Was depressing for 2 months and alright for 3. September 11, 2023

By (Environmental Studies, Biology, Middlebury College) - abroad from 01/04/2023 to 05/27/2023 with

Middlebury Schools Abroad: Middlebury in Paris

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
It was worthwhile. I gained much greater independence, improved my cooking skills, and generally learned how to navigate life in a huge city.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

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?

* 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 choose a different french-speaking middlebury program NOT in Paris—it was too much for me and I didn't really vibe with the program participants.


* 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? Unsure—probably about $100 USD
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Many students didn't cook much and spent A LOT on food in Paris. Don't do that. Grow up and cook for yourself.


* 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? Advanced
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? 0300
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? Find a french language buddy to practice with.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
  • Hotel
* 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
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?
  • The opportunity to explore as much of Paris as I desired
  • The ability to travel through the rest of Europe, albeit sparingly (it's expensive).
* What could be improved?
  • I didn't like my housing situation that much. Was kind of expensive and the shared spaces were dirty, to the point of being unsanitary.
  • I didn't struggle with the academics, but I didn't like the style of the classes. I would have liked to try different classes.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? That Paris is not the friendliest of cities. I kind of thought that the whole "Parisians are snooty" thing was a joke. It's real.

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 Avid Adventurer
The wardrobe you packed was better suited for a semester of camping than club hopping. Outdoorsy, you might forgo a crazy night out for an early all-day adventure. You'd rather take in the rich culture of an old town than the metropolis of a modern city, but for you getting off the grid is ideal.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Ecophysiologie des Animaux

Course Department: SVT
Instruction Language: French
Comments: Class was relatively easy and had interesting material. Both professors were well prepared. There were multiple indoor labs relating to animal morphology. Grades were based on lab participation, a group exposé, and the final exam.
Credit Transfer Issues: N/A
Course Name/Rating:

Ecologie Evolutive

Course Department: SVT
Instruction Language: French
Comments: Class was relatively easy and often quite dull. One instructor was well prepared but the other was a little worse for wear. Assessment was solely exams (midterm and final)
Credit Transfer Issues: no.
Course Name/Rating:

Advanced French

Course Department: n/a
Instruction Language: French
Comments: The class was fun, engaging, and easy. The instructor was excellent in instruction of grammar and other advance french skills. Assessments were open book.
Credit Transfer Issues: no
Course Name/Rating:

Descendre Dans La Rue

Course Department: n/a
Instruction Language: French
Comments: The instructor was knowledgeable but the class was often not engaged with the material, leading to very long and dull classes. The material itself was quite interesting. Assessments were in the form of 20 min exposés, participation, and two essay-based exams.
Credit Transfer Issues: no