Work hard, play hard Past Review

By (Spanish and Iberian Studies., Western Washington University) - abroad from 08/31/2013 to 11/21/2013 with

CEA CAPA Education Abroad: Alicante, Spain

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained invaluable language skills that I never would have been able to experience without studying abroad. I also learned a lot about adaptation.

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? 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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $40
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Avoid English menus and tourist traps. You'll use your language skills more and save money!


* 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

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? Fluent
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? Spanish 302
How many hours per day did you use the language? 10+
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Do not stay in a bubble with other American exchange students. Branch out, be bold with making mistakes, and try and make friends with locals.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* 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?
  • Using the language
  • The location
  • Having class with international students
* What could be improved?
  • More rigorous academics
  • More support prior to departure
  • More linking of current students to alumni
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? This will be the best time of your life. Take advantage of every second of it. Don't overpack. Don't be afraid to be wrong. Use your language as much as possible. Don't talk too much to people at home, you will get homesick. Keep in touch with friends so that you can visit! And really be ready for reverse culture shock.

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 Nearly Native or Trail Blazer
Craving the most authentic experience possible, perhaps you lived with a host family or really got in good with the locals. You may have felt confined by your program requirements and group excursions. Instead, you'd have preferred to plan your own trips, even skipping class to conduct your own 'field work.'