Life in NCTU: NTU EEE Exchange Report

Well, I am back from exchange in Taiwan! Received a few Facebook chats asking me about NCTU, hence I am updating my blog with a temporary post using my exchange report to EEE NTU regarding my exchange experiences. Will update with another NCTU & Taiwan post for further reference soon :)

Information on host university

NCTU is a university focusing mainly on engineering sector, especially Electrical Engineering and Computer Engineering. It is located at quite an isolated area in Hsinchu, in which you need to take a 15minutes bus ride to Hsinchu train station in order to travel around. Similar to primary and secondary schools, students in NCTU will have their own classes in each course respectively (eg. classA, classB etc). Students’ position in class and course are counted based on their total average marks obtained each semester. In their final year, only the first few position (aka NTU dean list) in each courses will get a chance to take up their desired master course. Taking up a master course before stepping into workforce is very common in Taiwan.

Information on country

Taiwan is a country which uses Chinese as their mother-tongue language. Local students are amazing as they manage to study their modules using Chinese version textbooks and yet score well in English version papers. Taiwanese are really friendly, easy-going and polite. During my first week in Taiwan, I have had 3 Taiwanese strangers approaching me on the road suddenly and volunteering to tour me around Taipei city, also to bring me to enjoy the more famous traditional local food in each area instead of those recommended food for tourists. It never failed to amaze me when 711 staffs bow and thank me after each purchase too. Taiwanese love dogs - It is quite common to see owners walking their pet dogs (1 dog to 3prams of total 12dogs) on the road, or locals stopping to pet or even to hug a stray dog. As for their toilets, I still cannot accept the unhygienic fact that I have to throw used tissues into the bin instead of flushing them down the toilet bowl.


Information on personal and academic benefits

I find that the education system in NCTU is really tedious if compare to NTU. Be prepared to mug more than you ever did in NTU as NCTU has no tutorial classes, past-year-papers (unless you know seniors who share you) and lecture recordings (some modules have). Lecture slides are just direct summary of textbooks, mostly without example questions. NCTU focus on technical hands-on a lot too. Hence, I got well trained in juggling between fun and studies consisting of continuous practical projects, lab reports, theoretical homeworks and quizzes/midterms.

However, non-academic wise, my life in NCTU is really hectic and exciting. Besides making friends with exchange students from NUS, Hong Kong, China and some other western countries, I got to know local Taiwanese through NCTU cheerleading club. I temporary joined NCTU overseas students club (as I have a secondary school friend there) and hence got to know a lot of Malaysians and Hong Kong students too. I am really grateful that they take me in as their family, allowing me to join all their events, gathering etc – it felt just like freshman year all over again. The family and friends I have made now become part of my life. We cannot wait to see each other again and have already planned our next trip together.

Student exchange gave me the opportunity to do and see things I could never dreamed of doing in a foreign country– such as cheer performance during NCTU Sports Day, 30minutes bike ride at 3am to Hsinchu train station for their famous chicken soup, joined event committee apart from NTU, etc. It is a journey of self-discovery and personal growth filled with unforgettable memories. I have gained more experience, changed my view on life, shaped my character, confidence and self-dependence within these three months than ever, and I have never regretted anything. I had the best time of my life in Taiwan – what I get after these three months in Taiwan will last me a lifetime!

Some photos taken during exchange

Traditional Taiwan culture of BBQ during Chinese Lantern Festival with friends

Supper at famous supper shop near NCTU with friends
Outing with exchange students with some locals

Trip with exchange students from NUS and HK
My first experience in cheerleading! The best memory in Taiwan!!


More Information About Taiwan And NCTU? Check out

Life in NCTU: NTU EEE Exchange Report 
Life in Taiwan: Officially A Student In NCTU, Hsinchu
NTU Exchange - Gem Explorer or Fee Paying (Q&A)
NTU Exchange - National Chiao Tung University (NCTU), Taiwan


Some other photos taken during exchange in Taiwan (no time to edit)

With my best friends (both of us in the center got the 2 standing by the side to be a couple)

After cheer performance, after gaining 12kg, when I was 50kg


My skin condition is so much better in cold weather (no I didn't make up)


My group of Malaysian friends (half of them can fit in)
One day trip with another 2 friends from Malaysia

He wanted to play with my camera so I simply let him capture photos
With the HK peeps, why am I so tan?!
Yeap, is never a glam shoot with NUS peeps! how candid was this?! This was before cheer performance so still slim
Never a glam shoot with NUS. And I realised I seldom let people take photos of me, so I don't have many photos to post

The NUS guy captured this. 1 shoot, done! We almost fell off the cliff, wind was too strong
With my Malaysian friend
Demo during "Explore NCTU" food fair, dressing as Indian (super cold, was winter)
This guy is my best friend there, this girl is my pet (to bully)
Oh I finally found a photo with the NUS guy (from left), HK friend and NUS friend

I love photos taken by the NUS guy, simply take also nice even without makeup AHAHHAHA

7 comments :

  1. Hello! I am going to NCTU to exchange next sem, and I was wondering how many modules did you have to take to fulfill NTU MCs requirements?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi ShiMeng,

      Not too sure what do you mean by MC requirements? I dont suggest MC-ing a module during exchange as modules cleared durimg exchange are all graded as pass/fail. In NCTU 60/100 total point are considered pass.
      Anyway I cleared 4 EEE mods + 2 UE there, total 17au (1 lab 2au).
      Hope this helps :)

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  2. Hihi I commented on your other post before haha so sorry for troubling you again but I'd just like to ask, do you think staying outside of the dorm would make it hard to like socialise with NCTU ppl or other exchangees? :) because based on the photos I'm really not keen on staying in the hostel LOL but I'm still kind of afraid it might be a compromise on social life if I don't stay?

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    Replies
    1. Hi Si Ai,
      Yeah, I remember your name :) Depends on your socializing skills? I normally mixed with locals and international students studying there, as I have friends there beforehand. The only closer exchange students I mixed were from HK and NUS.

      Anyway, NCTU International department will add exchange students into a Facebook group after school reopens. They will also arrange some events & 1-day trip for all to mingle together.

      Personally, we (HK & NUS & I) didn't really want to mixed with the other exchange students as the western students kept asking us to go clubbing only. The remaining NTU students happened to be my coursemates but they are from a different clique (except me, my clique all in SG). But I see they rent an apartment outside together :) The NUS people also rent their apartment outside, nearer to their communication school further away from the main campus (but they a bit regret lah cause the room fee 1 month = my whole sem dorm fee).

      So, maybe you would like to ask around for other NUS students going NCTU for exchange next semester and plan your dorm from there? It will be more fun too! :)

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    2. Oicic yup I'll be renting with other nus peeps :) alright thank you so much for your help once again hehe

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  3. Hi! thank you for your post. May I ask what the English-medium humanities and social sciences courses are like there if you or your friends had taken them?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, my friends has forgotten the modules in NCTU, but they cleared in Chinese medium. Lessons are conducted in Chinese, but they submitted their essays in English :)

      Anyway, you can check for available english-medium courses under https://timetable.nctu.edu.tw/ !

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