The opportunity to learn & explore in an amazing city January 12, 2022

By (Wellesley College) - abroad from 09/13/2021 to 12/31/2021 with

University of Edinburgh: Edinburgh - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned a lot about Scottish literature & history; my courses explored a lot of questions & concepts that I have studied in the states, but applied them to a new landscape, which allowed me to learn a lot. I also grew a lot just by living in a new city in a more independent way than I am used to.

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.

Courses were not as rigorous as I was accustomed to, which was a nice break to focus on life as a whole, not just academics. I did struggle just with the different academic structure, since I am used to much more contact with professors, but I really appreciated the tutorial style that I had for two of my classes.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

There wasn't much contact from the University throughout the semester, but I found the welcome modules during orientation week to be helpful. I think that the orientation could be even more helpful in non-pandemic times, because in-person programming would have been helpful, but for being online I found that all of the information was helpful and when I did have questions I was able to get them answered very quickly.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I lived in Warrender Park Crescent, and really enjoyed the building and flat itself! It is not a super new building in a very old city, so we did have visits from a few mice which is the only reason I am not rating this 5 stars, but the facilities and residential staff were easy to access and helpful!

* Food:

I lived in self-catered accommodations, so I mostly made my own food, and enjoyed that experience of exploring the grocery shops in a different country.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I enjoyed being a directly matriculated visiting student because it felt mostly like I was just a student at Edinburgh! I became a member of several student organizations, so I was able to attend some really cool events and meet full students that way. I also recommend being connected to other visiting students through social media because that allowed me to meet visiting students from different countries right away!

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I honestly don't know of any visiting students who had an easy time getting set up with a GP; I know of students who are in Edinburgh for 4 years who also struggled with this. I definitely recommend reaching out to multiple GP's right when you arrive, but even with this the sense I got is just that the demand is so high that it is really hard to get connected & get appointments. Something that was great in terms of healthcare though was that I was able to get free lateral flow tests for COVID from pharmacies & the university!

* Safety:

I always got home safe at night, and only ever used public transportation or walked, but that was just my individual experience that I know not everyone shares. Particularly due to the cases of spiking that happened throughout the UK in the early fall, many residents, myself included, did not feel safe in all spaces throughout 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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $50
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Get a tesco clubcard!! It allowed me to save a lot on groceries


* 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

  • Dorm
  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • 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?
  • The city
  • The ability to be immersed in life as a student at the University
  • How nice and welcoming the people were
* What could be improved?
  • More contact from the University for visiting students
  • More life class time (this will probably change if the pandemic improves)
  • More activities organized by the office for visiting students
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish that I had taken more advantage of public transportation and services throughout the city at the start of the semester

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.