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Yonsei University

115 reviews
4.27 / 5 based on 115 reviews
Useful  |  2
Jennifer
Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, United States
Political Science, Undergraduate, University Agreement
Yonsei University
2.5/5
Languages
Language of instruction: English
Local language was: Different than language of instruction
Was learning English a key decision factor?
No, it wasn't.
Was learning the local language a key decision factor?
Yes, I wanted to improve my the local language
How much did you improve your the local language?
My level before: Did not speak it
My level after: Everyday knowledge (shopping, directions, etc.)
Language difficulties
Social
Educational
Administrative / Institutional
Overall
Personal comments
It was a constant struggle. I mean, I chose the country to learn more about it...to feel a culture shock in a way..but it was an absolutely different language from my own. Learning it though...it motivated me for that very reason. But no matter how much of an effort I made it did hinder my social life with native Koreans because if you don't speak to them or approach them...don't expect them to come to you...unless its about something weird cause you DO get weird looks for being foreign. You should consider taking atleast a whole level 1 course before coming here... Even ordering food was a challenge at times especially because there will be those one or two times where they will take advantage of the fact you are a foreigner and will make you order whats more expensive or will be rude and unattentive to you because they know you can't say much back.
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Useful  |  1
Jennifer
Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, United States
Political Science, Undergraduate, University Agreement
Yonsei University
2.5/5
Expenses
Main source of funding:
Other
Other sources of funding:
Family<br> Personal savings<br> Other
Work opportunities:
It was not legal for me to work
Personal spending habits
You spend more because you're traveling and you doing new things! All new things in different countries does cost money unfortunately...while I can't say it doesn't apply for things back at home cause it probably does (like going to see a new movie or a new bar that opened a few miles away etc...) Here..You are more willing to spend because with this spending comes the memories that you did them in a different country and the stories you can bring back to your family. I think thats why I was always more willing to spend on food and and travel here more than at home. There's new foods to try and places to see that at home you won't have and who knows when you will be presented with the opportunity to encounter these same places again.
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Travel, Food, Overall, Housing:
was more expensive than at home.
Telephone, Nightlife:
was the same price as at home.
Accessibility of student needs
Second-hand text books
Second-hand household items
Computers / Internet
Administrative
Money from home
Personal comments
Significant financial surprises? mmm, don't go crazy spending if you know wiring money or your means of support doesn't come right away. I received a stipend from the school for my meals but I got so excited to see money that I blew it SO fast. On top of that my wonderful hardworking momma would send me $100 every 2 weeks...but once I blew my stipend and all I had was 100 every 2 weeks...Life got hard...And hard called for Ramen...FOR ALL MEALS. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner...It was all I could afford. It was horrible. Ramen makes me so sick to see now its scary.
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Useful  |  1
Jennifer
Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, United States
Political Science, Undergraduate, University Agreement
Yonsei University
3.8/5
Academic
Course recommendations
Courses are NO joke. If you are in a curve class and have Johnny the A++ kid you are (excuse the word) f**'d hahahaha. He will totally ruin the class curve for everyone. The classes are hard, but worth the work....it def teaches you the educational culture in this country and how it differs from your own (at least mine did...in America its safe to say many colleges spoon feed you compared to Yonsei...It's a drastic change) NO interaction with local students unless you HAD to be or got paired into a group together..Or else they would've chosen each other. CLASSES ARE IN ENGLISH THOUGH HOLLLLLA!
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My academic experiences
Quality of courses
Variety of courses
Access to resources
Interaction with teachers
Interaction with international students
Interaction with local students
Personal comments
I would've appreciated having the opportunity to meet more Poli Sci majors who were native to the school who I could've studied with...Only because sometimes like I said you feel at times as a foreigner isolated so they forget to include you.
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My opinion of the university assessment
Exams at end of course
Exams throughout the course
Essays and/or projects at the end of course
Essays and/or projects throughout the course
Overall
Useful  |  3
Jennifer
Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, United States
Political Science, Undergraduate, University Agreement
Yonsei University
4.9/5
Overall
I wish I had known...
Korean....I wish I had known Korean. It would've made things SO much more easier. I also would've wished I was a little more 'prepped'....You know, they have all these pre departure meetings at your school about studying abroad but Its YONSEI that needs to be super clear with your schools before you come. If you have Mac...8/10 if you don't have Internet explorer on it your f'd cause their portal system works only on internet explorer. They also don't tell you that you're very under represented here. "Learning to be more independent" is literally an understatement. They don't help you ever....Not even the international office at times and thats the worst. All your probs are your own.
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In my opinion:
Most people loved it.
Important factors in my choice
(1) Unimportant – (4) Very important
Academic reasons
3
Culture
4
Costs
3
Activities
3
Campus life
4
Party / people
3
Weather / location
3
Personal recommendation
I think as an institution its awesome. Its intense but its because it is one of the top schools in Korea. It DOES expose you to real Korean day to day experience...but there's a big clarification with that...don't assume you are actually participating...You are there yeah, but you aren't involved. For their biggest 2 events (Yonko-jeon and Akaraka... they don't even have designated areas for you to sit because, well...you are just there and thats it. Areas are taped off by department and you probably aren't included in a department since you aren't a regular student so you probably won't get a chance to mingle with e.g.; Korean native poli science students because you are on exchange so despite you having the same major and being under the same department...your class is in english, you are already isolated)
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During my experience abroad, I ...
(1) Never – (4) A lot
Became familiar with another culture
4
Traveled
4
Improved language skills
4
Met people from other countries
4
Became more independent
4
Partied a lot
4
Experienced a change in life
4
Advanced my studies & career
4
Final comments
I reallllly really hope not to sound pessimistic because OVERALL, the country is AMAZING. As a "tourist" you get everything out of the culture an frankly the culture is beautiful and so are the people. There's always things going on and its actually quite fun! But don't expect much from Yonsei as a foreigner especially in the aspect of clubs and activities...I just want to be super super clear about it because I have yet to see any review be honest about that in that aspect. I'm a very social person...I have no problem going up to someone I don't know and saying hey! At first when you first get here it's funny to both you and them...because well you both can't speak to each other...but as you spend more time here you realize its no longer funny on your end...you sincerely wanna be friends with these people or find your niche in a sense not just be I guess the funny 5 second encounter. I think that was probably the hardest out of the experience. But just as I said it...it's the EXPERIENCE right? Good luck adventurers!
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Useful  |  1
Jennifer
Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, United States
Political Science, Undergraduate, University Agreement
Yonsei University
1.2/5
Student life
Describe host city:
Students interact with the local community without much university involvement
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Nightlife, Travel, Activities: Takes place mostly outside the university/student environment
Personal social experience
Activities
Nightlife
Travel
Overall
Personal comments
Best bars? Sinchon and Hongdae for sure. Only because they are so cheap especially when you are on that student budget and wish to use money to travel then on expensive drinks like I did at least! On those nice nights though you can never go wrong with going to Gangnam once and a while. Octagon is the best club they have out there at its Free on Thursdays. Also if you happen to be a little familiar with Korean familiar faces (aka celebs and actors) you run into many out there! They all like to spend time around Apgujung and expensive areas (hehe) The Han river is GORG during the summer. It does get busy though! (not that it's a surprise....South Korea is a tad crowded on the weekends, be prepared to get bumped into every now and then) Student Life? Yeah....You make that for yourself. Foreigners stick to foreigners. They don't tell you that. No one will EVER explicitly tell you that...but as time goes after you realize you aren't on vacation, but actual living there for XX amount of months...Your integration with Koreans at school is almost non existent unless your Korean is A++, You're really pale and cute, you find yourself a Korean connection, or are just Korean. It's sad, but unintentionally (at least I hope thats always the case...) They don't know how to accept diversity...So Koreans WILL ALWAYS stick together.
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Useful  |  1
Jennifer
Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, United States
Political Science, Undergraduate, University Agreement
Yonsei University
3.8/5
Housing
Type of housing: Goshiwon
Arranged by: Independently - My choice
If returning, I would choose: Goshiwon
Why?
It gives you freedom unlike the dorms. The dorm life is harder because you have less privacy and if you are older (considering I'm sure you don't usually think of studying abroad right away freshman year -like myself-) dorm life isn't really your thing.
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Personal assessment
Cost
Facilities
Location
Cleanliness
Space
Personal comments
My Goshiwon was small but it was just outside of Yonsei and located right by the subway (which is honestly your main source of transportation anywhere in Seoul aside from buses and taxi's coming home from long nights with friends if you didn't spend it in Sinchon)
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