Semester in Perugia is housed at the Umbra Institute, which offers courses in a wide variety of subjects, including Archaeology, Art History and Studio Art, Classical Studies, Creative Writing, Economics, Education, European Studies, Film and Media, Food Studies, History, International Business and Marketing, Italian Language and
Literature, Political Science, Psychology, Religion and Philosophy, Sociology, Sustainability, Women's Studies, and more.
All instruction is in English except the Italian language courses and the Direct Enrollment university courses. Please click here to begin choosing your courses!
GPA Required: 2.75. If you find your GPA is lower than the requirement, use the "Contact An Advisor" button on this page or call us to let us know your situation. We will help find the right program for you.
General Studies Program
Now for the fun part: choosing your courses! 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.
The General Studies program has two components: Italian language and culture courses and an array of elective courses taught in English. All students are required to take an Italian language course. When choosing the appropriate Italian language course, indicate the level that best corresponds to their proficiency level, from beginner to advanced. During orientation, all students with one semester or more of Italian language will take a placement exam to determine their appropriate level.
Within the General Studies Program, you may also choose to study in the Food Studies Program, the Honors Program, or conduct independent research.
Course load: 4-5 classes (12-18 credits including the Italian course).
Course approval: Before you go abroad, it is best to get 7-8 classes approved for your semester program. This gives you some flexibility in setting up your class schedule. Think about courses required for your major, and that fulfill your elective requirements.
Please note: You will not receive your Umbra course registration until you arrive in Italy. You will have a two-week period to add or drop classes and will be informed if any of your courses will be unavailable for any reason.
Course materials: The majority of courses will require you to use a textbook or a "reader," which is a packet of information compiled by the professor. Textbooks will be available for purchase at the Umbra Institute or local bookstores; readers will be supplied by the first day of class at an additional cost.
Food Studies Program
The Food Studies Program, a concentration within the General Studies program, applies an interdisciplinary approach to the study of food--history, sociology, cultural studies, business practices, literature, politics, science, agriculture, and sustainability--to discover how the individual, the community, and society relate to food in Italy, America, and elsewhere.
The Umbra Honors program welcomes students with a desire to combine high academic standards, extensive study in the subject area, community engagement, and additional contact with instructors. Honors students further enhance their learning beyond the classroom by living with international or Italian students.
Honors students conduct original research in an area of their choice, working one-on-one with a faculty advisor. The research culminates into a traditional research paper or a creative project, approved by the faculty advisor. Prior to departure, students may also select a home institution faculty member who would approve the particular research topic and correspond with the student throughout the semester.
To qualify for the Honors Program, students must present a cumulative GPA of 3.4 (on a 4.0 scale) and a letter of reference from an instructor at their current home school.
The Independent Research option is designed to provide students with the opportunity to complete a significant research assignment in a topic of their choice as one component of their study abroad experience. Many colleges and universities require undergraduates to culminate their studies in a research paper or senior thesis. With this option, students can engage in independent research, using the experience as a platform for their thesis project at their home institution.
To qualify for the Independent Research option, students must present a cumulative GPA of at least a 3.4 (on a 4.0 scale) and a letter of reference from an instructor at their current home school.
Students in the Direct Enrollment will experience the Italian university as a local at the University for Foreigners (Università per Stranieri) or the University of Perugia (Università degli Studi di Perugia). The Università per Stranieri is one of the oldest and most prestigious institutions of Italian language instruction in Italy, while the Università di Perugia is one of the oldest universities in the world. Students accepted into the Direct Enrollment Program should exhibit exceptional maturity, responsibility, openness, and a fervent interest in a challenging academic environment.
The same Umbra services (orientation, safety, cultural activities, and more) are available to Direct Enrollment students throughout the semester. Students in this program will live in shared apartments with other Italian or international students to help with language acquisition. The program calendar differs slightly from the other Umbra program options. There is no traditional fall or spring break for Direct Enrollment students, but they will enjoy holidays listed in the Italian academic calednar; please contact your program coordinator for details.
University for Foreigners (Università per Stranieri)
The Direct Enrollment Program at the University for Foreigners offers the unique opportunity for students of all levels of language proficiency to focus exclusively on Italian language and culture. You will enroll at the Università per Stranieri di Perugia for a semester-long program, studying alongside with students from all over the world who share the goal to become fluent in Italian. Students will take a placement exam during orientation to determine the sequence of courses they will take at the Università per Stranieri. Students will study Italian exclusively,
or enroll in courses covering various topics in Italian language, literature, art, history, and culture at the advanced levels. T he program yields 16 semester credits and includes approximately 27 hours per week at the university coupled with weekly recitation classes with Umbra instructors. The instructors' role is to guide, assist, and assess students through their learning experience at the local university. They set weekly assignments and assess students' final grades in the program.
University of Perugia (Università degli studi di Perugia)
This Direct Enrollment option offers students the unique opportunity to gain a truly immersive experience in Italian culture and in the European style of education. All students will begin the semester enrolled in an intensive Italian language course at the prestigious Università per Stranieri for one month prior to starting their two elective courses at the Università degli Studi di Perugia. This month is dedicated to improving language skills and introducing students to the European university setting. Italian language tutorials will be held weekly led by Umbra professors at the Umbra Institute. Fall students will attend the five-credit Language Review Program in September and spring students will attend in January.
Students will enroll in courses taught in the humanities division of the University for one semester or a full year. Students should have a minimum of four semesters of Italian language courses and have achieved a B+ or higher proficiency in Italian based on the Common European Framework to apply.