IES Abroad Barcelona - Liberal Arts & Business
93% Rating
(63 Reviews)

IES Abroad Barcelona - Liberal Arts & Business

There are a wide variety of courses available, primarily taught in English by our world-class faculty. When you arrive, you are grouped into language proficiency-based levels to focus your course enrollment options. This will also provide a sense of community with your fellow students and will challenge you to maximize your learning.

In addition to your Spanish language course, you will choose from a variety of English-taught IES Abroad courses, as well as Spanish- and English-taught local university courses to round out your semester. All IES Abroad courses include field study activities that help you connect coursework with your surroundings. You can also take Spanish-taught IES Abroad courses.

Locations
Europe » Spain » Barcelona
Europe » Spain
Program Type
Provider
Subject Areas
Degree Level
Bachelors
Timeframe
Academic Year
Fall
Spring
Accommodation
Apartment
Host Family
Language
English
Steps
Online Application
Official Transcripts
Age Requirement
GPA Requirement
Health Requirement
Starting Price
$0.00
Currency
USD
Price Details
Contact IES Abroad or see website for details: www.IESabroad.org/barcelona

Questions & Answers

As far I as I know you need to be a current undergraduate student. At least everyone in my program was. You should also verify with IES themselves.

Program Reviews

  • Academics
    78%
  • Support
    91%
  • Fun
    89%
  • Housing
    95%
  • Safety
    89%
Show 1 - 15 of 63
Default avatar
Isabella
9/10

A Semester in Barcelona

My experience studying abroad with IES Abroad was extremely immersive. I lived with a host mother, who I still remain in contact with. Within my first few weeks I ventured out in the city with IES led programs - such as a bicycle tour of the city. I noticed myself falling in love with Barcelona throughout the semester. It’s a ginormous city, yet so easy to navigate on foot, and IES provided students with all the best resources to find out way around.

Another huge component of studying abroad is the study! The resources, study spaces, professor interactions and overall course material provided by IES was extremely beneficial. I loved how fun the professors made the courses, as well as the new knowledge I gained.

Yes, I recommend
Hollie
10/10

IES Abroad Barcelona- Must do!

I had such an incredible experience through IES. IES not only provided us with great classes that easily would transfer to my partner university, but also enabled us to truly have a cultural experience in those classes. I was able to take a few classes at local universities in Barcelona with students from all over the world which was a truly unique experience. IES also provided students with so many extra activities such as field trips or weekend trips to other parts of Spain. There were always activities going on during the week such as wine tastings, or cultural events. This program really positively impacted my life and helped me become an independent, cultured student. I highly recommend the program and traveling to Barcelona!!!

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Emily
10/10

The Best Months of My Life

Throughout my college years I was never set on studying abroad. I was always a homebody and choose to go to a college that was close to my hometown. However, last minute I decided to submit my application for IES Abroad Barcelona and follow through with the journey. It was hands down the best decision I have made in my life. From this experience I got to travel the world, meet new people, and learn so much about myself. Barcelona made me feel as home. My program, IES Abroad Barcelona, made me feel at home. The staff and professors at IES Abroad Barcelona will do everything in their power to make sure you are getting the most out of studying abroad. While they still have expectations, they understand that you will be taking time to travel and explore the world. I am so thankful that I had the change to experience this journey. It is something you will remember for the rest of your life.

Yes, I recommend
Emma
7/10

Advanced Spanish Studies

I enrolled in the IES Abroad Barcelona - Advanced Spanish Studies program. It sounds incredibly cliche, but I fell in love with Barcelona as well as with traveling. The program made the transition into living abroad easy. For first-time Europe travelers such as myself, it was reassuring to have solid support. The academics were challenging but did not interfere with exploring and immersing yourself in a new culture. I had an excellent housing arrangement and still keep in touch with my host family months after leaving. I am not much of a party-goer, but I heard that the social scene and night life in Barcelona is unforgettable. Even while using public transportation late at night, I still felt safe and knew which areas to avoid.

How can this program be improved?

I would definitely have more contact with locals. My immediate circle included my host family and my fellow American peers. Even my classes at an outside institution were also American. I don't regret it because I knew I would have been overwhelmed if I had studied in Barcelona by myself, but the immersion with locals portion definitely needs to be improved.

Yes, I recommend
Emily
9/10

Identity

I have never thought about I will be able to go visit Barcelona in a much more meaningful way. Being able to visit my dream city for honeymoon (such a girly dream, but it's true) as a student is way more fun than just a tourist for 3-5days. I get to stay with a homestay that do not speak English, which helps me improve my body language and Spanish quite a lot. I have no experience in Spanish at all before going. But during those two months, I can at least have some small conversation with others. I tried so many things while I am there, food, city life, night life, and more importantly is being able to figure things out by yourself like an independent adult. I also use one of the weekend to go visit Belgium with the friends I made there. However, while having tons of fun there, we also study a lot as well, which is pretty nice for someone want to get some extra credit for school. It's really nice that I can study and play at the same time in a foreign country, and still can be able to get credits. I also made a tons of international friends there as well, I think that enrich me a lot more as a student since I get to communicate with them and know about different culture and opinions. In addition, throughout the journey, I realized that I found myself or discovered a lot of things "about me".
Overall, the whole experience just amazing. Even when I was sick for couple weeks, there are teachers, staff or other resources that you can use. I would definitely go again with IES. LOVE IT!!!!

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Lucy
10/10

My Semester in Barcelona Spain

I studied abroad spring of 2017 in Barcelona, Spain, and I could not recommend a program more! From enthusiastic and helpful staff to simply being in an upbeat city, it truly elevated my undergrad experience. Although academics may be surprisingly difficult to students, there was plenty of time to immerse yourself in the culture of the city and also to Travel! The program also created opportunities for students to meet and travel with other students, as well as explore important aspects of the city! Additionally, I never spoke Spanish before this semester, which turned out totally fine, but also allowed me to learn a lot of another language in a relatively short time! If I could do it again I would definitely pick IES Abroad Barcelona.

How can this program be improved?

I think that accommodating students more academically could improve the program, e.g. being less strict about attendance and making it easier to succeed.

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Sophia
9/10

Best College Semester You Could Ever Have

My time in Barcelona through IES Abroad was absolutely phenomenal. I was looking to study abroad but as a rehabilitation psychology major, I worried that I would not be able to find a program that fit my specific major. However, with the IES Liberal Arts program in Barcelona, I was able to complete classes that would allow me to take classes that counted toward my degree. I hadn't been abroad before either, but after I got there and saw how beautiful the city was and the people there waiting to welcome me, I had no worries at all. I had a host mom and lived in an apartment in Lesseps, a neighborhood of Barcelona (as well as a metro stop). She helped me practice my Spanish and become acquainted with the city. My classes at IES were conveniently located right in the center of the city. I only had a little Spanish before coming to this program, so I took all my classes in English-- but by the time I left, my Spanish had improved tremendously. I can call my host mom now and have a conversation with her with no difficulty whatsoever. IES also offered subsidized programs as well, which I highly recommend! I was so surprised at how many students did not take advantage of those Friday or weekend trips. They plan Friday outings or full weekend trips for you to go on and you only pay a subsidized fee for the entire thing-- and they take care of everything for you so you can just enjoy it! All in all, I highly recommend studying abroad in Barcelona. It is an experience that cannot be compared to the average semester on your home campus. Studying abroad is a journey that gives you so many opportunities that you wouldn't be able to have otherwise. If you're considering study abroad, I can't recommend this program and city highly enough. It's a memory of my life that I treasure every single day.

How can this program be improved?

My only concern with this program was that many of the classes did not match up in terms of course load. One class could have several papers and projects, while others only had a few but both were equal in the amount of credit and class time.

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Kiaran
9/10

Lady in Spain

If you are planning on studying abroad for the first time, I highly recommend this program. They do an amazing job of walking you through predeparture information, paperwork, etc. They also provide you with tons of resources when it comes to getting to know the city and the culture. Barcelona was the perfect place to be - easy to travel to and from, but also very rich with activity and places to explore! I wish I could've spent more time abroad. Before going abroad, 4 months seemed like a really long time, but in hindsight, I should've planned to stay even longer.

How can this program be improved?

Incorporating the academics with other Spanish students. Sometimes it was hard spending class with only Americans.

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
katrina
10/10

abroad

When going abroad concerns start to run through you mind; how do i get home? what if i dont get the classes i need? where should i live? IES abroad looked after everything. Things i had to find out for myself, get a sim card dont use your data for useless things like instagram or facebook. Download google maps it is the best for public transportation in all of the cities that i traveled to. IES looks after you and will help you to get all of the classes that you need. Use time out either online or magazine, it will give you up to date information about things that are happening like markets or cultural events. Take full advantage of every situation, go out and explore, expand your friend zone, go to a meet and speak, have fun!!

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Jenna
10/10

IES Barcelona, la mejor experiencia de mi vida

IES provided the best experience I could ask for in a study abroad program. I participated in the IES Barcelona: Liberal Arts and Business program during the fall semester of 2016. Before I left, IES was very communicative with all the necessary information about things to do before departure. It all feels very overwhelming at first, but IES explained all the steps, including housing, Visas, and more in a clear and immensely helpful way. They offered a wide variety of classes so I was able to take some in my field as well as others that fascinated me. I can say with certainty that the quality of the education IES provides is amazing. As a foreign affairs major, this was the absolute best opportunity for me to learn about the world in an immersive and engaging setting. The faculty were incredible and always there to help or talk to. The classes were probably more challenging than most study abroad classes, but I learned so much, and it definitely was not too much work because I traveled or explored Barcelona every weekend! I stayed in an apartment with four roommates. I did not get a language immersive experience as I would have had in a homestay, but I enjoyed being independent and the freedom it allowed. Also, I have heard there is a discrepancy in the quality of the apartments, so while mine was decent, others were much better and others were much worse. For the city specifically, Barcelona is the best! There are endless amounts of things to do, the weather is gorgeous, and it is a central travel hub so getting around Europe is so easy. I miss it so much and this experience will be one that I will never ever forget. 10/10 would recommend Barcelona and IES!

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Sophie
9/10

How I Fell for Barcelona

I studied abroad in Barcelona for the fall semester of 2016. Unlike a lot of programs that offer a select number of classes, IES Barcelona Liberal Arts & Business offers an endless list of courses to fit the interests and major requirements of every student. Through this program, I was able to intern part-time for a local apartment rental company, an experience that connected me to the city in a really special way, along with broadening my professional network across seas. Because the program invites so many students to participate, the student body in this program is very large and therefore chooses students of varying schools, backgrounds and fields of study. In Barcelona, you never run out of things to do. I wrote a “Barcelona Bucket List” that I got about 20% of the way through, which only gives me an excuse to return in the near future! The location of Barcelona in relation to the rest of Europe is ideal, as it takes less than 2 hours by plane to get to all the main European destinations, and the flights are often extremely inexpensive. And since there are no classes on Fridays, you have 3 out of the 7 days of the week to travel! Regardless of where I traveled on the weekends, I was always so excited to return to my favorite city for the start of a new week. IES Barcelona Liberal Arts & Business has all the aspects of a study abroad program that I was looking for, and I know countless other students who feel the same way!

How can this program be improved?

There could have been shorter class periods and more access to travel guides for different cities.

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
R.
9/10

Never enough time in Barcelona

I had a fantastic experience studying in Barcelona with IES Abroad. After completing a backpacking trip through Europe with friends, I picked Barcelona as the city I would choose to return to, to study abroad, if I would be lucky enough to have the opportunity to spend a semester there. I'm so glad I picked Barcelona because it really helped me increase my Spanish language skills, and allowed me to experience so many places nearby. IES Abroad helped such a big city like Barcelona feel smaller, by setting up opportunities to volunteer and places to visit. I signed up for the intercambio program which helped me meet a local who I am still in contact with today. To have a good time in Barcelona I think you need to be adventurous, open to learning about a new way of life, excited to practice your Spanish, and able to function on little sleep. I never felt homesick during my semester because my host family made me feel at home and I knew the semester would fly by! I highly recommend staying with a host family, and going on day trips to nearby cities such as Girona, and Sitges. I recommend avoiding touristy places and speaking Spanish with as many people as possible. I enjoyed the small class sizes of my IES Abroad classes and my teachers. I chose IES Abroad because everyone at my study abroad center assured me that they had a very well-developed program, and were on top of things. This allowed me and my family to feel good about choosing to study abroad with them. I had a great experience in Barcelona and hope you do as well!

How can this program be improved?

I would like to see even more volunteer opportunities offered, as the volunteering experiences were so special to me, it would be nice to volunteer even more. I also think it would be great if faculty could provide a calendar of events taking place in Barcelona that could be distributed via email monthly. So much is going on in Barcelona, it would be nice to have a list of big events so I could plan my weekend travel around that.

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Brigid
10/10

The best semester of my life

I knew before I even started applying to college I wanted to study abroad. I picked IES because it came highly recommended to me and I wanted to be in Barcelona. Picking IES was the best decision I made. Your program truly defines what your experience will be like. IES made all the pre-departure paperwork easy and were helpful answering the 100's of questions I had. Once I got to Barcelona, they continued to be helpful. IES offers different actives such as bike rides, cooking classes, and tours of different neighborhoods. This gave me the opportunity to meet friends and get acquainted with my new city.
I decided to live in an apartment which was provided through IES. This was the perfect situation for me because I have already lived in an apartment independently before. I had to do all my own cooking but I loved it! I ended up getting to know the local shop owners. I would get my groceries from various markets. I even had a little fish shop where they spoke no English! It was challenging but I never felt more accomplished or proud when I placed my entire order of fish in Spanish!
The friends you make abroad are friendships that last a lifetime. One of my favorite memories that I think about often is going to get gelato between classes on Tuesday afternoon, strolling through the Gothic Quarter. It's little moments like that that I cherish so much.
Getting homesick is part of the experience, but everyone is going through the same thing, even if it's at different stages. When I lost my iPhone, the front desk woman helped me by calling the cab company since my Spanish was not strong. When I was sick, the study affairs office made sure I saw a doctor. Whatever question I had, IES was there to answer it.
I loved that my professors really brought the classroom into the city. Many of my classes went on field trips around the city. When my parents came to visit, I was able to lead them around and tell them many different fact about the city I didn't even realize I knew. It became my home. I grew to love certain neighborhoods, a favorite running path, and a favorite cafe to study (Organic's - right down the street from the IES center)
Studying abroad is something everyone should do. Of course it's a little scary but so worth it. I learned what it means to be a global citizen, I traveled to different famous European cities, ate amazing food, and I made incredible friendships. IES was organized and helpful from day one, which helped make this the best semester of my life.

