Copenhagen: Best 4 Months of My Life. Past Review

By (Political Science and Government., Tulane University) for

DIS Copenhagen: Semester

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I don't even know where to being. Definitely changed my perspective on the world, different cultures, and my own life and experiences in New Orleans. I don't think it altered my academic path or future plans, except for many more visits to Copenhagen in the future.

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.

The system was similar to the American system since it is a program meant for International students, overwhelmingly American in majority. The workload was appropriate but challenging. Much of the learning experience happened outside of the classroom but still organized and structured, which is something great about the academics at DIS.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Like pretty much everything else in Denmark, DIS runs like a well oiled machine. Any member of the administration that I dealt with was knowledgeable, helpful, and accessible. They are very used to dealing with American students and are familiar with our education system. The program was surprisingly large at 800+ students. But, the classes were a good size, usually around 30 students. It really didn't feel as big as it was and I never felt lost in the crowd. One thing to note about DIS is that because it is a program meant for American students it very much holds your hand throughout the abroad process. This can be nice and convenient at times but at the same time American students there can fall into a trap of reliance on the program by not asserting any independence while living in a foreign country.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Comment on the language acquisition in the living situation. Even people I knew who lived in host families did not acquire much of the language, so this is not a hit against dorm living. This is because of the nature of the Danish language. No one really goes to Denmark expecting to learn a significant amount of it. It is incredibly challenging and everyone in Denmark is 100% fluent in English. My neighborhood, Osterbro, was a family orientated neighborhood and like the rest of Copenhagen, was incredibly safe. It had all of the conveniences and amenities one would expect, like grocery stores, cafes, etc. It was about a 20 minute commute by bus from class, which made it one of the farther shared housing options but I didn't mind it. It is still closer than most housing options like host families, and my neighborhood was great. The facilities were nice, though the kitchens were definitely as small as they possibly could be and still be functional. We were provided with all of the necessary items. Our RA's were fantastic and helpful as well and the other students living there got along remarkably well.

* Food:

Kitchens could be larger, even putting in one more cabinet would make a difference.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* 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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? Groceries were covered by a food stipend for the most part. Additionally, transit passes are provided. But, Copenhagen is over the top expensive. Despite, DIS providing these things I still probably spent $150 a week. Not including traveling. I'm still giving it one globe because I know many people who spent way more than me, I really put myself on a budget and still spent a fortune.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Can't think of anything.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? No Danish background.
Language acquisition improvement?

We took Danish class. While a challenging language and not practical outside of Denmark, it was interesting to pick up a few phrases that could be used in everyday interactions on the street or in a store. I practiced occasionally with Danish friends and in class with American students. Overall English was the language I spoke in 95% of interactions since most would end in switching to English anyways. Denmark is an incredibly English friendly country. But, I still found Danish class and learning some of the language to be worthwhile.

If applicable, to what degree did your living situation aid your language acquisition?

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans


The Tulane office has a very close relationship with DIS. We trust that DIS will give students the information and assistance they need. It would seem redundant for Tulane to repeat what DIS provides our students. We also encourage students to study abroad but we want to make sure that there is an academic interested involved. The application process may seem like jumping through hoops but we want to make sure that students take studying abroad seriously.

deleted-1489833873deleted-1488902850Tulane May 10, 2011