Program Overview

Immerse yourself in Spanish language and Peruvian culture while in the ancient home of the Incan civilization. On our Semester in Cusco program, you’ll quickly learn why this great city is a World Heritage Site visited by millions of travelers every year. Study at Universidad San Ignacio de Loyola, a small, beautiful campus centrally located so you can explore Cusco, the center of modern indigenous culture in Peru. Take courses in Incan history, photography, and biodiversity, as well as Spanish and Quechua language classes.

GPA Requirement
2.7
Application Deadlines
Fall: June 15
Spring: January 15
Avg Course Load
4 - 5 courses (12 - 15 US credits)
Language(s) of Instruction
English and Spanish
Highlights
  • Immerse yourself in ancient Andean culture and cuisine
  • Easy access to the beautiful Sacred Valley, with ruins, market towns, hiking trails, and more
  • Choice between a homestay or dorm-style apartments
  • Enjoy many modern conveniences and extensive vibrant nightlife
  • Colorful indigenous and religious festivals
  • Spanish-language courses at all levels
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.

Academics

WHY THIS UNIVERSITY?

Universidad San Ignacio de Loyola (USIL) is a young, private Peruvian university with an entrepreneurial spirit, whose mission statement is “to shape competent entrepreneurial professionals who are socially responsible and capable of performing successfully, both domestically and internationally.” While the main campus is based in bustling Lima and is home to approximately 6,000 students, the satellite campus in Cusco is quaint and designed specifically for study abroad students wishing to take advantage of the exceptional learning potential of Cusco and its surrounds.

At USIL’s Cusco campus you can study Spanish language at various levels (Beginner, Pre-Intermediate, Intermediate, Advanced) to help you better understand and interact with the city and its inhabitants. You can also choose from a variety of courses instructed in English, most of which have a local focus in business, humanities, and sciences. Because classes are integrated with the city of Cusco and the surrounding Sacred Valley itself, you’ll get hands-on experience with the community and historical traditions of Cusco. This campus is located just five minutes from the main square or Plaza de Armas of Cusco, and a short walk or bus ride from both homestays and apartments.

Accreditation: Ministerio de Educación, Perú


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. Once you’ve decided which courses you want to take, fill out the CISabroad Course Selection Worksheet in your online portal.

Course Approval

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.

GPA Requirement

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.

Choose your courses, making sure to get them approved by your home university and then fill out the Course Selection Worksheet.

Course Information

CISabroad partners with Universidad San Ignacio de Loyola (USIL) for the Semester in Cusco program. In addition to all levels of Spanish language (Beginner, Pre-Intermediate, Intermediate, Advanced), the following courses will be offered Fall 2019 at USIL’s Cusco campus:

You can mix and match courses from different “tracks.” Please read through the course catalog to see descriptions of the courses offered. Please note that all courses will run subject to sufficient enrollmentso in addition to your first-choice courses, it’s important that you get several alternative courses approved as well!

If you need more than a course description to get approval from your home university, please let your advisor know. We’d be happy to get you syllabi for these courses.

Life in Cusco

Welcome and Orientation

Upon arrival you’ll be collected from the airport and taken to your accommodation. In the first few days you’ll take part in both the University and CISabroad orientation program where you’ll learn practical tips for living in Cusco like where to go out, how to stay safe, where to shop, and you’ll enjoy a CIS welcome meal.

Farewell and Re-entry Program

Though you’re not an astronaut returning from space, re-entering your home culture after being abroad can be shocking to the system. We’ll walk you through some of the things to expect, rehash your time abroad so that you can remember the highlights. We love to stay in touch so although it is farewell for now it is not goodbye.

Housing Options

On Semester in Cusco, you can choose between two housing options:

Apartments: You’ll live in “La Casa de Don Ignacio,” just a few blocks from the main square, Plaza de Armas.

Amenities:

  • Dorm-style apartment offers shared bedrooms, bathrooms, a living room, a small kitchen with a hot plate and refrigerator, and WIFI
  • Housekeeping and changing sheets are included in the housing
  • Laundry is available for a small additional fee
  • Breakfast is provided to all students, but other meals are self catered

Homestays: Students usually tell us that living in a homestay was their favorite part of studying abroad. You’ll get to truly immerse yourself in Peruvian culture by living with a family and getting an inside look at life in Cusco. Homestays are a 15-20 minute bus ride from the university, but it is much shorter via taxi.

Amenities:

  • Your host family will provide two delicious meals a day
  • Bed linens, utilities, and laundry services
exploring the heights of Machu Picchu

Local Life

  • Hiking Trails: Enjoy breathtaking scenery throughout numerous hikes around Cusco, with many interesting Inca ruins along the way.
  • Plaza de Armas: A beautiful and vibrant square with great restaurants, museums and shopping!
  • Local Markets: Enjoy a 'slice of life' in Peru. Experience the day-to-day, living Peruvian culture off the beaten tourist path. Browse for food, gifts, and much more!

