Bikes and Bridges at the University of Groningen Past Review

By (PSYCHOLOGY., SUNY - College at Geneseo) for

SUNY Geneseo: Groningen - University of Groningen

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Yes. Good experience, the city of Groningen is beautiful, the Dutch are very friendly. Dutch universities are VERY different than American universities, but that's not a bad thing. The Netherlands is a great place to study abroad. Huge learning experience, gave me a new perspective on the US (cliche but true!).

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.

Classes were much easier than American classes. Giant lecture halls, seemed like most students skipped classes. But might be different outside of Psychology courses. Professors will help if you seek them out. Grades are based entirely on one exam (in some faculties). Never had to write a paper, no class participation required, just the exam (I personally did not like this format).

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Not much interaction with administration. I guess help was available if needed, but the administration definitely did not "check up on us."

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Acceptable housing. A little dirty (rent was a bit overpriced), often loud. No RAs like in the US. Fun to live with other students--made friends with international students from around the world. Neighborhood was safe and lovely. No language acquisition component because we did not live with Dutch students. Cooked in a shared kitchen (no dining halls, etc.).

* Food:

Food was great. Good options at supermarkets or restaurants. Cheaper than in the US.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Erasumus Student Network organizes fun trips, bar crawls, activities--definitely join! Easy to travel to other countries in Europe from NL, easily accessible trains and airports. Groningen has many, many bars and a great city center--you will never be bored.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Never had health problems. I always felt very safe in Groningen, even riding my bike at night.

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? 50-100 euros.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? You must open a Dutch bank account unless you plan to use only cash. Credit cards not widely accepted, and neither are debit cards from outside the Netherlands.


How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

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  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

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  • International Students
  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

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A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? It will make you more independent. This could be a good thing, but if you're coming straight from living on campus and eating at dining halls, it might be a bit tough. Seems like Dutch universities are MUCH less involved with their students than America ones. Expect to take care of yourself.