Great opportunity to study in a different academic environment July 16, 2019

By (Middlebury College) - abroad from 10/01/2018 to 06/21/2019 with

Lincoln College, University of Oxford - Visiting Students Program

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I really liked the narrow focus of individual PPE courses at Oxford (when compared to Midd), it gave me much better insight into the topic than a more general Econ or PolSci class at Midd would do.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 6 months+

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Everyone in the administration will always try their best and they are all very helpful, however being a Visiting Student often creates some confusion and so you have to stay a bit on top of things yourself. Before I arrived there was very little information about VS course selection, reading lists etc and they didn't reach out with this info until late late summer, so I recommend being pro-active and reaching out to the college yourself (or to past Visiting Students) if you want pre-arrival information a bit earlier.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Very nice rooms. Had a room with a bed, large desk, desk chair, two separate chairs, table, dresser, shelves and wardrobe. En-suite private bathroom with shower. Oxford also still have "scouts", so housekeeping will empty your trash cans and clean your bathroom weekly.

* Food:

The food in college was okay, but do not expect a lot of healthy options. Food works through a "declining balance" system and this is non-refundable so from a budgeting perspective I highly recommend trying to eat in hall. However, meals are served during quite limited hours (do not expect the flexibility of Middlebury dining halls), and for someone who has commitments during meal hours because of lectures, sports etc there are very limited other options in-college. I therefore ended up buying a mini fridge so that I could make salads, wraps etc in my room if I got back to college after the meal services had ended.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* 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

Finances

* 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)

Language

* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • International 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?
  • Tutorial system
  • Amazing people
  • Variety of courses offered
* What could be improved?
  • Visiting Student Logistics
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Although the entire tutorial system with multiple long essays due each week sounds like a lot, since (at least for PPE) you have very few lectures and contact hours in total, you do have enough time for it all - I probably had more free time than at Midd!

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Labour Economics & Industrial Relations

Course Department: Economics/Politics
Instructor: Silvia Palano
Instruction Language:
Comments: Overall this was an enjoyable course that looked at a variety of interesting topics related to labour econ like gender inequality, income distributions, CEO pay and the importance of institutions. Very casual tutorials with an easier workload than other courses, which was nice.
Credit Transfer Issues: N/A
Course Name/Rating:

Development of the World Economy since 1800

Course Department: Economics
Instructor: Eric Chaney
Instruction Language:
Comments: Super interesting course, easy workload and great lecturer/tutor. Would highly recommend, especially if you are interested in the overlaps between political economy, sociology and economics. The tutor gave absolutely no feedback though during term, which made it very difficult to improve on essays (and estimate a final grade).
Credit Transfer Issues: N/A
Course Name/Rating:

Political Sociology

Course Department: Politics
Instructor: Spyros Kosmidis
Instruction Language:
Comments: Perhaps my favourite course during my year at Lincoln; the topics chosen by the tutor were very interesting, as the course covers newer research on a variety of interesting topics like gender and religion. Usually 1 essay per week (2000 words), and although we did not get feedback in terms of a specific grade, significant written feedback was given on all essays.
Credit Transfer Issues: N/A
Course Name/Rating:

Comperative Government

Course Department:
Instructor: Petra Schleiter
Instruction Language:
Comments: Interesting course, however I found the topic and style of this module way too theoretical and perhaps also a bit too fast for someone with limited exposure to especially the theory of politics. If you already have had comparative political science courses and love the topic, you'll probably like this course though. Min. 3 essays to write over 7 weeks, each about 3000 words. Extremely knowledgeable tutor.
Credit Transfer Issues: N/A
Course Name/Rating:

Comperative Demographic Systems

Course Department: Politics (and Human Sciences)
Instructor:
Instruction Language:
Comments: This is a really good course if you like doing demographic calculations as well as "normal" essay-based demographic study. The course has weekly lectures that were essential if you wanted to understand the problem set assigned for tutorials, as examples similar to problem set questions were worked through during lectures/classes. However, this module is split over two terms at Oxford, and the logistics of arranging tutorials for both these parts/terms was tricky, so I would maybe not recommend this course unless you *really* want to take it and have made sure that the PPE coordinator will try and schedule tutorials for both sections of the course before you start section A.
Credit Transfer Issues: N/A