Challenging, Rewarding, Extremely Educational, Life Changing, Eye Opening: Study Abroad. Past Review

By (Biology, General., University of Pittsburgh - Pittsburgh) for

AIFS: Prague - Charles University

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
The best part about studying abroad is that you get to know a knew way of life other than that we live in the U.S. There are OTHER ways of going about things, whether they differ dramatically or very little from the way we do things. Since studying abroad, I am enthusiastic about learning a second language.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

Workload was significantly less, however I was taking less demanding classes. The grading seemed to be about the same, but perhaps a little more lenient. Teaching methods were comparable to that in the US.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Very accessible as there was an office in town we could go to at anytime and ask question or use computers. Very knowledgable about Prague, as they were natives.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Neighborhood was great, as it was part residential and college campus. Dorm was creepy though and really confusing to navigate through at first. Walls were very thin so you could hear outside noise. Because the plumbing system was terrible, a rolled up towel had to be placed outside of the shower to absorb overflowing water.

* Food:

Food was great, but fruits and vegetables were rarely served with meals, so we had to get these at the grocery market

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Everything was amazing.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

It was safe as long as you practiced common sense.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
Language acquisition improvement?

I could practice with everyone else in my program, native students at the dorm etc., and, while I probably could have gotten by with English at many places, it would not have been as satisfying so I tried to use the host countries language as much as possible, even though what I knew was limited.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • International Students
  • Local Students

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? If you'd like to live in a relatively affordable city that can give you an sense of what living in a non-Capitalism country was like (therefore widening your understanding of the world) pick this program. Also, if your not adverse to a bit of a challenge, this is a great choice.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

(Mostly Czech) Photography and Genius Loci

Course Department:
Instructor: Jan Starý
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Exposed me to the art of photography for the first time, and for me that is priceless. It's any art form anyone can practice, so therefore it's great. I had absolutely zero interest or desire to practice art photography (nor really considered it an art), until meeting fellow student's who were into it and took this class.
Credit Transfer Issues: No.
Course Name/Rating:

“MITTELEUROPA” Germany and East Central Europe in the 19th and 20th Century

Course Department:
Instructor: Gaelle Vassogne
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Great history course that gave me a different perspective and, hence, understanding of Nazi Germany and the causes of World War II.
Credit Transfer Issues: No.