Past Review

By (International Relations and Affairs., Tufts University) for

IFSA: Oxford - Oxford University

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Oxford is the most magical, stimulating place I have ever been. Personally, intellectually, and socially, I grew a tremendous amount and really became more empowered from the Oxford experience.

Personal Information

The term and year this program took place: Full-Year 2007

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

Most stimulating academic experience I have ever had - challenging, yes. But not too challenging that it is impossible or stressful to do. I actually received a better overall GPA at Oxford than I did at Tufts!

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

I did not really use the program administration after orientation, but they always let me know that they were there if I needed anything and were very helpful and on top of it with regard to transferring my grades and getting them to the Tufts administration.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Butler offers students to live in a single or double dorm. I highly recommend living in a single, as the only students who live in doubles are the american visiting students. NO oxford students live in doubles. And the single is the same size as a double at Tufts. The dorms, or "staircases" as they are called is a great way to meet oxford students as you are living on the same floor and sharing a kitchen with oxford students. <br /><br /> I went to St Catherines college in Oxford, and what was great about Catz (what they call St Catherines) is that all three years of students live on campus, in dorms. Each room had their own bathroom (yes, amazing!!), huge windows, and LOTS of space. And location is fantastic because you are living on college. Also, a "scout" comes and takes your trash out everyday, and also vacuums and washes your sheets once a week (a definite plus).

* Food:

Despite its reputation, English food is really quite good. They love their potatoes and clotted cream on desserts. Food is served in the dining hall for breakfast lunch and dinner, but each floor also has their own kitchen (although these kitchens are typically small), so you have many options for food.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

As I mentioned above, get involved in as much as you can outside of the academics. Youll also find that this helps you academically, as it gives you more structure to your schedule.

* Safety:

I didnt have any health problems throughout the year, so cant address the first question. However, I definitely felt incredibly safe at Oxford, to the point where I was comfortable walking around at night by myself if I had to.

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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 50-80 pounds per week
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? When I was living in England, the dollar was REALLY weak, so everything was twice as much money. I tried to go to the grocery store once a week and spent about 20 pounds there, laundry costs about 5 pounds (an unanticipated cost), drinks are usually 3-5 pounds, and then there are other costs that just come up like coffee through the day, going out to eat, etc. I didnt go shopping pretty much all year though.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Definitely apply to a Butler program in Oxford if you are thinking about studying abroad in England!


Wow- awesome feedback, Naomi! Thanks so much for sharing.

Mike August 20, 2009