Have you considered studying abroad during the spring semester? Compared to short-term programs, a full semester abroad gives you the time to more deeply acclimate to your new surroundings and immerse yourself further in the local culture. But is it better to study abroad during your spring semester or your fall semester?
While both semester terms have incredible benefits, spring semester is one of the most popular times to study abroad — here are a few of the many reasons why.
#1: More free time after the semester ends
When you study abroad during the spring semester, you have the summer after your program ends for other adventures or adjusting to life back in the States. Having more time to relax and process your study abroad experience can help with reverse culture shock after you return home.
#2: Start the school year at your home campus
When you choose a spring semester program, you don’t have to worry about missing the beginning of the school year at your home university or college. You won’t miss on-campus activities traditionally held during the fall, like joining clubs, football season, and rushing sororities or fraternities. You’ll be back in time for the start of the fall semester, and you’ll have the whole summer to decompress from your study abroad experience.
#3: Spend spring break abroad
Some spring semester programs include a short recess for spring break. This is a great time to squeeze in some independent travel, or spend more time exploring your host city with new friends. Do you have family or friends who are eager to visit you overseas? Consider asking them to visit you over the break and give them a tour of your host city.
#4: Program options
There’s no shortage of program options when you decide to study abroad during the spring semester. Many AIFS programs even include Early Start or Extended Semester options for students looking to extend their time abroad.
#5: It’s convenient for holidays
Is Thanksgiving one of your favorite holidays? When you study abroad during the spring semester, you don’t have to worry about missing Thanksgiving with your family and friends. Most spring programs take place from January to May, so you’ll still get to enjoy plenty of turkey and pumpkin pie in November.
Plus, you can celebrate other holidays and traditions in your host country with your study abroad friends. Whether you get to experience Easter in Rome, Saint Patrick’s Day in Dublin, or a local cultural holiday or festival, you’ll still have plenty to celebrate during your spring semester abroad.
Studying abroad during the spring semester has some major advantages.
You’ll have more free time after your program ends, you can start the school year at your home campus, and you can even spend spring break abroad. Plus, there are plenty of program options to choose from during the spring semester.