PREPARATION STUDY ABROAD PERIOD

Exchange Experiences International Office Sweden – Stockholm University 2015-2016 Report 1 faculty/college level name study programme humanities ba...
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Exchange Experiences

International Office

Sweden – Stockholm University 2015-2016 Report 1 faculty/college level name study programme

humanities bachelor’s

master’s

PhD

Nederlandse taal en cultuur

PREPARATION exchange application process I didn't have much trouble with the application process, the information was great and easy to find so even though there was a lot to do, it wasn't problematic for me. counselling & support at Utrecht University The international office and the University were very helpful, so I am very satisfied with the counselling and support. I don't have the feeling that I needed more support. academic preparation The education in Stockholm is the same as in the Netherlands, so it wasn't necessary for me to prepare anything. language preparation I didn't do anything to prepare for my language. I spoke English all the time in Sweden and I spoke that already, so that went well. finances Sweden was very expensive, but I knew that in forehand so I saved some money and the erasmus grant was very helpful.

STUDY ABROAD PERIOD study programme (content and organisational issues) For halve the time I did an internship at the Dutch department at Stockholm University. I was an studentassistant, so I helped the teachers with correcting assignments from the students and helped/gave lectures. For the other time I followed courses which I chose by myself. I followed a course about Swedish film and media and a course about gender in anthropologies. academic quality of education activities The academic quality was very good in Sweden, I can compare it with the quality in the Netherlands. counselling & support at receiving university abroad The counselling & support was good, there was an international office which was very helpful. transfer of credits The transfer of credits didn't cause any trouble. It went alright.

STUDENT LIFE welcome & orientation programme

Exchange Experiences

International Office

Sweden – Stockholm University

There was a orientation week with a lot of useful information and nice activities. This was really helpful and nice. accommodation My accomodation was offered by the university, so I didn’t have to find an accomodation by myself, which was really nice. I didn't have to worry about accomodation, I only had to register myself and that was it. I was very happy with the way it went. leisure & culture Sweden has a really nice culture and Stockholm is a really pretty city, so it was really nice to explore the city. there was a lot to do and I really enjoyed my spare time. suggestions/tips I don't have any suggestions, there were a lot of activities for international studies to meet new people and explore the city.

CONCLUSIONS would you recommend this university/destination abroad to others? please explain I would definitely recommend this university and this destination. Everything is arranged really well, the academic culture is really nice and the university is a good one. Also Stockholm is a really pretty city with a lot of culture and nature. do you have any additional advice or comments? No. Report 2 faculty/college level name study programme

Humanities bachelor’s

master’s

PhD

BA Nederlandse Taal en Cultuur

PREPARATION exchange application process The application process was clear due to the instructions on the website of Utrecht University. I made sure to arrange everything before the Christmas holidays so there was no stress. counselling & support at Utrecht University I had support from the International Office, I e-mailed them about parts of the application process I was not sure about. I received support from the Exchange coordinator from my own programma as well. academic preparation There were no specific preparations I had to take. language preparation I felt confident enough about my level of English, so I did not take any additional language preparations. finances

Exchange Experiences

International Office

Sweden – Stockholm University

I applied for the erasmus grant, the public transport refund from DUO and decided to start a student loan at DUO as well.

STUDY ABROAD PERIOD study programme (content and organisational issues) At Stockholm University I did courses as well as an internship, which was arranged through the exchange coordinator of my programme in Utrecht. This internship was at the department of Dutch language at Stockholm University, where I taught and assisted the professors. The courses I took were Famous works of literature written in English and two Swedish language courses. For the English course I had to apply by sending an e-mail to the department, the Swedish course registrations took place at the beginning of the semester at the university. The website of SU gave information on how to apply for these different courses. academic quality of education activities The academic quality of the English literature course was similar to what I was used to in Utrecht. Not so many seminars, much individual reading, regular compulsory preparations and two essays. The group was small (about twenty students). The Swedish courses were not very academic, as they were language acquisition courses meant for practical purposes. The preparations consisted of learning grammar and vocabulary by heart, making exercises and writing short texts on various topics. counselling & support at receiving university abroad Everything at Stockholm University was very well arranged. I received an e-mail well in time before my arrival with everything I needed to know. I did not need any extra counselling or support, but I am certain it would not have been difficult to get access to it. transfer of credits The transfer of credits was very easy, because the credits (högskolapoäng) of Stockholm University are directly transferrable to ECTS. At present I do not yet know if the Board of Examiners will transfer the credits directly, but I don't expect any problems.

