I don't know how I ever expected to learn Chinese without this program Past Review

By (Chinese Language and Culture, The University of Texas at Austin) - abroad from 02/04/2015 to 05/29/2015 with

CET Beijing

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Language experience and necessary skills when placed in a new environment

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 6 months+

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

This language program was pleasingly extensive and rigorous.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The staff are open and available for academic and emotional support.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The new facilities were very comfortable and close to classes.

* Food:

I miss the food the most!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Chinese roommates were all very helpful and happy to show everyone in the program where to shop, eat, buy train tickets, etc.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

The administrators make health care information readily available in case of all emergencies.

* Safety:

Only complaint was something which probably can't be helped for another couple years, but the pollution was a bit detrimental to students' health. All safety precautions were covered by on-site staff, including readily available masks and safety information sessions, so all students were advised and protected to the best of the program's abilities.

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)

Food was made very cheaply available by the host university, city transportation is incredibly inexpensive, and learning to haggle can go a long way with most other purchases!

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? Less than $40, without excursions into the city.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Learn to haggle! If you can, always invite Chinese roommates out to shop or see a movie, as well as becoming some of your best friends they can be an essential resource in saving money. Always keep your city public transportation card filled with yuan, the transportation system is incredibly extensive and much cheaper than taxis. Also keep track of how much you take out of ATMs, Beijing has some establishments which accept card, but the country runs on hard cash.


* 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

They aren't kidding when they call this program "Intensive".

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Intermediate
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? 3rd semester Chinese
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? Chinese roommates are always there to help! They are wonderful people, and love to learn about you as you learn about them! Also, the host university is filled with curious students and professors, as well as some of the nicest people in the surrounding area. Become friends with every cab driver, shop owner, and student that you meet, it's surprisingly easy and amazing for your speaking skills!

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • 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?
  • Program-planned excursions
  • The food!
  • The people!
* What could be improved?
  • Lessons could be mixed up a little
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? There are more friends to make than you'd think.

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!