How to study abroad: learning your city AND extensive travel Past Review

By (ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE/LETTERS., Villanova University) - abroad from 01/03/2012 to 06/03/2012 with

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

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
it was the experience of a lifetime and i loved it because i got to travel extensively (14 countries in 5 months) but i still got to know the city like a local (i knew more about some areas than my english flat mates)

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

I felt that the classes were moderately interesting, the classwork minimal, and overall the fact that credits transfer as pass/fail allowed for more travelling and education outside the classroom.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

the bureaucracy of the administration entailed multiple visits to numerous offices in varied locations for even the most general inquiries (such as questions about the start date for a department's classes, rescheduling a final, etc.)

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

i lived in stamford street appartments which was located right across the river from my classes (where most humanities were), but if i had been in other housing it would have meant being very far (upwards of a 45 minute, non direct, bus ride)

* Food:

there was no university food: i cooked for myself

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

i lived in a flat with other students, most of whom were english, and that was nice and provided for an experience that other friends of mine at kings did not have. it required some effort on my part, but i was happy to have both the english flat mates as well as my american friends who i made

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

there doesn't seem to be an option for "does not apply" but this did not apply to me

* Safety:

there were sufficient security checks at dorms and i lived in a nice area with access to public transportation

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)

i lived the full experience as far as cultural experiences went, but i also cooked for myself instead of eating out exclusively, and maintained a stringent budget. all said, i spent about $300 a week and a total of $10,000 from january to the end of may, extensive travel included

* Was housing included in your program cost? No
* Was food included in your program cost? No
Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $300
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? go grocery shopping (experience the food and drink of the locale, but moderate between experiencing that and saving money with cooking for your self). also, if you're going to clubs, only have a drink or two there (fill in the rest in pre-drinks)


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
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?
  • MANY breaks from classes allowed for travel
  • London has a student discount for almost everything
  • Pass/fail grades take the stress off classes and allow education outside the classroom
* What could be improved?
  • Orientation to the school's website to make choosing classes more than a guessing game
  • There was no reason to move in so early: the school run orientation was a minimal effort and overall useless
  • Having Villanova sponsored events for students in England would be nice. USC did it, and my friends had a great experience with those outings (i.e. plays, dinners, weekend trips in the UK)
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? 1) 2) 3) buy a "london a-z" book (about 5 pounds or 8 dollars) to help with finding your way around the city and public transportation