More About Cusco

Cusco, one of the oldest inhabited cities on the continent, is a traveler’s favorite. But unlike the typical traveler, you can make the city your home for a full summer or semester. Cusco is situated at 11,500 feet in elevation, giving it a brisk mountain climate and beautiful views of the mountains rising up all around it. Lima remains the official capital of Peru. That said, Cusco is the historical capital of the country for its glorious past as the center of Incan civilization. This vibrant, high-elevation city provides the perfect setting for you to study abroad in Peru.

UNESCO declared the entire city a World Heritage site in 1983, and you can easily see why. All around you, you'll see the marks of Incan civilization, including in Cusco’s population. Consequently, you'll meet indigenous people on Cusco’s streets speaking in Quechua and wearing traditional dress.

While you can feel the history that surrounds Cusco, you'll also notice an undeniable sense of modernity. You're as likely to stroll on cobblestone streets to nearby ruins as you are to attend a salsa lesson at a discoteca. You may listen to Andean flutes or explore the flourishing urban arts scene. Be sure to delve into the city's coffee culture or simply meander around the Plaza de Armas or Plaza de San Francisco.

Oh, and Machu Picchu, one of the New Seven Wonders of the World is nearby, waiting for you. Need we say more?

Program Excursions

While participating on a CISabroad program, you'll be able to take part in built-in day trips at no additional cost. These trips are subject to change from term to term; listed below are excursions that have run in the past.

CISabroad Study Abroad Semester Program peru excursion machu picchu

Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu is the best-known archaeological site on the continent, and it’s an UNESCO World Heritage Site and a New Seven Wonders of the World. You’ll explore this “The Lost City of the Incas,” which has a breathtaking backdrop of natural mountains and valleys.

CISabroad Study Abroad Semester Program sacred Vallet peru

Sacred Valley

Visit the Sacred Valley to explore ancient towns where Quechua is still spoken more than Spanish. Here, ancient ruins are still being discovered and the beautiful Andes mountians look like they go on forever. The excursion includes lunch and a guided tour of many ruins.

CISabroad Study Abroad Semester Program in cusco archaeological sites

Sacsayhuaman and other impressive archaeological sites near Cusco

This excursion includes Pre-Incan, Incan, and Spanish sites such as the ancient citadel of Sacsayhuaman (complete with a great view overlooking Cusco!), Coricancha (the Incan “sun house” with a Dominican convent as a backdrop), Cusco’s impressive Incan city walls (constructed without the use of mortar) and other sites that demonstrate the blend of Pre-Incan, Incan, and Spanish architecture prevalent in Cusco.


Your Support Staff

Global Advising Team

Travel Tip: We love what we do and want to talk to you! The Global Advising Center is here to help you decide on a program, and complete the Online Application. From the moment you first hear from us be it through a phone call, email or personal visit, you will find that our passion for international education is contagious. We’re ready to launch you abroad.

Molly Bond
Senior Program Coordinator - Italy & South America

Travel Tip: The first chance I have in a new place, I like to either rent a bicycle or go running to get a better feel for my surroundings. Not only does this feel refreshing after time spent on the road or in the air, but it also gives you a great orientation to your destination.

Learn more about Molly

Mila (Milagro) Montufar Paz
Site Director in Cusco, Peru

Travel Tip: Cusco and the surrounding areas are some of the most beautiful places to explore in all of Peru (and maybe the world). Bring comfortable shoes and be prepared to do a lot of walking!

Learn more about Mila

Program Fees & Dates

Advisor Tip: Please do not book flights until you have received confirmed dates in your acceptance paperwork. Dates posted here are subject to change.

  • Fall 2019
    Application Deadline
    June 15
    Arrival
    August 8
    Orientation
    August 9
    Classes Start
    August 12
    Classes End
    November 29
    Departure
    November 30
    PRICE
    $11,290 - $11,590
  • Spring 2020
    Application Deadline
    November 1
    Arrival
    January 15 (Estimated)
    Departure
    May 10 (Estimated)
    PRICE
    $11,290 - $11,590 (Estimated)

CISabroad reserves the right to alter fees at any time due to currency fluctuations and/or fee changes made by our partner universities.

Program Inclusions

As with all study abroad programs, you should count on a few additional expenses.

Program fees are in US dollars and include the following:

  • Excursion to Machu Picchu
  • Full-time tuition and fees
  • Housing (apartment or homestay)
  • Two meals per day at homestay option. Breakfast at apartment.
  • Medical and accident insurance
  • CISabroad support services before, during, and after the program
  • Academic advising
  • Financial aid counseling
  • Assistance with travel arrangements
  • Predeparture orientation
  • Airport pickup
  • Universidad de San Ignacio de Loyola orientation
  • On-site support
  • Wireless internet
  • Weekly laundry service (homestay)
  • Universidad de San Ignacio de Loyola official transcript
  • NYTimes Digital Subscription
  • La Vida Local cultural program