University: San Diego State University
Country: United States
Continent: North America
Field of study: business administration
Study type: semester abroad
MicroEdu was recommended to me by both a friend and my home university and I’m glad I used this service. Thanks to MicroEdu, my application to SDSU was made very easy and I felt extremely well advised and supported. Because MicroEdu has been cooperating with the SDSU for a long time, all the necessary application steps were explained very well and were easy to handle.
Arriving in San Diego, I quickly felt very comfortable and settled in well. The orientation week especially for SDSU internationals was very helpful and ideal for making initial contacts. I lived in the Fifty-Twenty-Five (“5025”) residential complex, which is in the immediate vicinity of the university. At the time, I decided on this option because I could already book it from Germany – many internationals arrive without permanent accommodation and are looking for a suitable flat share on site. In retrospect, I have to say that the search on site can also be mastered without any problems with a little patience seems to be and in the end you can maybe save something on the rental costs, but above all you can optimize the location and the comfort according to your wishes. Visit mcat-test-centers.com to get information about Newcastle University.
Of course, living in 5025 has the advantage that you don’t have to travel far to the university and can therefore also go home for a short time in the free hours. There is a shuttle bus that runs approximately every 20 minutes between the 5025 and SDSU. While I was staying at 5025, the entire apartment complex was gradually being renovated and the renovations will continue into 2017. The rooms were (partially) equipped with new furniture, the pool area was renovated and the gym was also expanded. Nevertheless, the rental prices (as is generally the case in San Diego) are very high and cannot be compared with Germany. Therefore, you should plan between $700-$1000 per person per month rent (notice for a flat share). In general though, I’d say that San Diego offers significantly better housing options than the 5025. For example, if you want to live near the university, I would recommend Boulevard 63. This is much more modern and offers many more amenities. I was deterred at the time because you only have the option of renting the apartment for a whole year. However, this is not a problem as you can easily get out of the contract by giving the apartment to other internationals coming to San Diego next semester.
In principle, I can only recommend everyone to seize the opportunity and rent accommodation near the beach. The beach sections “Mission Beach” or “Pacific Beach” are available for this purpose. Pacific Beach is particularly good because it celebrates “Taco Tuesday” every Tuesday: First you meet for a taco and then there is a party in the “Backyard”. And otherwise there is always a lot going on in Pacific Beach, as there are many restaurants and shops. The way from the beach to the university is about 20 minutes on averageand since most internationals manage to plan their timetable so that they only have to go to the university three times a week, the commute is not too great either. However, the prerequisite is that you have a car or carpool. The public road in San Diego is extremely poorly connected and only slightly recommended. Two of me shared a car and rented it from Express Car Rental (near the airport). Dirt Cheap Car Rental is also recommended for internationals. Both offer the ‘cheapest’ prices – note that anyone under the age of 25 is charged the young driver surcharge, so it’s not that cheap to hire a car. The two of us paid $400/month for our car. However, from my experience, I recommend everyone to have access to a car, in other words, get together with one to three other people to reduce the costs. Others also bought a used car for the time – but I can’t give any tips on that.
Now to study at SDSU:
From the University of Mannheim I was obliged to take 5 courses, of which 50% of the courses had to have “Business Content” (here the course HTM 201 was credited to me as a course with Business Content). Unfortunately, what I didn’t know beforehand is that the tuition fees paid in advance only cover 4 courses and I therefore had to pay about $700 more. In general, I found the academic level at the SDSU to be significantly lower than that at the University of Mannheim. The courses could all be completed with significantly less work. In almost all of my courses, however, there were mid-term exams as well as small homework and presentations to prepare.
SDSU obliges you to choose two so-called “Special Session” courses in advance – these deal exclusively with business content. You choose these courses before you arrive at home. All other courses can then only be selected on site. However, you can get an overview of the courses offered by the SDSU in advance on their website. Unfortunately, some courses are already fully booked at the time you are able to register, as priority is given to regular SDSU students. However, since the range of courses offered by the SDSU is very large, I think there are enough options to switch to other courses.
I have taken the following courses:
HTM 201: Introduction to Hospitality and Tourism Management (Dr Alana Dillete)
This course was really easy and also very interactive. The two exams were also extremely easy. However, shooting an information or music video on the subject of hospitality/tourism is a bit time-consuming. In addition, a separate website must be created, on which you have to upload many assignments throughout the semester.
CJ 300: Crime, Law & Justice (Dr. Nicole L. Bracy)
Compared to my other courses, the workload here was a bit higher. Personally, I had imagined the course content to be somewhat different, but it was conveyed quite clearly. The great advantage of the course is that it is a “hybrid course” – every 14 days the lecture takes place online. For exam performance: 2 written assignments, 2 online quizzes and 2 online exams.
JMS 460: Principles of Advertising (Barbara Mueller)
I really liked this course. A lot of interesting and easily understandable learning material on the subject of advertising was conveyed. Although this was my only course where attendance was not compulsory, I attended almost all of the time as no online course materials are provided here. The book that accompanies the lecture is highly recommended, as about half of the exam questions come from it. There were a total of 4 exams (i.e. one every 4 weeks) and a “Written Assignment”. In general, I can highly recommend JMS 460.
MGT 475: Leadership in Organizations (Dr. Mark E. Nicholson)
This course consists of 2 exams and a larger project with the topic “Servant Leadership Project”. In my opinion, the course content is conveyed rather boringly and very monotonously through the lecture. The project is a bit more interactive, but it also took a lot of time.
BA350: Management & Organizational Behavior (Lily Zhou)
What the name of the course and the course description do not suggest, this is not a standard university course. Ms. Zhou designs her lessons completely according to her own, very unconventional, ideas. Therefore, there are no lectures given by them using PowerPoint slides. Much more, the majority of the lecture consists of discussions of current political, economic and general world events. The final grade consists of four parts: Participation, attendance, project (“essay contest”) and a written assignment.
In general, all of the exams I have written at SDSU have been multiple choice and, except for JMS 460, all courses are compulsory. In addition, the exam material was not queried cumulatively in any of my subjects, ie the material that was relevant for the midterm was no longer queried in the final.
In conclusion, I can only recommend everyone to spend their semester abroad in San Diego at SDSU. San Diego is a great city with so much to offer and the climate is truly gorgeous. San Diego is also a great base for road trips and short vacations. Highly recommended are road trips up to San Francisco or through the national parks. Bargain flights to Las Vegas or Mexico are always popular. My personal highlight was the trip to Hawaii after the end of the semester. You should therefore try to set aside a budget for trips before you arrive and definitely use this opportunity.