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Ohio State, Arizona or Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


cadwallader

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Hello everyone,

 

I am a graduate student from Spain and I applied for the MA in Spanish/Hispanic Linguistics at the universities of Ohio State, Arizona and Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I have already been admitted to Illinois and Ohio State, fully funded in both programs thanks to a teaching assistantship. I am still waiting for Arizona's answer, but I believe and hope I will be admitted on the same terms or even better.

 

Now I ask you Americans for some help. My question is ¿What is the best option from the academic point of view? ¿Is Arizona's Department of Spanish at the same level as Illinois and Ohio State? ¿And what about the cities (Columbus, Urbana-Champaign, Tucson)? I have read many good things about Tucson, ¿is it a good place? I've also heard that Columbus is kind of awful off-campus and Champaign is really small, isn't it. ¿Which do you think is the best place to spend two years of my life doing my MA? 

 

At this moment my ranking goes like this: 1 Arizona, 2 Illinois 3 Ohio State...¿Opinions?

 

Thank you very much for your help

 

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NRC has the departments ranked 11-12 for Illinois, 24-25 for Ohio, and 47-48 for Arizona. I have visited Tucson and it seems like a good place to live in general but it is very hot there.

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Columbus and Champaign-Urbana (locals call it Champaign-Urbana, or just Champaign or just Urbana- only the university really uses Urbana-Champaign) are both nice areas, as well. I can't speak to the quality of these programs, but I think the location that is best depends on what you want. Do you want a bigger city? Will you have a car, or will you need to rely on public transportation? Do you want to be somewhere that has a large international student population? How much can you afford in rent? These are the kinds of questions I would start with.

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Hey thanks for your comments!!

 

 

Basically, I am just not sure about living in such a small city as C-U, which is in the middle of nowhere...I've read some good things about the city too and I know the university is amazing (probably the best program) but I am pretty sure I would prefer a bigger city, and Tucson (500.000) or columbus (700.000) would suit me best. I do not know whether i'll buy a second-hand car or not, but I'll try and the budget thing is not so important for me. Of course, even though having international students around would be great, I do not want to stick to an international environment only.  

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I can't speak for the strength of the programs because I have no idea. However, I did do my Masters at U of A and lived in Tucson for 2 years so I can at least tell you what it's like over there.

 

It's a pretty nice city. Not too big, but plenty to do.

The weather is hot. Actually the weather is wonderful from around October till May. I've seen people in tshirts during winter. June-August are really hot but manageable. Everywhere has A/C.

The university campus itself is really nice too. Housing and apartments are very affordable. The bus system is not bad and you get a reduced price for annual or semester bus passes as a student. There are also decent biking lanes.

My favorite things about it were the hiking and the food. Lots of outdoor activities and hiking available if you like that. Lots of really great affordable multicultural food. I spent the 2 years looking up the best reviewed restaurants on google and going there :P Something I highly recommend.

It's not the shopping center of the world though but it has a couple of malls. There's 4th Avenue which has all the student bars and nightlife.

Edited by TeaGirl
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I'm only familiar with Champaign as a city and not the program. Its definitetly a small college town experience and kind of dominated by undergrad life at U of I. Its not bad, but its not really super exciting and definitely not a cultural center. The good news is if you ever get bored you can hop a bus for around 10 bucks each way and hop up to Chicago or down to St. Louis for a weekend (its about 3 hours to either). 

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I've spent some time in Tucson and I've passed through Columbus.  My vote would be for Tucson. More culture, better food, west coast liberals, and beautiful people (all the sunshine and time at the pool will do that).

 

 

But...It will be extremely hot in the summer months June-September. I mean brutally hot, and the sun is very intense with a high UV index. So don't bring any furry pets, cause they will hate you for it. So give scruffy up for adoption and pack your sunscreen, shades and swimsuit.

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