Year in London September 04, 2019

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 10/01/2019 to 06/15/2019 with

SOAS, University of London: London - Summer School

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Yes!! It really was a year of adulting, I learnt how to rent and live in a flat, cook for myself, commute to university, budget my expenses, and I got very involved in societies at my University. I think learning to live in a city and manage logistics in a way that allowed me to make the most of my time there was my biggest takeaway

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.

Was disappointed by the academic rigour, quality of teaching, and lack of term time feedback.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Helpful and accessible

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Very! But I lived in non-SOAS housing, in a flat with some UCL students

* Food:

I cooked for myself

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Quite well integrated! London, especially central London l, feels very international and I immediately felt at home there

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

The NHS is such a refreshing break from the US healthcare system. Once I figured out GP registration it was smooth sailing. There were often long wait times but I had very good care. And all free!

* Safety:

I had no issues with safety

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

SOAS is great if you have a clear regional/linguistic interest, but I would prefer to have gone to LSE or UCL because I would have had a broader range of course options


* 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)

Quite easily! London is expensive but there are many cheap options if you look for them. If you buy a lunchbox and cook for yourself, bike instead of taking public transport, and make caps on how much you spend every week, it should cut a large part of your extra living expenses.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? ~50-60 GBP (not inc. housing)


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

* Did you study abroad through an exchange program or did you directly enroll in the foreign university? Direct Enrollment

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • 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?
  • SOAS students! They're incredibly diverse and politically engaged
* What could be improved?
  • Quality of teaching
  • Course offerings
  • Assessment and feedback
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I had known just how different the academics would be and how much free time I would have!

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 Nearly Native or Trail Blazer
Craving the most authentic experience possible, perhaps you lived with a host family or really got in good with the locals. You may have felt confined by your program requirements and group excursions. Instead, you'd have preferred to plan your own trips, even skipping class to conduct your own 'field work.'