Moving to a new country can be exciting, but it can also present challenges. It can take time to adjust to a new culture. You may miss your family and friends, and the cuisine and the rituals of home.

It's okay to notice that life is different here

There are a lot of adjustments to make. Life is different to home and you are settling into a new academic environment with a different language and teaching practices. Because of the stress of these changes, you may experience feelings of homesickness. Many international students feel homesick or out of place at some stage in their study journey. It's okay. You're not alone.

Adapt for success!

If you can adapt to the challenges of living and studying in a new place it will help you develop valuable life skills. These skills can contribute to your personal growth, and increase your resilience, even making you a great candidate for future jobs.

There has been some research on homesickness and culture shock. Students who value their own culture and their new culture will feell less stressed and will find it easier to settle in their new environment.

Practical tips to help you adjust

Here are some simple ways to help you make a start in a new place -

  • Be prepared to feel homesick at times.
  • Take part in orientation activities.
  • Talk to people and try to make friends.
  • Join social clubs.
  • Connect with students from your own culture and speak in your home language.
  • Share your experiences with others that are in a similar situation.
  • Eat a healthy diet, have regular exercise and get enough sleep.

Living away from family and friends is a major life transition and can be a risk factor for mental ill-health. The student support service at your education provider can provide support and assistance to you and your friends.

Friends can help you adjust to a new culture

Visit our page on Making friends for some great ideas on how to connect with other people. Your study journey in Melbourne and Victoria is an adventure. Adventures can be even better in great company.