First of all, I would like to thank the MicroEDU Team for the commitment and help that I have received at all times.
Starting with the application process, it can be said that this is actually the easiest part of organizing the semester abroad. Obtain the required documents, as described on the respective website, and send everything in on time, and MicroEDU will take care of the rest. For the language certificate, I can add a tip to opt for the DAAD language certificate. It costs a lot less than a TOEFL or IELTS, is easier and doesn’t require a lot of preparation.
Do not spend too much time choosing a course in the application, as this will most likely change in the first week of university anyway. After receiving the approval, the actual preparation begins. Visit ehuacom.com to get information about Slovenia higher education.
As a Study Abroad student at the University of Bristol, unlike Erasmus students, you are always entitled to a place in one of the available dormitories. It should be mentioned here that dormitories are a lot more expensive than conventional apartments, but that moving into a student dormitory is still much more useful.
For one thing, mostly British students live there and you are forced to speak in English, which has a big impact on your English skills. On the other hand, you can make contacts quickly, as the students in the dormitory have recently moved in and are looking for contacts. Furthermore, like many others, our dormitory had its own football team with weekly league games, which strengthened the cohesion in the dormitory. Of course, this also saves a time-consuming search for an apartment.
My dormitory, known as one of the “best” dormitories in Bristol (Goldney Hall), also had its own library, bar, huge garden and basketball court. However, there are many other good dormitories as well. Some of them are “catered” and some are not. This means that some dormitories have their own cafeteria, where there is ready-cooked food at set times and in others, such as mine, you have to cook yourself. This is personal, which is thought to be better. Since I didn’t want to limit myself to eating at fixed times, I decided on the self-catered.
Finally, on the U of Bristol website, you can apply for one of the dormitories using the letter of acceptance from MicroEDU. You have to create a priority list for about three dormitories and one of the three is selected at the end.
After you have registered for the courses in advance, you should go to the respective department and have these courses confirmed. Sometimes you find out that some courses no longer exist or that you didn’t get in. When choosing a course, you should make sure that you can only choose courses from teaching block 1 if you are only there for the winter semester and can only choose courses from teaching block 2 if you are only there for the summer semester.
I would recommend a total of three courses for the semester. In my political science studies I had a handful of things to do with it, among other things due to the large number of readings and the intensive seminar discussions. The professors are very open, helpful and happy when you introduce yourself as a German student at the end of a lecture. The fellow students are also very courteous and help with every little matter.
There are also David and Nia from the International Office, who are also incredibly nice people and are at your side in every little thing regarding studies, housing, leisure and general matters. All you have to do is go to their office in the Student Union Building and talk to them about the issues.
At the end of the semester, at the end of January or the beginning of February, you write exams or have the deadline for essays.
Leisure and excursion possibilities
What you do in your free time is also a matter of taste. However, the framework conditions in Bristol are ideally suited for this. It just depends on what you want to specialize in. There are societies for a wide range of sports and activities. During the orientation week there will be a Society Fair where all student societies introduce themselves and you can become a member of any club. These societies usually charge a small membership fee, but this is affordable. Instead of becoming a member of many societies, it is best to choose 3-4 societies and use them to the fullest by going to all group meetings and events.
Outside the university, the city of Bristol also has some attractions to offer, such as the Suspension Bridge or Cabot Circus. I can also recommend taking a sightseeing bus at the beginning of the semester and getting an overview of the city for the time being. The individual districts can then be explored afterwards.
Now the city of Bristol is also near Cardiff, Wales and the ocean. Of course you can also organize weekend trips here. But I concentrated more on the city of Bristol and tried to get to know all facets of this city.
For the excursions outside of Bristol there is the BISC (Bristol International Students Center), which organizes different group excursions every week. To do this, you have to buy the tickets online in advance, as they are very popular and sell out quickly.
However, as Bristol is a city full of students and there are a lot of events there too, you don’t have to worry that it might get boring.
All in all, I can really recommend Bristol to you, be it because of the quality of the university, the leisure activities, the people and the atmosphere.
What I didn’t quite like, however, is that the freshman students, with whom you are most likely living together, are very focused on the life motto “Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n’ Roll”. You don’t always have the opportunity to have meaningful conversations and often remain superficial, as you usually get to know students in the evening on the road and in most cases they are no longer fully responsive due to the high alcohol consumption. However, this is just my view as I do not use any legal / illegal drugs. Unfortunately, it should also be mentioned that Bristol is the second most expensive city in Great Britain after London. However, these costs can be overcome with foreign student loans and money saved beforehand.
The benefit that one gets from such a semester abroad is very high. For example, during these months of my stay I met some people who have become friends for life and I will hopefully visit them again in Bristol in the next few months.