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chinesekitten

Dormitory - a room for my own or sharing?

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chinesekitten

In September I'll go to Donghua University in Shanghai. Now I have to decide weither I want to have a room for my own (in the dormitory) or share one with a stranger.

 

I really don't know what the best deciosion would be. Money doesn't really matter with that. 

 

The rooms in the dormitory are very small and I am afraid, that I won't have any privacy with someone always being around. On the other hand it would probably also be nice to get to know someone and have someone I can always talk to. 

 

Do you have any experiences that could help me with my descion?? 

 

Thanks a lot! :)

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Shelley

Personally I would choose a room on my own. Having someone around can be fun but it can get problematic if you find you are not compatible.

 

What starts off as interesting personality quirks can very quickly become annoying traits that end up driving you up the wall. :shock:

 

You can always seek out company in libraries, cafes, dinning halls etc but having a place you can go where there is peace and quiet has got to be high on the list.

 

Go solo and maybe later if you find someone you really get on with maybe you could swap to sharing but don't commit till you have had a chance to check it all out.

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roddy

Start off in the single room - you'll make plenty of friends anyway (with a bit of effort) and if you decide you want to share a room with them, it'll probably be possible to move to a shared room.

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skylee

I agree with #2 and #3.

Not sure if the OP has started to learn Chinese yet, but down here we have a saying that goes, "相見好,同住難", and it is so true, very true. It is good to meet one another but it is difficult for people to live together. Even the best of friends may not get along well when they live in the same place.

My niece is now a university student and she must share a dorm room with two other girls. In her first year she basically went home (which is far from the U) every night as she could not stand one of the roommates. She did not move in the dorm until her second year when she could choose her roommates.

I spent one year in a university dorm, sharing a room with a friend. It was not a particularly warm memory.

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Lu

I've lived in two different shared dorm rooms in two different years, and overall I had a good experience. The first time around was at BLCU, I could choose whether I wanted to room with a classmate from home or with a stranger and opted for a stranger. Firstly, because if things would go bad because we saw too much of each other, at least I wouldn't see that person again after that year; and second, because most strangers at the time were Korean or Japanese students who didn't speak any English, forcing me to speak more Chinese. My Korean roommate and I never became friends (which was fine by me) but we got along well enough as roommates, and we only spoke Chinese together. The second time around was in Taipei, and I had a similar experience.

 

If you and your roommate don't get along, can you switch rooms/roommates? If so, the risk is a lot smaller. How much space do you yourself need, and how particular are you about your immediate environment? If you want your room just so and need quiet after bedtime and such, then a single room is better. If you don't really mind noise or light or occasional inconvenience, a roommate is more feasible.

 

Perhaps I should add that I'm a woman (as were my roommates, of course). Not sure how much of a difference this makes.

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Tianjin42

Back at 天大 I was on a scholarship that provided a shared room. I enjoy my privacy but thought I would go with it.

On the positive side my Japanese roommate spoke reasonable Chinese so that was the lingua franca.

However he was also very messy (unusual for a Japanese - as he used to say) and he thought there might be a ghost in our room.

Predictably, things were at times strained but I probably wouldn't change it. Wouldn't do it again now though.

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shuoshuo

I would actually do the opposite: share a room first, so that you will have a friend that you will get to go out to new places and experience Shanghai with for the first few months. Yes it's true that you will still be able to make friends if you are in a single room, but it's different. If you have never experienced having a roommate before, it's definitely something you should try. I have been lucky to have such great roomates in the past.

Will you hate it? Probably. Most people end up miserable because they hate the roommate experience. But since money isn't an issue for you, you can move into your own room if you've had enough. But roomies have special bonds and of your roomy is a hard-working student, you will be able to benefit from their positive habits (e.g. sleeping earlier, waking up on time). You might even be able to cook together, shop together, etc.

Donghua normally picks out your roomy for you, they will choose someone from your country or region so that the culture difference will not be too wide.

