3 Steps to Include Study Abroad Experience on Your Resume

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Studying abroad is a valuable and enriching experience that can boost your academic, personal, and professional growth. It can also make you stand out from other candidates in the competitive job market, as it shows that you have cross-cultural skills, adaptability, and a global perspective. But how do you showcase your study abroad experience on your resume? Here are three steps to follow:
1. Choose the right section and format
Depending on the relevance and duration of your study abroad program, you can include it in different sections of your resume. For example, if you studied abroad for a semester or a year as part of your degree, you can list it under the Education section, along with your home institution and major. You can use the following format:
  • Name of the foreign institution, city, country
    Dates of attendance (month/year - month/year)
    Courses or subjects taken (optional)
For example:
  • University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom
    September 2023 - June 2024
    Courses: English Literature, History, Philosophy
If you studied abroad for a shorter period, such as a summer or a winter program, you can include it under the Additional Experience or Extracurricular Activities section, especially if it was not directly related to your major or career goals. You can use the following format:
  • Name of the program, name of the foreign institution, city, country
    Dates of attendance (month/year - month/year)
    Brief description of the program and your achievements (optional)
For example:
  • Global Leadership Program, Seoul National University, Seoul, South Korea
    July 2023 - August 2023
    Participated in workshops, seminars, and cultural activities to develop leadership, communication, and teamwork skills. Received a certificate of completion and a letter of recommendation.
2. Highlight your skills and accomplishments
Studying abroad can help you develop a variety of skills and accomplishments that are relevant and valuable for your future career. You can highlight them in different sections of your resume, such as the Summary, Skills, or Achievements section. Some of the skills and accomplishments that you can mention are:
  • Language skills:
If you learned or improved a foreign language during your study abroad program, you can list it as a skill on your resume. You can also indicate your level of proficiency, such as basic, intermediate, advanced, or fluent. For example:
Skills: Spanish (fluent), French (intermediate), Mandarin (basic)
  • Cultural skills:
If you gained knowledge and awareness of another culture, society, or region during your study abroad program, you can list it as a skill on your resume. You can also mention any specific aspects that you learned, such as history, politics, art, or religion. For example:
Skills: Cross-cultural communication, intercultural competence, Latin American studies
  • Academic skills:
If you achieved academic excellence or recognition during your study abroad program, you can list it as an achievement on your resume. You can also mention any specific projects, research, or publications that you completed or contributed to. For example:
Achievements: Dean’s List, Fall 2023 and Spring 2024. Co-authored a paper on “The Impact of Brexit on the European Union” for the Oxford Review of International Affairs.
  • Professional skills:
If you gained professional experience or exposure during your study abroad program, you can list it as an achievement on your resume. You can also mention any specific internships, volunteer work, or networking opportunities that you participated in or benefited from. For example:
Achievements: Completed a 3-month internship at the British Council, assisting with event planning, marketing, and administration. Attended a career fair and connected with representatives from leading multinational companies.

3. Tailor your resume to the job
Finally, you should tailor your resume to the specific job that you are applying for, and emphasize the aspects of your study abroad experience that are most relevant and appealing to the employer. You can do this by:
  • Researching the company and the position, and identifying the skills, qualifications, and qualities that they are looking for.
    Reviewing your resume and selecting the most relevant and impressive information from your study abroad experience that matches the job requirements and expectations.
    Revising your resume and adjusting the wording, order, and emphasis of your information to highlight your suitability and fit for the job.
For example, if you are applying for a job as a marketing assistant at a global company, you can tailor your resume by:
  • Mentioning your language skills and cultural skills in the summary section, as they are valuable for communicating and collaborating with diverse clients and partners.
    Listing your academic achievements and professional achievements in the education and additional experience sections, as they demonstrate your marketing knowledge and skills, as well as your initiative and leadership potential.
    Using keywords and phrases that match the job description, such as “global perspective”, “creative thinking”, “team player”, and “results-oriented”.
By following these three steps, you can include your study abroad experience on your resume in a way that showcases your skills and accomplishments, and makes you stand out from other candidates. Remember to be specific, concise, and honest, and to proofread your resume before sending it. Good luck with your job search!

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Conclusion
Effectively incorporating your study abroad experience into your resume requires thoughtful consideration of placement, skill highlighting, and detailed presentation. By strategically integrating this transformative period of your academic career, you not only demonstrate your academic achievements but also convey the invaluable skills and cultural competence gained during your time abroad. Ultimately, a well-crafted resume that reflects the depth of your study abroad experience will set you apart in a competitive job market, showcasing you as a candidate with a global perspective and a diverse skill set ready to contribute to any professional setting.
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