My Seoul Searching Success Past Review

By (Marketing., Bentley University) - abroad from 08/19/2012 to 12/21/2012 with

CIEE: Seoul - Arts and Sciences

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Personal growth, friendships from around the world, cultural experience, everything. You can't put enough words to describe this experience. It was definitely worthwhile. I wish Bentley made an effort to promote these non-traditional programs to the student body because it really is more rewarding than I ever thought it would be.

Review Photos

CIEE: Seoul - Arts and Sciences Photo CIEE: Seoul - Arts and Sciences Photo CIEE: Seoul - Arts and Sciences Photo CIEE: Seoul - Arts and Sciences Photo

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.

Some classes were easy, others were hard such as the Korean Language class.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Very small living quarters for two people. It's a shock when you first walk in but get used to it very quickly.

* Food:

Korean food is amazing and tastes great. If you love being a foodie, Seoul is perfect.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

CIEE brought us on various trips that helped to experience the local culture.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

If anyone ever had a problem, the suggested place to go to was the hospital. I don't recall there being a "Wellness Center" for the campus or a university doctors office.

* Safety:

I could walk around at any time in the day and feel completely safe. I misplaced a few of my personal items and ended up being able to find it because strangers were kind enough to bring it to an office for me so I can find it.

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)

Depending what food you want and where you want to go, it can be costly. Some weeks I buckled down and ate like a true poor college student so I could make up for other weeks that I spent more and traveled to other places around Korea and outside of Korea.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 130$ on food and drink, 10$ transportation, 10-50$other expenses
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Make a rough financial plan and try your hardest to stick to it. Make no excuses. Students go abroad to experience a new country and culture, so one thing I did was..If you spent more on week because you went somewhere you didn't plan to, then use the weeks that you don't plan to travel or go anywhere new to buckle down and bring yourself back to your financial plan. It's easy to get caught up in the moment and before you know it, you might have spent twice as much than you originally planned because you were so caught off guard.


* 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

I had to use it in class all the time. It wasn't a requirement out of class because Seoul was very English friendly.

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? Beginner
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? None
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? Bentley didn't have Korean for Rosetta stone before I attended CIEE Seoul, but now they do so that will be really helpful. Learning vocabulary was also important for the class so if students can pick up on that it will be good. There are many videos/tutorials/blogs that can help to learn Korean while having fun as well.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • 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?
  • Independence
  • Non-traditional
  • Got to explore the culture in different ways
* What could be improved?
  • Give me more time!!!! 4 months is not enough in Korea
  • Evaluate the Korean Language Institute aspect
  • Some classes required too much work
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? That Korean / Hangeul is not a simple language to learn. It really takes time, patience and hours out of class to review.

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 Outright Urbanite
A social butterfly, you're happiest in bustling cities with hip people, and took advantage of all it had to offer. You enjoyed the nightlife, and had fun going out dancing, and socializing with friends. Fun-loving and dressed to the nines, you enjoyed discovering new restaurants, shops, cafes, and bars in your host country.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Korean Language Institute

Course Department: KLI
Instructor: Various professors
Instruction Language: Korean/Hangeul
Comments: This course was really challenging for me. It took a lot of effort to simply just try to understand some of the material that was taught. This class was strictly at one pace for the whole institution for all of the students in each level. It didn't take into consideration any learning factors such as the level of Korean students were in, their paces they pick up new information, etc. It also was more complicated for me to learn in this class because throughout the semester, my class was provided 6-8 different Korean professors which includes 5 regular teachers that were switched every 4-6 weeks of classes, and 2 substitute teachers. We were assessed primarily from our midterm and final exams, and a small percentage of our grades came from vocabulary quizzes.
Credit Transfer Issues: I am not sure yet, I have to wait to receive my grades. However, I failed to check my grades at the university's window of availability so I am trying to receive my grades through the office directly.