SAI's Barcelona/Elisava Program Past Review

By (Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis / IUPUI) - abroad from 01/09/2017 to 04/28/2017 with

SAI Study Abroad: Barcelona - Elisava, Barcelona School of Design

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Living in a different country, amongst a completely different culture, is something I believe everyone should do at least once in his or her life. I can promise you that the six months I lived and studied in Barcelona, Spain will always play a huge roll in why I am who I am today. I fully encourage everyone to go out of your comfort zones, and apply for study abroad (whether it be a year, semester, or even just a couple weeks in the summer)! Those months and or weeks, will add so much substance into your life, substance you will only ever be able to receive through an opportunity like this.

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.

Elisava could have done a better job with their criteria in some classes, and the teachers they chose to teach them.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Extremely nice in all ways, kitchens well stocked, clean, perfect location, etc.

* Food:


* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

SAI did a great job making sure that we had plenty of different options to become more integrated with the culture and people in the city. There were elementary school volunteer options, a way to 'adopt' a spanish family for fun times/insight into the daily lives of the locals, and weekly get togethers where you could talk with a local student and learn more of the language.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Had to use GeoBlue twice and both times it went smoothly!

* Safety:

Felt very safe in the day and at night compared to other cities.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes

SAI is incredibly put together! Had an amazing experience with them from pre-departure days all the way through till the end. I would recommend them to anyone wanting to study abroad in a heart beat.


* 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? $100-$200
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Learn how to cook and make food at home as much as you can. Only try to go out once a week if possible! It will help you eat healthy and save money!


* 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

Gave us many opportunities to sign up for things that would immerse us into the language, but the school taught in English.

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? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? Level 4 Spanish
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? Talk to the locals, take advantage of the volunteer sign-ups at SAI, and speak to your roommates in Spanish even if you are all english.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • 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?
  • Very well put together
  • The Coordinator Mireia
  • It was professional
* What could be improved?
  • Elisava's Study Abroad Staff
  • Some of Elisava's classes
  • Learning the language could be pushed more
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? There is nothing I can think of off the top of my head.

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!