Time to mainstream blended learning abroad with falling rupiah and soaring dollar

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In September 2022, the Indian rupee broke through the 80 mark against the US dollar. The country’s financial situation has deteriorated due to the historically low level against the US dollar. The falling rupee will place an additional burden on parents who plan to send their children abroad this year or who already have children studying abroad. However, experts believe this setback can be overcome with careful planning and a blended learning model.

Rupee Falling Adverse Effects

Tuition fees and living expenses are said to be the two largest items of student expenses while studying abroad. According to experts, the fall of the Indian rupee will affect the living expenses of students studying abroad or planning to study abroad in the future, as well as tuition fees, which are usually paid at the start. of each semester. To make matters worse, many universities are planning a fee hike, which had been delayed for the past two years. Students who have already paid their tuition in advance at a lower exchange rate, for example, may not have to worry about funding their studies, but rather the rising cost of living. Education, on the other hand, will become more expensive for those who pay tuition semester by semester as they will have to pay the remaining installments as the value of the dollar increases. These students may need to take out additional loans to cover their expenses.

Blended learning program: a godsend

It is no surprise that more than half of Indian parents have considered sending their children to study abroad. This year, a total of 1 lakh+ Indian students went abroad to further their education. But this is becoming increasingly difficult as tuition fees continue to rise and students are forced to choose between continuing their studies at home or going abroad.

In response to this problem, several organizations have begun to offer hybrid programs that allow students to complete their studies partly at home and partly abroad. These programs allow students to pay their tuition fees both in national currency (INR) and in foreign currencies (USD, for example). This saves them money when paying their tuition and gives them more flexibility in choosing where they want to study. It’s a great idea to pay in INR now and pay in international currencies later when the Rupee stabilizes.

The cost savings alone make these programs a smart choice for many students. However, there are still many other benefits associated with hybrid programs abroad that make them even more compelling choices for those considering studying abroad.

Students can take advantage of both traditional on-campus learning and online learning while reducing their overall costs. Additionally, students who complete such hybrid programs are more likely to be accepted by VISA authorities since they have already demonstrated their academic commitment and expertise by completing part of the program.

According to a survey response, students are increasingly open to blended learning models because it helps them save money and get a head start on their courses. Additionally, the survey found that job opportunities and costs are among the most important considerations for students when choosing an educational destination.

Difficulties encountered with conventional study abroad programs

The conventional path of study has its own set of challenges. For starters, students often struggle with visa processes, both due to the uncertainty of acceptance and the long delays involved. Ironically, there are many cases where students are forced to start online because the visa has not been obtained, but they still pay on-campus fees abroad. Instead, students can start with hybrid routes where the in-country component is cheaper and they can do their visa processing in parallel.

Also, the academic environment abroad is very different from what students are used to in India. Therefore, the first year can be difficult for students. Some parents may pay extra for support services such as tutors or counselling. This problem can be overcome by hybrid programs where the student is facilitated in the university environment abroad, thus increasing their chances of success and reducing stress and anxiety.

Hybrid programs also offer a number of benefits to students and parents. Students will be able to learn at their own pace and stay in control of their education and schedule. At the same time, parents will have access to resources like mentorship and counseling that are not available in traditional programs.

Hybrid programs are here to stay

The hybrid model empowers children to succeed and allows education to continue in the face of a global health crisis, inclement weather, transportation issues, and other challenges because it is an educational paradigm ready for the future. Because it combines the convenience and freedom of remote learning with the value of in-person interactions, blended learning is here to stay. Regardless of what the future holds, blended learning can benefit students and enable academic institutions to deliver high-quality education if used purposefully and consistently.



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Disclaimer

The opinions expressed above are those of the author.



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