Florence is an art lover’s dream and a food lover’s paradise. During your winter break, you can dive right into exploring this stunningly visual city on our January in Florence program. To make the most of your time abroad, we’ll quickly immerse you in local Italian and Florentine culture. Join excursions in and around Florence to galleries and famous sites. You’ll study at Florence University of the Arts and you’ll practice Italian with friendly locals. How do you say, “Another gelato, please?”
- GPA Requirement
- Application Deadlines
- Avg Course Load
- 1 course (3 US credits)
- Language(s) of Instruction
- English and Italian
Key Program Highlights
- Winter break program allows you to get ahead academically
- Courses taught in English and Italian
- Great support services with English-speaking staff
- Busy social programming schedule—pick and choose what you want to do
- Two to three-day trips included
- Exceptional campus facilities, including a gym, wireless internet, library, and restaurant on campus
Your Journey Begins Here
Connect with your Global Advisor to start planning. Apply by the application deadline.
Meet your Program Coordinator to finalize acceptance paperwork, housing, courses, flights, visas, payments, etc. Attend a pre-departure orientation.
Fly away. You'll be greeted at the airport, participate in a robust On-site Orientation and La Vida Local Curriculum with your Site Director.
Life in Florence
Welcome and Orientation
Once you have arrived and settled into your apartment in Florence, you will attend two comprehensive orientation sessions. The first will be led by staff from your academic institution in Florence and may cover topics such as academics, student life, housing, and health and safety. You will then participate in a second session, presented by your CISabroad onsite staff. We’ll introduce you to Florence, help you become familiar with many practical matters relating to your stay in the city, equip you with tips and suggestions for a safe, healthy, successful, fun term abroad as well as answer any questions you may have. Specific topics covered during orientation may include housing, health and safety, emergency response and the Italian Permit to Stay process. After orientation, students and onsite staff attend a fabulous (and plentiful!) Welcome Dinner at a well-known Florentine restaurant.
Farewell and Re-entry Program
Towards the end of your study abroad term you may feel a little nervous, or perhaps anxious, at the thought of leaving your new home and returning to your old. If you asked around, you’d find that a lot of study abroad participants share your apprehension. It is not uncommon to wonder what re-entering your home culture will be like after having spent time in a new – and different – culture. To make things a little bit easier, we will come together for a Farewell Event (it includes amazing Italian food, of course!) and talk through some of the things to expect as you return, positive things to focus on as you leave your host country, and essential tools for how best to share your important experience with people back home.
During the January in Florence program, you’ll enjoy a furnished, centrally located apartment, shared with other CISabroad students. The student apartments house between four and six students, and have multiple bathrooms and bedrooms (some shared), and a living/dining space.
All apartments come with:
- A washing machine
- Basic kitchenware
You can easily get to markets if you want to prepare your own meals, or you can take advantage of someone else’s delicious cooking by dining at restaurants nearby.
- Florentine Fridays: On no-class Fridays, we meet for breakfast and explore Florence! Discover markets, museums, art galleries, churches, beautiful gardens, and many of the city’s hidden treasures!
- Sports Events: Florence is the home of the Fiorentina soccer club. Attend a game and cheer “Forza Viola!” from the stands with the locals.
- Cooking Class: Attend a cooking or pizza-making class and learn how to cook like a local! Fresh pasta is always on the menu, along with fresh, seasonal produce!
- Opera: Where better to enjoy a glittery evening performance of La Bohème or Madam Butterfly than in the birthplace of Italian opera? Join us for an evening at Florence’s stunning new opera house!
- Theatre: Florence is well-known for its many ornate theaters and theater productions. Spend an evening at Teatro Verdi, founded in 1854 at the site of an old prison and listen to a performance by the Orchestra della Toscana. Or attend a Medici Dynasty Show, set in a stunning Baroque church and learn about the cultural heritage left to the city of Florence by 300 years of Medici family rule.
More About Florence
Florence (Firenze in Italian) is a culturally vibrant city located in the heart of Italy’s Tuscany region. Around every corner you’ll encounter jaw-dropping architecture, like the terra-cotta-domed Florence Cathedral. The mild weather makes it ideal for exploring the city on foot—we recommend getting lost so you can meander the streets and interact with the friendly locals.
