Bad program, good experience Past Review

By (PSYCHOLOGY., Middlebury College) - abroad from 08/30/2014 to 12/13/2014 with

SIT Study Abroad: Morocco - Field Studies in Journalism and New Media

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
confidence, experience, maturity

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.

The academic director was disorganized and unhelpful. The course descriptions did not at all match what we spent our time doing.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

People were often left to fend for themselves in times of illness, which was unreasonable given how little of the host country languages we spoke.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Need to do much more preparation of incoming students to the changes in lifestyle.

* Food:

Did not get anything close to adequate nutrition from my school and host family.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Difficult to integrate due to reasons beyond the program's control, such as my skin color.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Program directors waited until things got dangerous before helping. Were very unwilling to take time to help students.

* Safety:

Be aware of pick-pocketing, groping, cat-calling, harassment, general theft

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


* 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)

Stipend was too low during independent study

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 80


* 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? None
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Beginner
How many hours per day did you use the language?

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

  • Americans
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?
  • the challenge of living with the host family
  • independent study
  • having Moroccan-born teachers
* What could be improved?
  • coursework
  • class time
  • general academic structure
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? How hard the home stay is going to be, but also how rewarding it will end up being if you try to stay open, but do little things to comfort yourself. It won't be comfortable, but it wouldn't be good if it was.

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:

Contextual Studies in Journalism Morocco & North Africa

Course Department:
Instructor: Mary Stucky
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This was not at all challenging and included less journalism instruction than I expected. Some of the lectures were totally irrelevant and didn't provide much opportunity for participation. The country itself was not taken advantage of outside of lecture in a classroom. Assignments were minimal and very occasionally challenging.
Credit Transfer Issues: N/A
Course Name/Rating:

Field Ethics of Journalism in Morocco

Course Department:
Instructor: Mary Stucky
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This took the form of an online class from Poynter University. I did not go to Morocco to take online classes. I was very disappointed.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Independent Study in Journalism

Course Department:
Instructor: Mary Stucky
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This course was the only one of the four that matched my expectations of the program. While still flawed (very little teaching was done) it fit the description of the program online and was useful.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Language Study

Course Department:
Instructor: CCCL Rabat
Instruction Language: Arabic
Comments: We had an untrained teacher and were given far more to learn than we were instructed on. While I really enjoyed the language study, it was not taught very well, and Modern Standard Arabic is not useful in Morocco.
Credit Transfer Issues: