Program Overview

This engaging semester study abroad program places you at Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF), a young and dynamic public university. UPF offers a globally-minded approach to teaching and learning while staying true to its roots in Barcelona, Catalonia, and Spain. The UPF urban multi-school campus is concentrated near Barcelona’s beautiful coast and among some of the city’s top attractions and most desirable neighborhoods. Share a classroom with students from Barcelona, elsewhere in Spain, and other visiting students from dozens of countries. And of course you’ll also share a beautiful and vibrant city with its lively inhabitants, extending your academic and personal learning setting to wherever you find yourself in any given moment.

GPA Requirement
-Junior for business
Application Deadlines
Fall: May 15
Spring: October 15
Avg Course Load
4 - 5 classes for 12 or 15 credits
Language(s) of Instruction
English and Spanish
  • Learn from top professors - the highest percentage of international faculty in Spain
  • Study on an urban campus, with most buildings just blocks from the beach
  • Choose from dozens of courses in both Spanish language & culture and a variety of courses in English
  • Abundant program inclusions and exceptional staff support to show you Barcelona's best
  • Attend an authentic Spanish university, studying and socializing alongside students from both near and far
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.



Established in 1990, the Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF) is a young and dynamic Spanish public university. UPF places itself uniquely as a Catalonian-rooted institution with an impressively global reach, boasting more faculty from abroad than any other Spanish university and hosting students from around the world studying a variety of disciplines in Spanish and English.

Self-described as having “its feet in Barcelona and its head in the world,” the UPF achieved a designation of International Campus of Excellence from the Spanish Ministry of Education just 20 years after its founding. The campus is comprised of remodeled historic buildings, nestled among some of the city’s most desirable areas and/or just blocks from beautiful Mediterranean coastline and some of Barcelona’s best beaches.

Universitat Pompeu Fabra is accredited by the Spanish Ministry of Education

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

Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF) offers a wide variety of courses across most major disciplines, meaning you can likely study in your major. However, if you have some elective or general education requirements, you can easily fulfill those while focusing on topics aimed to provide local context and additional insights in a setting as engaging as a Spanish university in Barcelona.

You’ll have the option to choose from Spanish language and culture courses, content-based courses conducted in English, content-based courses conducted in Spanish, and really any combination thereof as long as you don’t have scheduling conflicts.

As a CISabroad participant, you will have at your disposal essentially the entire course catalog across UPF’s various schools/departments. The following guidelines are intended to help you start choosing your courses.

This track creates the foundation of most CISabroad participants, as it aims to provide students with greater insight into the European, Spanish, and Catalan social and cultural contexts. This track also includes Spanish language learning, with levels ranging from beginner to proficient, and even Castilian Spanish for native speakers of other dialects.

Most courses in this track encourage experiential learning by including cultural activities and field-based classes in the form of trips to museums and heritage sites, course-related walking tours, and guest speakers.

Most CISabroad participants are advised to take at least one Spanish language course and at least one culture course as your studies permit, as this will help you engage more significantly with your new home in Barcelona.

Spanish Language
Courses offered during 2018-2019 academic year (indicative of future offerings):
Fall 2018 – Spring 2019

Culture and Literature
Courses offered during 2018-2019 academic year (indicative of future offerings):
Fall 2018
Spring 2019

Indicative of its global reach, UPF offers a variety of content-based courses conducted in Europe’s lingua franca, English. Courses span the UPF’s various schools/departments, among which are the following:

international business
international management
business innovation

Business Courses

Legal Studies: (Spain’s only law school chosen by Oxford University Faculty of Law)
legal studies
international relations
political science

Legal Studies Courses

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Math):
engineering (electrical, computer, biomedical, robotics)
computer science
audiovisual systems

STEM Courses

International Relations:
international relations
political science

International Relations Courses
(2018-2019 academic year)

design (history, principles digital, graphic, visual, interior)
visual communication
building engineering
industrial design engineering

Design Courses

For content-based courses conducted in Spanish, a minimum of four semesters/quarters of college level Spanish (or equivalent) is required prior to enrolling. Students with high enough Spanish language proficiency can choose from courses across UPF’s schools/departments, which include all those listed above plus its “Basic Biomedic Sciences” program, conducted primarily Spanish.

(In addition to the departments/subjects listed above)
Health Sciences:
Health sciences
veterinary science

Health Sciences Courses

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.


Visit a city filled with unique architecture and a rich history. Enjoy guided tours of theaters, civil war battlefields, and the Aljaferia Moorish Palace. You also will have a chance to try the best migas – dishes featuring fried bread crumbs – a tasty local specialty!

Weekend in the Basque Country

Enjoy a weekend trip to the rustic, historic, and vibrant Basque Country. Situated along the northern coast of Spain, País Vasco offers an enchanting mix of rugged seashore, rolling hills, delectable seafood, and a unique and rich culture. This excursion may include a trip to the Guggenheim Museum, an outing to a traditional “pincho” (skewer) tapas bar, a winemaking lesson, and tours of historical sites.

study in spain and travel to morocco

4 Days in Morocco

Fall and Spring semester students also have the opportunity to join a four-day trip to Morocco with a non-profit organization dedicated to helping travelers jump off the beaten path and understand the local culture.

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.

Juliana Casella
Program Enrollment Coordinator

Travel Tip: Start walking and don’t be afraid to get lost, that is how you begin to understand your surroundings. If the culture is slow – be slow! Take hours to enjoy a coffee and connect with a friend. If the pace is fast, jump in! Be patient with yourself as you adjust. Start a journal and write everything down. It’s incredible to look back and remind yourself of who you were at a time of growth and discovery!

Learn more about Juliana

Elena Villaescusa
Site Director in Barcelona

Travel Tip: When traveling make sure to use humour and start conversations with local people, they are the experts of the places you visit and you can learn so much from them; particularly the older generation can be a wealth of information. Try to enjoy every single minute of your travels!

Learn more about Elena

Student Feedback

CISabroad really helped me to become a part of the culture in Barcelona. Their cultural activities gave me a hands on experience of what life is like in Barcelona. This has changed my life because I will always reflect on my time in Barcelona, and how I grew as a person.

Maleesha Ebanks, West Virginia University

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.

  • Spring 2020
    Application Deadline
    October 15
    January 2 (Estimated)
    Late March (varies by track) (Estimated)
    $12,490 - $13,590 (Estimated)
  • Fall 2020
    Application Deadline
    May 15
    September 12 (Estimated)
    Mid December (varies by track) (Estimated)
    $12,490 - $13,590 (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:

  • Cultural and recreational excursions and activities in Barcelona
  • One guided weekend excursion outside of Barcelona
  • Full-time tuition and fees
  • Housing
  • Meal plan available with a homestay
  • Medical and accident insurance
  • CISabroad support services before, during, and after the program
  • On-site support
  • Academic advising
  • Financial aid counseling
  • Assistance with travel arrangements
  • Predeparture orientation
  • Airport pickup
  • Universitat Pompeu Fabra orientation
  • Official Universitat Pompeu Fabra transcript
  • Onsite mentorship program
  • La Vida Local cultural program