Thanks to the city's small size, you'll feel like a local in no time. You can explore the historic city center and beyond in less than 30 minutes. Florence is also an art lover’s dream! Must dos: visit the Galleria dell’Accademia—home to Michelangelo’s David, the world-renowned Galleria degli Uffizi, and the iconic Duomo. Explore the lesser-known Boboli Gardens and Palazzo Pitti. Art is a great way to soak in the culture and history of this wonderful city. The views from the Ponte Vecchio and Piazzale Michelangelo will steal your heart, but the food, culture, and people will make you want to stay forever.
To explore outside the city, you can easily hop on a bus and head up to the hillside town of Fiesole. You'll catch a full panoramic view of Florence and enjoy the peaceful Etruscan ruins. Sienna, San Gimignano, and other Tuscan villages are also a short bus ride away. If you have the travel bug, trains and nearby airports make it easy and affordable to travel to Milan, Venice, Rome, and beyond in Europe.
The best way to experience Florence is simply to wander through its wonders. This is how you'll find the hidden gems not mentioned in any guidebook.
If you find your GPA is lower than the requirement listed at the top of this page, do not despair! Get in touch to let us know your situation. In many cases, there are additional application materials that you can submit to make your case for acceptance.
How to Choose Your Courses
Now the fun part! You get to pick the courses you will take abroad. Review the course information on this page and once you’ve decided which courses you want to take. Fill out the CISabroad Course Selection Worksheet in your online portal.
Make sure to talk with your home university about course approval and get additional classes approved before you go abroad. For example, if you are taking 4 classes abroad, we recommend getting 8 approved. This gives you some flexibility in setting up your class schedule. Think about courses required for your major, but also courses that fulfill your elective requirements.
Choose your courses, making sure to get them approved by your home university and then fill out the Course Selection Worksheet.
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).
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.
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.
Founded in 1997, Florence University of the Arts (FUA) is located in the heart of Florence. As you walk to school, you'll pass magnificent monuments such as the Ponte Vecchio and the Basilica of Santa Croce. You'll enjoy small class sizes of 8–20 students, which gives you individualized attention. Your Italian and European professors are experts in their fields. With the exception of your Italian language course, all courses are taught in English. As a result, you'll choose from an extensive variety of classes. In terms of academics, FUA truly has it all!
Most importantly, you'll find a learning environment that allows you to soak in as much of Florence as possible. Many classes use the city itself as a core part of the curriculum. Full-time advisors assist you academically and personally, helping you choose courses and overcome culture shock. Therefore, you'll quickly get to know the city and make the most out of your study abroad experience. Also, you can join other students for local concerts and get involved in a community service project. Turn to the friendly student services staff to jump right into campus events.
Accreditation(s): FUA is accredited by the Region of Tuscany, as delegated by the Ministry of Education and students can receive a University of South Florida transcript *FUA is also reviewed yearly for European quality certification:
Certified by IMQ S.p.A. –ISO 9001:2008 Cert. N. 9175.FLRU
Ashlyn Alessi - Albright College
Program SupportMeet Our Staff
Before, during, and after your study abroad experience, you’ll be supported by the dedicated and passionate CISabroad staff. Our goal is quick responses to your questions before you depart, and even quicker once you’ve arrived on site.
Robust Advising Center
Our team of advisors will help you choose a program, connect with your home university regarding classes and financial aid and get you prepared to apply for your program.
Team of Dedicated Program Coordinators
Your Program Coordinator will assist you in finalizing housing, enrolling in courses, booking flights, obtaining visas, arranging payments, and provide pre-departure orientation.
Experienced On-site Staff
From greeting you at the airport to a robust On-site Orientation to La Vida Local Activities our on-site staff will be there to support you throughout your time on-site.
Our support doesn’t end when your program does. We have alumni programming, webinars, and resources to help you readjust when you’ve returned from your experience.
Your Support Staff
Global Advising Team
Programs Team Manager - Italy
Site Director in Florence
Application DeadlineOctober 15ArrivalJanuary 3 (Estimated)OrientationJanuary 4 (Estimated)Classes StartJanuary 5 (Estimated)Classes EndJanuary 20 (Estimated)DepartureJanuary 15 (Estimated)PRICE$4,590 - $5,990 (Estimated)
CISabroad reserves the right to alter fees at any time due to currency fluctuations and/or fee changes made by our partner universities.
As with all study abroad programs, you should count on a few additional expenses.
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 advising
- Financial 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
- La Vida Local cultural program