Using London as a Classroom: Academics Abroad

Jan 25, 2017 5:30:00 PM / by Stephanie Sadler

CAPAStudyAbroad_London_Spring2017_Courtney Manning Profile Square.jpgCourtney Manning is an official CAPA blogger for spring 2017, sharing her story in weekly posts on CAPA World. A Convergence Journalism major at the University of Missouri-Columbia, she is studying abroad in London this semester.

In this week's post, Courtney talks about what her classes are like in London so far and how they compare to her experience with academics back home.


I’ve learned that classes in London are a lot more fun and interesting than classes back home. We go on a lot of field trips, many of which are at museums. I think it’s really great that we are learning by doing and going instead of just sitting in a classroom listening to a lecture.

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So far, we’ve been to the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Natural History Museum. We also went to Greenwich on an incredible boat ride that went under the Tower Bridge. My teachers for both of my classes are absolutely wonderful. They seem truly invested in our learning and just as importantly, enjoyment while learning. I really love museums, so these classes are right up my alley.

The Victoria and Albert Museum was really cool, especially because I’m a total history nerd. We got to see a really cool photography exhibit which showed a lot of people taking pictures with their own cameras within their photos. My favorite exhibit was probably the fashion exhibit which included lots of real clothes that people wore through history, dating as far back to even the 17th century. I really liked seeing clothes from the early 1900s because I really like learning about the Titanic so it was very cool to see clothes from that time period.

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The Natural History Museum is absolutely amazing as well, from the architecture to the exhibits inside. We spent most of our time looking at the photography there, which I found to be incredible. I really want to start taking more photography classes at Mizzou after seeing the exhibits at this museum. I love nature photography, and I think it would be really cool to work as a photographer for National Geographic or something similar.

Apart from the museums, though, my classes are still really cool. We get to travel all over London and learn about awesome famous places that aren’t obnoxiously touristy. Both of my professors are wonderful, and I have a lot of fun learning from both of them. Honestly, I think that all classes should be this way - a bit more easygoing and a bit more hands-on instead of textbook/lecture-oriented.

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So far, I’ve absolutely loved both of my classes. I’ve already learned a ton from both of them, and I’m very excited to learn these things from them. Usually at school I get pretty bored with a lot of my classes, but here in London I am always looking to learn new things! I think that field trips should be part of the college curriculum as they are in elementary school, because students of all ages get so excited about them and learn so much through them!

We also get to meet a lot of other CAPA students through our program, which is really cool because one of the other interns at my company is also a CAPA intern from Pittsburgh. It’s really nice that we get to hang out with other students from America while studying abroad here because it really makes us more comfortable adjusting to this new country and this new culture here.

Thanks Courtney!

Courtney's journey continues every Wednesday so stay tuned.

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Topics: London, England, Academics Abroad