Potentially great experience, but limited by unfair academic stress from Midd Past Review

By (Middlebury College) - abroad from 01/25/2016 to 05/21/2016 with

University of St. Andrews: St. Andrews - Direct Enrollment & Exchange

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned that different schools have different academic systems that we should integrate into for the semester. If Middlebury does not approve of the St. Andrews grading system and translation, then Middlebury should not let students attend St. Andrews. It is unfair to deflate the grades.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? None

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

My educational experience was made unnecessarily stressful by Middlebury's grading system. Middlebury did not take the St. Andrews grade suggestion, which made us have to achieve unreasonable grades compared to the typical St. Andrews student. As a result, I was unable to fully integrate into the academic culture, strongly taking away from my overall experience.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

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

I would choose a program that Middlebury could not influence the grading system.


* 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? $25
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Don't eat out every night.


* 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
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
  • International 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?
  • Friends
  • Soccer
  • Town
* What could be improved?
  • Middlebury's grade deflation
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? That Middlebury was going to unfairly deflate the grades that you earned at St. Andrews. You could do very well at St. Andrews. You could be above average and earn "high merit" markings, but still end up doing very poorly because Middlebury deflates the grades upon return.

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 Outright Urbanite
A social butterfly, you're happiest in bustling cities with hip people, and took advantage of all it had to offer. You enjoyed the nightlife, and had fun going out dancing, and socializing with friends. Fun-loving and dressed to the nines, you enjoyed discovering new restaurants, shops, cafes, and bars in your host country.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Psychology of Terrorism

Course Department: Psychology
Instructor: Nicole Tausch
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Teacher was very knowledgable, but there was not a lot of lecture. It was mostly structured around student presentations.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Introduction to Middle Eastern History

Course Department: History
Instructor: Dimitri Kastritis
Instruction Language: English
Comments: This was the worst class I have ever taken. There is no consistency in lecturers and the lecturers just read quickly from a printed piece of paper for the entire 50 minute class. Assessments are not clear.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

From Adam to Apocalypse

Course Department: Divinity
Instructor: Nevadar
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Great lecturer.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Social Psychology

Course Department: Psychology
Instructor: Nicole Tausch
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Favorite class of the semester.
Credit Transfer Issues: