Lewis - Technical University of Denmark

B Engineering/Science
Semester 2, 2019
If you are even remotely considering exchange, seize the opportunity. This experience will test your relationships and completely change aspects of your life, you will not look back.

Academic experience

I studied Introduction to Spacecraft Systems and Design (masters level), Introduction to Machine Learning and Data Mining, Statistical Physics (masters level), Mechanical Vibrations, and Numerical Analysis for Applied Engineering. Weeks are divided into 4-hour blocks and each course is taught in one of these time slots, so you must be mindful not to overlap courses during registration. DTU puts an emphasis on group work with much of the assessment being completed this way. Exams were either oral or 4-hour written open book. My favourite course was Introduction to Spacecraft Systems and Design, as each week two topics were covered by their respective experts rather than a single lecturer, and the course was assessed through weekly assignments. One challenge I found was when I began classes, I realised a course I was taking was similar to a previous course I had already taken at UQ. After emailing my academic advisor at UQ, I found I could replace this course with another.

Personal experience

Introduction week saw us placed in groups of approximately 10, completing activities around campus and in Copenhagen city. No two people in my group were from the same country, and this brought some incredible experiences. Having friends in countries around the world significantly opens up your life and I am excited to visit them soon. I also made lasting, close friendships with my roommates whom I saw every day. I also travelled with these new friends to nearby cities and over a weekend to Poland. I was lucky enough to already know some Danish students, but if you wish to meet some, you really have to make a particular effort as you will likely be housed with other exchange students and gravitate to the English speaking exchange students in classes.


I lived off-campus in DTU provided accommodation called Linde Alle. This was a newly renovated set of buildings in which each room had an ensuite, and kitchens were shared by 6-8 rooms. The rooms were quite small but comfortable, and the kitchens were well kept with more than enough cooking equipment. The only downside of Linde Alle was that it was approximately a 15-minute bike ride from campus, or a single stop on the bus. There was on-campus accommodation available including ‘U2’, however I heard this could be quite isolating since it had individual kitchens and no shared spaces. I would suggest anyone to put their accommodation application in as early as possible and research the different accommodation buildings.


Accommodation was roughly $250 per week at Linde Alle. Groceries were about the same as in Australia, I spent approximately $50 per week. Overall I would budget about $500 per week for living expenses including social events. Estimate how much travel you would like to undertake and check flights and accommodation as this will be your biggest expense. I received a $3000 student exchange scholarship which helped significantly.


One of the most challenging aspects of my exchange was the length of some of the days, my Tuesday had me starting at 8am and finishing at 10pm. This was compounded by the distance between campuses which had me travelling an hour bus ride to and from the Ballerup campus. My advice in this scenario is to explore options of changing courses, however I found with time I could suitably balance this intensity with my days off and plenty of social events.

Professional Development

Exchange provided me with an immense amount of independence, most problems I had to face I initially faced alone. Through being out of my comfort zone and forced to make new friends, I learned a lot about the kind of person I am and the people I want to spend time with. I also learned how to balance my life in terms of social events, life chores and work. Professionally, I found my exchange experience to be a particularly useful addition to my resume. Employees are very interested in this kind of outside experience and they love to talk about it and ask related questions during interviews.


A trip to Poland with my housemates was definitely a highlight of my exchange. It cemented some of my closest friendships and provided an eye-opening experience both of historic events and beautiful buildings and landscapes. It was also very cheap to travel there, with food and drinks being significantly cheaper than in Denmark.

Top tips

Masters level courses are frequently undertaken by undergraduates in Denmark, so do not be deterred by this title. Free black/white printing at the library, use this for your open book exams. Rent/purchase a bike – Denmark is very flat! Organise plans with your new friends, go travelling with them - Europe is all around you.