>> This site is intended for students at any stage of the study abroad experience: before, during after; for concerned and excited parents; for aspiring study abroad pros who want advice on breaking into the field; and for study abroad staffers and faculty trying to thread the academic and administrative needle. Of course, we welcome any one interested in education abroad, from any angle.
>> We are open to blog topics from the most basic info about study abroad to the most advanced and everything in between. Here are a few general topics and themes to help inspire your creative juices:
- Working in Study Abroad: How to guides, articles, opinions, musings on actually running study abroad from academics, logistics, finances, marketing, advising, etc.
- How to Make It Happen: Advice for students (high school and college) on how to make study abroad a reality; getting ready for the experience logistically, academically, emotionally; etc.
- On the Ground: Tips, tricks and advice on maximizing the study abroad experience; places to go; how to have cross-cultural encounters; language acquisition tips; what not to do; common mistakes, etc.
- Keeping the Experience Alive: Advice and experiences on what's next after study abroad; future international opportunities; reflecting on the experience; helping others make it happen, etc.
- Op Eds: We love opinions! Is there a public policy you feel strongly about? Have some critiques of a education abroad-related research study that was recently released? Need to vent/praise about working with students today? Let's hear it!
- Destination Details: Top 10 lists of things to see and do in a certain city/country/region; Focus on restaurants or hostels or museums or gardens or pubs, etc. We want your on-the-ground expert advice!
- Career Connections: Getting into the study abroad field (and related advice); Tips for students wanting an international career; creative ways to showcase international experiences during the job search, etc.
- And so much more...which leads us to...
>> While we are primarily a study abroad based site, that does not mean you are limited to that subject specifically. As long as your submission adequately provides the community with insightful commentary—be it negative or positive, so long as it is sufficiently explained—around anything remotely related to our cross-culturally conscious, forward thinking, music/food/travel/techie loving, equal rights rocking, awesome student/pro staff/aspiring international guys and gals of mystery readers, we want to see it.
>> Keep it real. We like chatting…and we chat a lot. So we want blog submissions to flow like a regular conversation - just like you were telling the story of your first international experience to friends. Try reading it out load before you send it in.
>> Original content is not required but always encouraged. If you've been published with the same content elsewhere on the web, please oh please make sure you receive permission to re-publish the content on our site. Let us know where it was originally published (and share the direct link) and we'll make sure to link back to it. When you submit an article to us, you are giving us the right to publish it on our site.
>> While we can’t pay you for your article, we can promise to spread your work all across the interwebs and include you on our Contributors page with a by-line and link back to your social media accounts and websites. It's also a nice opportunity to see your work published on a professional platform, have your opinions/expertise heard by the education abroad community, connect with like-minded study abroad enthusiasts, and encourage/educate/help the growing Inside Study Abroad community. And, our content is often shared across the education abroad digital community, increasing your exposure and reaching more people. How cool is that?
>> Word counts are up to you; we don't technically require anything specific. However, depending on the subject matter, posts should average between 300-1000 words. Highly technical posts about financial aid and study abroad, for example, might be longer…but "just for fun" posts like 10 best bakeries in Paris might be shorter. Basically, we want you to do the topic justice without going overboard. Ask yourself this: Would YOU read the article you're writing? If yes, send it in! Just make sure it makes sense and use simple and detailed explanations to get your point across.
>> If you'd like to include a link to external sources to help further explain your content, that's just fine. However, we will not include links that are blatant attempts at link-baiting and SEO back-linking gimicks to promote a product, service, website, etc. We will always try first to include internal links where relevant but if there is anything outstanding that you know is needed please just include the links at the bottom of the post and let us know where they go. Please do not insert the link into the submission yourself as sometimes it doesn’t properly transfer over to the HTML code on the site.
>> We might edit your article before it goes live. Your work is awesome, and we are so incredibly thankful you're willing to share your insights and expertise on the site, but we will occasionally make edits (typically) related to grammar and format. Don't' worry. We will never change a significant amount of your submission without contacting and working with you first.
