CIEE College Study Abroad in Madrid, Spain

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Seated in the center of Spain, the capital city is not only the political and cultural center of the country, but an important player in global economics. Despite its present-day status, much of Madrid’s historic past remains beautifully preserved in its landmarks, museums, and architecture.

A huge variety of tapas bars, dance shows, concerts, outdoor parks, soccer matches, ethnic neighborhoods, and contemporary theater and cinema make it a lively place to live and learn.

  • Soak up Spanish culture with museum visits, dance classes, urban art and graffiti tours, and neighborhood visits in Lavapiés, Malasaña or La Latina.
  • Explore beyond Madrid with day trips to Toledo, the Monastery of El Escorial, or the UNESCO World Heritage sites such as Toledo and Alcalá de Henares.
  • Visits to Seville, Barcelona, Granada, Bilbao, the Canary Islands, or Morocco
  • Depending on their program of study, language ability, and availability, students may be able to participate in an internship or volunteer.
  • Do Madrid on your own terms by customizing your experience through the Open Campus program. Take one, two, or three six-week blocks, select your academic track from six options, then choose your courses from a wide range of subject areas.

Study Abroad Risk Free!

In the unusual event we have to cancel your study abroad or internship program due to a health, safety, or security concern, you’re covered with our Program Assurance Advantage.


CIEE Scholarships
CIEE Offers More Than $8 Million in Scholarships Every Year!

We know cost is one of the biggest barriers to studying abroad. At CIEE, we dedicate real resources to help break down the cost barriers so every student who wants to study abroad, can do so.

$500 - $2,500

Popular Programs

CIEE Madrid Summer Programs

Develop your Spanish language skills this summer, explore historical 20th century events that shaped modern Spain, and discuss how art is used as a creative tool for political activism.

CIEE Madrid Semester Programs

Come to Madrid and take your advanced Spanish language skills to the next level in one of the world’s most energetic, artistic, and cosmopolitan cities.

CIEE Madrid January Programs

CIEE’s January in Madrid program invites students of all majors to explore world-famous artists and their art featured in the city’s many museums.

Questions & Answers


9.77 Rating
based on 13 reviews
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  • Academics 6.5
  • Support 9.5
  • Fun 9.8
  • Housing 9.6
  • Safety 9.8
Showing 1 - 8 of 13
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

CIEE Madrid

The program at CIEE Madrid was perfect for my semester abroad! The classes there were fun and interesting and greatly contributed to my experience. The class schedule allows you to take 2 classes at a time for 6 weeks so I was able to take up to intermediate spanish language. I was also able to conduct my own research project with great support from CIEE staff. The schedule also allows lots of travel on the weekends! I traveled to 12 other cities while I was there. The other students in the program were amazing and we became such great friends- we would do cultural things like go to museums or parks and explore the nightlife of Madrid (which is incredible). This semester was an incredible experience for me!!

What would you improve about this program?
I wish that the classes were a little bit more flexible concerning attendance. The very strict policies kind of made me feel like I was back in high school.
5 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Lover Madrid Open Campus!

My experience with CIEE's Madrid Open Campus program has been fantastic. All the staff are super helpful and care about not only helping students but getting to know them as well. They really encourage students to explore Spain and get out of thei comfort zones. All of the classes included excursions that related to the class content and helped solidify what we learned in class. The teachers are interesting and willing to work with students. The program also offered lots of cool activities that could appeal to everyone's interests. If at anytime I had a question I knew someone with in the CIEE Madrid office would help me find the answer. The connections and skills that I've developed in this program will benefit me for years to come. Overall a great program that I highly recommend!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Participate in the program activities! They often allow you to see and do things you probably wouldn't on your own and help strengthen relationships between you, your peers, and the great staff here!
5 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

CIEE Open Campus Program: Madrid, Spain

From the day you get accepted (along with the application process,) you have support from program staff members both in the US and in Spain that help you through every step of the process. Upon arrival, you are immediately met with helpful people and other students from the program. They really want you to get to know each other and have a good experience, and they foster community from the moment you land. During orientation, staff members are open and honest with you about the ups and downs that come with study abroad, which was helpful for students who have never done it before. The classes are amazing, and they are both informative about the subject matter and Spanish culture and society. The teachers
are engaged and kind, and they are just as helpful outside of the classroom as inside the classroom if you need it. The program has a great balance of challenging you to be independent but also give support whenever you need. You have a lot of options that the program gives you about different events to go to (most of which are paid for by the program if you sign up with them,) which help your engagement not just with Madrid but other students.

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
This program challenged me to be more independent, and that was an amazing experience when I got over the initial fear of not knowing the language very well or the country. CIEE provided support though, understanding that we were in a completely new situation. I think it's important that people know that it can be hard to study abroad for a longer period of time, and CIEE is committed to making sure that you know that you have support and that this is what they are prepared for, and they have set up every aspect of your program with that in mind. I learned a ton about myself, and have become a lot more independent and social as a direct result of this program! :)
5 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Experience of a Lifetime!

My time in Madrid with CIEE was absolutely incredible! I had a full immersion experience, taking classes at the local university (UC3M Getafe) and living with a great host family. CIEE offers many options in terms of studies, housing accommodations, and activities. They also held weekly events to visit new spots in Madrid. Some of my favorite include a cooking class, a trip to an art and history exhibit at Circulo de Bellas Artes, watching the sunset at Templo de Debod, and a Flamenco class. They really touch on every "Madrilena" experience I wanted to get. I truly believe CIEE allowed me to have the freedom I needed to grow independently as well as the support I needed to feel safe while miles away from home. I could not recommend CIEE enough and would love to answer any specific questions anyone has before choosing a program.

What would you improve about this program?
Although I enjoyed UC3M Getafe, a couple of the classes I took were poorly taught. I would have liked to get credit for my Spanish minor as well.
6 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Madrid and the CIEE staff are wonderful!

CIEE's Engineering and Society program in Madrid was amazing! The staff is very friendly and helpful--I felt very comfortable talking to them right off the bat and they always suggested cool places to check out in Madrid.

All of my classes (apart from the three week intensive language course) were direct-enroll, so I was in class with local Spanish students--though my classes were in English. This was a good way to get to know local students as well as gain an understanding about their perspective on academics and education, which was different from what I am used to in the US. In doing this I also met a lot of other American students that were not in CIEE..

The staff organized a lot of social and cultural events (like Flamenco lessons, bike tours, socials with local students, and cooking classes to name a few) which were very fun and a good way to make friends with other people in the program (as well as non-engineering-CIEE students). My favorite things they organized were our weekend excursions. My semester we went to Bilbao and then on the way back we went wine tasting in La Rioja. We also took the high speed train to Sevilla, which was another great city. It was really fun to have these excursions organized by the staff because it enabled us to explore different areas of Spain with some direction (they covered hotels and most meals and tours) while giving us enough free time to bond with other students and explore on our own.

Madrid is my absolute favorite city after living there for a semester (and I live in NYC!). The people are nice and the Spanish culture and night life is so fun to explore! I stayed in a homestay which I really enjoyed (as it was where I developed most of my language skills), but I also know people who enjoyed living in an apartment with other students.

All in all I recommend this program!

What would you improve about this program?
Maybe they could encourage/offer ways to get involved with extracurriculars like volunteer opportunities. I know that is generally done through the host university, but I think if CIEE offered a direct path to joining these, it would be helpful.
5 people found this review helpful.
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing Experience

I had the best semester of my life in Madrid. It's a great city, especially for students. Madrid isn't Spain's top tourist destination, but it is the heart of the country. I visited most regions in Spain, and 12 countries, and I would not have chosen to study anywhere else. There's no reason to leave on the weekends, but cheap transportation (domestic and international) is abundant if you wish to travel elsewhere on the weekends. The CIEE Staff went above and beyond to support the students. Occasionally, I stopped by the CIEE Study Center just to say hi to them because they foster such a friendly, welcoming community. I made many lifelong friends from other universities during my time here, including my host family. I would absolutely recommend this program.

5 people found this review helpful.
orange trees
Yes, I recommend this program

Changing Your Worldview

There is no such thing as a typical abroad experience. As a college junior, I decided to do course work in Madrid, Spain and gained a cross cultural understanding that will last a life time. Many college students who study abroad visit Europe. Europe is in fact part of the Western world. My time in Spain does share similarities to other university students who visit Europe: being in a new place, trying new food, learning a foreign language. However, what I hope to be our greatest similarity is an expanded worldview and new appreciation for other cultures. There is no such thing as a typical abroad experience, but many instances abroad shape students to come to the same realization: the world is much bigger than it seems. This program helped me feel comfortable in other city in a way I did not think was possible, Madrid felt like my home.

What would you improve about this program?
The only critique I would have for this program was to help the students on the program spend more time with each other. The program gives students the freedom to make Spanish friends or other European friends. However, I wish there was more connection with the other CIEE students.
5 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program


Madrid is a remarkable city. I loved it. As others have said, the city offers everything and can fit for anyone and any activity. At least 3 times a week, I would wonder the streets by myself or ride to a random metro stop and explore the city. I am returning to Madrid this spring and could not be more excited

My favorite day of the week while studying abroad was tuesdays. I, along with my closest friends, had classes in the morning but the entire afternoon off. We would go to the famous sandwich shop at Carlos III and then go to retiro to eat these delicious sandwiches. It doesnt sound like much. But, when you felt true spanish hospitality and love from the sandwich shop owners, then took easy metro to the park, and then laid in the park on a sunny beautiful day at retiro watching people all relax and slow down... then it becomes something special

the CIEE program was great. Highly recommended-- the staff, the programming, the trips, the filed trips, the center, the host family, everything was good

4 people found this review helpful.