Valencia: The Hidden Spanish City Past Review

By (Spanish/Secondary Education, The College of New Jersey) for

ISA Study Abroad in Valencia, Spain

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
My program was great for cultural awareness because I got to learn about the Spanish culture by living in Valencia and from my host family. The only reason I would choose a different program is because I did not find the classes challenging.

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.

There was little work to do, and I was very annoyed by the low academic standard. Our classes were not with Spanish students, and often the professors would attempt to speak in English if someone did not understand. I did not feel challenged at all, and I spent the majority of the class time writing postcards or writing in my journal while still receiving 9's and 10's. The teaching methods were not very different from those in the United States, but there was one professor who frequently cut students off as they were speaking.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

All our directors were easily accessible and extremely friendly. They felt more like family.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

We had an excellent host family because they had grown up children, so they were focused on us. The only bad thing was that we were quite far from the university (about a 45 minute walk), and we were far from the nightlife.

* Food:

The food was very good, but do not be afraid to tell your host family when you don't like something!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

We were lucky enough to be in Valencia for Las Fallas, which is a very important festival. It was an amazing experience to see the city on fire and all the fallas built and the flowers that made up the Virgin Mary.

* 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? 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)


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
Language acquisition improvement?

We were in Spain, so with our host family and in everyday interactions we needed to use the language. When we were with other ISA students, we usually spoke English. I came with a high level of fluency, so my language skills only improved by three points based on the test we took at the beginning and end of the program.

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

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? If you're going abroad to learn/study a language, sssess your language level and be sure to pick a program that will help further your skills in that language. If you are advanced, you should try to find a program that puts you in classes with students that speak that language.