Sydney is lovely, but expensive Past Review

By (Studio Arts, Simmons College) for

The Education Abroad Network (TEAN): Sydney - University of Sydney

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I enjoyed it--I increased my independence, my willingness to do things by myself, but wished I had been more outgoing, going out and such.

Personal Information

If you took classes at multiple universities, list those universities here: Sydney University
How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks
The term and year this program took place: Spring 2010

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

I enjoyed my courses, and was glad I could fulfill all my requirements for home with little to no hassle about having to switch classes around at the University. The grading system is very different from the States, relying much more on the independent student rather than the lecturer holding your hand through the course.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The leaders of our program are well informed and very helpful. They have always been reachable by either phone call or email and respond typically within a day or so.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Wish it were closer to Uni--buying public transport passes was also an expense I had not been expecting. Apartment cleaning services were wonderful, front desk was always helpful in providing extra amenities (towels, sheets, toilet paper, dish soap, etc.). Still had to buy food essentials, but all cookware and dishes/utensils were provided.

* Food:

Fun to try new foods, like kangaroo, but trying to make nice meals frequently gets pretty pricey.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Great to be near other Americans, but I wanted to hang around with more Australians

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

The people I know who needed health assistance received excellent care. My program did a great job helping us get acclimated and telling us how to keep ourselves safe in and around the city.

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)

Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Public transport passes, as study abroad students we aren't eligible for student concession rates, so had to pay full price for the semester. Or at least being informed of travel options--monthly/quarterly passes vs. travel tens/weekly passes.


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

I enjoyed picking up the Aussie lingo, but I would recommend program advisers ask recently returned students what language they most often heard rather than throw a bunch of slang at them that they may not hear--that way as slang goes in and out of style/use, the students are up to date with what their fellow students will most often be saying.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
  • Hotel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • International Students

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Have ample savings, and try to find a job as soon as you get here--it really helps offset costs.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:


Course Department: Architetchure & Design AWSS 2014
Instructor: Seraphina Martin
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Excellent instructor, very knowledgeable, and explains processes well. Learned a lot and enjoyed the various practices covered in class.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Wheel throwing Ceramics

Course Department: Architecture & Design AWSS 2011
Instructor: Mark Jones
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Awesome hands on class. Must be willing to put in the work and possible extra studio time. Excellent souvenirs to bring home as a token of the semester!
Credit Transfer Issues: N/A
Course Name/Rating:

Indigenous Creative Expression

Course Department: Koori Center KOCR 2607
Instructor: Jessica Bulger
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Very informative, more theory than practice,but requires students to create their own Creative Expression exhibit at the end of the semester. Professor seemed a tad disorganized, but there were last minute staffing changes and she was brought in from another university, also was her first time teaching this course at Sydney Uni. The disorganization was tolerable, but slightly frustrating. Guest lecturers were fun and interesting.
Credit Transfer Issues: