1 Report 1 faculty/college Humanities level bachelor s master s PhD name study programme Media and Culture exchange application process PREPARATION Although the application process was well explaned on the website of staying abroad it was a lot of work and sometimes a little confusing wether or not I had yet filled in the right forms. In the end it all went well, but at the time of my application I was a little stressed. Therefor I would recommend to start early and to make well organized maps on your laptop to don't forget some forms. counselling & support at Utrecht University Before my mobility I had some questions about procedures and I wrote some s to the international office. They were very kind and willing to help me. The only academic preperation I made was my regular study. The courses I took in Utrecht were sufficient to succeed my courses in Rome. Although the Italian language was a little difficult for me, because I just started it, the level of the courses itself was not that high. To obtain a good level of the Italian language, which was required for my erasmus period, I followed two language courses in The Netherlands. One course at Babel language school and one private course from an Italian woman. Furthermore I followed a three weeks course in Italy at my University before the courses got started. For my I made a financial plan. By making this plan I knew wether I had enough money or not. Because my study grant had stopped this year I had only my erasmus grant which was not enough for all my expenses. Therefor my parents gave me some money for my stay. I also had some spared money which I could use. All together I could pay my stay. study programme (content and organisational issues) STUDY ABROAD PERIOD My study programme was a little hard to arange because the courses I chose before my mobility were not all available when I arrived in Rome. I therefore had to choose new courses. The international office helped me and it was easier to arange there than I thought, but I learned from this expecience that it is never sure whether you will be able to follow the courses you want or not. In the end I was really happy I chose the courses I was enrolled in because they made me want to learn more about these subjects back in Holland. academic quality of education activities The quality of education activities was good. The first weeks I was arrived I did not have any courses yet, but I started a Italian language course at the Univesity which offered me a good level of Italian. The courses started in octobre and they were of a high Italian level. Teachers talked very fast, so you really need to keep your attention. The level of the content of the courses itself was not that high, with the knowledge I already had about the topics, so I could understand a lot because of that.
2 counselling & support at receiving university abroad The support at the receiving university was of a really good quality. There was an international office that was willing to help you at working days. I could sent an and they responded very quickly, or I could come to their office. They were very friendly, although they always spoke in Italian, so you need to have a good knowledge of Italian. The transfer of the credits took a while. But in the end they gave me my transcript of records via . So it went well, but you need to have a little patience. welcome & orientation programme STUDENT LIFE At this university there was no real welcome programme. There was organised one morning where they gave some information about the university, but they didn't contacted erasmus students that well about this day, so I found out later that this day had passed already. I arranged my accomodation by myself. I uses Facebook groups to come in contact with landlords. I arranged my room already in august, to be sure I had a place to sleep. Although it was quit easy for me to find an accomodation, I heard some stories of people who found it very hard to find a room. So you need to arrange it early, or need to accept the fact that if you wait for you to be in Rome it will take some weeks to find a room. The cost of the room is also very high. I payed 650 euros without expenses for my room, but I lived next to the st. Pieters and next to my university so it was worth it. leisure & culture For erasmus students there are a lot of leisure activities. There is an organisation of the university itself that arranges some activities and of course ESN, which is an international erasmus organisation that organises parties and cultural trips. It is nice to do some of these activities to see the city or meet some people at parties. Furthermore Rome is a city with a lot of culture and activities, so I would recommend to go and see the city. You need to be aware of the fact that Italy is a chaotic country where everything you want to do or arrange is three times more difficult than what you are used to. This means for example that you will have not enough information about your study programme, you don't know exactly what you need to do and when. Although this is sometimes really irritating, it also works the other way around. When you don't know the time of your course for example it is not that much of a problem when you miss the first class because they know it is a little chaotic. And the international office is always willing to help you, but still you need to figure out a lot by yourself and that sometimes take som time. CONCLUSIONS would you recommend this university/destination abroad to others? please explain If you want a really nice expierence in a nice area of the city I would certainly recommend this University. The University offers a really good International office that is willing to help you. They also offer a really cheap Italian language course for all erasmus students and organise some activities. The only negative thing about this University is the fact that it is a relative small University and therefore there are not that much international students. You also need to be aware of the fact that there are not that many Dutch students, but mainly Spanish student, because of the language. If you want an University with more (Dutch) students you should go to the bigger Universities such as Sapienza.