If your roommate is from a whole other place, you might get close in the beginning but eventually when they start knowing people from their own country, you might slowly drift apart. My first roommate was from a country in my region, but I didn't want to hangout with her countrymates so I ended up not hanging out with her after the first year. Nevertheless, we were good friends and got along well, my uni experience would have been different without her. I still remember the day I moved out, it broke her heart and she even cried.:( I moved out because I wanted space and privacy.

Remember that you cannot expect your roomy to make all the effort, you have to compromise too.

A few things to consider: do you Skype often? Is your family back home in a whole other timezone that if you accept calls it may disturb your roommate's sleep? Do you have special daily routines that require you to e.g. pray on the floor? Do you have habits that annoy your siblings? Do you snore? Do you sleep with the lights on? Do you wake up very early using an alarm clock? Do you clean your room and bathroom? Do you open the windows and curtains as soon as you wake up? Do you spend a lot of time in the bathroom? Would you let your BF sleepover while your roommate is in the room?

Now look at the above and consider what you would do if your roommate did things that were to annoy you, how much are you willing to tolerate?

I don't believe in roommate rules, but there should be a certain compromise. E.g. time for lights off (which instills good habits anyway), no touching each others stuff incl. toilet paper!, splitting the bills if any.

Having a roommate helps you understand part of who you are and how much you are able to tolerate, so go for it.

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Aleksei

Dear ladies and gentlemen,

Does anyone know how foreign CGC-Type A Scholarship PhD-students are normally accommodated on campus in dormitory buildings in Shanghai Jiao Tong Uni (or Shanghai universities, generally)? I mean, do they usually receive single rooms with private bathrooms or shared rooms with shared bathrooms, or single rooms with shared bathrooms? I plan to pursue my PhD at the age of 31 and I'm married, with child, and I have no money to settle off-campus, therefore, I don't imagine how I will share dorm room with another PhD-student my family members. Of course, I can leave my family in my country and go to Chine alone, but anyway, have I any chances not to share, even if I arrive alone. 

 

Yours Faithfully

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shuoshuo

In Shanghai most PhD students (or all...) have their own rooms (not shared), which includes a bathroom.

Some dorms have family rooms, so it's large enough to accommodate your wife and child. I don't know if you'll have to pay extra for that though. I suggest you settle in China on your own for a month or 2 and when you've got everything settled, you can bring your family here. 4000 rmb is enough to feed 3 people, although you'll have to make a few sacrifices here and there.

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Aleksei

Thank you Mr. Shuoshuo!

Do you know, should I write a message to my university in advance with discussion about reservation and booking of a single room with private bathroom for me? Or they will supply me what I need, by themselves, without any queries from my part?

 

Yours Sincerely

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shuoshuo

You don't have to book, they will organize this for you so you don't have to ask them. But you should ask them if your family can live with you in the same room, some universities e.g. Fudan can be very strict in terms of accommodation.

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sensun

shuoshuo, can you elaborate on that please? how is Fudan strict, compared to the other universities?

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shuoshuo

Well, a few years back I had a friend at Fudan. Whenever I'd visit her I had to register at the front desk there, and I had to show some kind of ID if I was carrying any. I mentioned on this forum that once she invited me for a room bday party she was having but I was running late so I arrived at around 10 or 11 in the evening. The staff at the front desk refused to let me go to her room. But because it was her bday and they had some bday cake left, she cane downstairs to beg them to let me in. Now, I'm female and so is she so they didn't get any ideas. I figure if I had been a guy they would not let me enter.

Many other universities aren't like that (although, over the years they are becoming stricter with foreign students). The other universities I've been to and lived in, students can come and go whenever they please. I know students who have pets, who live with their partners or spouses, and so on. Ask anyone from Fudan, they'll tell you how it is over there. Perhaps there are workarounds if you're arriving with a spouse and a child.

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ganaatsag

Dear Aleksei,

Did you find a suitable accommodation to you and your family? I'm in a totally similar situation which u were once in, kkk.  Would you share your experience a little bit on how u managed your accommodation, please. 

 

Faithfully yours,

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