9 Common mistakes that students make while planning to study abroad

Studying abroad is definitely an amazing experience. Every year a large number of students pursue their dream of studying in an international university. However a good number of these applications face rejections either at the admission stage or the visa interview.
From incomplete application forms to ending up choosing wrong universities, this blog focuses on nine such mistakes students planning to go abroad make and intends to give a clearer understanding to the readers on how to and what next.


I have most of the documents ready

Over 70% of students face rejection from universities abroad because of incomplete application. Students presume that “say, I meet 9 of 10 criteria, I am good to go and can submit my application”. You have to submit all the documents listed on the university website while sending your admission application. No matter how trivial it may seem to you, treat every document as mandatory and double check the list against the university website and other official sources.

Failure to attach even one single document could lead to rejection. The same applies for visa interviews too.

Mark sheet and Transcript mixups

Most students mistake transcripts for marksheets. Transcripts are a mandatory requirement for applying to universities abroad. Unlike mark sheets which carry only marks scored per subject and overall percentage, a transcript is a detailed statement of semester-wise marks of a student that is acknowledged by the institute. Also the mark sheets do not carry the number of hours and semester-wise performance of the candidate.

Application fees after the confirmation of admission

This obviously sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it? Always remember that application fees have to be paid (mostly online) along with the submission of the filled application form. Even though you may have submitted all the necessary documents to the university, if you do not pay this fee, your application will be rejected. Application fee is different from admission fee, which is paid after confirmation of admission.

No need for bank statements or solvency letters if I am going on a scholarship

Universities abroad ask for a bank solvency letter. Most students mistake solvency letter for bank statement. They do not understand the purpose behind submitting a bank solvency letter. This letter is mostly issued by the bank and validates the sufficiency of the liquid funds in your name. Declaration of liquid funds is to ensure the concerned authorities that you can afford the living cost and allied expenses during your stay abroad. Bank solvency letter is equally important for students who travel abroad on a 100 percent scholarship. Insufficient liquidity is a good enough reason for the university to reject your application.

It is okay if there is a delay in the visa.

It is very obvious that you can not travel to a foreign nation without a valid visa. Most universities conditionally confirm your admission in advance so that you can use the conditional offer letter to apply for a visa. One must also keep in mind, this does not guarantee admission. Your offer letter would mention a deadline to confirm your application.  In case your visa had arrived after a week of your course commencement, not only will you have to intimate the university but you will also have to request for a conditional admission letter that states that the university is aware of your pending visa status and yet is willing to admit you. Failure to produce the conditional admission letter would result in a visa reject.

My relatives are citizens of that country, so I can take it for granted that my application will get through

Although it is good to have relatives in the host country, it doesn’t merit your qualification of admission.  Such details might be relevant but do not add value while applying for visas. The fact that admissions to universities is purely based on fulfilling the criteria should not be ignored.

It is quite essential to know the visa norms of your host country.  Secondly, you are expected to take care of yourself rather than depending too much on your relatives where this also helps shape yourself into a better person.

If it is good for one stream, it has to be good for my field of study too


Many at times we come across big names like Oxford, Cambridge and so on. Students tend to miss out on a thorough study of the programmes the university offers and the quality of the programmes. It is more likely that the college would have launched a new program and is throwing away scholarships to attract a lot of students. It is wise to understand “What’s in it for me?” before falling into such traps.

My loan will take care of all my expenses

Most aspirants heavily rely on education loan to fund their masters abroad. While there are additional costs that one might incur like accommodation, travel etc., it is always advisable to do a thorough research on the country you are going to travel keeping in mind the affordability factor.

I can do it all by myself

Students love to believe that they can find all the information on the internet.However, you may face ambiguity and miss the deadlines due to incomplete or outdated information being a some reasons. There are online counsellors and experts who will guide you at all stages of the application process. By seeking help, you not only do things the right way, you also don’t have to worry about missing deadlines.Most of the times besides helping you with the application process, counselors also help you make an informed career decision.

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