3 You certainly have to be aware of the fact that you go to Italy and to Rome in special. The city is really chaotic and allthough LUMSA university is quite organized, you need to go after everything yourself. That is something to keep in mind by chosing a destination Report 1 faculty/college level name study programme Humanities bachelor s Communicatie- en Informatiewetenschappen PREPARATION exchange application process Before applying I did some research on the internet. I choose Rome and the University of LUMSA and I wrote a letter to motivate why I wanted to go to Rome and the University of LUMSA in particular. Thereby I filled in the usual paperwork and went to information meetings organised by the. Keep in mind that getting the paperwork signed properly by the institutions (home ánd host universities) takes some time, so to avoid stress, start in time. And make sure your application is in Osiris before the deadlines. counselling & support at Utrecht University The of Utrecht is very helpful and is quick in answering. The website can be a little messy and unclear, so it can take a while before you find all the documents and information you need. I didn t do any. It was my last semester of my Bachelor s, so I already had sufficient academical knowledge. However, I had more contact hours then at my home university, but the exams were a little easier then I was used to. I did 2 language courses at the University of Utrecht (Italian 1 & 2), and started a LOI course at intermediate level. Still I thought this wasn t enough. It is more important to practise the grammar you already know and to have a large vocabulary then knowing all the grammar en rules. How good my writing and reading was, as bad was my understanding and talking of Italian. Practise is the best way to learn the language! The Erasmus Grant is quite a big amount, but still Rome is expensive. My parents and I have saved money for some time, so I had a savings account as a buffer. I also got OV-vergoeding and the usual student scholarship. So the weren t a problem for me. STUDY ABROAD PERIOD
4 study programme (content and organisational issues) Before going I didn t have a lot of information, especially about when the courses and the Italian language course would start. When I came to Rome the university still didn t know when the Italian course would start, so I had to wait for it. Eventually I had to pay 80 euros for it before I even knew when it would take place. In the end I had class of another course at the same times at the Italian course, so I couldn t attend, but also didn t get my money back. So if you want to do an Italian course, think about doing it somewhere else then LUMSA. academic quality of education activities The courses were fairly easy, however most of the time it was mandatory to attend classes; I had more contact hours then at Utrecht University. For passing the courses I had to do a project work, some presentations and the final exams were all oral. The difficulty level however was not really high. If you do a little work you can pass the courses; if you prepare yourself well you can easily get the highest grades, especially Erasmus and exchangestudents. But don t underestimate the Italian language and especially the Italian literature for some courses, it takes more time then you are used too. counselling & support at receiving university abroad If you have questions, you can always go to the. However, the office is only open 2 hours per day and they don t speak English that well and sometimes they refuse to speak another language than Italian. Especially when Italian is difficult for you, they can get annoyed and inpatient. You can also them, sometimes that is even better. They will also you information, but make sure they put you on the mailinglist, because I didn t receive all the mails and it can be a problem if you miss information. The organisation is pretty chaotic, but you will get used to it. This university also works with ECTS and on the website you can see how many credits you get for every course. Before going to your exams, you have to pick up a grade-book at the, that you have to bring to the exam for the professor to sign. After all your exams you have to hand it in at the International Office, where they will make a grades-list for your home university. However, it can be that i won t be ready before you leave, but they it to you and your home university. But keep in mind that it s easier to stay a little longer in Rome to take care of all the needed documents. welcome & orientation programme STUDENT LIFE From the university there was no such thing as an introduction, at least not at the beginning of the 2nd semester (February). There are however a lot of other Erasmus organisations, such as ESN ASE, Erasmusland and ESN Roma Tre. It was difficult to come to Rome as a student without knowing anyone, you can feel lost in the city. But you have to go out on your own and to activities of the different organisations. I even put a message on Facebook and ended up discovering the city with 2 people who became one of my best friends in Rome. And through them you will also meet other people. Making fiends goes really fast, because everyone is in the same situation.
