Getting the most out of your elective abroad
All you need to know before you make your plans
- By: Samy A Azer, Takaaki Nakashima, Seiji Yamashiro
Doing a clinical rotation overseas is an opportunity to learn new skills, not just clinical ones, and also a chance to brush up on a different language and get a flavour for the culture. Here are a few tips on how to get the most out of your elective placement.
Always be clear about what you want to achieve.1 Knowing exactly what you want to learn overseas enables you to plan your time and allows the hosting university or hospital to meet your needs. Discussing these objectives at an early stage with your supervisor is essential.
A key obstacle to overcome is language. If you are not fluent in the language, you might need to work on your fluency at least 12 to 18 months before your travel. Remember that using any foreign language in a medical context is different from using it on holiday. In medicine, you need to