STUDENT LIFE welcome & orientation programme The university had arranged buses on arrival day to take all arriving students directly from the airport to the place where we could pick up our keys. The first week was the introduction week, with various optional activities. There was an Orientation Day where we received a lot of information. accommodation I lived at campus Lappis, an area with many student flats close to the university (ten minutes by foot). I shared a kitchen and living room with ten other students and had my own bathroom. The corridor was very international, with two Swedes and all kinds of other nationalities. leisure & culture Stockholm is a very beautiful and interesting city. There is much to see and do, but going out is quite expensive. Corridor parties or just eating and having a nice night at home with friends were therefore a better option. I also joined a small orchestra (Stockholm Akademiska Orkester), which was a nice way to continue playing my instrument while on exchange but also a good way to meet Swedish people (which is not always easy as an exchange student). suggestions/tips

Exchange Experiences

International Office

Sweden – Stockholm University

If you decide to learn Swedish, use the free app Duolingo and find yourself a tandem partner (a Swede who is learning your language so you can practise with each other).

CONCLUSIONS would you recommend this university/destination abroad to others? please explain Absolutely. Sweden is a great country and Stockholm is a fantastic city. The university is good, very well organised and with good seminars. do you have any additional advice or comments? Learn Swedish! It is a lot of fun and a good means to get in touch more with Swedes (even though everyone speaks perfect English). I also became a coordinator at the Dutch Language café at the university, where students learning Dutch could come and practise. This is also very recommendable if you are interested in language. Report 3 faculty/college level name study programme

Humanities bachelor’s

master’s

PhD

Language and Culture Studies (TCS)

PREPARATION exchange application process The exchange application process is a complicated one. This has nothing to do with the university you will be attending, but more so with the administrative requirements for for example the Erasmus grant. When it comes to Stockholm University, the application is very clear and thus easy to follow. They quickly respond to requests for signatures etc, which can be very helpful when preparing for your exchange. counselling & support at Utrecht University The counselling & support at UU is good. They are always quick to respond if you have any questions, and the online information was quite clear. What is also comforting is that they send you reminders during your stay if you have to keep an eye on certain deadlines. academic preparation I was given the advice to prepare more thoroughly for two of my courses since they were on masters level. Even though this was good advice, I did not really do it extensively. Eventually, the courses were not easy, but most definitely doable. I think the academic level at Stockholm University could be compared to that of Utrecht University. language preparation I did not do any extra language preparation before I went to Sweden, since almost everyone is fluent in English there. If you would like to however, I would advice you to take a Swedish course before you go, since it is a lovely and not too difficult language to learn. finances Sweden is a very expensive country. Make sure that you have enough savings or support for during your stay. I personally had to do without any ‘Studiefinanciering’, which made it a little bit more expensive, but it was definitely worth it. Do not forget to cancel your OV if you have one, because DUO gives an amount per month

Exchange Experiences

International Office

Sweden – Stockholm University

for that. With this money you can pay for travelling within Stockholm, which will cost you around €60,- per month.

STUDY ABROAD PERIOD study programme (content and organisational issues) I really enjoyed the three courses I took in Stockholm; Swedish Film & Television Culture, Mediatized Intersections (M) and Formations of Cinema Studies (M). The courses are clearly structured (comparable to UU) and doable if you just keep up with the readings. The organisation is well done, but do keep in mind that depending on which courses you take, the location of the classes can vary. For example, most of my classes were at the Filmhuset (Filmhouse) and not on campus. academic quality of education activities As mentioned above, I would say that the academic quality could be compared to that of UU. For my course on Swedish Film & Television Culture we also got to watch some films in the actual cinema of Filmhuset, which was very nice. The university library is a great place to study, there is always room and it has great views on the green campus! counselling & support at receiving university abroad The counselling and support at Stockholm University is very well taken care of. They are extremely helpful and friendly. They have a large array of people that can help you with various things. Especially my exchange coordinator was very helpful and kind. transfer of credits The online environment of Stockholm University is very well designed; you can download your Transcript of Records online. This then of course has to be approved by several people, but getting the document itself is very easy.