5 I got my big and lovely room through an add on Facebook. There are a lot of Facebook-pages where people offer rooms and apartments. The most important thing is to look at the location, because of course it is easier to live closer to the city and/or to the university, and to a metro station. There are some neighbourhoods that I would recommend: San Lorenzo (a lot of students live there, with a lot of bars and cheap restaurants), San Giovanni (I lived here and it s a really nice and safe area), Trastevere (a really hip and beautiful neighbourhood, with bars and restaurants. A lot of American students live here, but also LUMSA students). LUMSA can also offer you housing, which is quite good, but expensive what I ve heard and it is often a little out of the centre leisure & culture Rome is a big city with a lot of students, so there is always something to do, but it can be overwhelming. I subscribed at ESN ASE, the biggest Erasmus organisation of Rome. Every week you get an with the program of the activities, like cocktailnight, language-tandems and trips. The organisation Erasmus in Campus organises some tours through Rome and some trips, it is a much smaller organisation, but that makes it more intimate. CONCLUSIONS would you recommend this university/destination abroad to others? please explain I would, because the location of the university is amazing (really close to the Vatican) and it s easy to go there by public transport. Rome is an amazing and absolutely beautiful city and has a lot to offer, from cultural things to bars, restaurants and clubs. But on the other hand, the university is really small and doesn t do anything for Erasmus students. Especially in the beginning that can be difficult. Rome is not a really cosy student city and there are a lot of universities and students, so you can feel lost in the crowd. And of course there are a lot of tourist. But if you want to live in a big, beautiful and cultural city, Rome is the perfect place! Report 1 exchange/placement application process preparation For the application process I wrote a motivation letter why I wanted particularly to go to Italy, Rome and to the university of Lumsa. For the rest I just followed the process which was explained by the international office of the university of Utrecht. It was clearly explained and just a lot of paper works but nothing that was really hard. counselling/support at home university I had a very good experience with the international office in Utrecht. They respond on e- mails very fast and they try to help you where and as much as they can.
6 I didn't do any. Since the level of university in the southern countries are supposed to be a little bit lower then what we're are used to in the Netherlands, I didn't make any special preparation besides for the language I worked really hard on my language skills of Italian since I didn't want to come here without preparation and I was convinced that I wanted to follow the courses in Italian here in Rome and I really wanted to understand it. So I took 2 courses at the university in the semester before coming here: Italian language skills 3 and Italian literature. Besides I repeated at home everything I already studied and in the sumer before coming to Rome I went 2 weeks to Italy to practice the language skills I've always had a job besides my study and in the half year before going to Rome I worked extra shifts to save up money for Rome. It was hard since I worked at least 20h a week but it was worth it since you really have a goal where you do it for. For the rest I applied for an erasmus scholarship and I rise up my loan, to have a buffer here. study/placement abroad period study programme/work plan (concerning content and organisational issues) Italy is famous for her disorganisation. This was also the case to organize my study programme. They almost never responded on my s and questions, and only mid june I heard something from them, since I called and ed a couple of times. If you don't hear anything but you applied in time, you don't have to worry, only don't expect that they respond like we are used to in the Netherlands. Until I came here I didn't know when the semester would start, how and when the language course would start (before the semester started) and which corses they'd offer. It's hard but I just decided to come here in time (september) and see. Since I already spoke italian (and a lot of other students not) I went to the international office of the university and they gave me more information, they were happy to have an italian speaking foreign