Past Review

By (Finance/BHP, The University of Texas at Austin) for

Ecole Superieure De Commerce De Paris: Paris - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained an appreciation of the quality of life and low cost of living in Texas. I decided last minute to study abroad and got into the Paris program when someone dropped out, so it was not my first choice of program for that semester. If I could redo it I would go Asia where things are cheaper and the weather is warmer.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

I thought the comments from returned student surveys gave me an accurate representation of what the academics would be like, and my experience lived up to the expectations. Classes were longer than at UT, but met only once per week. The only grades were a midterm (for some classes) and the final.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Most school administrators were impossible to access because they had too few hours on campus and tons of international students needed their time. The administrators were not accessible by email.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

A very small apartment on the 5th floor of a building in the 11th arondissement. <br /><br /> Our French landlord was very uptight and charged us almost all the deposit we put down even though we were all girls and kept the place nice. The apartment was within walking distance of the school, which I wanted, and the area of town was authentically Paris (not touristy), which I wanted. Even though it wasn't great, I'm sure there are a lot of apartments in Paris that are worse, and the private dorm seemed even worse.

* Food:

The food was expensive - normal lunches were sandwiches of ham and cheese on a baguette, all of which I could buy at the grocery store for a fraction of the price the cafes and bakeries charge. The grocery stores had small selection but I got used to eating the few things they did have.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The field trips put on by a student group were expensive

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

I didn't have any health issues. I felt safe because I never left my apartment alone at dark.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? No


* 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)

Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Paris is just an expensive place to live, and I knew it would be


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
Language acquisition improvement?

The French language classes were held only on Fridays when there were no other classes, and I was often traveling on Fridays

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

* Did you study abroad through an exchange program or did you directly enroll in the foreign university? Exchange

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

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? If you have been to Europe before, go somewhere else. If you haven't been to Europe, save a lot of money to attend this program and go to a different country every weekend.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Financial Institutions Management

Course Department: Finance, FD-10
Instructor: Michael Troege
Instruction Language: English
Comments: The class consisted of 10 3-hour lectures and a final. The instructor frequently got off-topic and talked too much about one subject so we got extremely behind in the class, and then on the last class day, same day as the final, he squeezed in a bunch of new material which in my opinion was the most difficult of the course because it was the first time we were taught calculations, and then that material was on our test that same class period, making it very difficult to do well. Only course materials were the lecture slides which he passed out at each class. The grade consisted of the final plus a 10-page group paper on a finance topic of your choice (or his choice as it turned out for my group).
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Positional Bargaining: Negotiation

Course Department: OA-01
Instructor: Constantin Bjerke
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This course seemed exciting from the title although I did not end up enjoying it. The course is basically three group debates spread out over 3 3-hour class periods each, and for each one there are two teams who represent either side of a big company trying to make a deal. There is little to no teacher instruction - the instructor was usually on his laptop or talking on the phone while the students were in the classroom "negotiating." The grade consists of attendance and participation as well as an easy presentation about yourself at the end. I took this for an easy A and it turned out to be the class I dreaded most.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

International Finance

Course Department: Finance, FD-08
Instruction Language: English
Comments: The instructor was American so this class was structured a little more familiarly. There was a midterm and a final, and before each the instructor would hand out a practice test that was formatted like the actual test with a few work out problems and a few short answer. The short answer were almost impossible to get right and often came out of the textbook. We were required to read hundreds of pages in the textbook just for the few questions on the test yet he never talked about it in class. I wish I had taken this class at UT instead of abroad.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Commodities Risk Management

Course Department: Finance, FA-0D
Instructor: Steve Ohana
Instruction Language: English
Comments: The instructor is French and can be difficult to understand. However, this class was very rewarding and I learned more than I thought I would. There was a midterm and a final, and the instructor did a good job of practicing the type of problems that would be on the test. The class required more of a time commitment, although maybe I just committed more time because I enjoyed it the most. I would definitely recommend this class.
Credit Transfer Issues: