A Fantastic Semester Living in Copenhagen August 03, 2016

By (Middlebury College) - abroad from 01/15/2016 to 05/13/2016 with

DIS Copenhagen: Semester

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I became more independent; I was exposed to many more American perspectives beyond those at an elite liberal arts institution; I absorbed the societal values/perspectives of Danish culture.

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.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Perfect execution. Thorough communication.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Very.

* Food:

Food stipend is laughable in comparison to Copenhagen food prices.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Would have appreciated more effort on DIS's part to solve this problem.

* 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

To be able to live the Danish lifestyle for four months was so special. The Danish societal attitudes and lifestyle are particularly prone to happiness, work/life balance, and liberal attitudes. The Danish emphasis on the group and work/life balance are lessons I will apply to my own lifestyle and choices for the rest of my life.

Finances

* 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? Probably between $100-300.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Use your food stipend as wise and judiciously as possible... Try to cook for yourself as much as possible.

Language

* 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? 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? Use it when out and about. A language is meant to be practiced and used outside of the classroom!

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* 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?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Administration
  • Work/Life Balance
  • Housing Arrangements
* What could be improved?
  • Separating students whose grades matter from those who don't. The result is that the classroom environment severely suffers.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Copenhagen prices! But i suppose that is somewhat a product of my own lack of true preparation.

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!

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

European Art of the 20th Century

Course Department:
Instructor: Andrea Homann
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Absolutely amazing. And we took several field trips to art museums around Copenhagen. So practical and such an amazing instructor.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Development Economics

Course Department: Economics
Instructor: David Possen
Instruction Language: English
Comments: On par with a Middlebury economics course---taught by a former Yale professor who combined his teaching methods with the Danish system. An emphasis on student discussion paired perfectly with the complex developmental economic theory we learned. Such an incredible course which was capped off with a real world proposal for a World Bank project in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Danish Language & Culture

Course Department:
Instructor: Nina Benedikte Lahav
Instruction Language: Danish; English
Comments: Very valuable in understanding Danish culture. Also enhanced our ability to connect with Danish society. So happy this was a Middlebury requirement.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Who's Watching: Surveillance, Art, Culture

Course Department:
Instructor: Karen Søilen
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Very relevant field trips. Classroom discussion, in my view, was a bit too abstract and not grounded in true theory. Rather, student's personal experiences and views dominated discussion rather than the material itself.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

European Politics

Course Department:
Instructor: Jacob Buksty
Instruction Language:
Comments: Amazing teacher, and taught by a true, former Danish politician. Could not have asked for a more first-hand experience and classroom environment.
Credit Transfer Issues: