Great Break from the school and a novel experience Past Review

By (The University of Texas at Austin) - abroad from 09/10/2018 to 01/04/2019 with

Tsinghua University: Beijing - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
It was definitely worthwhile as I think living in a completely different environment for 6 months is quiet difficult if you are not a student. Learned that there are so many other experiences and areas that I did not not know about. I think experiencing different culture is very important because it really open oneself's spectrum and who knows it could open new ways in life!

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.

I think the workload was doable and since I only took classes with other exchange students, professors expected that we are here for cultural experiences, not just academics.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

not well managed and I feel like there are not enough faculties to accommodate the amount of exchange students.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

pretty great! the price was very cheap compared to the livings here and I had a Chinese housemate which allowed me to practice more!

* Food:

I enjoyed all types of Chinese food. Since I was in Beijing, there were different types of foods as well which I enjoyed most of them!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I felt pretty well integrated with the local culture, but since I mostly had classes with exchange students, I need to actually try to make Chinese friends and to adapt to a different cultural setting.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I didn't have health issues there, but I have heard that students from different universities have unpleasant experiences with the school's hospital.

* Safety:

I felt pretty safe while abroad as there were so many people in general. Also, there are many guards in the campus as well which I felt pretty safe.

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

It was very comforting that I got to be away wit the 'reality' a little bit and really went to a new environment for me to explore. It definitely made me to think that there are lots of different areas that I could possibly see my future at. I think one of the most important takeaway that I had from study abroad was knowing that there are this whole another part of the world that exists and it's so great to know that there are so many great opportunities!


* 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)

compared to the states, the cost of living and the food is very cheap. I used less money and saved a lot in terms of living. For example, I spent about $1,000 just on housing each month in Austin, but in Beijing I only paid about $400 per month for housing.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? I would say less than 100 dollars.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? I think setting a budget and planning on how much you will spend on each week is helpful. Sometimes I would lose track of how much I have spent because I was not fully used to the currency. And definitely checking the account often in order to be on top of your spendings.


* 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

I was involved in a buddy program which I was partnered up with a Chinese in order to do a language exchange. It was quiet helpful but it really depends on how much one actually try to spend more time with the locals. there are lots of sources for one to take.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Beginner
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Intermediate
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? Advanced Chinese speaking
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? just really hang out with the locals. speak confidently even though you know your pronunciations are not good.

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

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

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • 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?
  • amount of time I have to experience the culture
  • friendly staff
  • locals/foods
* What could be improved?
  • nothing really!
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Just knowing more about the cultures there.

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 Networker
An active student leader, it was important for you to network abroad as well. Once overseas, you sought out student clubs, volunteered with local organizations, or attended community events. You encouraged your friends join you, and often considered how you could reflect your international experiences in a resume.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Chinese Writing 2

Course Department: Chinese Language and Literature
Instructor: Wei Wei
Instruction Language: Chinese
Comments: it was challenging in a way that the fellow students' Chinese level was high, but the instructor was highly motivated and well-prepared each session. I participated a lot in the class as lots of group projects and meetings really brought all the students together. there were oral presentations, homework and video projects!
Credit Transfer Issues: I already took lots of Chinese classes here at UT, so there isn't many credits that I could transfer it back to here. But, with the skills I learned in China, I would be better equipped to take Chinese classes here!