Go for culture and people, not for the academics Past Review

By (Economics., Wellesley College) - abroad from 09/29/2011 to 06/07/2012 with

London School of Economics (LSE): London - General Course, Year-Long Study Abroad Programme

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained a lot more personally and culturally than academically. I learned more from debating and listening to my European friends and their perspective on politics and free markets than from the often scripted and uncaring professors in lectures. By living in an urban city, I also became a lot more independent--it's completely different from Wellesley's dining halls and great support network. Traveling around Europe trained me to respond quickly and adapt to different situations while soaking in the phenomenal and inspiring culture.

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

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

I don't know about other halls, but I lived in High Holborn, which was self-catering so I cooked the entire year. It was no problem, because there were several grocery stores nearby.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Though living in central London, it's a very safe city.

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)

It's London, so everything is very expensive. I used about $500 per week on living expenses.

* 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? 100-200 dollars
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Cooking for yourself and eating in helps a lot.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

* Did you study abroad through an exchange program or did you directly enroll in the foreign university? Direct Enrollment

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

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

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • 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?
  • being in central London
  • gaining a different perspective on economics from diverse peers
  • traveling in Europe
* What could be improved?
  • academic support
  • financial help from LSE or Wellesley
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? How disconnected LSE economics courses are from Wellesley economics courses.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Principles of Finance

Course Department: Finance
Instruction Language: English
Comments: I would only recommend this course to someone who already has a background in finance or is very interested/motivated for this subject, as a lot of independent studying is required. The resources are all provided, but don't expect any personalized help. Just hope that you have a great TA who actually cares. Otherwise, this course is very scripted and fast-paced.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Economy, Society, and Space

Course Department: Geography
Instruction Language:
Comments: My favorite course in LSE. This is a smaller department, so there is a lot more focus on the students. The course takes you from theories of classes, cities, and markets to more concrete applications in urbanization today. Very enlightening, because I think they teach a more balanced perspective than in the US.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

International Economics

Course Department: Economics
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This was my most challenging course. I have already taken intermediate macroeconomics before studying abroad, but this is definitely a graduate level course. Make sure you have a solid foundation in multivariable and can find first order conditions in your sleep. The two instructors put in minimal effort in teaching, often ill-prepared. It does not follow Wellesley's economic courses well at all.
Credit Transfer Issues: