IES Abroad Madrid Summer
100% Rating
(9 Reviews)

IES Abroad Madrid Summer

Make this summer an unforgettable one when you study abroad in Madrid. Spend your afternoon studying with top-notch professors at the IES Abroad Center, and your evenings exploring your beautiful host city. When you study abroad, Madrid will quickly become your classroom.

Spend you summer among the throngs of madrilenos flocking to the streets of the city. Sip coffee on terraza, sample traditional tapas (try as many of the city's tapas bars as possible). Take an afternoon and simply stroll along the city’s boulevards, watching a parade of fashionable Spaniards as they pass by. The seat of Spain's government, Madrid is also a cultural center and home to many famous museums for you to visit, including the Prado and the Reina Sofia, where Picasso's Guernica resides.

Have an unforgettable summer in sun-kissed Spain. Apply to study with IES Abroad today.

Program Type
Subject Areas
Art History
Degree Level
Host Family
Online Application
Official Transcripts
Age Requirement
Language Requirement
GPA Requirement
Health Requirement
Price Details
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Questions & Answers

Program Reviews

based on 9 reviews
  • Academics 8.6
  • Support 10
  • Fun 9.4
  • Housing 10
  • Safety 9.7
Showing 1 - 9 of 9
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The Best 6 Weeks of my Life

Studying abroad is always referred to as the greatest experience of one’s life. For me, my six weeks in Madrid were 42 days of cafes, conversations, friends, and discoveries that collectively created the greatest experience of my life. My host family was incredible and exposed me to so many little differences between Spain and the US that I would have never learned. The classes taught me so much because they were taught in a way that was fun and interactive (I highly recommend Madrid the City). In addition, my weekends were filled with trips to London, Tenerife, Morocco, Sevilla, Toledo, and Valencia, and the day trips arranged by IES were so convenient and exposed us to places we would’ve never seen on our own. Overall, the program was so hospitable and always made sure we had everything we needed. I loved my time in Spain and I highly recommend IES Madrid Summer to anyone looking to go to Spain for less than a whole semester and who wants to learn and experience the true language and culture of the city.

How can this program be improved?

The program was very well organized! I just wish I had more information before I got to Madrid, but all of my questions were answered the first day.

Yes, I recommend
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Unforgettable Experience!!

Classes were easy to understand and staff was very accommodating. Madrid is a central hub for transportation, so it is so easy to travel around Europe (and even Africa! I went to Morocco for a weekend). I highly recommend studying through IES, it was amazing to meet students from all over the country and I definitely will not forget the memories I made while abroad. Six weeks is the perfect amount of time, not too long and not too short!

Yes, I recommend
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An Unforgettable Experience

Studying abroad this past summer in Madrid was one of the best decisions I have made. At first I was hesitant to apply to this program because I had never been out of the country before. But I knew that this was a step that I needed to take, and I am so happy that I made that decision because it was an amazing six weeks. I was able to achieve so many of the study abroad goals that I set for myself before going. I gained greater confidence in my speaking abilities and was able to immerse myself in the culture. I remember leaving for Madrid the first day. I was excited and a little nervous sitting at the airport, and I had no idea what I was about to experience, and didn’t realize how different I would be when I returned just six weeks later.
The IES program requires that you take two classes: a Spanish language class and an area studies course. I chose to take “Madrid the City.” My language class definitely helped me improve my Spanish, and my teacher was great. The “Madrid the City” class taught me all about the history of the city, and we took tours around the city twice a week, which were a great way to explore.
IES offers homestays or apartments to students for housing. I stayed in a homestay. My Spanish improved so much from my homestay, and it was a great experience. I had lunch with my host mom most days, which allowed me to practice speaking in Spanish. I felt very comfortable with my homestay, and my host mom made it feel like a second home. On the last day, she told me if I return to Madrid in the future, I would have a place to stay.
The IES program includes many different activities and trips that allow you to further explore Spain and its culture. I took advantage of all of these activities, including a cooking class, a flamenco dance class and tours of the Palacio Real, the Prado museum, and various other places. In addition, we all went on a three-day trip to Valencia and a day trip to Segovia. Both trips were amazing.
I definitely recommend this program to other students. It is a great way to learn a new language and experience a new culture. I was nervous at first and almost didn’t do this program. So my advice is for any student unsure about studying abroad with IES Madrid to definitely just go because it will be an unforgettable six weeks.

Yes, I recommend
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A Life-Changing Summer

Before I boarded the plane for my flight to Madrid, I really had no idea what to expect. I had multiple conversations with close friends and my parents leading up to my departure, all who told me to go into the experience with an open mind. Open mind? Sure, I could do that. The plane landed in Madrid, and from that point on, my time in Madrid had begun.

… And how wonderful that time was! I couldn’t have asked for a better experience. I lived in a warm and welcoming homestay, enrolled in two classes that were taught by great professors, and got to truly experience Spanish culture. Over the course of the program, I noticed in awe how my Spanish speaking and comprehension skills were improving week by week. On a few of the weekends, I was able to travel to various areas of Spain with friends I had made on the program. We attended a Real Madrid game, saw a bullfight, went on a winery tour, got to explore new cities and see incredible landmarks, among many other things. I also learned how to cook Spanish food and dance flamenco, thanks to classes set up by IES staff. All of my classes, extracurricular activities, and travel excursions made my trip truly meaningful, well-rounded, and rewarding. That is why studying abroad is such an enriching learning experience, because not only are you learning so many new things in the classes you attend, but you also are continually learning by exploring, traveling, and appreciating the aspects of your host country.

At the end of those six weeks, when I left to go back home to the States, I was no longer just leaving Madrid; I was leaving a city that had become my city and had become my home. I look back on those six weeks with such happiness and nostalgia; I made new friendships, saw new places, and made new memories that I will cherish for a long time to come. It truly was the best summer of my life!

How can this program be improved?

I wish it were a little bit longer of a program.

Yes, I recommend
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IES Madrid

People will tell you that when you go abroad something changes in you. I never really felt this until I went on to Spain. Coming from a small southern town to a bustling city environment was a huge change for me. Especially when my host mother spoke not one word of English. To be honest, the first night I was not so sure that I would do well. But as the days passed, I soon met new people through my program, started to learn more spanish, and began seeing this big city as my second home. It was a big change from the southern hospitality I was used to but I also discovered that most people in Madrid are just as friendly as my neighbors at home. This study abroad experience pushed me academically, as I learned more Spanish in one summer than in the 19 years prior. I made friends I will not forgot. But most importantly, I learned more in one summer about growing up than I have in my whole life. I would highly recommend IES because the staff was excellent, my host mom was so sweet, and the people that were accepted in this program were awesome. IES did an amazing job of helping us get our bearings and giving us opportunities to go on trips and see Spain, but also the freedom to ultimately decide what we wanted to do. I hope that you will find your other home in Spain like I did!

How can this program be improved?

I would have our Spanish classes integrated with the native Spanish speakers.

Yes, I recommend
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Immersive Summer in Madrid, Spain with IES Abroad

When I landed in Madrid's International Airport in the Summer of 2011 for a three-month study abroad program in Spain's capital, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I was nervous, jet lagged, and literally and figuratively shaking in my breeches. All of that fear and anticipatory anxiety washed away when I made it to the arrivals gate and was greeted by 3 smiling faces, directors of my program all waiting to wish us a happy "bienvenidos." I was lucky enough to be placed in an apartment near the university with a native 24-year old and a fellow American student. We were within walking distance of our daily classes at the beautiful Universidad, the metro line, and a handful of markets and shopping centers.

The professors were all kind, supportive and enthusiastic and the course load was more than manageable. The program directors were always available for questions and assistance and accompanied us on a few wonderful weekend excursions to cities around Madrid.

The program was structured such that we had classes 4 days a week until the early afternoon and were free to explore the city and surrounding countryside on the weekends.

My fellow students and I attended various elective classes such as dance and cooking. And set up our own weekend excursions to wonderful cities like Granada.

The program allowed me to experience the culture of Spain in an authentic study setting, enhance my language skills, and meet people from all over the world.

How can this program be improved?

I would require a one-on-one language exchange session with a native Spaniard and an IES student. That way students would get more language practice, even while traveling in a group that is mostly American.

Yes, I recommend
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Madrid, una ciudad magnífica

The Spanish have a saying "vivir para trabajar, no trabajar para vivir." Loosely translated this phrase means "live to work, don't work to live." In other words, enjoy what you do with your life and make sure it makes you happy; don't do something just because you have to. During my visit to Spain in the summer of 2014, I found that this statement embodies the Spanish culture, and the IES Abroad Madrid Summer program truly gave me the opportunity to live it.

Having lived in the United States all my life, I did not have too many international experiences under my belt before this trip to Madrid. I chose to study abroad so that I could be immersed in the Spanish language and culture, and it was definitely one of the best decisions of my entire life.

IES Abroad Madrid Summer is a 6-week-long program centered in Madrid, Spain. The program allowed for complete language immersion, as all my classes were in Spanish and, since I was with a host family, I could only communicate with them in their native language. Everyone took two classes: a grammar class and an elective. My elective was Madrid the City, which basically just gave the class an excuse to travel around Madrid and learn the history. By the end of the program, I really felt like I knew the city well.

The program offered many activities throughout the week within the city. We had museum visits and walking tours, flamenco dancing lessons and cooking demonstrations, debate sessions and excursions with native students.

Over the course of the program, we also got to travel around Spain. With IES Abroad, we went to Segovia, Valencia, Cordoba, and the Madrid mountains. We had enough downtime as well so that I took a trip o fmy own to Barcelona with friends I'd made in the program.

As much as I enjoyed experiencing the city, the country, the culture, and the language, some of my favorite memories are a result of the people I met. All of the IES Abroad staff and teachers were incredible and helpful. My host family was so nice and made delicious food. I made many friends who were fellow students in the program. Overall, I always felt very comfortable and happy during my stay.

I learned and experienced so much and gained so much confidence from my time in Madrid. IES Abroad truly has an amazing program, and I would highly recommend the program to any prospective Spanish study abroad student.

Yes, I recommend
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Short Program, Endless Memories

For the IES Madrid Summer program, you are required to take one grammar and conversation course, and one elective. The grammar class is great for brushing up on how Spaniards speak vs. what you may have learned in previous classes. For my elective class I took an Art History course that met in the Prado three days a week. How often do you get to learn about famous paintings while standing right in front of them?! All of the staff was so warm and welcoming, too. My professors and the directors of the IES Center were funny and outgoing, and made a point of getting to know every student to help them improve their Spanish, which I hope to use in the professional world when I graduate.
Deciding to study over the summer was a great idea because the academics were relaxed and the Spanish students were not busy with schoolwork and were more available to show us the city. Be sure to bring clothes for all weather, though! The temperature fluctuates a lot between May and June. The program is short, only about 2 months, but that means that all of the students on the program are really trying to make the most of everything. Everyone tries to go on every trip (there are two organized by IES) and takes advantage of every opportunity (free additional cooking/flamenco classes, guided tours of the Palacio Real etc.). IES also organizes tons of activities with Spanish students at the university so that you really get to immerse yourself in the Madrid culture.
One of my favorite parts of this program was my homestay experience. My host mom -- or señora -- was an incredible woman who cooked me amazing meals and made laugh every day. IES does a great job matching you up with a señora whose English abilities match your Spanish abilities. My Spanish skills were already high, and my señora didn't speak a word of English! I did some of my best learning over long dinner conversations with her, and we still keep in touch via email. That's not to say that it wasn't an awkward or even scary transition to living with someone else in a foreign country. It can be hard to get used to following your señora's rules or customs, but once you do, it becomes routine and you just enjoy the immersive experience and learn to laugh at the times you can't understand one another.

How can this program be improved?

I would have liked if the IES Center/classes were a bit more centralized on the Universidad Complutense campus. It isn’t a long walk to get over to where more Spanish students are taking classes, but it was more isolated than I would’ve hoped.

Yes, I recommend
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Madrid + A Great Program

I went to this program solely looking to have a good time. For a summer program abroad, you should not have lofty goals of becoming perfectly fluent or visiting every city in Spain. I took the days as they came and it was a phenomenal experience all around. I stayed in a home stay near the Pacifico station. Your average weekday starts with breakfast like cereal and fruit. Everyone has grammar class early in the morning followed by your elective class either right after grammar or later like 3 pm. During the summer program, they are more relaxed on the academics compared to the semester because they know the students are there to have fun. That being said, you learn useful grammar tips and my elective went to the Prado two days a week. The academics are very manageable. Between classes, you can go home to have the large lunch prepared by your senora. Around 5, I would go out everyday to meet up with the other students in the program. Most times, we would walk around a plaza, grab dinner, and possibly go to a bar or club. Those nights just hanging out with the other people in the program are some of my favorite memories. This program also has two weekend trips which are awesome as well and not restrictive, you go to Valencia for 2 days for example. You can also travel over the weekends if you like. In my opinion, this program doesn't take up too much time which allows you to really take in Madrid and the culture. Also, the city of Madrid is awesome and offers so many different adventures!

How can this program be improved?

I wish it was slightly longer like 8 weeks. Also, my senora sometimes made bad meals but it took me a while to get used to Spanish food. Overall, it is absolutely amazing!

Yes, I recommend

About IES Abroad

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...