I began my expatriation in Leon, in Spain. During this semester in a university abroad, I followed 5 classes which were World Economy, Business Administration, Law of International trade, English 2 of International trade and Basics o Interpret the Cultural Heritage.
I will introduce you to each one of those subjects :
I took this subject because I wanted to strengthen the knowledges I already had on it, even deepen them from what I have learned in high school and at IPAG BS. Here, I studied the economy of the world globally and specifically, concentrating on the European Union, the United States of America and Japan, since XIXth century until present. The analysis concerned the economical and political evolution framed in the historical context, the risks around it and the consequences that followed.
It consisted in studying the different strategies implemented by companies and their characteristics, according to their environment, market and groups of interest. The week was divided into two types : on Wednesdays, I had theoretical classes and on Thursdays, it was practical classes. This class was for me a deepening of what I already knew. It was very interesting and even if there were many things to learn, I liked it very much.
Law of International trade
This subject was the most difficult for me. I still haven't had my final exam on it and I fear it a lot. It consists in studying the laws implemented by Spain and the European Union concerning the trade of goods and services. I also learned specific aspects of treaties, norms and principles according to the national or European Constitution, and the parties concerned in case of conflict and had to retain numerous article and their specificity.
But let me explain why this class was so hard for me.
Contrary to the other teachers I had, this one didn’t make efforts to speak clearly and make herself understandable. She swallowed words and her lessons were not well structured : she always went from an idea to another without logical link, and it was not rare to have notes where sentences were not finished. I have spoken with other students, including Spanish ones, and even them told me they had difficulties to follow the class. So for me, who decided to do my university semester in Spain to improve the language because I was useless in it, it was really, really hard.
English 2 of International trade
To continue my learning of foreign languages, I decided to take an English class oriented on International trade. I will explain this choice with three reasons.
Firstly, as I was in Spain, I knew I would not practice English. Not to forget what I have learned, so to maintain my level, even to improve it, I decided to take a language class.
Secondly, even if I still don't know what I would like to do in the future, I have a preference for the international side, from where this choice. Indeed, it is essential to know the specific vocabulary related to this sector and to master it.
And thirdly, I have selected this course because I was curious to see how foreign languages are taught in an othter country than France.
The semester was divided into four parts, each one focusing on a precise goal. I began classes concentrating on the grammar (recap of all the tenses, time concordance and construction of complex sentences). I continued with the reading and listening comprehension, then came the vocabulary part. In parallel, once a week, I had oral classes which consisted in learning phonetic, that is to say how to pronounce well words.
However, I didn't learn many things because all the explanations were always in Spanish, and the students had a low level so I didn't improve a lot.
Basics to Interpret the Cultural Heritage
As I was allowed to take an "opening" class, I chose this one because I have always been interested in Arts. I would divided this subject semester into two.
For me, the first part consisted in discovering the different types of cultural properties that exist (material or intangible goods) and the procedures to follow to consider them as Good of Community (from the Spanish autonomous communities) or National Interest.
The second part focused more on how to analyze a work of art : type (painting, sculpture, architecture), genre, theme, description, analyze, interpretation and judgment.
Through the semester, I had many oral presentations which aimed to apply what I had learned in class. It was a difficult exercise for me because first of all, I feel unconfident orally, and speaking in a language I don't master at all makes it more stressful. Plus I feared they would not understand what I was or wanted to say due to my accent. But hopefully, things were not that bad.