A good investment, given the current geopolitical environment. Past Review

By (Monterey Institute of International Studies) - abroad from 01/27/2017 to 05/17/2017 with

Middlebury Schools Abroad: Middlebury in Irkutsk

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned a lot about Baikal and discovered a liking for writing in Russian.

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:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Keep language exchange going from the start of program.

* 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


* 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


* 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? intermediate
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? Be ruthless in seeking out opportunities to speak.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Other
* 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?
  • Siberia in International Relations course
  • Seeing Baikal
  • Host family
* What could be improved?
  • Have language exchange ready to go from the start
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Work on your verbs of motion and prefixes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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:

Modern Russian Political Discourse

Course Department:
Instruction Language: Russian
Comments: Presentations were useful practice, but we learned virtually nothing. It was just a chat session with no material, no learning objectives. Good speaking and listening practice, but no real lessons. Also, the system for verifying problems in the class makes no sense. I complained about the class, which brought an observer to the class to see what was happening. Obviously, this is not going to do anything, as it creates an observer effect and changes the professor's behavior.
Credit Transfer Issues: I have no idea about this yet.