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
- Application Deadlines
- Fall: June 15
Spring: November 1
- Avg Course Load
- 4 - 5 courses (12 - 15 US credits)
- Language(s) of Instruction
- English and Spanish
Key Program 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.
WHY THIS UNIVERSITY?
Universidad San Ignacio de Loyola is your chance to study with top-notch professors in an exciting city or in one of the world’s most beautiful settings. The University is dedicated to high-quality education and ethics, and you’ll benefit from close student-faculty interactions. You can choose to study at the University’s main campus in Lima, or at the satellite campus in Cusco.
The main campus in Lima is home to approximately 6,000 students. You can delve into eighteen distinct academic areas, from agro-industrial engineering to tourism management. This is a bilingual institution, which means all of your Peruvian classmates will speak English. You can choose to take classes for your major in either English or Spanish. You’ll study alongside local students as well as internationals from all over the world. The campus itself is similar to a modern, urban campus in the U.S.
If you choose to study in Cusco, you’ll benefit from a small campus designed specifically for study abroad students. Here, you can study Spanish at any level and choose from a variety of courses focused on Peru’s history and culture. Because classes are integrated into 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.
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.
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.
CISabroad partners with Universidad San Ignacio de Loyola (USIL) for the Semester in Cusco program. Please read through the course catalog to see the different courses offered at USIL’s Cusco campus.
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.
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.
- 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.
- Your host family will provide two delicious meals a day
- Bed linens, utilities, and laundry services
- 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?
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
Travel Tip: Drink coffee the local way. Dine with a host family. Eat some recommended street food. Drink fresh juice from local fruits. Find that hole-in-the-wall restaurant that will probably serve the best meal of your time abroad (and it will likely cost less too!). Food and drink can be an excellent inroad to getting to know another culture.
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!
Application DeadlineJune 15ArrivalAugust 8OrientationAugust 9Classes StartAugust 12Classes EndNovember 29DepartureNovember 30PRICE$11,290 - $11,590
Application DeadlineNovember 1ArrivalJanuary 15 (Estimated)DepartureMay 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.
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