How can this program be improved?

I think the biggest thing they could improve upon is getting students information about cell phones. I spent an entire day trying to figure out the best option. Also, not having finals on Friday would help make the transition home a bit easier.

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Tauriah
10/10

Viviendo en Barcelona

Studying abroad was one of the best decisions I have made in my life. I took the big step to go to Barcelona, Spain for my 2016 spring semester of college. It was hard to leave my family, but once I made it and met my loving host mom and great roommates I knew I would be alright until April. I was able to not only improve my Spanish, but I got to do so in an actual Spanish speaking country. The Spanish culture was what I enjoyed the most.I learned so much about myself that I may not have known until later in life if I had not gone. I am not fine with traveling alone, spending the night in an airport, or hoping on a plane and going to another country. It was all worth it.

How can this program be improved?

I think if they enforced speaking Spanish in the IES building more that would help those who are not on the upper levels.

Yes, I recommend
Default avatar
Shannon
10/10

An Unforgettable Semester

When I first decided to study away, I had no idea where I wanted to go (besides somewhere in Europe) or with which program. In a meeting with my advisor, I said that I was thinking about Italy. Since I was studying Spanish, she laughed and instead suggested IES Barcelona Business and Liberal Arts. She said it would be perfect; I could take my business, my general education, and my Spanish classes PLUS live in Europe. And you know what? She was right.

Spending a semester in Barcelona was more than I could have ever imagined it and there are three reasons why.

1) My host family was phenomenal. My mom was a teacher, my dad a doctor, and they had three boys ranging from 12-16. They welcomed me, and my two roommates, into their family with arms wide open. We had dinners together every single night, where they challenged us to work on our Spanish (even though they knew quite a bit of English), played video games with the younger brother, and even had a family ping-pong tournament. When I was debating whether to live in an apartment or a homestay, I was worried that I would feel trapped in a family dynamic and that it would be weird to leave to go on trips or to go hang out with friends, but that wasn’t the case. They had hosted before so they knew how life would be with study abroad students, and in fact, they encouraged us to go to cultural events and to get out of the house as much as possible. I do not think I could have asked for a better living situation if I tried, and I will definitely stay in contact with them. They’re my Spain family!

2) The history and art of Barcelona are impressive. If you had asked me about art before going to Spain, I would have said, “ehh it’s ok”. Ask me now, and I will tell you all that I know about European art, especially the work by Gaudí. I would never have called myself an art enthusiast before going abroad, but now, I love art! My turning point was learning about and seeing the Block of Discord (which consists of three houses designed by Gaudí, Puig i Cadafalch, and Domenech i Montaner) and La Sagrada Familia.

3) The friends I made are lifelong. We all shared one of the key personality traits that I need in a friend: adventurous. Each and every person I met, had plans to do and see things and to enjoy their time however that meant to them. But in all, we shared a magical experience that no one else will quite understand. We stayed up all night to see the sunrise from the Bunkers, ate patatas bravas every day for a snack, flew cheap flights at 6am, found local festivals to attend, bought more souvenirs then we could really bring home, etc. The only sad part is that since we went with a study abroad program (versus one at our home school), we are all scattered across America, which makes seeing each other a bit of a challenge.

Thinking back, the only part I would change, would be coordinating my travel plans with the friends I made. Many weekends, one set of friends would travel while the others were in Barcelona and then it would flip. It made it hard to just live in Barcelona with a normal lifestyle. That being said, studying away isn't really a normal experience and you learn that you have to put your wants/desires first to make your dreams come true.

Overall, I was very impressed with my study abroad experience and now as my next semester is approaching, my only question is: can I go back?!

How can this program be improved?

I don't have many suggestions. I really enjoyed my semester abroad.

Yes, I recommend

About The Provider

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IES Abroad offers 140 programs worldwide for college students. We are a highly charged force of study abroad enthusiasts. Every day we have the privilege of witnessing how study abroad changes our students’ lives. We also believe that every student...