Study Abroad in Barcelona, Spain: UPF: Semester or Academic Year

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About Program

Spend a semester or academic year in Barcelona, Spain with AIFS! You’ll earn up to 15 credits per semester studying at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF). Courses are taught in English or Spanish with no previous Spanish language study required.

Volunteer opportunities are available through local NGOs to provide services to people in need within the local community.

Live in a Spanish homestay or, for an additional fee, in a student residence or apartment. Homestay students receive daily breakfast and dinner from the family. Apartment and student residence students will receive a meal allowance.

Cultural and social activities include:
• Guided tours
• Cooking classes
• Flamenco performances
• Tapas evenings with Spanish students
• 3-day excursion to the Pyrenees
• Day trips to Gerona and Besalú, Figueras and the Salvador Dalí Museum and Montserrat and Sitges.

Optional excursions include a 3-day trip to Seville and Granada and a 3-day trip to Morocco.

Program Highlights
  • Day trip to Gerona and Besalu
  • 3-day trip to the Pyrenees
  • Earn up to 15 credits and transcript issued by the Universidad Pompeu Fabra (UPF)
  • No previous Spanish language study required

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Program Reviews

9.5 Rating
based on 2 reviews
  • 9-10 rating 100%
  • 7-8 rating 0%
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  • Academics 8
  • Support 10
  • Fun 10
  • Housing 9
  • Safety 9
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Yes, I recommend this program

My time in Barcelona felt like a 3-month long siesta I never wanted to wake up from!

Ever since I was a little girl, I have always wanted to visit Europe and specifically Barcelona, Spain. Mostly because I saw Cheetah Girls 2 when I was younger. Despite my strong desire, I was still relatively nervous when I discovered the opportunity through AIFS to study abroad in my dream city to complete my Spanish minor. However, any worries or anxieties I had quickly disappeared as soon as I stepped foot in the city and immediately fell in love. First of all, the warm greeting by the AIFS staff was truly heartfelt and very much appreciated as I could tell how much they cared about us students. Even though I went by myself, I quickly made friends not only with other AIFS students but also with locals. The best part, and also what I am most proud of, was how drastically my Spanish speaking abilities improved! I previously had always struggled to speak Spanish in my classes at my home university. Being in Spain however, allowed me to gain the much needed confidence to allow my abilities to flourish. Aside from all of the great times I had in Barcelona, being able to travel all around Europe was a plus too! Even though I have been back in America for over 6 months, a part of my heart will always be in Spain as I search daily for opportunities to return.

What would you improve about this program?
Even though my classes were interesting, they felt a little disorganized. I like the idea of the Global Health program, I just wish we had more options for classes in general to take.
2 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Transformative Year Abroad

Coming from a small school where you are secluded to your small campus and community, need to have a car to get around, have limited options for adventures and food, I was inspired to go abroad for the opportunity to create a new day every day. I studied abroad in High School with AIFS in Granada, Spain and they made my transition and experience seamless and life-changing. I was eager to go abroad with them again because of how positive my past experience was and they had the best program for me. I wanted to go to Barcelona, Spain, be immersed into Spanish language and culture, and stay on track with my liberal arts studies and AIFS UPF Program met all of those needs and beyond. On top of all my requirements for my study abroad experience, AIFS hosted cultural events, lead us on day and weekend trips, and provided support when needed.

When I arrived in Barcelona, AIFS was there to orient me with the city, peers, and UPF campus. Our homestay and classes were chosen for us so little work was required on our end which made the transition easy and comfortable. During my second semester, I lived in a residencia, Residencia Onix, with other AIFS students and international students and that experience was amazing. I lived with a Spanish roommate and we learned so much from each other. Throughout my year abroad, I had an amazing time getting to know the staff at AIFS in Barcelona through events and trips. They are caring, generous, and intelligent people who were always willing to listen and help. They felt like family that brought about a sense of comfortability while in a foreign country.

Furthermore, I really enjoyed my classes offered at UPF: Intermediate and Advanced Spanish Language, Social Movements in the XXI Century to Globalization, Understanding Globalization, Pictures of Spain in Contemporary Cinema, Spanish Literature, and Contemporary Spanish Art. These classes allowed me to immerse myself in Spanish and European Studies while getting credit towards my majors. All of these classes that I took at UPF were very challenging because of the grading system and having tests count towards the majority of your grade but I learned a lot. The teachers were engaged and advocated for your success.

In regards to location - Barcelona is the best place to go abroad. It is such a large city with a fascinating history, beautiful landscape, amazing beaches, inspiring architecture, diverse and energizing Catalan and Spanish culture. The city gave me the opportunity to do something different every day and easy access to traveling around Europe.

2 people found this review helpful.

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