Buenos Aires would be a perfect fit to build my Spanish skills. “If you can understand the Argentinian accent, you can understand any Spanish accent!”

I quickly found out she was right! Porteños, or people from Buenos Aires, have a unique accent that took some getting used to. I learned about three main differences that set porteños apart. The first difference was that instead of pronouncing double l’s like in “calle” (street) with a “ya” sound, they pronounce it with a “sh” sound. Secondly, I noticed that “vos” is used instead of “tu.” Along with this, “vos” has its own unique conjugation that I had to learn. Instead of “tu entiendes,” porteños would say “vos entendés.”

“A lovely sunset off the coast”

It was a challenge at first to adapt to these new rules, but it forced me to work harder at my comprehension skills. Interestingly, the pronunciation particularities are really only prevalent in Buenos Aires. If you travel to other parts of Argentina, you will hear a more neutral Spanish spoken. My time in Buenos Aires will always hold a special place in my heart because it was the first time I traveled by myself, and my first time riding in a subway!

For my next trip, I traveled to Costa Rica for two weeks in the summer of 2017. Luckily, the Spanish spoken in Costa Rica is extremely neutral. Some people even describe it as not having an accent at all. This makes it very easy to understand, and because of that, it is an excellent destination for first-time travelers or students who are starting to learn Spanish. I also found that everyone I encountered – host families, waiters, tour guides, and store owners – were all very patient with me and were helpful if I happened to say something incorrectly.

“The view from out host family’s house, which was amazing to wake up to”

A major reason why I love Costa Rica and think it is a perfect location for students is that it is well-suited for weekend travel. Costa Rica is quite small and has such a variety of ecosystems to discover. The bus system is simple, and if you travel with a study abroad program, your directors will usually help you book your own excursion!

“My co-worker and I at Manuel Antonio National Park!”

Next on my list was Spain! I traveled to Spain in April of 2019. First, I spent a weekend in Madrid, then two weeks in Granada.

“Enjoying the sunset in the Albaicin neighborhood in Granada”

I had always been warned about the Spanish accent and the “Spanish lisp” but had no problem understanding it. I learned that the lisp is used to differentiate the pronunciation between an “s” and “c” or “z” (which are pronounced with a “th” sound). The Spaniard accent definitely has a different rhythm than the Latin American Spanish I was used to; however, I always felt like I was able to understand everyone, so don’t be steered away from this enchanting country!

One of my favorite things about Spain, and Granada specifically, is the “tapa” culture. Tapas are a small snack that is brought out with each drink order. In Granada, these were always free, unlike the rest of Spain. If you plan it right, you can have a free “dinner” while exploring some of the best restaurants and bars that Granada has to offer!

“The tapa that came with my glass of wine – caracoles! (snails).”

My most recent trip has been to Oaxaca, Mexico. I have been living in Oaxaca for the past four months and am loving my time here! I have discovered that Spanish in Mexico is relatively neutral. There are slightly different accents depending on which part of the country you are in, much like the United States, but they have not been difficult to understand.

The Santo Domingo church in the heart of Oaxaca, Mexico

One tricky thing is that Mexicans are notorious for having a lot of slang terms. It can take a while to pick up on all of them, but you’ll certainly fit in once you do! Out of all of the Spanish-speaking countries that I have been to so far, Mexico has the most slang words. I’m learning that there is probably so much slang because Mexicans like to have fun, even with their language!

Enjoying a hike through Hierve El Agua, a petrified waterfall just outside of Oaxaca

You can’t go wrong with whichever Spanish-speaking country you chose to study in! Any study abroad experience will help you advance your comprehension, speaking skills, and world-view tremendously.

The best suggestions that I can give are to stay with a host family and speak Spanish to as many people as possible. Living with a host family is where you will get the majority of your exposure to the Spanish language and immersion in the local culture. You are able to speak Spanish without judgment and your family is always happy to help you with any doubts or questions. I also encourage you to meet as many locals as possible. Speaking with locals will do wonders for your Spanish conversation skills. Hopefully, you will have the chance to travel to numerous Spanish-speaking countries and become a master of this beautiful language!

Author:

Monica Guajardo with SOL Education Abroad