Is there WiFi? Past Review

By (Brandeis University) - abroad from 06/09/2016 to 08/12/2016 with

CET Beijing

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
The experience was very worthwhile. I learned a lot about Chinese culture, and I learned to survive on my own in a foreign country.

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.

The courses were very interesting. There were on-site trips in addition to readings for all of our courses. In addition, the classes we very small and interactive.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

I liked that I had a lot of freedom and independence in China, but we were originally informed of multiple trips and opportunities we would have that were later cancelled.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The hotel room was maintained well by the hotel staff. I also really liked my roommate.

* Food:

The food was not included in the tuition, but there were many good restaurants and places to purchase food that was both delicious and cheap around campus.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I mostly spent time with my fellow classmates and not with any of the local students. I was also less integrated due to the lack of a language commitment, so other than speaking to locals, and mostly spoke English to my friends and my roommate.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I didn't require any vaccinations for this program. Interestingly enough, our program allowed us to receive traditional Chinese medicine and Western medicine covered by the insurance.

* Safety:

The city was mostly safe, considering I had to travel alone to work independently everyday. I did have the unfortunate experience of being molested while commuting to work, but the experience I had was not common.

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

I would have liked to improve my Chinese more with the Language Intensive program, but I really enjoyed my internships and learning about Traditional Chinese Medicine.


* 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 and transportation and very inexpensive in China. The program however, requires additional fees to access internet, laundry services, the gym, and the pool.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? I probably spent around 200-300 yuan on food and transportation every week.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? I recommend only carrying the amount of money you intend to spend on any occasion, and to split costs with people as much as possible (taxis, food, etc.)


* 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 was no language pledge, but during our Chinese class and Chinese Table, we were required to only speak Chinese, as well as on particular floors of the building.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Beginner
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? Chinese 20B
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? I recommend trying to practice speaking the language with your roommate, even if he/she speaks English very well. I also recommend trying to speak Chinese with friends when possible.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Hotel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
* 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? 10+

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • People
  • Food
  • Tourism
* What could be improved?
  • Organization
  • Scheduling
  • More Activites
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish that I knew that the WiFi was so awful in the dorms. My roommate wound up buying me a router so I could purchase data.

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 Avid Adventurer
The wardrobe you packed was better suited for a semester of camping than club hopping. Outdoorsy, you might forgo a crazy night out for an early all-day adventure. You'd rather take in the rich culture of an old town than the metropolis of a modern city, but for you getting off the grid is ideal.