London and Limerick. The perfect Abroad Year. Past Review

By (Psychology, University of Maine - Augusta) for

CISabroad (Center for International Studies): Limerick - Semester in Limerick

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I came back a completely different person. I have found out who I really am. I now have friends all over my country, and many others. I need them in my life, and they have helped me become who I am now. When I went to London, I got into a dance company and double majored in Dance and Psychology. These decisions are crucial to my future plans to become a Dance Therapist. I also re-realized how much I love to dance and learn new dance styles. I plan to go back to London for Grad School now.

Review Photos

CISabroad (Center for International Studies): Limerick - Semester in Limerick Photo

Personal Information

If you took classes at multiple universities, list those universities here: Roehampton University, London (Fall) Limerick University (Spring)
How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

Workload- It is much less than American students are used to, until Final Exams time. There is no continuous assessment for most classes. There is also no attendance taken for most classes. There will be one large paper, that is 100 percent (or almost) of your grade that is due within the last week or exams week. Grading System- The grading system is completely different. In London, the grading system is very hard and one would have to ask the school to provide them with the transfer. One will never get above a 70 in a class. There are Firsts, 2.1, 2.2, etc. In Ireland, the grades are again different. Below a 40 is failing and again one will rarely get above a 70. Grades are in A, B1, B2 format. Teaching System- I feel that the teachings for my Psychology classes in London were very philosophical. If was always on the subject WHAT IF? and if the mental problems really existed, unstead of how to treat them because they DO exist approach that we have in the States. "Are anxiety disorders real? or are people just stressed?" Things like that. It can get frustrating if one does not expect it and think about the subject from that point of view. Ireland is very similar in the teaching methods. There is a lecture, then many small tutorials for each class. International students can pick the one that can attend. The Irish students have no choice in the classes they take each term. Once they pick their major, all of the classes are decided for their 4 years. There are many classes for International students (Irish language, folklore, Irish Music and Dance) Educational System- England has UNI for 3 years only. The Irish are usually abroad for most majors in their 3rd year, so there are less classes for 3rd years, but you can take any year.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

In London- Valerie is a very busy person and had many students to look after. I was able to go to her Office a few times for faxing, questions and the like. I also emailed her and always got a prompt reply. Ireland- The International Office there was amazing! There were 6+ women who worked there and ALWAYS could help you. I had to fax many things home and each time I just had to walk in and was done in 5minutes. I also received many emails from them about what was happening around campus and in the international community there.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

London- There are many different living buildings around campus, and 4 different colleges to live in. I lived in Shaw house in Digby Stuart. This had 6 singles, and a common den and kitchen. There is a full fridge, and full freezer for everyone. There is a small bathroom, bathroom with a tub, and shower room at the end of the hallway. The international office will provide sheets, pillow etc. They also give everyone cookware on the first day. There is a bus into town, or it is only a 10 minute walk into Roehampton Village. It is also a 15 minute or so walk to Barnes station which will bring you into Central London (Waterloo). UL in Limerick- I lived in Dromroe Village. There are flats with 6 singles, ensuite (with their own bathroom each) The den and kitchen are huge and contain anything you would need. The fridge and freezer are small, but it works. Sheets and cookware are provided, and you do not need to buy them. There is a bus station on campus that goes into Limerick City. The JJ Kavanaugh bus also comes there, which goes to Shannon and Dublin airports. It is very handy.

* Food:

London- The food on campus is good. Since there is a kitchen in your flat, I rarely ate out. The students union had cheap good pub food (chips, burgers etc)The Library also had a coffee shop setup, but it can get expensive if you are eating there all of the time. In Roehampton Village there is a very good bakery. There is also Favourite Chicken, which is cheap fast food and good once in a while. In Ireland, there are many places to eat on campus. Stables has food for most of the day, and it is a good place for pints at night. Scholars is a great place to meet friends for lunch. It is low key and had cheap and good food, Along with coffee, tea etc. The Eden Cafe in the main building is quite expensive. It is easier to just make food in your flat most days.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Anytime you go abroad, it is an extreme cultural change. Both places were amazing for me. Try to meet as many locals as you can. In Ireland I met a lady and her daughter on a train from Dublin to Limerick. I then later went to stay with her and her family for a weekend. It was probably one of the best experiences I have ever had.

* 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)

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • Local Students

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? The world is just too big to stay in one spot. Travel as much as you can, but still just hang out with your local friends for a few weekends. Get into clubs and see as much of the country as you can. Don't get caught up with being different, become one of them.