Contemporary culture is studied not as the “most refined human endeavors,” but as “everyday culture.”
Spend this summer exploring contemporary culture in two of Europe’s most creative and dynamic cities. Begin in Prague, where you’ll examine the roots of underground and alternative cultures. Through discussions of street art, squatting non-conformist Czechs have made use of popular culture and form their own communities and identities. Next, you’ll study the global urban movement through the lens of Barcelona, a city whose landscape is being perpetually redefined by the contemporary arts.
Study abroad in Prague and Barcelona and you will:
- Develop the tools to examine contemporary urban culture through an anthropological lens
- Analyze graffiti, video, and graphic art that incorporates local and international themes
- Explore the districts of both cities where these cultural forms are thriving
Scholarships & Grants
Scholarships & Grants
We want as many students as possible to benefit from studying abroad. That’s why CIEE awards more than $3 million every year – more than any other international educational organization – to make study abroad affordable.
Applicants to this program are eligible for the following scholarships and grants:
To be considered, simply check the “Scholarships and Grants” box on your program application.
The CIEE Difference
The CIEE Difference
Intercultural Comparative Experience
Expand your global perspective. Choose to spend your three-day intercultural weekend in one of these European cities:
- Barcelona, Spain
- Berlin, Germany
- London, England
- Paris, France
Dates, Deadlines & Fees
Dates, Deadlines & Fees
We want to make sure you get the most out of your experience when you study abroad with CIEE, which is why we offer the most inclusions in our fees.
The program fee includes:
- Tuition and housing
- Pre-departure advising and optional on-site airport meet and greet
- Full-time program leadership and support
- Field trips and cultural activities
- CIEE iNext travel card which provides insurance and other travel benefits
Please note, program dates are subject to change. Please contact your CIEE Study Abroad Advisor before purchasing airfare. Click the
button to view more detailed information about dates and fees as well as estimated additional costs. Please talk with your University Study Abroad Advisor about additional fees that may be charged by your home institution when participating in a program abroad.
Program Date Notes
In addition to the items outlined below, the CIEE program fee includes an optional on-site airport meet and greet, full-time leadership and support, orientation, cultural activities, local excursions, field trips, local transportation pass (in Prague), pre-departure advising, and a CIEE iNext travel card which provides insurance and other travel benefits.
Participation Confirmation *
Educational Costs **
This breakdown has been prepared from the program budget for the purpose of calculating eligibility for financial aid. During the course of program operations, actual figures may vary. It should not, therefore, be used as a basis for calculation of refunds. CIEE reserves the right to adjust fees at any time.
Students required to study on CIEE programs through a School of Record will be charged a $340 administrative fee in addition to the Program Fees listed.
** direct cost of education charged uniformly to all students
*** No meals are included while in Prague, nor in the Residencia option in Barcelona. Students selecting the homestay option in Barcelona have two meals per day included while in Barcelona.
Estimated Additional Costs
Meals not included in program fee *
International Airfare **
The estimated additional costs indicated are intended to assist students and parents in budgeting for those additional living and discretionary expenses not included in the program fee. Actual expenses will vary according to student interests and spending habits.
* Estimated amount for all meals for students staying in apartments in Prague plus the Residencia in Barcelona. Total estimated meals cost for students living in homestays in Barcelona (for lunches), in addition to all meals while in Prague, is $1,150
** round-trip based on U.S. East Coast departure; note that students will require a multi-destination ticket
- Overall GPA 2.75
- For CIEE content courses taught in Spanish, 4 semesters of college-level Spanish or equivalent
Course contact hours are 45 hours and recommended credit for the program is 6 semester/9 quarter hours, unless otherwise indicated.
Students must take one course during each session. In Prague students will take Contemporary Czech Culture: Art, Literature, Music & Lifestyles followed up in Barcelona with Urban Culture in Contemporary Barcelona.
About the City
About The City
Because of its innumerable characteristic steeples, Prague is called the city of a thousand spires. A member of the EU, Prague is a perfect example of the steady development of a society, recently transitioning from its communist past. With a population of only 1,200,000, Prague has an unusually rich cultural life, including festivals, operas, concerts, and cultural programs, many of which are accessible to students on a budget. Study abroad students experience life similar to that of Czech students and make use of the city’s numerous neighborhoods just like native Praguers.
Barcelona is the capital of Catalonia, a region in northeastern Spain with its own distinctive history, culture, and language. Set between mountains and the Mediterranean sea, the city's population is 1.6 million, with a total of 4.5 million in the greater metropolitan area. Walking though the city, one can observe 2,000 years of architectural history—Roman remains, the network of narrow streets in the Old Town, the 19th Century Eixample district with its original examples of Modernista architecture—contrasting with the ultramodern showpieces that continue to redesign its skyline.
Meet The Staff
Meet The Staff
Marilena De Chiara
Marilena De Chiara supervises and administers the Language and Culture Program and the summer Language and Culture program in Barcelona. She also assists students with academic, administrative and day-to-day matters. Marilena, a native of Naples (Italy), holds a Ph.D. in comparative literature from Universidad Pompeu Fabra and a M.A. in literary criticism. As part of her doctoral studies, she spent a year and a half at Yale University. Her research interests are focused on performance studies and the role of cultural icons in the representation of creative cities like Barcelona. She is also trained in translation studies in Spanish language.
You are about to depart for one of Europe’s most beautiful, dynamic, and cosmopolitan cities. Barcelona is not only a seaside city near spectacular mountains, but it is also a city of artists, architects, and designers. From the audacious heights of Antoni Gaudí’s Sagrada Família church to Salvador Dalí’s surrealist fancies, the city has played host to many artistic movements.
No matter what side of the Catalan character fits your personality best, be prepared for a challenging academic program that will bring many rewards in the future., Barcelona will be the highlight of your undergraduate career.
— Marilena De Chiara, Resident Director
Amanda Bell received her B.A. in cultural anthropology from Michigan State University. Amanda first lived in the Czech Republic as a Rotary Youth Exchange scholarship recipient and has lived and worked in Prague for several years.
Jana Čemusová heads the CIEE Study Center in Prague, leading study abroad programs, customized partnerships with Charles University and other educational institutions. She served as a student services director from 2008 to 2011. Prior to joining CIEE in a full-time position, Jana gained extensive experience with CIEE students through her many years of teaching and leading Czech language instruction through the CIEE Study Center at Charles University.
Jana was a Fulbright scholar at the University of Kansas and has expertise in training language teachers and leading projects in immigrant communities. She served as a chair of Association of Czech Teachers Teaching Czech as a Foreign Language in 2003 – 2009.
Jana is a double graduate at the Charles University in Prague, Faculty of Philosophy, where she studied theory of culture (anthropology) and Czech language and creative studies at the Faculty of Education.
Veronika Tobiasova is responsible for managing housing in dorms, apartments, and local homes. She also manages solving student issues, the Flat Buddy program, Meet Czech Families and Friends, CIEE promotion, and study center greening. Veronika received her master’s degree in English and American studies and Spanish philology at Charles University in Prague, with specialization in American and Argentinean literature. During high school, she was an exchange student in Madison, WI for one year. She also studied at Universidad Autónoma de Madrid in Spain for a year. Her previous working experience includes teaching both English and Spanish in different language schools and a high school in Prague. She also worked for a trade promotion agency and the Peruvian Embassy.
Eva Tomišková works as a program coordinator and her main responsibilities involve orientation, academic trips planning, volunteering program coordination, site visit planning, catering and overall office management. Eva is a graduate of The Technical University in Liberec, the Faculty of Education, with major in social studies and English language. Prior to joining CIEE, Eva gained extensive experience in human recourses and education in the Czech Republic and abroad.
Where You'll Study
Where You'll Study
CIEE works closely with Charles University, the oldest university in Central Europe, to deliver courses to students at the CIEE Study Center in Prague. All CIEE study abroad courses are held at the CIEE Study Center, located at the historical site of Vyšehrad. Although the CIEE Study Center is not located in a Charles University building, CIEE courses are recognized by Charles University and taught by faculty from various Charles University faculties and institutes. Participants of DAMU theater courses will be take their classes at DAMU facilities.
The CIEE Study Center in Barcelona, Spain, is located in two adjoining historic buildings on Passatge Permanyer, near Passeig de Gràcia and Plaza Catalunya, Barcelona’s main square. This historic passageway provides a quiet haven in the city center and houses CIEE classrooms, a computer lab, and student lounges.
Housing & Meals
Housing & Meals
Housing is included in the study abroad program fee. Each CIEE apartment houses three CIEE students as well as one local student (CIEE Flat Buddy). Apartments consist of two bedrooms with shared areas: fully-equipped kitchen and bathroom. Please note that meals and Internet fees are not included. CIEE apartments are located in various neighborhoods with a maximum of a 35 minute commute from CIEE.
Study abroad students can choose to live in either Spanish homestays (there is also an option to live in a homestay along with another CIEE student) or in a student residencia (residence hall) with other Spanish and international students. The residencias are located in urban settings throughout the city. Students living in a homestay will have breakfast and dinner provided at home, while lunch is at the students’ expense. Kitchen space is allotted the student should they wish to make picnic lunches, and many students choose to get a sandwich from local takeaway places near the center. Students in homestays will have their laundry done for them once a week. Meals and laundry are not included in the student residencia option, but students share fully equipped kitchens where they can prepare their own meals and laundry facilities are available. All homestays and residencias are located within the city of Barcelona, and within 30 minutes by public transportation to the CIEE study center and host institutions.
As space in the residencias is limited, study abroad students who request to live there but cannot be assigned a place are accommodated through a homestay placement. In the event that there are more requests to live in a residencia than the total available spaces, students with more advanced Spanish take priority over those with less Spanish (proficiency level is based on students’ CIEE Spanish course pre-registration and academic background in Spanish, as reflected on the transcript). Students who are not assigned the housing option of their choice are notified by the Resident Staff prior to arriving in Barcelona.
An orientation session conducted at the beginning of the study abroad program introduces students to the country, culture, and the academic program, as well as providing practical information on living in the Czech Republic and Spain, in particular, Prague and Barcelona. Themes such as an introduction to Catalonia, health and safety, banking, cultural adaptation, and many others are covered. Orientation also includes structured cultural activities and guided tours. Ongoing support is provided by center staff on an individual and group basis throughout the program.
Students can use the computer room or wifi at both the Prague and Barcelona CIEE Study Center. Students are therefore encouraged to bring wireless-enabled laptops.
Note: This course listing is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a contract between CIEE and any applicant, student, institution, or other party. The courses, as described, may be subject to change as a result of ongoing curricular revisions, assignment of lecturers and teaching staff, and program development. Courses may be cancelled due to insufficient enrollment.
CIEE Study Center Syllabi
To view the most recent syllabi for courses taught by CIEE at our Study Centers, visit our syllabi site.
Contemporary Czech Culture
Contemporary culture is studied not as the “most refined human endeavors,” but as “everyday culture.” This course utilizes the professor’s background as an urban anthropologist and examines the roots of underground and alternative cultures in the Czech Republic. Current “hot” topics—graffiti and street art, squatting, alternative music, and other alternative aspects of current Czech culture will be discussed. Students will learn about ways in which non-conformist Czechs have made use of popular culture, how they form their communities and identities, and how they have tried to join the creative stream.
HISTP 3004 BARU
Urban Culture in Contemporary Barcelona
Barcelona is well know as a prototype for the creative city, where different forms of urban culture are constantly growing up, reinventing the city itself. Contemporary arts, alternative literature, and music styles are redefining the urban landscape of Barcelona in the 21st century, blending together local and international references. This course aims to explore and analyze the urban culture of contemporary Barcelona in the context of the global urban movement. Graffiti artists, skateboarders, multifunctional art-galleries, electronic and techno music festivals, video artists, and comic books writers are just some of the aspects discussed in class. A series of field-trips will allow the students to create topography of the new Barcelona, exploring the districts and locations where these contemporary cultural forms are taking place.