Study Abroad in London: So Ridiculously Worth the Paperwork Past Review

By (Biochemistry, Biophysics and Molecular Biology., Austin College) for

King's College London: London - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I wouldn't change my experience for the world. It is a cliche statement, but it is so true. I loved all of my experience. While the start of my program sucked because Arcadia seemed unorganized, the second that I moved into my dorm, everything was great. I learned to be more independent and more outgoing. The experience really did change me for the better and advise anyone who is considering studying abroad to do it.

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.

The grading system was hard to grasp. In the UK, an 70% or above is an A, but only graduate level essays will get you an 80% or higher, so the grading scale can mislead you if you don't realize this. Your tests also get graded my different people, so you may get a higher or lower grade than someone else who wrote the same quality essay as you. Also, many classes only have on exam for the entire semester that determines your final grade, so be sure to study or else you'll be screwed when you try to cram for a semester's worth of information a week before your exam.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Registration at King's College was ridiculous. I stood in line for 2 hours (no exaggeration). The students running the registration said that people showed up for the wrong registration time and that was why it was taking so long, but I don't see why they couldn't turn those people away and cut down on the wait time; it made no sense. Then after waiting 2 hours, you had to get into a different set of lines to do separate parts of the registration process, so it ended up taking 3 hours.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Everyone, study abroad and local students, on the floor bought cooking equipment. We had our own kitchen. It was great. We all had to buy/bring sheets and towels as well, but a mattress and pillow was provided. We also had cleaners that came every weekday morning. Everyone on our floor got along great; really it was the perfect living arrangements.

* Food:

I can't say that I ate too healthy, but that is because I'm not too responsible with my diet. A couple of my flat-mates were health freaks, so I got a lot of my vegetables via them (aka, they were disgusted how I only ate fajitas or curry chicken, so they added broccoli or humus to my plate). But if you have a kitchen and want to eat cheap, shop at Sainsbury and Tesco and do their 3 for $10 meat deals. Also, all the supermarkets have reduced prices on food later in the evening, so go shopping at 7pm-10pm and you'll find reduced yogurt and fruit.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I studied in London, so travel to Europe was sooooo cheap. I got a round trip flight to Paris for $45. As long as you buy ahead of time, you can get cheap tickets to anywhere in Europe. It is fantastic!

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

London is one of the safest cities in the world and it's always busy, so there was never any concern walking around late in London. Also the ambulance are quick to respond. We had a girl on our floor go to the hospital for alcohol poisoning, and we had a nurse on hand in our dorm to help us until the paramedics got there.

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? I have no idea to be honest. I was so under budget food-vise during my first couple of weeks that I stopped keeping track. But I am a 5'2" girl, so I don't require that much food. I don't know how much some of my guy friends had to spend on food, but it was usually a lot. But I bought in bulk and didn't shop unless I was low on food or I wanted some junk food. Shop at Sainsbury and Tesco, and avoid M&S Food, and you should be able to stay on budget. Most of my budget went to traveling abroad and going to places in the UK like Stonehenge.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Read my above comments.


How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

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  • Local Students
  • International Students
  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • New friends and experinces
* What could be improved?
  • .
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Do it! Anyone would benefit from studying abroad in London. As long as you are willing to make connections and experience new things, then you need to this once in your life.