Chiara Danti, student of University of Pisa on Modern Languages and Literature went to Göttingen in Germany: "With my naive German, built in less than 3 years, I really didn't know what to expect from an entire year in Germany. Many were the difficulties, especially at the beginning, and many times I've thought about going back, because finishing the studies on time was for me really important. I'm so incredibly glad that I didn't! True, coming from Italy Germany is a great shock. Mandatory classes, cold classmates, competition, necessity to speak your mind out in class if you want to have a slight chance to get a good mark. But nothing of this can affect the feeling I had for the first time in my life to have met people I truly had something to share with. People like me who love traveling, experiencing new things, making friends, having fun without necessarily getting bloody drunk. Of course we did that too, anyway. About studying in Germany I can't be as positive as I would like: students are cold and most of the times won't talk to you in class. The only chance you have to get in touch with Germans is when they're damn drunk -of course there are exceptions, but this is the rule.
Their way of studying doesn't make much sense to me either: learning every line of an essay by heart and record every single word that comes out from the professor's lips.
Classes where you have to speak even if you've got nothing to say, that means that at a certain point everyone says either lots of bullshit or lots of empty words, without the professor pointing it out. Extremely young professors, which on one hand is great, but on the other hand it isn't that amazing anymore when you have doubts they can't answer either.
About the German study system I've become really critical, but I will never regret my Erasmus experience. It was in all and for all the best year of my entire life, it gave me confidence and it made me stronger, it made me cope with lots of problems I didn't think I could have, in short: it made me a better person through the lots of people I've met thanks to it.
Göttingen is a small town, with a huge number of initiatives that can make you get constantly in touch with new people. They're really caring for students, and I don't think my Erasmus experience could have been any better.
Make Erasmus, not war!"