>> Pictures – All submissions should include 1-4 photos (maybe more) depending on the subject. If you have photos you would like to use and you own them, great! Attach them to your submission with notes on where each should go in the article. If there are pics that you don’t own but would still like to use, please include a link to where you found them. The licensing and content sharing rules on the web can be tricky, so depending on the licensing of your pics, we may not be able to include them, and if we can’t we will find something we can use.
>> Lists and Top 10 (or any number really) posts are always a favorite, i.e. “10 Pre-Departure Activities That Will Make Your Students Go "Oooooh! Ahhhhhh”," “8 Songs That Will Inspire Your Wanderlust", "Top 12 Mistakes Every First-time Advisor Makes on the Job".
>> Checking out the other blog posts on Inside Study Abroad will help you get a better idea of our style/tone and help you to tailor your post as you then see fit. This is not to say that if you have something you have never seen done on our site you shouldn’t submit it (we’re open to it all).
>> The numbers one through nine should be spelled and 10 starts numeric digits. Try to avoid starting sentences with numbers.
>> Use a ‘double s’ for possessives. (Charles’s) This contradicts the AP style gods but is recognized when writing for the web.
>> The title of a book, song, movie, etc. should be italicized not put in quotations. (i.e. The Alchemist, Red Hot Chili Peppers)
>> Please use only single spaces after periods or other punctuation at the end of a sentence.
>> Title and the featured image will make or break your post. Try to come up with an engaging title that draws people in - don't be afraid to be a little risky. If you have a pretty amazing picture, please send it over (but note the guidelines above on pics). The title is subject to change, but will always reflect the body of work you've submitted.
>> Keep it personal- Let's face it. Our readers want to be engaged and drawn into what you have to say. Make sure you address why you feel/think a certain way, drawing from your own personal experience. Of course, you need to back up what you write with some data/citations/resources/etc., but you need to connect what you're writing with why it's important to you and your experience. Be sincere and genuine - our readers will definitely notice if you're not.
Spreading the love:
The most popular articles (the ones with the most pageviews, facebook “likes”, comments, etc.) on our website will receive the most exposure on our site, newsletter, and social networks. Below are some tips to help you get the word out.
>> Once you're published, please include links to your work featured on Inside Study Abroad to any personal blog or website you have.
>> When your post goes live, please share on FB, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, etc. and use hashtags when appropriate. The more people who see your post the better it is for your exposure and ours…and the more people that come to our site, the more who will see and read your article. It's kind of a win-win all around.
>> Get comments. Engage readers by asking open ended questions, asking for opinions, commenting where appropriate, BUT above all else: stay humble. No one knows everything about study abroad - and there's not one right way for study abroad to be administered or experienced.
>> Remember - We don't promote products, companies, services, sites, etc through guest posts. So please do not use affiliate links or submit content that is blatantly a sales/promotion tactic.
>> Submitting your post to bookmarking sites like reddit, StumbleUpon, and Digg is a surefire way to increase traffic.
>> Comment on other people’s blog posts and include a link to your own if it’s relevant!
Social media is pretty much free and there for you to use it - take advantage of getting your ideas and name out there!
Still interested in writing for us? Sweet! Here’s how to submit your post:
>> Email your post to email@example.com
>> Please include the phrase "Guest Post" AND your working title in the subject line.
>> Please do not copy and paste your post into the body of the email, send it over as an attachment.
>> Pictures should be sent as attachments. YouTube and other videos can be included as links.
>> Please include a brief bio (no more than 125 words). And be sure to send over all of the links to social sites and websites you would like to include within.
>> Please send a headshot as an attachment.
>> If your post has been accepted, please expect a response within 3-5 business days. Sorry - we can't respond to every single submission. There just aren't enough hours in the day.
Thank you so much for your interest in contributing to Inside Study Abroad! We can't wait to hear what you have to say!