UAB Reviews (2)

Vila Universitària Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

Application:

The application process is really very simple. You have the necessary documents together quickly and everything is described exactly, so that you can’t really go wrong. The fact that the service is free for the applicant is of course great.

The apartment search worked surprisingly well. Since the two of us were looking for a small apartment of our own, we didn’t look for shared apartments. All the friends we met later had no problems at all and either already booked their apartment or room in a shared apartment from Germany or found them here in Barcelona via loquo.es, a fast-paced internet platform. Many apartments are also advertised on Facebook in corresponding UAB groups, for example looking for “UAB Erasmus 2012-2013” ​​or the like. You shouldn’t be afraid of arriving without an apartment. Simply book a hostel for a few days and then search on site on your own. In the end, it turned out to be top for us that we placed our own free ad at loquo.es, in which we described what kind of apartment, with what attributes we were looking for and on the first day we got the answer to the dream apartment, which we visited that evening. That was pleasantly simple and the apartment was absolutely great.

The University:

I’ll write what I thought was good, but also honestly what wasn’t so great. When they arrived at the UAB, there was initially a rather childish introductory event, in which, in addition to some useful information, the simplest rules of behavior were explained and panic was spread about the performance requirements. The level is extremely high, it is difficult to get a really good grade, you have to do a lot of personal work and additional work – all nonsense. It hailed good grades. You shouldn’t let that intimidate you, afterwards you laugh about it. However, the amount of work involved depends very much on which courses you have taken. Some lecturers actually asked for written papers and some presentations several times during the semester. The system is a little different than in Germany. While we are at most one presentation from home, However, if you are usually only used to a final exam at the end of the semester and practically do not do much during the weeks, this is exactly what the UAB aims to do. Here you have to work together during the courses, the final exam is no longer a “hammer” for which you would have to study for weeks. Here, too, I can only say from my own experience and stories from other fellow students that the preparations for these interim performances do not demand anything impossible. Those who are used to the level and performance requirements at home will get away with work that we perceive as sloppy. That makes the semester all in all very casual, but at the same time it also creates inner dissatisfaction, because the motivation and participation in the courses is subterranean and you have the feeling that you could learn three times as fast if only things went faster. Unfortunately, many students have not even come to study in second priority and just sit down their time in the courses. This often makes the lessons a tough affair and also frustrates the lecturers. It’s a shame, but apart from my Spanish course, I can’t say that I learned a lot here.  This point is certainly decisive for many students. The other way around you can say, if you want to do an easy, breezy semester abroad with only shallow brain movements and a lot of fun around it – and still come home with a great certificate, you’ve hit the bull’s eye  This often makes the lessons a tough affair and also frustrates the lecturers. It’s a shame, but apart from my Spanish course, I can’t say that I learned a lot here. Check andyeducation to see more reviews from current students.

Spanish course:

The intensive Spanish course, in my case level B.1.2, on the other hand, was great. Three hours of Spanish in a row might make your head smoke, but it was quite effective and I learned a lot in a short amount of time. The two teachers I had were great and the group was halfway equally strong, so that we made good progress and the progress was quickly noticed. I can only recommend the language course at UAB. However, I also noticed that it actually depends on the composition of the group. The Spanish courses for beginners are said to have been hair-raising (sorry, but you have to say it) due to the overwhelming power of the unmotivated Americans, who learn very slowly at this language stage, and caused more anger build-up than language skills. As I said, The Americans really wanted to learn at my higher level and my course was great. It always depends.

UAB program:

What is a bit of a shame and really a minus point is the complete lack of UAB’s “socializing program”. Unfortunately, there are no offers from the UAB to bring the students together and propose joint activities or the like. The whole social life is left to the students alone, which is basically good and works, but the nations don’t mix as much as they could and it’s just harder to get to know other new people. Everything is based on your own initiative, there are no suggestions or events or excursions or the like. It is also a shame that there are no Spaniards at the university themselves and that there is no contact with the locals at all and that it is not as easy to set up as you might imagine. The Catalans somehow like to stay among themselves and there are not many points of contact to get to know the Spaniards in everyday life, but that certainly differs from case to case. But you know that beforehand and have to plan for it. Maybe the “next time” I would want to take part in regular university courses for a semester so that I can be more involved in Spanish life. But for that you would have to be able to speak the language much better and often they also hold their lectures in Catalan, then things get very complicated.

Location and equipment of the buildings:

Our university buildings are located in the city center of Barcelona, ​​which is absolutely great, but it is completely cut off from the large UAB campus in Bellaterra outside of Barcelona. I think there are already organized events or something there, but the international students have the feeling that they are just being “processed” in the city center. Those who take economics courses are only taught in the Eixample Campus and this building unfortunately has no real lounge or bistro or anything like that. There is a computer room with a few PCs for the many students and a large table, but that’s about it. The Sant Pau campus is beautiful, a great building. All in all, the location of the building is of course awesome, despite all the criticism that should not be ignored

Barcelona – the city:

Writing about the city of Barcelona would take several pages and read like a song of praise. I would like to summarize that it is really great to spend a semester abroad here. It’s very different than at home and if you are open to new things, can overlook and accept finicky quality differences in many things, then you get a great Mediterranean feeling and find yourself in a different atmosphere and will soon be taken with it of the new city. In addition to the many sights, you will always find something new in all the many alleys and districts and you will quickly be fascinated by the variety of everything here. The standard of living is somehow similar to at home, European and you really don’t miss anything, at the same time the way of life here is just a little different, Maybe slower and more fun – especially on sunny days, all life takes place on the street outside and literally pulls you out. Every day in the apartment feels wasted because there is still more to see. The potential does not seem to be exhausted. You never get bored!
If you choose Barcelona, ​​you don’t have to worry about a possible culture shock in everyday life. Germans also seem to be welcomed here. This certainly applies to the university, where every lecturer is happy if at least one German is in the course, as well as to the Spaniards outside the university themselves. We have a very positive image here and political discussions do not have to be feared.

My conclusion:

The semesters at the UAB seem unfairly short and you practically have to go back home when you have really settled in and settled in.  Barcelona: Again and again!JThat’s a shame, but I don’t know after how many months this feeling would subside  It was great, I’m staying even longer myself to polish up my Spanish and be able to stay in town a little longer. Practically everyone I met here had a great time here and fell in love with the city. I don’t see any reason to hesitate.

Vila Universitària Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona