Barcelona, Spain

Business + Culture

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Information for term Business + Culture

Application deadline, and cost information.

Application Deadline

April 1, 2023
weeks
days
hours

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Tentative Dates: Aug 30 – Dec 20, 2023 (16 weeks)*
  • Credit: 14 - 17 semester hours / 21 - 25.5 quarter hours
  • Eligibility: 3.0 Overall GPA

Application Deadline

The application deadline has passed.

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Dates: Jan 3 – Apr 19, 2023 (15 weeks)
  • Credit: 14 - 17 semester hours / 21 - 25.5 quarter hours
  • Eligibility: 3.0 Overall GPA

Overview

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Known for its stunning architecture, world-class cuisine, and vibrant cultural heritage, Barcelona is one of Europe's crown jewels. The city is also considered one of the region's most dynamic startup ecosystems and leaders in innovation and entrepreneurship. For these reasons, Barcelona has become an ideal destination for international students interested in studying business and culture.

Designed for students with a background in business, CIEE Barcelona's Business + Culture program offers students access to countless cultural wonders – all while earning college credit. From indulging in mouth-watering tapas to marveling at world-famous architect Antoni Gaudí's 20+ sites (like his masterpieces La Sagrada Família and Park Güell) to participating in traditional Catalan dances (like the native Sardana dance), you'll discover all Barcelona has to offer during your semester abroad with CIEE in Spain's most popular city.  

Unique Experiences

  • DISCOVER

    one of Europe’s most dynamic startup ecosystems.

  • EXPLORE

    Barcelona’s “District 22@”, a hub for innovative companies.

  • LIVE

    with a Spanish family and immerse yourself in local culture.

  • STARTUPS

    2,048
  • VISITORS YEARLY

    12 M
  • BUS LINES

    150

Location & Culture

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Culture, sport, fashion, finance, media, and entertainment – Barcelona is brimming with it all. The largest city on the Mediterranean Sea, Barcelona is home to 1.6 million in the city proper and 4.5 million in the broader metro area. It is edged with a river on either side and backed by the Serra de Collserola mountains to the west.  

Castilian Spanish and Catalan are the official languages. Both are regularly used in all aspects of life, and Catalan is not imposed. Taxi drivers, shopkeepers, professors, and host families all speak clear Castilian when Spanish speakers are present. Spanish is widely used at the university. Students don’t need to speak Catalan but learning a few words can open doors to making new friends.  

CIEE Barcelona is conveniently located in a historical pedestrian passageway in the heart of the city. In it, students will find staff offices, classrooms and open-air terraces.  It is close to the host universities and to the city’s main attractions. 

CIEE wants all our students to feel welcomed, supported, and empowered to succeed while studying abroad. Local CIEE staff have provided details about conditions and cultural attitudes that students with specific identities might encounter in Barcelona.

The Culture

EXCURSIONS & ACTIVITIES

  • One of our popular day trips takes you to Montserrat, a Benedictine monastery retreat high atop one of the most spectacular mountain ranges in Catalunya. Not only is its history of significant religious importance but the surrounding natural beauty is nothing short of breathtaking. There you can visit the monastery to see La Moreneta (the black Madonna), listen to the world-renowned Boys’ Choir (whose history dates back to the 14th century), and trek any of the numerous mountain trails where you’ll take in incredible countryside views and see the most unusual rock formations in all of Catalonia. Are you ready? Let’s go! 
  • Discover the Gràcia neighborhood, famous for its bohemian and artistic style and streets filled with color and culture. 
  • Visit the oldest preserved garden, reflecting both Neoclassical and Romantic styles – and try your luck in the park’s labyrinth maze! 
  • Eat like a local and try popular traditional dishes like churros, patatas bravas, tortilla de patata, tapas, and pinchos. 
  • See a flamenco show! 
  • Hike the Carretera de les Aigües for amazing views over the city. 

INTERNSHIP

Complement your studies with an internship in English or Spanish. You might help a company like Naru Sport market its international products; work with a team on real estate and investment options; or help a firm such as Audiconsultores with finance and accounting. Internships include required weekly class sessions to support and enhance the internship experience with academic grounding. Students applying for an internship are required to submit additional materials during the course selection process. 

VOLUNTEERING

Get to know the people of the city and their language as you give back. Here are some of the ways you might serve: 

  • Help children with homework after school 
  • Assist kids with special needs during school breaks 
  • Collect food for people in need 

Program Blogs

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Program Blogs

Daily Life

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  • HOUSING

    All housing is within a 30-minute commute to CIEE. 

    Homestays: Live with a Spanish family, with or without another CIEE student, and immerse yourself in the city’s language and culture. Each student has an individual room. 
     

    Apartments: Students can live in apartments shared with other CIEE students. If local health and safety regulations permit, most students live in double or triple rooms. Each apartment will have shared common spaces, including kitchen and bathroom. 
     

    Residence Halls: Students usually live with a mix of CIEE students, local and international students. If local health and safety regulations permit, students live in single, double, or triple rooms. Students usually share kitchens and common areas. 
     

    Independent Housing is not permitted unless: 

    • You have a relative in the host city 
    • You have a medical condition that we are not able to support with our existing housing options 
    • Requested and approved by CIEE (even if these conditions are met) 

     

    Housing is tight in Barcelona. If we can’t accommodate your first housing choice, we’ll let you know before you arrive. 

  • MEALS

    Homestay students have breakfast and dinner with their host families, and they are responsible for lunch. Meals are not included at residence halls or apartments. 

Barcelona, Spain

Where You'll Study

  • A

    CIEE BARCELONA

    30 minutes, by public transportation, from homestays, shared apartments and the residence hall.

  • B

    GETTING AROUND

    Students can take the metro to get from their homestays, shared apartments or residence halls to the CIEE Study Center.

  • C

    University of Vic

    BAU School of Design Barcelona location

What People are Saying

  • "It an experience you will never regret. The people you meet and the culture you immerse yourself in is the best way to get out of your comfort zone and learn about the differences in cultures."

    Christian C., Bradley University
  • "I really enjoyed my experience with CIEE, I appreciated how organized the program was. I always knew where to go if I needed assistance."

    Ashna B., Indiana University-Bloomington
  • "I think that everything about the program from orientation to sitting in classes was very well organized and every staff member was very kind and helpful. Also the excursions every week were amazing!"

    Carly A., Indiana University-Bloomington
  • "This was an incredible experience, I felt like I learned a lot and I really enjoyed how everything was organized with CIEE as well as how there were an abundance of CIEE-sponsored trips and activities we could participate in"

    Keya S., Indiana University-Bloomington
  • "CIEE has been an amazing program with life changing opportunities. The courses have been great, I've enjoyed every event, and I've been surprised by how many people I've met."

    Spencer K., Oakland University

Academics

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Academics

CIEE’s Business + Culture program invites business students to improve their Spanish language skills and earn credits toward their degree with courses at CIEE Barcelona and Universitat Pompeu Fabra’s Escola Superior de Comerç Internacional (School of International Studies, or ESCI) or the Universitat de Vic – Universitat Central de Catalunya (UVic). Students are required to take one Spanish language course tailored to their skill level. 

Escola Superior de Comerc Internacional (ESCI) offers bachelor’s degrees in business and marketing, as well as an International Business Program (IBP) for international students. ESCI hosts 500 students and is located 15 minutes from CIEE by bus or metro. 

Universitat de Vic – Universitat Central de Catalunya (UVic) is an independent state-supported institution committed to the economic and social development of the region.  The university offers a Business, Design, and Innovation program for international students on their Barcelona campus (at BAU Design College), just 15 minutes from CIEE by bus or metro. 

Spring 2024: Students taking courses at UVic may need to remain onsite until April 19, 2024, due to an extended course schedule. 

GPA

CIEE or UVic Track: Students need to have a GPA of at least 2.5 at the time of application 

ESCI Track: Students need to have a GPA of at least 3.0 at the time of application 

Language Prerequisites

There are no specific language requirements for this program.

Additional Requirements

3 semesters of college-level micro- or macroeconomics, accounting, finance, management, or statistics. Must have junior-level standing or higher by the time of arrival in Barcelona. 

Individual courses may have additional prerequisites; for CIEE courses, these are listed in the syllabi below. Students are responsible for having their own course approval conversations with their advisors.

Program Requirements

Students are required to take four to five courses for 14-17 credits: 

  • One CIEE Spanish language course (Based on Spanish Language Placement Exam Results) 
  • Two business, economics, management, or marketing courses: 
    • Students can take both courses at CIEE (if enrolled on the CIEE only track); combine a CIEE course with a host institution course (ESCI, UVic); or take both courses at one of the host institutions (ESCI, UVic tracks) 
    • If you are on the ESCI or UVic track you must take at least 1 course at the host institution  
  • One to two elective courses (depending on credits): 
    • CIEE courses 
    • CIEE internship 
    • Host institution courses (ESCI, UVic)  

Program Credit

Total credit: 14-17 U.S. semester/21-25.5 quarter credits 

Course Credit

  • CIEE courses: 3 U.S. semester/4.5 quarter credits; 45 contact hours 
  • CIEE Internship: 3 U.S. semester/4.5 quarter credits; 15 seminar hours, 100 internship placement hours 
  • Escola Superior de Comerç Internacional (ESCI) courses: 3-4 U.S. semester/4.5-6 quarter credits; 45-60 contact hours, as noted 
  • Universitat de Vic – Universitat Central de Catalunya (UVic) courses: 3 U.S. semester/4.5 quarter credits; 45 contact hours, unless otherwise noted 

Individual courses may have additional prerequisites; for CIEE courses, these are listed in the syllabi below. Students are responsible for having their own course approval conversations with their advisors.

Academic Culture

Courses are academically challenging and involve daily reading and homework assignments, and attendance at lectures and field trips. Students are responsible for knowing the dates of exams and assignments.  Dates are firm and attendance is required.  As students gain proficiency in Spanish, they are encouraged to use their skills with local students, host families, and new acquaintances. 

Class Format

ESCI direct enrollment courses are taken alongside Spanish students. ESCI International Business Program courses and UVic courses include other international students. CIEE courses are taken with other CIEE students only. 

Grading

Students are evaluated based on class participation, in-class activities, homework assignments, exams, papers, and oral presentations. In some courses, grades are based on an exam and a group or individual project. ESCI and UVic professors grade on a 10-point scale and points are converted to U.S. letter grades. 

Individual courses may have additional prerequisites; for CIEE courses, these are listed in the syllabi below. Students are responsible for having their own course approval conversations with their advisors.

Language of Instruction

Spanish and English

Individual courses may have additional prerequisites; for CIEE courses, these are listed in the syllabi below. Students are responsible for having their own course approval conversations with their advisors.

Courses

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Course Information

  • Students who choose to take courses at a host institution are only allowed to take courses at one host institution (either ESCI or UVic).  
  • Students who choose to take all their courses at CIEE are responsible for confirming with their home schools that this is an approved option.  
  • Courses at CIEE and at ESCI are offered in both Spanish and English. Courses at UVic are only offered in English. 
  • At ESCI, students can take local courses and/or courses for international students in ESCI’s International Business Program (ESCI IBP). 
  • At UVic, all courses are for international students only. 
  • Students with four or five semesters of college-level Spanish are encouraged to take two courses in Spanish. 
  • Students with six or more semesters of college-level Spanish are encouraged to take all their classes in Spanish. 

Spring 2023 CIEE Courses

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Academic Projects

Course
Language
Semester Credit

Business, Economics, Management, and Marketing

Course
Language
Semester Credit
MGMT 3001 BASP (ENG): International Management (English)
English
3

Communication, Journalism, and Media

Course
Language
Semester Credit

History, Philosophy, Religion

Course
Language
Semester Credit

Languages and Cultural Studies

Course
Language
Semester Credit

Social Sciences

Course
Language
Semester Credit

Visual and Performing Arts

Course
Language
Semester Credit

Host Institution Courses

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The following is a sample list of courses; not all are available every year. 

THE ESCOLA SUPERIOR DE COMERÇ INTERNACIONAL (SCHOOL OF INTERNATIONAL STUDIES, or ESCI) BUSINESS COURSES 

ESCI courses in English (3 credits)

  • Culture and Business in Europe 
    • (Prerequisite: Business Organization) 
  • Culture and Business in America 
    • (Prerequisite: Business Organization) 
  • Culture and Business in Middle East and Africa 
    • (Prerequisite: Business Organization) 
  • Industrial and Services Marketing 
    • (Prerequisite: previous marketing knowledge recommended) 
  • International Product Management 
    • (Prerequisite: previous coursework in marketing, market research, and strategic marketing knowledge recommended) 
  • International Project Management 
    • (Prerequisite: Business Organization / Finance) 
  • International Strategic Management 
    • (Prerequisite: Business Organization/Marketing) 
  • International Marketing 
    • (Prerequisite: Marketing / Business Organization) 
  • International Expansion 
    • (Prerequisite: Business Organization) 
  • International Team Management 
    • (Prerequisite: Business Organization) 
  • Market Research Analytics 
    • (Prerequisite: Business marketing, Market Research, Statistics) 
  • People Management 
    • (Prerequisite: Business Organization.) 
  • Market Research I 
    • (Prerequisite: Fundamentals of Marketing / Introductory Statistics) 
  • Public Relations and Consumer Relations Management 
    • (Prerequisite: Marketing) 
  • Pricing Policies 
    • (Prerequisite: Intermediate Microeconomics required) 

ESCI courses in Spanish (3 credits)

  • Auditoria 
    • (Prerequisite: Contabilidad de Costes) 
  • Compras Internacionales 
    • (Prerequisite: Organización de Empresas) 
  • Contabilidad de Costes 
    • (Prerequisite: prior knowledge of accounting required) 
  • Cultura & Negocios en Asia 
    • (Prerequisite: Organización de Empresas) 
  • Direccion de Ventas 
    • (Prerequisite: Organización de Empresas/Marketing) 
  • Economia y Globalización 
    • (Prerequisite: Macroeconomía/ Economía Internacional) 
  • Gestion de la Sostenibilidad 
    • (Prerequisite: Organización de Empresas) 
  • Innovación y Emprendimiento 
    • (Prerequisite: Organización de Empresas) 
  • Logística Internacional 
    • (Prerequisite: Gestión de Operaciones / Distribución Comercial) 
  • Marketing Digital Internacional 
    • (Prerequisite: Marketing)        
  • Negociación Internacional 
    • (Prerequisite: Organización de Empresas) 
  • Retail Internacional 
    • (Prerequisite: Marketing)        
  • Técnicas de Previsión 

ESCI International Business Program Courses in English (4 credits)

  • Applied Marketing Research in the Digital Era  
    • (Prerequisite: Introduction to Marketing) 
  • Consumer Behavior 
    • (Prerequisite: Introduction to Marketing) 
  • Corporate Finance 
    • (Prerequisite: Accounting) 
  • Cross Cultural Management and Intercultural Communication           
    • (Prerequisite: Business Organization) 
  • Doing Business in Europe 
    • (Prerequisite: Business Organization) 
  • Economic Global Order 
    • (Prerequisite: Introductory Economics) 
  • Financial Risk Management 
    • (Prerequisite: Corporate Finance) 
  • International Management 
    • (Prerequisite: Business Organization) 
  • International Economics 
    • (Prerequisite: Introductory Micro and Macro Economics) 
  • New Trends in International Marketing 
    • (Prerequisite: Introduction to Marketing) 
  • Strategic Brand Management 
    • (Prerequisite: Marketing Management) 
  • Strategic Consumer Insight 
    • (Prerequisite: Introduction to Marketing) 

UNIVERSITAT DE VIC – UNIVERSITAT CENTRAL DE CATALUNYA (UVIC) BUSINESS, DESIGN, AND INNOVATION COURSES 

Spring 2024: Students taking courses at UVic may need to remain onsite until April 19, 2024 due to an extended course schedule. 

Syllabi for the courses listed below can be found on the UVic website  under the ‘Programme’ tab. 

UVic courses in English (3 credits)

  • Brand Design 
  • Design Thinking 
  • Digital Business 
  • Global Marketing 
  • Marketing and Fashion 
  • Leadership, Business, and Society  
  • Luxury Marketing 
  • Psychology of Communication and Publicity 
  • Retail Management 
  • Start-up Creation 

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 canceled due to insufficient enrollment.
"(GI)" denotes courses that originated at CIEE's Global Institutes and that are offered at multiple CIEE sites.

Scholarships

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Scholarships & Grants

CIEE offers scholarships and grants annually to help students like you make your study abroad dream a reality.

Students who apply to this program are eligible for the following scholarships and grants:

  • Ping Scholarships for Academic Excellence
  • Global Access Initiative (GAIN) Grants
  • CIEE Gilman Go Global Grant

To be considered, submit the CIEE Scholarships & Grants application within your CIEE program application. Learn more at the Scholarships & Grants section of our website.

See more scholarship info

Dates & Fees

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Dates & Fees

You get more for every dollar when you study abroad with CIEE, because our high-quality programs include everything from excursions to insurance. There are no hidden charges, and no disappointing surprises when you arrive.

Program

Application Due

Start Date

End Date

Fees & Housing

Spring 2023 15 weeks Deadline Passed Jan 3, 2023 Apr 19, 2023
$19,950
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Program Fees

CIEE offers the most student support of any provider in its program fee, including an airport greeting, full-time leadership and support, orientation, cultural activities, local excursions, pre-departure advising, and CIEE iNext travel insurance with benefits.