STUDENT LIFE welcome & orientation programme Stockholm University really makes you feel welcome at their campus. There is a week full of activities, including free bus tours to Ikea and parties in the centre. They offer you endless options to meet new people and find your way around campus and the library. The given information is clearly structured and very helpful so participating in the activities really gives you a good start for your exchange. accommodation I was lucky enough to receive accommodation through Stockholm University. I lived at Campus Lappis, located right next to the University Campus. This is a very large students campus, with (I think) around 2000 students. It has a little supermarket and a (pizza) restaurant. The campus is beautifully located next to a large lake/forest. The rooms itself all had a private bathroom. The kitchens were being refurbished during my stay, but unfortunately the kitchen in my corridor was slightly old and messy. The organisation that offers these houses, the SSSB, is not the best organisation to deal with if you want to get something done, like receiving a new bed. But, if you just keep on asking they will eventually do what you ask them  leisure & culture Stockholm is an amazing city that I would recommend to anyone for an exchange. It is the perfect combination between culture (lots of museums), good food, nature and architecture. Make sure that you go to Fotografiska, if you are in to photography, and the Vasa Museum if you’re in to see something spectacular. Definitely eat some Swedish meatballs in the Salullhal in Ostermalm. If you are in Stockholm in the summer, take the ferry to

Exchange Experiences

International Office

Sweden – Stockholm University

Vaxholm to get a glimps of the amazing archipelago that is situated on the coast of the city. Another lovely place to visit (and take a bike ride) is Gotland; a large island situated a little south of the city. Once again, even though there are lots of nice things to do, keep in mind that it also costs quite some money. suggestions/tips If you are in Sweden in the wintertime, keep in mind that it gets dark early. This might not sound very freighting, but it has more impact that one might think. However, the winter also has its advantages: book a trip with Scanbalt in the beginning of the semester to go to Swedish Lapland in the winter. I did not do it because I was too late, but trust me; it is most definitely worth its money. Going to Lapland, which I did individually instead of with the organisation, will be the cherry on top of your Sweden experience.

CONCLUSIONS would you recommend this university/destination abroad to others? please explain I would definitely recommend Stockholm University to anyone. The country is great, the courses are well structured and of high academic quality and the university itself provides you with the best care. do you have any additional advice or comments?

2014-2015 Report 1

PREPARATION exchange application process Everything went really fast for me. I started to apply after the date for application had allready passed. That was because the announcement about the open spot was made at the end of march. Within a few weeks I had to wright the studyplan, the financial plan, the motivation letter and my C.V. After everything was signed and the application was complete it was almost immediately accepted. I was the only candidate for this spot at Stockholm University. counselling & support at Utrecht University I have to say that my international officer and the other people working at the international office were always very quick to respond. However, there were some things that weren't very clear. I was a parttime student for four years allready and the announcement about the open spot at Stockholm University was made during an eveningclass for parttime students. After I completed all the documents I got all the required signatures and everything got approved by the international office as well as my student counselor (for parttime students). But somehow nobody ever mentioned to me that you can't go on exchange when you're a parttime student. So after I gave up my fulltime job to go on exchange and payed for my appartment in Stockholm it turned out that my exchange was possibly not going to happen. This was two weeks before I was scheduled to leave. Thankfully I was able to arrange everything before I left, but I think this is a really good example of bad communication. It caused a lot of stress. Having said that, everything else went very smooth and I got the help that I needed when I needed it. academic preparation There was not so mutch I had to do to prepare myself academically. I did have to pass the course NT2 (educating Dutch as a second language), but the announcement about the exchange was made during this

Exchange Experiences

International Office

Sweden – Stockholm University

course, so I was allready taking it. After I passed the course there was no academic preparation necessary. language preparation A B2 level of English is required for this exchange. Because I was studying at the university allready it was assumed that my level of English was high enough. I did, however, download a Swedish course as well and started with that for some extra language preparation. finances I'm a thirty year old student with a (at that time) fulltime job. I also had enough savings, so my finances were no issue. Offcourse I knew it would cost a lot of money, but I thought the experience I would get in return would be worth it.

