Institutions North America

Semester in University of California Irvine

Why UCI?

  • The summer session was still part of the 6 week summer vacation (only had to be leave for one week)
  • Offers (in this case English and maths) are suitable as preparation for the ABI or KSII
  • California : Sun / Beach / Attractions

I took part in the Summer Session II of the UC Irvine from 3.8.13 – 12.9.13. Since I had just finished the KSI, I wanted to prepare a bit for the ABI in my summer vacation and still have vacation. That’s why I decided to take a math and an English course. Get more information about University of California Irvine  on educationvv.

Course content

The math course consisted of a lecture and discussion. In the one-hour discussion phase, you could practice and ask questions, while new material was conveyed in the two-hour lecture phase (which could sometimes be quite lengthy). In addition, there was “voluntary” homework, webwork and, for the midterms and the final, tests that were included in the overall grade.

There was a lot of discussion in Academic English and there was a relaxed atmosphere in the language laboratory. The professor was very nice and the English course was a lot of fun.

Study conditions

The UCI has the best equipment. From several libraries to bookstores, study rooms and public WiFi on the entire campus, to good dining options. The campus is also beautiful and very close to nature thanks to the Aldriche Park.

The only drawback is the lack of WiFi in the Arroyo accommodations.

Life

By living in the Arroyo accommodations, you and your roommate had immediate contact with the other international students. There was always someone to talk to, cook with, or study together. Since there are mostly Italians and Asians, you are practically forced to speak English.

The kitchen is large (unfortunately not so well equipped with dishes and sometimes very untidy;)). The washing machine and dryer are conveniently located right next door.

The ARC (Anteater Recreation Center) sports facility is also great and a great way to balance learning. As soon as you have your ID card, you can use everything there. The ARC is really well equipped with a pool, fitness rooms, basketball court, squash, etc. You can sometimes also attend fitness courses for free. Shops such as Albertsons and restaurants are also just around the corner (about an 8-minute walk). However, it takes about 25 minutes to walk from the accommodation to the main campus. In view of the fact that you save the cost of the rental car and you can be in the air when the weather is nice, walking is not a problem. In addition to all the fast food, such a walk is good;)

I would recommend a rental car over the weekend. You can then share it with 5 other international students, for example. So it’s cheaper and you can go on great trips together. The German driver’s license is valid, but you have to note that you should be 25 years old to rent a car. You can be younger (21 years, sometimes 18 years with special providers), but then there are even more additional costs.

Fun

Guaranteed! The UCI offers great trips that you can sign up for (Las Vegas, San Francisco, beach, surfing, Disneyland, Universal Studios, Six Flaggs…). I personally took advantage of a few of these offers and loved it. You come into contact with the students again and it’s worth the price-performance ratio. The domestic students who lead the trips were always very nice and open-minded.

Tips

  • read the Summer Session Handbook beforehand for important information
  • uses the pickup service, but be careful, this only applies to arrival! You have to take care of the return journey yourself, here you can book great and cheap at (www.primetimeshuttle.com)
  • Don’t forget your LAN cable
  • the pdf “Survivingwithoutacar” (just google it) can be helpful; However, the public transport system (www.octa.net) cannot be compared with the German one
  • start running in the morning before your first course, or walk the path the evening before, because the campus can be quite confusing at the beginning, but you should use the “map” (overview plan that you get when you move into the dormitory) you find everything good and over time you get used to it quickly
  • buys used course books (is a lot cheaper)
  • Don’t hesitate to use the professors’ office hours for questions etc.
  • are open to everything new and ask if you want to know something (whether students or Gabriella and her team – they will try to help you)

I can really recommend the UCI to you! It was a great life experience and an unforgettable summer. Last but not least, I would like to thank MicroEDU for the great advice and support.

Semester in University of California Irvine