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Gap year

gap year noun

  1. a period, typically an academic year, taken by a student as a break between school and university or college education.

There’s a lot to think about when deciding if you want to take a gap year. If you do decide to take one, the main thing is that you use your time wisely. You might want to think about:

  • your long term plans – this might be what career you’d like
  • your short term plans – this might be your steps after the gap year (for example, university or college)
  • what opportunities are out there? You might need to research your goals, and what is out there that could help you reach these
  • do you have what you need for these opportunities? This might be money or support from your family.

If used well, your gap year could help you to learn new skills, gain work experience or travel to gain life experience. This can look good on applications for college, university and work. The main thing is that you have something positive to show for it.

There are lots of options that could suit a gap year. Which option is best for you really does depend on your personal situation. Think about your short and long-term goals. Is there anything that might help you to reach these?

It also depends on what you might enjoy doing in your gap year. Options could be to:

  • find paid work
  • travel
  • build on your skills whilst living at home – this could be through volunteering
  • study abroad

All of these options can be available if you are taking a gap year.

For more information on taking a gap year, check out this link and watch the following film clip.