Participation Confirmation = $300 *

Educational Costs = $14,983 **

Housing = $4,500 ***

Insurance = $167

Total Fees = $19,950

Estimated Costs

Students are responsible and manage costs related to travel, meals, books, and personal expenses. Below are estimates for consideration.

Meals not included in program fee = $1,768

International Airfare = $1,200 ††

Local Transportation = $135 †††

Books & Supplies = $100

Visa Fees = $160

Potential travel to consulate for visa = $500

Personal expenses = $1,280 ††††

Total Estimated Costs = $5,143

Financial Aid

CIEE offers the most grants and scholarships of any study abroad organization, including $8 million/year in travel grants, merit-based scholarships, institutional and MSI grants, and Gilman Go Global Grants.

See Scholarships

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 by their US home institution to study abroad via CIEE's School of Record will be charged a $500 administrative fee in addition to the Program Fees listed.

* non-refundable

** direct cost of education charged uniformly to all students

*** homestay includes two meals daily; no meals are included for students in the Residencia option

Homestay includes two meals daily; no meals are included for students in the Residencia and Shared apartments options. Homestay students Fall & Spring should budget $885 for meals not included in fees

†† round-trip based on U.S. East Coast departure

††† "Local transportation: t-jove (3 months) = 85€ ($90) / t-usual (1 month) = 40€ ($43)

†††† "Personal expenses: minimum social life twice a week ($45 aprox)

Fall 2023 16 weeks Apr 1, 2023 Aug 30, 2023* Dec 20, 2023*
$19,950
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Program Fees

CIEE offers the most student support of any provider in its program fee, including an airport greeting, full-time leadership and support, orientation, cultural activities, local excursions, pre-departure advising, and CIEE iNext travel insurance with benefits.

Participation Confirmation = $300 *

Educational Costs = $14,953 **

Housing = $4,500 ***

Insurance = $197

Total Fees = $19,950

Estimated Costs

Students are responsible and manage costs related to travel, meals, books, and personal expenses. Below are estimates for consideration.

Meals not included in program fee = $1,168

International Airfare = $850 ††

Local Transportation = $65 †††

Books & Supplies = $100

Visa Fees = $160

Potential travel to consulate for visa = $500

Personal expenses = $167 ††††

Other = $0 †††††

Total Estimated Costs = $3,010

Financial Aid

CIEE offers the most grants and scholarships of any study abroad organization, including $8 million/year in travel grants, merit-based scholarships, institutional and MSI grants, and Gilman Go Global Grants.

See Scholarships

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 by their US home institution to study abroad via CIEE's School of Record will be charged a $500 administrative fee in addition to the Program Fees listed.

* non-refundable

** direct cost of education charged uniformly to all students

*** homestay includes two meals daily; no meals are included for students in the Residencia option

Homestay includes two meals daily; no meals are included for students in the Residencia and Shared apartments options. Homestay students should budget $600 for meals not included in fees.

†† round-trip based on U.S. East Coast departure

††† Local transportation: t-jove (3 months) = 40€ ($43) / t-usual (1 month) = 20€ ($21)

†††† Personal expenses: $100 emergency fund and cell phone expense + estimated cost of toiletries for one month

††††† Covid test fees for entry to the US, if required

*Dates for this program are provided as tentative dates. Please consult with your study abroad advisor to confirm dates before purchasing your flights.

To help you budget, keep in mind that students are responsible for the cost of international airfare, local transportation, books and supplies, visas, and personal expenses. In addition, ask your college or university study abroad advisor if your school charges additional fees for study abroad.

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What's Included

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What's Included

Tuition
Housing
Pre-departure Advising
Advising before you depart to set goals and answer questions
Optional on-site airport meet-and-greet
Orientation
Introduction to your program plus practical information about living in your host city
On-site Staff
Full-time program leadership and support in your city
Cultural and/or Co-curricular Activities
Excursions and/or Study Tours
Travel Protection
CIEE iNext and a local liability insurance
24/7 emergency on-site support

Our Staff

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Get Started

Here's what you need to do to take the next steps:
  • 1

    START AN APPLICATION
    You're one step closer to an amazing study abroad experience! 

    Apply Now
  • 2

    CONNECT WITH YOUR CAMPUS STUDY ABROAD OFFICE 
    Share your plans and confirm you're on track to meet all required steps to go abroad. 

  • 3

    Contact Us

    Send us an email if you still have questions or need information about applying to this program.