student and they were very nice with me, so it's definetely a pré when you already speak the language where you go to. academic quality of education/placement activities The academic level is not so high here. Although I had more contact hours then I was used to in Holland, it goes a little bit slower. However the courses were very interesting and in the end it was harder then I thought to read books on a academic level of a total different language. It's definitely a challenge. Regarding to the placement activities, they accepted everyone in every course, even if you don't study something in that direction, but its just up to you if you fail or pass the course. They will help you but if you don't have any pre-knowledge of the subject it's harder to follow, since you are taking place in a curriculum of italian students and studies, based on which courses they've already taken before. counselling/support at host institution/organisation You can always go to the international office with your questions, but it's only 2hours per day open and often they don't know answers to your questions. once again it's not so well organized and if you prepare yourself for this it's ok. Because they also don't ask of you that you know already everything in advance. for example you can change your courses within 5 weeks after starting, so you have a lot of time to make a decision and to figure things out. on the webpage is written how many credits you get for every course, and in the end of the semester you have to do an oral exam (depens on the course, but on my university it was mostly oral) or write a paper. They definitely realize that you're an exchange student so I have the feeling they are a little bit more nice with you, howerer this depends on the
7 course and the professor. after all the exams you have to let it signed by the international office and they will give you the credits. The system here works the same as in holland, so you get ects. welcome/orientation programme student life There was no such thing as an orientation programme, you more or less have to figure out things for yourself but this is not a bad thing, you become independent. There are many 'erasms' organisations who organizes all kind of activities to get to know the city, to get to know other people and to make you feel comfortable in another city. This doesn t come from the university but from independent organisations. the accomodation I found through facebook. There are many ways to find an accomodation via internet, and also the university can help you with that. The best way to find accomodation is to call the person when you found something on internet, since they're not so fast in responding on s. What also good is to know is that it usually doesn't work like it works in holland. Here te appartment owners just want to subrent their houses so the persons who come, they get it. you don't have to apply or talk to the house if you're accepted or not. leisure/culture There's much to do in Rome. As I said before there are many organisations who organizes all kind of activities, but you can also explore the city on your own. Ofcourse Rome is a perfect city for culture, there are many websites who update you about all the cultural activities in Rome. also for leisure it's a perfect city. They have nice area's where Italian people come together to chat and eat, they have pubs and bars and clubs to enjoy the nights. conclusions would you recommend this host organisation/destination to others? please explain Yes, absolutely. Rome is a particular city but not how I expected it. The people are so nice, they always want to help you with something. The city is big but it doesn't feel big. there's so much to do that you won't succeed to do everything in just a half year. The city is absolutely beautiful, the weather the food is good. I was also surprised by how well organized is the public transport. Besided from the strikes, you can come everywhere you want with the public transport. There are many busses, 2 metro lines and trams. When you want to go to Rome, before get in touch with someone who either was there as an exchange student or someone you know who already lives there. there are so many particular things which are good to know in advance. So it's very good to have a coffee with someone to just get some tips how to prepare your stay! Report 1 preparation exchange/placement application process Research on the internet, information meetings organized by the. The preparation took quite some effort by filling in forms and getting them signed properly.
