An amazing learning experience! Past Review

By (ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE/LETTERS., Brigham Young University) - abroad from 01/08/2013 to 03/28/2013 with

Brigham Young University: Alcalá de Henares - Spain Study Abroad

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned how to have patience with other students, communicate better in Spanish, live in a European country, make friends with the locals, and make the best out of the situation (have an attitude of what I can give to these people, not what I can get from them). I wouldn't trade the experience for anything.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

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? No


* 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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? About 20 euros on souvenirs or foods.


* 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

There were plenty of opportunities to learn more of the language and improve, but it was completely up to the students to do so.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Intermediate
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? Spanish 106
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? Realize that you need to get out of your comfort zone and take full responsibility for what you do (or do not) learn. Nobody will spoon feed you knowledge like they do in lecture halls.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • Host Family
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
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?
  • The fellow students
  • Interacting with the locals
  • Learning Spanish
* What could be improved?
  • Awareness of the rules before breaking them.
  • Communication between students and program directors.
  • Cooperation between program directors, BYU and Alcalingua.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Madrid is colder than it seems. Bring an umbrella and rain coat!

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!