Resumes

How to Add Your Study Abroad Experience on Your Resume

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Studying abroad does not only improve your knowledge in an academic field but also provides you with new life experiences. It is important that you include your study abroad experiences in such a way on your resume that you convey the full value and benefits to employers. Here are a few guidelines to help you add your study abroad experience on your resume.

Why add study abroad experience on your resume?

You should add your study abroad experience to your resume since living and studying in a foreign environment has likely helped you learn new skills. You probably improved your knowledge in an academic field and also learned about a different culture. In addition, you perhaps also got to learn a new language, which can be beneficial to your career. Adding these new skills and experiences to your resume may set you apart from other candidates when applying for a position. 

When should you add study abroad experience on your resume?

When adding your study abroad experience, try to tailor your resume for the specific position you are applying for by highlighting only the relevant skills and aspects of your study abroad experience. Most importantly, focus on showing how your experiences abroad will be of value to the company. However, you may only want to add study abroad experiences on entry-level resumes when you do not have much professional experience yet. 

How to list study abroad experience on your resume 

You can include your study abroad experience on your resume by following these steps:

1. First, add it to your education section

Your education section is the best space to add a study abroad experience. If it was a short exchange program, you can add this experience below the college where you completed your graduate studies. You should add the name of the school, the location, dates as well as your degree or diploma if you’ve earned one. 

If you completed your entire program abroad, add this as a separate entry in your education section. Ensure that you include any awards, such as making the dean’s list or graduating with honors. Add relevant coursework that may apply to the job you are applying for. For example, if you’re applying to marketing assistant positions, include coursework in communications and marketing.  

2. Next, consider adding it to your experience section

If your time abroad included both studying and work experiences, such as an internship or volunteer work, you can add this to the experience section of your resume. This entry should include your job title, company name, employment dates, duties and achievements. 

You can add duties as a bullet-point list but only add the most relevant information. Try to start each bullet point with a verb, such as ‘taught’ or ‘worked,’ and add statistics and numbers if possible. Adding statistics and numbers can make it easier for the hiring manager to get a clear idea of your duties. 

3. Then, update your skills section

During your time studying abroad, you probably learned many new skills that employers value. To explain the skills you learned abroad, make a list. Think about all of the hard and soft skills you developed while you were studying, then narrow it down to the most relevant ones.

Skills that you may have developed while studying abroad could include flexibility, communication, interpersonal skills and adaptability. You should also add any new languages that you may have learned, as employers value employers who can speak two or more languages. 

4. Finally, create a resume objective or summary

An objective is a short opening paragraph in your resume where you state your career goals. A summary lists the skills and achievements that demonstrate that you are the perfect candidate for the position. If the skills you learned during your time abroad are directly relevant to the position you are applying for, you can add them to your objective or summary. 

Try to keep your objective or summary statement between one and three sentences so it’s easy for the hiring manager to read. For example, this objective is two brief sentences: ‘Recent graduate from the University of Tokyo seeking a role with Georgia Polytechnic Institute to use microchip engineering skills. Dedicated to promoting research in safety microchip protocols.’

Study abroad resume template

To help you add your experiences abroad on your resume, here is a template you may find useful:

Summary

[One to three sentences that describe skills gained abroad and career goals.]

Education

[Degree]
[University]
[City, State]

[Dates attended]

Relevant coursework:

  • [Awards and achievements]
  • [Study abroad experience]

[University abroad]
[City, Country]
[Dates attended]

Relevant coursework:

  • [Course A]
  • [Course B]

Awards and achievements:

  • [Award 1]
  • [Achievement 1]

Experience

[Position title]
[Company]
[City, Country]

  • [Line 1 description of responsibilities]
  • [Line 2 description of responsibilities]
  • [Line 3 description of responsibilities]

Skills

  • [Skill 1 gained abroad]
  • [Skill 2 gained abroad]
  • [Skill 3 gained abroad]

Study abroad resume section examples

Here are a few examples you can use when adding your study abroad experience on your resume:

Summary example:

Driven professional with a Master of Arts in Medieval and Renaissance literature from the University of Cambridge eager to join Evelyn & Co. Publishers. Can add value to the company with passion for the English language, strong communication and interpersonal skills and experience abroad in multicultural environments.

Education for short-term study abroad example:

Education

Bachelor of Arts in English
University of Central Florida
Orlando, FL

2016 – 2020

Relevant coursework: English Grammar, Creative Writing, Critical Approaches to Literature

  • Margaret Cole Scholarship 2018 and 2019
  • Dean’s List 2016–2020
  • Exchange Program, University of Cambridge, England, January to May 2018

Education for long-term study abroad example:

Education

Bachelor of Arts in English
University of Central Florida
Orlando, FL

2013 – 2016

Relevant coursework: English Grammar, Creative Writing, Critical Approaches to Literature

  • Margaret Cole scholarship 2018 and 2019
  • Dean’s List 2013 – 2016

University of Cambridge
Cambridgeshire, London
Concentration in Medieval and Renaissance Literature

2016 – 2017

  • Melton Foundation full scholarship

Experience example:

Volunteer experience

English Teacher
Cambridge English Outreach Centre
Cambridgeshire, London, 2019

  • Taught conversational and written English to over 30 political refugees from all over the world
  • Created tailored study plans for each group based on English language level
  • Assisted full-time teachers in administrative tasks
  • Wrote an English study guide: ‘English for Adult Beginners’
  • Took small groups on day trips in London to improve understanding of English culture

Skills example:

Skills

  • Spanish: fluent
  • Portuguese: conversational
  • Adaptability
  • Problem-solving 
  • Cultural awareness