By Clémentine Faure (2015)
During the first year of my Master’s, I spent a semester at Loyola University in the beautiful and exciting city of Chicago, Illinois. Despite the apprehension of living in a huge city where I had never been before, I left my small town in Provence on August 22nd to start taking classes on the 26th. There were ups and downs, but the upsides are the ones that have stayed with me in the long run. Read more!
By Flora Roselier (2015)
Many of my friends are former Erasmus students, and I have always been jealous of their experiences abroad. When I was accepted at the University of Birmingham in the West Mid-Land, in England, I was eager to start my own experience as an Erasmus student. Needless to say, moving to a foreign country is a bit scary, but as soon as I arrived the fear went away as excitement set in. Still, I did not yet realize that I was starting one of the best years of my life. Read more!
By Salomé Boucher (2015)
Galway is the capital city of Connemara, a region along Ireland’s West Coast, ‘The Wild Atlantic Way’. Connemara seems to perfectly fit our stereotypes of Ireland: green grass, lakes and sheep. However, after having spent the first year of my Master’s there as an Erasmus student, and truly considering Galway as my home, I discovered it was so much more than pastures. I found a country whose history and culture have captivated me ever since. Read more!
By Valentine Oliviero (2015)
“Tom, he was a piper’s son, he learnt to play when he was young,
And all the tune that he could play, was ‘over the hills and far away’.”
Why travel abroad? Why go somewhere where you may be completely lost and unable to communicate with others? As a student with the option of going on an Erasmus exchange, these are the questions you have to ask yourself. My instinct was to take the plunge and try to make this experience happen. It was worth it. The year I spent in Chichester, England gave me so much, personally and culturally, that it was one of the best decisions I have ever made. Read more!
By Christelle Klein-Scholz, post-doctoral fellow, LERMA (E.A 853)
Area studies are intrinsically interdisciplinary: ‘[c]ultures, in their ever-shifting interactions and complexities, need to be both researched and taught from interdisciplinary perspectives’. Characterized by hybridity, breadth, general knowledge and synthesis, they aim at ‘interconnect[ing] and transgress[ing] boundaries’ so as to implement a synergistic approach to ‘the growing number of problems “without a discipline”’. ‘Commitment’ can be thought of as one such problem, and the 2015 LERMAsteriales were undoubtedly ‘at the boundary of the individual disciplines’ – literature, history, enunciation, linguistics, translation, photography, art, religion, politics, and language – ‘where they begin to merge and intermingle, clash and jar.’
The concern that comes to mind when dealing with interdisciplinary studies is addressed on the website of the Arts and Science programmes at University College London: ‘If I take an interdisciplinary approach, won’t I just learn a little bit about everything and not much about anything?’; the answer that is provided aims at being both upfront about the issue at hand and reassuring to prospective students: Read more!
Eight students’ accounts of their experiences abroad
Students at Aix-Marseille, as elsewhere, are strongly encouraged to apply for exchanges abroad. But what is really behind this presumably enriching and colourful experience—an experience that has become became a rite of passage for students committed to the study of English? In the French academic system, a year abroad is not compulsory when you study Modern Languages, so the decision to leave is entirely personal.
What are the reasons why some students choose to leave in the first place? Is the process of leaving as easy as it sounds, and is coming back as natural as one thinks? Read more!