STUDY ABROAD PERIOD study programme (content and organisational issues) My study program consisted of the course 'Theatre in Sweden. Historical and Contemporary Perspectives' and an internship as a student-assistant at the Dutch department. Both parts are worth 15 credits. In addition to the internship and the course I also took two courses (level one and level two) 'Swedish for international students'. Together they were worth 12 credits. At the end of each course there was a written exam. The first course lasted five weeks, the second one nine weeks. There were three hours of class each week., mostly in the evenings. We learned the very basics of the language and nothing more. These courses are extra and are not needed to get the required thirty points in one semester. academic quality of education activities The course 'Theatre in Sweden' was, in my oppinion, of not such a high level. I got A's for both papers (the highest grade you can get) and I was quite surprised about that. Also, when I compare the course with the internship, the course was a lot easier and a lot less work. Still, they eventually are worth just as mutch ECTS. The course itself was not as interesting as I expected it to be and it was hard to know what the red thread of the course or the classes was. Afterwards it is difficult for me to point out what I have learned exactly. The internship on the other hand, was more work and took more effort, but has brought me a lot in return. I learned a lot about teaching Dutch to students with a diffrent mother tongue. Watching and assisting the other teachers was very helpfull. It allso tought me a lot about my own language and about the difficulties the students can have with learning Dutch. I have the feeling that the experience that I got at this internship really was very valuable. counselling & support at receiving university abroad I received the most support from my counselor at the Dutch department, professor Annika Johansson. Whenever I had a question or something I needed to talk about she was available. She has an incredible amount of knowledge of the Dutch language and I really admire her for that. I think it's important for a student to believe in his/her teacher. At least that's the case for me. I always get enthousiastic when a teacher proves to be skilled and passionate about their his/her of work. Annika certainly fits that discription. But also the other teachers, such as Stefan Fredrikson and Evie Coussé, were really helpful and willing to teach me something about their profession. For the Swedish courses I didn't really need any counseling or support. Everything was quite clear. The same can be said about the course 'Theatre in Sweden'. The few times that I had some practical questions about application and stuf like that I could always get an answer at the information desk or from whoever was

Exchange Experiences

International Office

Sweden – Stockholm University

available at the departement of Theatre studies. transfer of credits Every credit I earned was shown almost immediately at the transcript of records which I could find on the online student environment of Stockholm University. The credits that I received for the internship will be assigned to me by the University of Utrecht after my paper about my stay at Sockholm University is approved.

STUDENT LIFE welcome & orientation programme There was an orientation week before the classes started. At the first day (25-08-2014) every foreign student was invited for an orientation programme where a lot of different speakers gave the information we needed about al sorts of subjects such as banking, health insurance, studentnumbers, finances and more practical matters. This was very helpful, because everything is unsure in the beginning, especially those little practical things. The rest of the week was filled with activities, but since I was there with my boyfriend I chose to spend some time with him. Those activities were not commandatory. accommodation I was housed in an appartmentbuilding at the island Lidingö. That’s about thirty or fortyfive minutes away from the university (depends on the connection between the different kinds of public transport). That was quite okey. The appartmentbuilding was called Fjällis. I had no problems with my accommodation at at all. It was clean, everything worked I had everything to myself (kitchen and bathroom). At times some of the washing machines didn't work, but it never took long before they were repared. There was a supermarket really closeby and the best thing about the place was (to my oppinion) the fact that the woods were almost right next to the appartmentbuilding. That way I could really enjoy the Swedish nature whenever I wanted. The only thing that I was a little less enthousiastic about was the price of the accommodation. It was almost 500 euro's a month. Lidingö is the richest part of Stockholm (so I've been told) and that's why the price was a little bit high. But I enjoyed my stay there very mutch. leisure & culture Stockholm is a very beautifull city with a lot of beautifull nature surrounding it. Most of the times when I wanted to enjoy my free time there I walked out of my door and in to the woods. That is something that doesn't come so easy for me at home, because there simply are no woods in the neighborhood. In Stockholm I only had to walk like fifty meters and there I could enter the woods. I really enjoyed those walks. The city center itself is also very beautifull. It's almost always crowded, but not too crowded. There are a lot of museums to go to. There are just too many to be able to go to them all, but at least you don't have to get bored. And off course you should go 'fika' any chance you get. It's like going for a cup of coffe with some cake on the side. It's a real thing in Sweden. suggestions/tips th

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Skansen! It's an open air museum with al kinds of buildings that are from the 17 , 18 or 19 century and they placed it in Skansen so that you can see how people lived back then. You can also find the animals there that live in Sweden. It's a really big museum and you can actually spend a whole day there. The Vasa Museet is also recommendable. The ship the Vasa has been on the bottom of the sea for over 300 years and they managed to get it out and rebuild it with almost all of the original parts that they took from the bottom of the sea. It's very impressive. And above all I would recommend to enjoy the nature. In the Netherlands it's just not that common to be around so much beautifull nature and it's what made my stay in Stockholm extra great.

Exchange Experiences

International Office

Sweden – Stockholm University

As a last tip I would suggest to go to Lapland. It costs quite an amound of money, but it is really worth it. It's so different from what I'm used to and it felt like an experience I will never forget. The dogsledding, the Ice Hotel, the Sami people with their reindeers, Santa's village and the Northern Lights, it was al great!

CONCLUSIONS would you recommend this university/destination abroad to others? please explain Yes, I would deffinately recommend this destination abroud to others. Stockholm is a beautifull city and the Swedish people are very nice. Also at the university everything was fine, although off course that also depends on the kind of courses you take. But I had a great time there. do you have any additional advice or comments? The only thing I would like to advice is to take advantage of the time that you spend abroad. Try to see as much of the city and the nature that you can. It will make your experience even more unforgettable.

2013-2014 Report 1 preparation exchange/placement application process I did not only follow courses during my Erasmus exchange period in Stockholm. The reason why I chose Stockholm and why I went on an exchange in the first place was an internship at the Dutch department for one semester. As an intern, you work 50% (so 20 hours per week) on the internship. The other 50% are meant for following courses. This is the reason why my placement was somewhat different from the normal procedure. I got 15 ECTS credits for the internship and 15 ECTS for the course I followed. The proces is time consuming, and there are a lot of forms and signatures you are going to need before, during and after your exchange. Don't forget about that, because that can cause a lot of stress and that's not needed if you start preparing in time! Luckely, my exchange coordinator in Stockholm was also my internship coordinator and she always replied within a day. In Utrecht, however, the International Office has to deal with a lot more students so it can take time to get all the signatures and approvals you need on all the forms. I would say the motivation letter you have to write is very important: you can already show your host university what you're made of so don't waste that chance. Also, consider your courses very well, you don't want to have to change them while already being on exchange. For me, everything went well untill my Erasmus grant got denied while I was already staying in Stockholm for two months. After a lot of emails and a long time everything was fine again, but you really don't want to have to deal with stuff like that, so make sure everything is taken care of! counselling/support at home university The International Office at Utrecht University is very helpful and they provide good information. Keep in mind that they have a lot of work to do for a lot of exchange students all at the same time, so sometimes you have to wait for one or two weeks to get what you need. I think sometimes it was a bit unclear what was expected and how many signatures you have to get for everything before all of the forms are approved. This could be way more efficient I feel.. Maybe a checklist with all the forms for before, during and after your exchange in one email included would be a good idea. With a good explanation of what you're expected to do with the form: does this one need to be signed by my

Exchange Experiences

International Office

Sweden – Stockholm University home/host university? Do I need to uplaod it to Osiris? Sometimes it was very unclear. academic preparation For my internship I had to take a preparation course called "Onderwijs Nederlands als Tweede Taal" (NT2). The course I took in Stockholm was called "Sweden-Society and Everyday Life" and was placed in my minor Cultuurgeschiedenis after an approved request with the exam committee. language preparation I took a course completely taught in English at Stockholm University. Sweden is the number one English (as a second language) speaking country in the world, so everywhere I went people could answer my in English without any problems. You really don't need to learn Swedish if you don't want to. Of course, Swedish is a very nice language, so it is fun to take a language course. I could not take any language courses, because they had the exact same schedule as my course about Swedish culture. The university provides language courses for Erasmus students on many different levels and I heard they are a lot of fun! finances Sweden is an expensive country to live in, but if you do your shopping with awareness and don't drink too much alcohol in bars and clubs you will be fine. I saved up my own money before coming to Sweden and I did not use all of it, so I spend less then expected. I am very lucky that my parents paid my rent (about €420 per month!), everything else I paid myself. You can easily spent a lot of money in Sweden, but the same goes for the Netherlands. If you live like you do in the Netherlands, you will probably spent about 50100 euros per month more. For me, this was because I also made trips to other cities and other parts of Sweden to explore the country and culture. Keep in mind that alcohol and going out to clubs is very expensive in Stockholm, so think twice before doing that too often. Also, meat is more expensive. The rest is comparable to the Netherlands! study/placement abroad period study programme/work plan (concerning content and organisational issues) I took the one course "Sweden-Society and Everyday Life" about Swedish culture and politics nowadays and cultural history. It was quite easy, but very interesting, because you see what you learn all around you in everyday life in Sweden. Also, we had to do a field observation and question our knowledge in practice. Therefor, I went to the island of Vaxholm with my research group. It was a lot of fun on a sunny day on a beautiful island: how hard the life of a student can be! I had to give a presentation and write two major essays for each 7,5 ECTS credits. These took up quite a lot of time, but it was not too difficult and I got an A and a C as grades, so overall my grade for the course is a B. Additional to these essays there were a few smaller excersizes about the readings for the seminars that were also graded. academic quality of education/placement activities The university level I experienced in Sweden is lower and easier compared to the Netherlands, but I heard other people from the Netherlands studying law, economics or engineering that the level was quite high and difficult for their studies. I think overall it is comparable, but I did a course especially for exchange students, so maybe that's why the level was not too difficult, although it did require a lot of effort for reading the articles, writing the assignments and preparing for the seminars. They are on every study very generous with grading. In The Netherlands, it seems impossible to ever get a 10, but in Sweden, if you work enough, you can get an A for your work more easily. counselling/support at host institution/organisation

Exchange Experiences

International Office

Sweden – Stockholm University My coordinator was also my internship coordinator, so in fact my colleague in Stockholm. This made communication very easy. Also, the student has a very strong position in Sweden. The institutions are obliged to do everything that is best for the student. This means that you will always get an answer to your emails or other questions within maximum about two days. They are very helpful. transfer of credits In Sweden they work with a different grading system. It goes from A-F, where an A is excellent and an F is a fail. It depends on your own institute in the Netherlands how they transfer the grades you have. I got a B on my course and I think they will transfer that to an 8, but I am not sure about that yet. I am sure that I will get 30 ECTS for my period abroad. student life welcome/orientation programme At Stockholm University they provide exchange students with a lot of welcome activities. There is an Orientation Week where you get all the information you need and also get to know the university campus and the city itself. During the Orientation Week, you get an introduction to the university and a lot of information and checklists, but you will also be introduced to Sweden: the culture and the people. There are busses to IKEA so you can furnish your room, guided tours in the city, partys and clubbing nights. You get all the information about the public transportation, supermarkets, touristic sites, finances etc… You can get registered for different clubs or for other courses. I felt very welcome at Stockholm University, and it seems the university is very happy with the loads of foreign students they get every semester. Also during this week you get to meet a lot of people from other countries and interact and make new friends. accommodation I got my accomodation via the university. I stayed on the biggest campus of all: Lappkärsberget (Lappis). There are a lot of exchange, foreign, but also some Swedish students. The rooms are good size and they all have a private bathroom with toilet, sink and shower in the room. You have a lot of closet space to store your stuff. There is a bed, nighttable, closets, small coffeetable, chair and desk in the room. It is very basic, but all you need. My room was not very clean when I arrived, but the rooms should be, so normally they will be I suppose. You share the kitchen and livingroom with about 8-10 other people in your corridor. I was lucky my corridor and kitchen were very clean, but I have also been to others that very extremely dirty, so I guess you have to be lucky with the other people in your corridor! Make sure you create a good and friendly atmospere so that everybody is willing to do their cleaningduties. The campus is quite big and has a supermarket, gym, laundry rooms, restaurant/bar and everything you need. The city center is about 20 minutes away by SL (public transportation). The best thing about this campus: it is only a 5 minute walk to Stockholm University! The campus is awesome, because you are surounded by people like you (exchange students) all the time, so you make new friends very easily on all of the parties everywhere on campus. However, not everybody can get a room like this, I was very lucky to win the lottery, but some people have to find their own place which can be very difficult, time consuming and expensive. Watch out for scams while searching for a place in Stockholm! leisure/culture Swedes love to be outside, so a lot of leisure time is spend in the forest or at the lakes. The nature is really beautiful so make use of that by going hiking, skiing, swimming, sailing, running, biking etc.. The thing I love about Swedish culture is their special coffee time in the afternoon called Fika! Swedes have fika almost every day and I certainly enjoyed that. Usually they also have something sweet to go with the coffee or tea, like a

