January in Florence

Spend your break in beautiful Florence, Italy, gazing at the impressive architecture, soaking up the vibrant culture, admiring the impressive history, and taking in the delectable cuisine!

Unique programs. This special January term study abroad program allows you to earn credit in a variety of subjects during your winter break. Who said you fall behind when studying abroad? Spend a couple weeks getting ahead by studying abroad in Italy with CISabroad.

We’re here to support you. While all programs offer exceptional support services, we know you’ll absolutely LOVE our staff in Florence. We’ll make sure you’re well prepared before you go, help you settle in as soon as you step off the plane, take care of you the entire time you’re in Italy, then provide some great resources for your readjustment and making the most of your experience once you’re back home. 

We offer a great value. In less than 3 weeks you’ll earn 3 credits, which is a great deal, especially when you consider all you get when studying abroad in Italy with CISabroad! Although it appears to be a short experience, we bet it will stay with you longer than you would have ever expected. 

On our January in Florence program, you’ll be immersed in the local Italian and Florentine culture immediately to get the most out of this winter study abroad program. We’ll pack in a lot of fun activities in a short time, including excursions in and around Florence, group outings to movies and galleries, city tours, and enough social programming that you won’t have any trouble sleeping at night while you study abroad in Italy!  

Florence is an amazing location - This Renaissance city boasts countless galleries, museums, cafes, festivals, holidays and generally social street scenes. Even when you don’t necessarily plan on it, you might find yourself engulfed by culture as a festival strikes up, a new gallery opens its doors to the public, or a museum offers free entrances. 

A medium-sized city - Perfect for a shorter program, Florence is just the right size so that you can learn your way around in a couple days, yet it’s big enough to keep you fully engaged the entire time you’re there. Explore the historic city center end-to-end, then venture into outlying towns, and even into the snow-capped Apennines Mountains. 

The rest of Italy and Europe are easily accessible - from Florence, take a quick trip into Rome, Pisa, Venice or Milan. Or, go further afield and spend a weekend in Prague, Paris, London, or Barcelona. You will be surprised how cheap airfare is once you get over there! 

A wide variety of courses to choose from - Much of your learning will take place OUTSIDE of the classroom in Florence. However, inside the classroom, you’ll be learning about intriguing, locally-focused topics including business, art, culture, architecture and even physical education. Of course, if you want to brush up on your Italian language, there are a range of levels of Italian offered. 

Escape the cold back home - If an average high of 50 degrees and sunshine sounds tropical compared to winter where you are, bring your bathing suit! A nice, temperate climate even in the dead of winter means you’ll have no excuse to not be out and about in the beautiful city. 

Combine this with a spring semester - Want to get a head start on an incredible spring semester in Florence? The January in Florence program leads right into our spring Semester in Florence program, allowing you to combine the two for more than 4 months in Italy! Or, get your feet wet in the touristy town of Florence then go on to a more traditional city for full Italian language and culture immersion by spending the spring Semester in Perugia

If you've considered a winter term study abroad program in Italy, here are some reasons the January in Florence program is a great fit:

  • Winter break program allows you to get ahead academically! 
  • A variety of courses in both English and Italian
  • Great support services with English-speaking staff
  • Busy social programming schedule - pick and choose what you want to do
  • Classes have a local focus and take you to explore outside of the classroom
  • Exceptional facilities, including a gym, wireless internet, library and restaurant on campus
  • Centrally-located campus with easy access a variety of shops and eateries on foot
  • Included overnight excursion to Rome - the Eternal City

Spending January in Florence with CISabroad gives you the opportunity to go on a weekend trip to Rome at no additional cost.

Weekend in Rome
You will get to experience one of the premiere tourist destinations in the world on this excursion. Marvel at the masterpieces of Roman art and architecture, visit numerous cafes, trattorias, and gelato stands, and take in the incredible history and culture of this beautiful city!

CiSabroad students will also have the opportunity to go on optional trips that are organized by our partner school in Florence:

Day trip to Tuscany
During this trip, you will have the opportunity to relax and enjoy a slower pace of life in the charming towns of Pienza and Montepulciano. These picturesque villages are famed for their goat cheese and wine, and offer beautiful views of surrounding countryside.

January in Florence, based at Florence University of the Arts (FUA) offers this unique program during students’ winter break or January term. A great range of courses are on offer from the following departments: business, digital imagery & visual arts, fashion, fine arts, food and wine studies, family and consumer sciences, wine and culture, interior design & architecture, Italian culture and language, liberal arts, and sports and health sciences. See below for actual courses. 

GPA Required: 2.8. If you find your GPA is lower than the requirement, do not despair! Use the "Contact An Advisor" button on this page or call us to let us know your situation. We'll do all we can to find the right program for you.

How to choose your courses

Now the fun part! As part of the application process you will be required to complete the CISabroad Course Selection Worksheet found in the CISabroad Application Page. The following instructions will guide you through the steps of choosing your courses.

Course load: 

1 course (3 US credits)

Course approval: Although you will only take up 1 class in the January session, it is best to meet with your current academic advisor and obtain approval for 3–4 classes. That way you can easily switch courses once you get on-site. Courses are generally approved if they fill major or elective requirements. 

Course descriptions: Please click here for a list of courses offered during the January 2017 program. 

How to read the Florence University of the Arts course catalog

In the catalog, courses are numbered 100–299 for lower-division courses, 300–399 for upper-division courses, and 400–499 for introductory courses to graduate studies. An example of a full course number is “LA HS MI 280.” The first abbreviation represents the college within the University (LA=Liberal Arts); the second, the department within the college (HS=History); and the third, the course within the department (MI=Modern Italy). 

Course Fees:

Students should be advised that some courses offered by FUA require additional fees ranging from approximately $50 - $320 for various supplies, texts, and lab use. These fees apply to some courses in the School of Fine Arts, Squola, School of Sciences and Mathematics, and the School of Liberal Arts.  This charge will need to be paid directly to FUA upon arrival to the university.

Course Credit:

Transcripts from your program will be issued by the University of South Florida. Please note that transcripts will be sent directly to your home university 8-10 weeks after the close of the Spring semester at the Florence University of the Arts. 

You’ll love living in amazing Florence. The relatively small city is perfect for a short-term study abroad program because you’ll be able to get to know the city well, but still find new things to keep you busy at every turn! There are countless museums, galleries, restaurants, shops and plazas to explore. Visit the famous Duomo and walk across the incredible Ponte Vecchio during your stay in Florence.

It’s easy to get out and see the rest of Italy, too! Public buses are available to take you into neighboring towns, or you could get on a train and see places like Rome, Venice, Milan or Pisa. Our CISabroad staff will take you off the beaten path to locations that most tourists don’t get to see.

January in Florence is based at Florence University of the Arts (FUA), a well-established partner university of CISabroad. FUA was established with the American and international student in mind, with a strong emphasis on Italian and Florentine art, culture and history. The program uses various renovated, historical palaces, all located in the historic city center. 

January in Florence is a very culturally engaging program; however, we’ll make sure you’re able to test the water before jumping in! You’ll have English-speaking staff available throughout the duration of the program - staff that understand what it’s like adjusting to a new place and culture. We’ll meet you at the airport, help you settle in to your apartment in Florence, and give you and all the other CISabroad students an orientation to the city and campus. Our CISabroad site director will take you on excursions and help you acclimate to Florentine life. 

Between activities and excursions specifically for CISabroad students and those organized by Florence University of the Arts, there will almost always be something going on. That doesn’t mean that you can’t take things at your own pace though! We’ll have plenty of great cultural activities that you can participate in, including volunteering, movie nights, outings to galleries and museums, and optional excursions outside of Florence on most weekends. 

The facilities are exceptional, so you can expect all the comforts of home, such as internet, a library, fitness facilities, media labs, courtyards, patios, and even a fully-functioning restaurant on-site! Of course, we wouldn’t want you to feel SO comfortable that you don’t ever leave campus, so classes and program activities will take you off-campus and into the city frequently.

During the January in Florence program, you’ll enjoy a modern, centrally-located apartment, shared with students from around the world. The student apartments house between four and six students and are comprised of multiple bathrooms and bedrooms (some shared), and a living/dining space. They are pre-stocked with linens, a washing machine, TV, and basic kitchenware. You can opt for internet access for a small fee upon arrival. You can easily get to markets if you want to buy food to cook back at your apartment, or you can take advantage of someone else’s delicious cooking by going to any of the restaurants nearby.

