Culture a little more shocking than expected Past Review

By (Politics, Philosophy, Brandeis University) - abroad from 09/08/2012 to 12/15/2012 with

Hansard Scholars Programme: London - Hansard Society

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Intense knowledge of UK/EU politics, first-hand experience in parliament.

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.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Somewhat disorganized but committed and well intentioned. They do a really solid job of working with the demands of program participants and the finicky nature of UK politics

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Conway hall was beautiful and central.

* Food:

It's London. There is amazing food everywhere. It's just expensive

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

It is easy to connect and integrate yourself into the culture if you are willing to make an effort.

* 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? 150/week
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Cook! Eat/drink in Portcullis House/on the Parliamentary estate!


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

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?
  • Internship in Parliament
  • Mandatory field trip to Edinburgh
  • Dissertation
* What could be improved?
  • Guidance in writing dissertation
  • Politics and public policy class
  • Access to dorm resources
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? to really invest time/energy in internship and dissertation.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Politics and Public Policy

Course Department: Politics
Instructor: Peter Caterall
Instruction Language:
Comments: This class was fairly straightforward and was filled with important information about the British policymaking process. While the subject matter of this class was very interesting and relevant to every-day work in internships, the instructor is somewhat dry and it is sometimes difficult to stay focused for lecture. There is a large amount of non-mandatory reading that is listed for the course, mostly useful for the class's one essay and final exam. Classes consist of part lecture, part class discussion centered on British/EU political history and current events. While it's possible to go into this course with very limited knowledge/understanding of UK politics, is useful to stay up-to-date on current policy and to brush up on history to better participate in class discussions.
Credit Transfer Issues: