What is expected of me during the exchange?
There are many expectations placed on students during the exchange, but the most important ones are the willingness to be open to a new culture, politeness towards your host family and attendance at school. We strongly encourage students to meet as many European students as possible. This is essential to your success on the exchange. The more you interact with the locals, the easier you will adapt culturally and linguistically. Students are also urged to complete the homework and assignments given at school, as this will help you integrate as smoothly as possible into the academic system. It is wise to try and become a part of the school community by participating in different activities. Remember to always use your voice to advocate for yourself. If you are unsure what to do in a particular situation or there is a language barrier, ask your host family for help.
Do my marks count while on exchange?
While your marks do not count, you will be receiving a report card from your host school. We expect that all participants are representing their schools to the best of their ability, which also means completing homework and assignments that are given out at school. This will help you integrate as smoothly as possible into the academic system.
Are there cultural differences between Canada and Europe?
Please see section on Cultural Adaptation
What should I do if I am feeling homesick?
It is perfectly natural to experience some form of homesickness during your exchange. Before you leave on your exchange, set up a weekly day and time that you will communicate with your family. This will give you a specific time to look forward to. Sometimes homesickness can last for a few hours while other times it can feel like days. If you experience homesickness for more than a couple of days, we strongly suggest you limit your communication with home. That means no phone calls, texts and emails to your family and friends for at least 3 consecutive days. Set a day and time that you will reach out to your family and do not contact them before that. Try and fully engage with your host family and find pleasure in the activities they have planned. Something as simple as going for a walk with your host partner could make you feel better. The more you actively participate in the exchange, the less you will miss home.
What should I do if I do not get along with my exchange partner?
The first step is to have an open conversation with your exchange partner to determine if there are any underlying issues that can be quickly resolved. Having a parent present might also help in resolving issues. Should this not work, please contact the Education Abroad Canada office so that we can reach out to the family and provide you with next steps.
I am not feeling well and need to go see a doctor. What do I do?
Speak directly with your host family. They will make and appointment for you to visit their doctor. Your doctors’ visits are covered by your Travel Insurance, so there is nothing to worry about. The same applies for dental visits.
Can I visit family and friends in Europe while on exchange?
The simple answer is no. Unfortunately, Education Abroad Canada liability insurance and our travel insurance will not cover you during any unsanctioned trips during the exchange. If you have any further questions, please contact the Education Abroad Canada office.