8 counselling/support at home university The home university is very helpful and they are well reachable. The website is sometimes a little unclear about which universities you can go to. I finished all my bachelor courses at the UU and my thesis before I went to Rome. I finished everything off so the only thing I needed to do in Rome was to get my remaining ECTS. I did a language course in Firenze in I also followed an Italian course at the university and an Italian course at the James Boswell Insitute in Utrecht. I saved up money for over a year by working. My parents and grandparents support me as well. I have a DUO grant and loan. study/placement abroad period study programme/work plan (concerning content and organisational issues) It was quite difficult to find suitable courses and the online system is not very good. The planning of the exams was dreadful. Everytime I had an exam I needed to wait at least three hours on other students before I could take my own exam. academic quality of education/placement activities The academic quality is not that high. The oral exams are quite subjective and the level is not so high (for Erasmus students) Also, not all the lectures were that well structured but the professors were very nice and with a lot of knowledge. counselling/support at host institution/organisation The counselling was not great at my host institution. For example, I needed a gradebook for my exams that nobody told me about. It's quite chaotic in it's organisation, but maybe this is because of the Italian nature. I hope it will be fast enough for my deadline. student life welcome/orientation programme I went in the second semester and there was no such thing as a welcome. I asked but there was none. There are multiple ESN organisations and Erasmus organisation in Rome but they are all separate and the organisation overall is really messy. It was not enjoyable at all to be a student arriving in Rome while knowing nobody. The accomodation was provided by LUMSA, which was really good, easy and fast. I got a lovely but expensive appartment. leisure/culture Like I said, the erasmus organisation need to do something about the way they organize things and how they let people know. Is was so messy I didn't where or who to go to or what was the program. The things they organized that I did join were really good. / conclusions would you recommend this host organisation/destination to others? please explain I would because the location of the unversity was great and the courses for erasmus students were fairly easy. The international office is not the best. I needed a form to take with me to the exams and I found out I needed that while I was at the exam itself. They didn't tell me what I needed to do and there were more of these kinds of situations where the communication was poorly. / Report 2 preparation exchange/placement application process In the beginning I didn't really know what to do and I think my tutor didn't really help me, so I asked other students what to do. After I asked them and understood what to do it was really easy, because it's all in Osiris. Make sure you use the right forms! In the beginning I didn't know that there were special forms for this. counselling/support at home university They try to provide us good information, but since it's really much it can be confusing. I went to an information evening, but even there it wasn't all really clear to me. Maybe there could be a
9 page where is explained really clear all the steps what to do, so also still for the application process. This was okay. The courses I followed in Utrecht were useful as well in my exchange university. I study Italian, so the couldn't be better in my case. Really good, I think the Erasmus scholarship is a big grant. study/placement abroad period study programme/work plan (concerning content and organisational issues) This wasn't really clear, specially the courses erasmus students could follow. For example there where some courses in the list where was written that they where the 1 st semester but they took the whole year or took place in the 2 nd semester. Also there was written in the list 'English language' but there where a lot of courses with this title, and I choose the wrong one that appeared to be an annual course, so I had to drop it. Maybe they name the code of the course with it. The courses which I could choose from where almost all really interesting. academic quality of education/placement activities It depended on the courses I followed. Some where really of good quality with good professors, but there where also some that were of a too low level (even for me as student form abroad). Or it seemed difficult but then the exam was really easy. counselling/support at host institution/organisation Really good, they are really quick in responding and help arranging things. It's in ECTS. student life welcome/orientation programme There wasn't organized anything. I found it by myself, but there is an service of the university which provides houses near to the university. The houses are a bit expensive though, because it's an expensive zone. I found my room in another (cheaper) zone in which are living a lot of other students (form another university though). leisure/culture I inscribed myself at the erasmus organisation in Rome (ESN) and they arranged some trips etc so there was a lot of opportunity to see a lot of cultural stuff and to enjoy your time. / conclusions would you recommend this host organisation/destination to others? please explain Depends. Because it's so little there's not a lot of confusion like on a lot of other Italian universities, so if you need to be helped mostly you can be helped directly and they respond as well on your mails directly. A lot of times the amount of students following a course is around max. 20 persons, but I also had courses of 8 so you are more able to ask questions etc and the teacher knows your in erasmus so asks sometimes if you understand anything. On the other hand I think a bigger university would be more fun, since this one is private there aren't a lot of students and also not really much erasmus students. They also don't organize anything like an introduction in the beginning of the year for the erasmusstudents, like a lot of other universities do so you can meet other exchange students. Also I don't think the level of education on this university is really high. /