Overload of Work Past Review

By (Middlebury College) - abroad from 01/05/2017 to 04/15/2017 with

Middlebury Schools Abroad: Middlebury – CMRS Oxford Humanities Program

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I did learn plenty of research skills and how to use a library to my best advantage. I think Oxford is more worth while though if you do two terms with an individual college rather than a proxy program. I would recommend this program if you care little about travelling and want to delve yourself into Medieval or Renaissance studies.

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.

They will tell you ahead of time that it is a hard program. What they don't tell you is that you will be doing triple the amount of work as a regular Oxford student to keep up with the American credit system. Oxford students usually take two classes per a term, one with an essay due each week and one with an essay due every other week. This program has you do both tutorials with an essay each week and you are doing a seminar with substantial reading.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

They claimed often that they were open to suggestions about improvement and were willing to help but I found them often to shrug at any suggestions/complaints and say that's just how Oxford is, when it was an easy change. They also took two months to return our grades.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

We cooked our own food but the food at Keble was eh.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

They do not help you integrate. You have to join a sport or a club and most are uninterested unless you are there for the full year. And the work load is so ridiculous most people I know quit their clubs.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Several people I know had break downs from extreme stress.

* Safety:

The building itself is safe and is in a decent part of town.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? No

Way to much work for a semester and very little support from the system. The way my classes worked out I never could enjoy the weekend or explore the UK. I'm not from Middlebury but I am saying so to remain anonymous. The program was bought by Middlebury and 100% panders to their needs and will not make any adjustments without Middlebury's approval. Over half the students are from Middlebury and most of them won't bother learning the other students names. The spring break is a laughable four days. Overall, my mental health suffered here.


* 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? 150
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Go to Mark and Spencers and buy dinner for two meals.


* 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

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
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?
  • Independent Research
  • Library
  • Location
* What could be improved?
  • Workload
  • Integration
  • Adjustment of Non-Middlebury students
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? How much the program is Middlebury focused and how much work you are doing compared to the regular Oxford student.

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 Outright Urbanite
A social butterfly, you're happiest in bustling cities with hip people, and took advantage of all it had to offer. You enjoyed the nightlife, and had fun going out dancing, and socializing with friends. Fun-loving and dressed to the nines, you enjoyed discovering new restaurants, shops, cafes, and bars in your host country.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:


Course Department:
Instruction Language:
Comments: The work and reading load was challenging but the essay questions where often vague or survey like.
Credit Transfer Issues: No