Its applicability in a variety of industries, makes biochemistry one of the fastest developing fields in science. Fast-paced growth and the need for constant innovation has led to the creation of top-notch biochemistry programs at Universities all over the world, which means you can pick any country and go. While studying abroad as a biochem major you’ll have the chance to learn from renowned scientists in the field and to become part of groundbreaking research projects.
Depending on your budget, your academic goals, and how long you plan to stay abroad, you can choose between direct enrollment at the university of your choice or apply through a third-party study abroad provider. There are pros and cons to each option, but typically you’ll find more flexibility and options -- and less structure/support -- through direct enrollment; a third-party provider can help you manage the at times confusing world of study abroad, especially when you’re looking to study a specific subject like biochemistry while abroad.
Direct Enrollment Options
Direct enrollment study abroad programs are particularly useful for students looking for an immersive experience studying abroad for a full academic year and who have traveled before (and can handle all on their own from finding accommodation to application bureaucracy). Typically you’ll enroll directly with the university you choose and for the exact biochem or other courses you want to take.
Third-Party Study Abroad Providers
If you’re looking to pursue a specific learning experience in a shorter period of time (like a summer or a semester) or have a destination in mind where English is not the first language, it’s best to choose a third-party provider. Providers help with travel and accommodation arrangements, visas and other paperwork, and even local language classes will be taken care of for you. You might find fewer program options through a third-party provider, though.
Where to Go
Biochemistry is quickly becoming one of the most studied subjects in the world. The biochemistry programs in universities are diverse and include different specializations, from pharmaceutical research to biotechnology. Whether you’re looking to enter the work market immediately after graduation or deciding which research field you’d like to pursue, studying biochemistry abroad is an experience you need to add to your resume.
If you don't mind traveling to the other side of the world and you are more interested in expanding your knowledge in the field than learning a new language from scratch, Australia is the perfect destination for you.
Universities in Australia offer a large range of specialized programs, taught by experienced professors. Whether you choose Sidney, Perth or Brisbane as your temporary hometown, there will be plenty to do in these cities on your breaks from intensive research.
With reputable universities like Oxford and Cambridge, England has a variety of study abroad programs to choose from. It’s particularly appealing for biochemistry students interested in research with prospects of participating in high-profile projects.
On weekends and school breaks, exploring the rest of the country or mainland Europe is just a low-cost flight or a train ticket away.
If you’re looking for a career in pharmaceutical research, then there is no better country to expand your knowledge than Germany. The country is one of the world leaders in the area and studying here opens up a lot of opportunities for those who want to start working immediately after graduation, as some local companies offer research internships for undergraduates.
You’ll get a chance of getting involved in state-of-the-art research projects while learning or improving your German and exploring central Europe.
Costs & Funding
Housing takes up a large chunk of your budget unless you chose a Program Provider that takes care of that for you and has already included it in their fee.
If you opted for Direct Enrollment, check if the local University provides accommodation (on- or off-campus) or look for local shared housing opportunities posted online (websites like Uniplaces and UniversityRooms, social media, foreign students’ communities like the Erasmus program in Europe).
Overall Living Costs
If the university, study abroad office, or third-party provider you choose don’t provide you with general information about the cost of living while you study abroad, connect with local students or alumni to find out the average cost of living of where you’re moving to. Ask around on a related Facebook group or an online forum like Quora to have an idea of the overall living cost. You can even ask questions about a specific program here on Go Overseas, and alumni can answer you.
Scholarships & Grants
If your chosen university or third-party provider doesn’t have a special grant program to study Biochemistry abroad, look for colleges that have special conditions or dedicated scholarships for foreign students like the Graduate School of Science (University of Tokyo) or the University of Western Australia. Both of them have special monthly or yearly scholarships that cover basic needs like tuition and living expenses -- having one of these scholarships will help you focus on your biochem classes and cultural immersion during your study abroad experience.