Exchange Experiences

International Office

Sweden – Stockholm University pastry or cookies. Have hourlong fika's in one of the countless nice little cafés in the city centre. Lunch is the biggest meal for Swedes and it is better to go out for lunch than for dinner. Dinner is expensive, while for lunch you get a lot for your money! Usually, you buy a plate with a warm lunch (meat, fish or vegetarian) and there is a salad, bread and soup buffet included in the price of which you can eat as much as you want. Also, coffee, tea and water are included. With a big lunch like that, you don't even have to spend money on your dinner anymore. Mostly, those buffet restaurants sell the same menu at night for a price that's more expensive. suggestions/tips Become a member of a student union. It saves you money on a lot of things! Such as: public transportation, phone costs, coffee/lunch on campus, study books, stores in the city center, museums etc. Visit Fotografiska, the photography museum: it is amazing. Also, the Vasamuseum, Skansen and Stadshuset are nice to visit. Grona Lund is an adventurepark with a lot of rollercoasters and other cool stuff, visit that in summer! Go to the islands in the archipellago in summer, they are a dream, just like Pippi Longstocking! Take the boat there for an amazing view. Visit an icehockey game, it is the biggest sport in Sweden and a lot of fun to watch! You can only buy alcohol at one store: Systembolaget, which is a state store. Alcohol is expensive, but it is way more expensive to drink in bars and clubs, so buy your own. Boxed wine is the real deal in Stockholm. Eat daim cake, kanelbulle and chokladbollar as much as possible. Also, don't forget the Swedish meatballs with lingonberrysauce, or try reindeer, elk or moose in winter. Smoked salmon with dillsauce is also very good. Go to the viewpoint at Zinkensdamn station, it is on the top of the rocks and you have the most amazing view! Finally, visit Swedish Lapland in winter. It seems like the end of the world there, it is unreal and like no other place you have ever been. I booked a student tour via Scanbalt tours and I stayed in Lapland for a week during Christmas. I have been on a dogsledge, snowmobil, visited the one and only Ice Hotel and saw how Sami people (like eskimo's that herd reindeer) live. It was the most special Christmas of my life with amazing people. conclusions would you recommend this host organisation/destination to others? please explain Yes, definitely. I have had a great time here, and I have learned so much. This has been a great experience. I will be coming back to Sweden and Stockholm many times, that's for sure. If you want to go on an extreme party exchange maybe Stockholm is not the right place for you, but if you want to experience another culture and living in a great city, Stockholm is the place for you. Sweden is very modern and the culture shock is not too big. For me, I adjusted within a few days and never got homesick or anything. You hear all there horror stories about Swedish winter, but really, it is not that bad! Sweden is a beautiful country, with beautiful people and I have had the time of my life here. do you have any additional advice or comments?