Not a year off, a year of amazing growth

More and more graduating high school students are deciding not to go straight into college, but to invest instead in their own personal development with a year of travel, language-learning, cultural exchange, and professional experience. The benefits can be enormous.

What is a gap? An investment in your future

EF Gap Year - EF Education First - Academic programs - What is a gap

Give yourself an advantage in college

A gap year doesn’t put you a year behind. It actually ensures your success in college. In fact, recent studies show gap students out-perform traditional students (see below). Many top tier schools, like Harvard, Stanford and MIT, are actively encouraging the students they accept to defer enrollment for a year to have a gap experience.

EF Gap Year - Program Guide - What is a gap

Return home with documented skills

An EF Gap Year allows you begin college with language fluency, volunteer service  experience, an international internship, and proven leadership skills. Thanks to our educational partnership with Southern New Hampshire University, you can even place out of college-level classes and earn advanced credit toward graduation.

EF Gap Year - What is a gap

Grow tremendously as a young adult

While you’re away, you’ll become more self-confident, self-reliant, worldly, and mature. You’ll also be a better independent thinker, communicator and problem-solver with a cross-cultural understanding far surpassing that of your friends who stayed at home!

Gap students perform better in college

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Be better prepared for college

Gap year students are more enthusiastic about and better prepared for university than traditional students, according to a recent Middlebury College/UNC Chapel Hill survey.

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Earn better grades

Gap year students often earn better grades in college than traditional students. On average, their GPAs are .1 to .4 higher, according Robert Claggett, former dean of Middlebury College.

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Experience long-term benefits

Gap year students see a positive effect on their academic performance in college which appears to endure over all four years, according to Robert Claggett, former dean of Middlebury College.

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Be more socially responsible

The majority of gap students (72%) are inspired to become more active local or global volunteers, according to a recent survey conducted by the American Gap Association.

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Become a campus leader

Gap year students tend to engage more in campus life than traditional students. They also take on more leadership roles around campus, according to a recent Middlebury/UNC survey.

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Enjoy higher career satisfaction

Post-college, gap year students tend to achieve higher satisfaction in their new careers, according to a recent Haigler and Nelson survey.

“For nearly 40 years, Harvard has recommended [students] postpone entrance to college, indeed proposing it in the letter of admission...The results have been uniformly positive.”

WILLIAM FITZSIMMONS
DEAN OF ADMISSIONS & FINANCIAL AID, HARVARD COLLEGE

“Universities mostly understand that students who have completed a Gap Year will be more invested, better community members, and have better employability partially as a result of their Gap Year.”

GAP YEAR ASSOCIATION

“Students who had taken a Gap Year were more likely to graduate with higher grade point averages than observationally identical individuals who went straight to college.”

JOE O’SHEA
GAP YEAR: HOW DELAYING COLLEGE CHANGES PEOPLE IN WAYS THE WORLD NEEDS

“New research shows the skills learnt on gap years are
a key to success in later life.”

ANDREW JONES
“MAKE OR BREAK TIME,” THE GUARDIAN

“For many students, a gap year is about crystallising their decision-making; developing self-directed and self-regulation skills, broadening their competencies and self-organisation and perhaps their confidence.”

ANDREW MARTIN
LEAD AUTHOR OF A 2013 UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY STUDY

“Study abroad is basic training for the 21st century.”

INSTITUTE OF INTERNATIONAL EDUCATION

Questions? Speak with an EF Gap Year Advisor.

   

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