Shattering Boundaries and Unforgettable Adventures Past Review

By (Finance And Economics, University of Hartford) - abroad from 01/09/2013 to 04/25/2013 with

API (Academic Programs International): Barcelona - Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Although I did learn quite a lot a better phrase would be to say that I advanced dramatically as a human being. I could write a thesis about what I learned and how everybody should do a term abroad. Of many things, I learned how to truly feel, think, and act independently. The world is at your fingertips when you study abroad, and I couldn't recommend it enough.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

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)

$50 a week baseline (cooking everything), $100 practical (buying lunch), $200/wk is reality for about everyone. More if you travel

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 250
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Cook every dinner you can. Metro instead of cabs to save money. Don't go abroad trying to be stingy and save money, it will stifle your experience. Be glad you're not paying for overpriced campus housing and spend that money on living instead. You'll probably still save money compared to studying in the USA anyway.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

The program did their role in encouraging the use of foreign language but the responsibility is on the students. One half came out speaking the language great and the other half didn't learn anything

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Advanced
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Fluent
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? Spanish 2, however, I'm a native speaker
How many hours per day did you use the language?
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Make an honest effort to communicate in the foreign language every time you can. However, if you pick a country like Czech Rep/Hungrary/Finland/etc. with a distinctly arcane language, it won't be an effective use of time to learn beyond the essentials.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • International Students
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Organized trips abroad
  • Resourcefulness
* What could be improved?
  • Affordable living help
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish somebody would have told me that the vast majority of students would be very wealthy frat/sorority upper classmen that would treat the program like an endless Spring Fling. I would have waited to go my Junior semester instead because as a Sophomore I wasn't quite ready for that.