CISabroad’s Site Director in Italy:

Romina is a native Roman, who graduated with a degree in International Communications at the University for Foreigners of Perugia in 2005. In the same year, she returned to Rome where she started working for IES. In the following two years she decided to study International Relations and enrolled in the MA in International Affairs at the SIOI school in Rome. In 2007 Romina graduated in International Relations at the same University of Perugia and after completing the MA she undertook an internship at the Italian Development Cooperation Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Rome. At the beginning of 2008, after completing the internship, Romina was offered a position to work as a Communication and Public Information Officer within the civilian component of the Provincial Reconstruction Team in Herat for the NATO mission in Afghanistan. Between 2008 and 2009 she accomplished two missions in Afghanistan. In 2009 she started working for the Italian Development Cooperation Office at the Italian Embassy in Beirut. In Lebanon she worked as a Communication and Public Information Officer and she was also in charge of the joint projects which were later carried out together with the Italian troops within the United Nations mission in Southern Lebanon. In the summer of 2010 Romina left Lebanon to work in Yemen, where she held the same office within the Italian Development Cooperation Department of Sana’s. In the spring of 2011, due to the serious and uncertain situation in Yemen, all the Italian Embassy staff was ordered to leave the country for security reasons. Because of the consequences of the Arab Spring in all Middle East, the Arabian Peninsula, and in Northern Africa, Romina has decided to work in Rome and enjoy with her friends and family the beauty of the Eternal City.

Romina will be present in Italy and available to students for activities, emergencies, issues or concerns around your program, or just if you’re feeling out of place and need some support. All students will be formally introduced to her prior to the start of the program and she will maintain contact with you throughout the program, to ensure that everything is going well.

1. What is the cost of program tuition? What is included in the program fees?

The program cost for January in Florence can be found on the Price and Dates page. You can also see a full breakdown of the program prices and budget here.

2. When are the program fees due?

Program tuition for January in Florence is due on November 15th. CISabroad will email invoices to students approximately one month before the program payment deadline. For example, if your payment deadline is July 15, you should expect your invoice in mid-June. If you are using financial aid, please ensure all financial aid paperwork is returned to our office by the payment deadline. If your financial aid does not cover your entire balance, CISabroad accepts these payment methods.

3. What is due with my application and when is my application due?

There are four easy steps in the application process. 

1. Fill out the online application, which includes your contact information, what program you are applying for, etc. 

2. Pay the $200 application deposit in order to secure your space in the program. This amount will be applied toward the final cost.
3. Complete the Academic Reference Form, Course Selection Worksheet, Personal Statement, Applicant Profile, and Scholarship Application (optional). In addition, the Florence University of the Arts requires you to fill out its supplemental application which will be provided to you once you have made your $200 deposit.

4. Mail in your official transcript to our office.

For detailed instructions, see application instructions. The application for January in Florence is due on November 1st.

4. Do I need a passport or visa? When should I apply for my passport/visa?

Yes, you WILL need a passport to travel to Italy. Your passport must be valid for 6 months BEYOND the date you return to the United States. For detailed passport instructions, U.S. citizens should check the State Department's Travel Site. For January in Florence, you WILL NOT need a visa. For specific visa details, please contact your CISabroad advisor.

5. Is there a GPA requirement?

Yes! For January in Florence, the GPA requirement is 2.8.

6. What are my housing options?

January in Florence offers housing in shared apartments. These accomodations are within walking distance of the campus and you have the option of living in a single room or multi-bedroom.

7. Will other students participate in the program with me? How many?

CISabroad programs are not only a great way to meet local and international students, but also students from around the United States. Program size varies each year - if enrollment size is important to you, contact a CISabroad advisor at 1-877-617-9090.

8. How many credits are offered in the program?

For January in Florence, you will enroll in 1 course (3 U.S. credits). To see the courses available, go to the course catalog.

9. Can I combine this program with another CISabroad program like intern, summer, or semester abroad?

Yes! A great way to extend your CISabroad experience is participating in another program. Combine semester programs to create a full academic year or if an academic year is just a little too long and a semester is too short, combine a semester and summer session or a semester and January term program. You can also participate in a semester abroad and combine that with a summer intern abroad. To find out more information on the application process for more than one CISabroad program, contact a CISabroad advisor at 1-877-617-9090.

Term: January 2017
Arrival January 3
Departure January 21
Application Deadline October 15
Term: January 2017 Price: $4590-$5990 more info

Dates posted here are for reference only and are subject to change. Please do not book flights until you have received the confirmed dates in your acceptance paperwork.

To view expected additional expenses for this program, click here.

Program fees are in US dollars and include the following:

  • Overnight excursion to Rome
  • Weekly visits to sites around Florence and optional excursions
  • University of South Florida official transcript for up to 6 credits
  • CISabroad support services before, during, and after the program
  • Academic advisingFinancial aid counseling
  • Assistance with travel arrangements
  • Full-time tuition & fees
  • Housing (shared bedroom in apartment, single supplement $250)
  • 15 meal plan units
  • Pre-departure and on-site orientation
  • Airport pickup
  • Medical & Accident Insurance
  • NYTimes Digital Subscription 
  • Free use of gym and gym classes


CISabroad reserves the right to alter our fees at any time due to exchange rate fluctuations and/or changes in partner university fees.