Learning to live abroad January 29, 2018

By (Middlebury College) - abroad from 01/03/2018 to 05/15/2018 with

Middlebury Schools Abroad: Middlebury in Bordeaux

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained language skills and and amazing host family, and I learned to live on my own abroad which was a great challenge to overcome

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.

Huge classes, not a lot of educational support or practice. Almost no homework, didn't learn a lot

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Very hard to be integrated with french students, mostly spent time with other internationals

* 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? No

I would likely go to a bigger city, and opt to do some sort of professional experience like an internship to integrate myself better.

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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $50 (ate out about once a week)
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Eating out is the most expensive thing. In Bordeaux, you can buy some cheap food and have picnics by the river, which is a nice way to hang out and save money

Language

* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Intermediate
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Intermediate
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? 300 level
How many hours per day did you use the language?
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Speak it with your friends, or if you can't, find a place to work or volunteer where you have no choice but to speak it

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* 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? 0

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Host Family
  • City
  • Student Trips
* What could be improved?
  • More integration with French students
  • More student trips
  • More tutoring
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Going abroad is just moving to a new country, and it comes with the same challenges as moving your home does

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:

Sociologie Politique

Course Department:
Instructor:
Instruction Language:
Comments: The professor was great but it was a very big class so it was easy to get lost
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Théorie Politique

Course Department:
Instructor:
Instruction Language: French
Comments: Interesting course material, and our professor spoke clearly.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Afrique Subsaharienne

Course Department:
Instructor:
Instruction Language: French
Comments: Smaller course, and the information was more specific which helped me to understand it. Very nice professor
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Droits et Libertés en Europe

Course Department:
Instructor:
Instruction Language: French
Comments: I had a very hard time understanding my professor in this class. I was saved by French students who understood him and could take notes
Credit Transfer Issues: