Summer in Florence

Best Value
Gap Year Friendly

Feast on summer in Tuscany.

Be dazzled by Florence this summer! Our Summer in Florence program lets you study within your major in the Cradle of the Renaissance. Spend 3-12 weeks in Florence and see why travelers never get enough of Italy. During Summer in Florence, you’ll be a local in one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations. Florence is an amazing location for cultural immersion. Take classes at Florence University of the Arts, a small university in the center of historic Florence that focuses on experiential learning.


What to Expect:

  • Language: English and Italian
  • Average Courseload: 1-2 courses per session (3-15 U.S. credits)
  • GPA Requirement: 2.8

Highlights:

  • Option to study abroad for 3, 6, 9 or 12 weeks and earn up to 15 credits
  • Courses taught in English or in Italian for more advanced speakers
  • Easy access to other European cities
  • Optional homestay with a local family
  • Experience the city’s music, art, dance, food, and more

Program Details

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

Areas of study with 3 to 7 classes available

  • Health
  • Natural & Applied Sciences

Don't see your major listed here? There may still be courses available. Browse our programs by major.

Areas of study which have more than 8 classes available

  • Art & Design
  • Business
  • Communications
  • Humanities
  • Italian

Don't see your major listed here? There may still be courses available. Browse our programs by major.

Course load
  • During 3-week sessions (I-II-III-IV), 3-credit and 6-credit courses will be offered. Each course will be held from Monday to Thursday and most will have a mandatory 1-day field learning component (for dates please see course notes in the online class schedule). You can elect to take a total of 3 credits or 6 credits, but please keep in mind that completing 6 credits over three weeks will entail a large amount of class time each day.
  • During 6-weeks sessions (A-B), 3-credit or 6-credit courses* will be offered: Each course will be held on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays and will have an Experiential Learning component OR a Field Learning component (for dates please see course notes in the online class schedule).
  • You may combine the summer sessions to study in Florence for up to 12 weeks, including the traveling program A Taste of Italy! Please contact us for more details on this option.

*In the 6-week sessions (A-B), two courses are offered for three or six credits:
– Food, Wine and Culture in Italy
– Regional Perspectives: A Voyage of Discovery
For these courses, if a student takes the course for 3 credits, a 1-day field learning is mandatory. If a student takes the course for 6 credits, two 1-day field learning and one 5-day field learning are mandatory.

Course descriptions

Session 1: Please click here for course descriptions.
Session 2: Please click here for course descriptions.
Session 3: Please click here for course descriptions.
Session 4: Please click here for course descriptions.
Session A: Please click here for course descriptions.
Session B: Please click here for course descriptions.

How to read the Florence University of the Arts course 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. As for the letters, in “LA HS MI 280,” for example, the first pair 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).

Course Fees:

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.

Experiential Learning & Field Learning at FUA
What is EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING at FUA?

During summer A and B, some courses include experiential learning hours with our Community Engagement Member Institutions (CEMI). CEMI are dynamic learning environments created to foster learning through a structured interaction with the community. For more information about experiential learning opportunities at FUA, please refer to this page.

What is FIELD LEARNING at FUA?

Field learning is a method of educating through first-hand experience. Skills, knowledge, and experience are acquired outside of the traditional academic classroom setting and may include field activities, field research, and service learning projects. The field learning experience is cultural; because it is intended to be wide-reaching, field-related content is not limited to the course subject but seeks to supplement and enrich academic topics. Students will have the opportunity to integrate theory and practice while experiencing Italian culture, art, and community within the Italian territory.

Faculty will lead students in experiencing Italian culture through guided projects and field experiences as planned for the course. Field learning will be developed through classroom preparation, follow-up projects, and guided learning outcomes.

Field learning will provide students with the opportunity to develop skills and appreciate the multifold components of Italian Culture through direct experience.

Field education will advance student learning as a relationship-centered process.

Field learning activities are an integral part of the course content and not additional excursions. Attendance is mandatory.

 

Why Life in 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.

Live La Vida Local

  • 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.

Apartments in Florence

Location

Semester in Florence students stay in apartments close to campus that house 4-8 students and are fully furnished with multiple bedrooms and bathrooms, as well as a living/dining space.

Watch Faith’s video tour of her Florence apartment to get an idea of what your housing could be like.

Meals

Apartments come with a kitchen to prepare your own meals (put your on-site cooking class to good use!) and are within walking distance of markets and restaurants.

Students at FUA also get points they can use at student-run restaurants – read one of our alumni’s blogs about it!

Inclusions and Amenities

  • BathroomShared
  • Bed linens
  • CommutePublic TransportationWalking
  • Desk
  • Double Room
  • Kitchen Equipment
  • LaundryOn-site
  • Single RoomOptional
  • Triple Room
  • Wi-Fi

Homestay in Florence

Location

A homestay option is available upon special request. Your homestay might be further from campus. There are a limited number of participating families, so please let your program enrollment coordinator know of your interest during your application process.

NOTE: This housing option has a supplemental fee, but offers an additional immersive experience!

Meals

If you decide to double-down on the cultural immersion side of your study abroad experience by staying with a homestay family, they will provide some AWESOME Italian meals!

Inclusions and Amenities

  • CommutePublic Transportation
  • Homestay
  • MealsHomestay

What's Included

Inclusions

Program fees are in US dollars and include the following:

  • Weekly visits to sites around Florence and optional excursions
  • University of South Florida official transcript
  • CIS Abroad 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 fee)
  • 15 meal plan units per every three weeks
  • Pre-departure and on-site orientation
  • Airport pickup
  • Medical & Accident Insurance
  • Free use of gym and gym classes
  • La Vida Local cultural program

Farewell & 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.

Additional Expenses

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.

Program Excursions

While participating on a CIS Abroad 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.
Chianti

Chianti

Discover quaint towns and villages set in the rolling hills of Chianti and learn about the olive and grape production that makes this region famous. Visit during the harvest season to see the changing colors of fall and sample products at small, family run wineries and oil producers.

Lucca

Lucca

Strategically located on the Serchio river, Lucca is a famous Tuscan town primarily known for the Renaissance walls that still encircle the historic city center. Strolling or biking along the tops of the wide, tree-lined ramparts remains a favorite pastime for tourists and locals alike. Lucca is also the birthplace of famous Italian composer Giacomo Puccini (La Bohème and Madama Butterfly) and Pope Lucius III.

Site Director

Travel Tip:

Never forget to pack an open mind, a lot of patience, a couple of snacks from home to cure homesickness and last but not least…serenity. Once in town, LOOK UP when walking around. Take a different route to class everyday. Live, love and accept your destination!

Travel Tip:

Never forget to pack an open mind, a lot of patience, a couple of snacks from home to cure homesickness and last but not least…serenity. Once in town, LOOK UP when walking around. Take a different route to class everyday. Live, love and accept your destination!

About:

Alessandro Bruno was born in Maryland, United States, and was raised in Rome, Italy. He has traveled extensively through Europe, Central America, North America, and China. He definitely considers himself a citizen of the world. During his travels, he acquired a passion for the environment and preservation, cultures, and languages. This passion led him to obtain a B.A. in Geography with a minor in Chinese Studies from Humboldt State University. In 2010, Alessandro spent a semester studying abroad at the University of Shanghai in China and has since become an even stronger proponent of study abroad programs, no matter where. Alessandro has also successfully completed the National Park Service Law Enforcement Training Program and a Wilderness First Responder course, and returned to Italy to join the CIS Abroad Site Director team in 2015. Aside from traveling, Alessandro’s other favorite activities are wake-boarding, kayaking, diving, eating sushi, learning new languages, cooking, and getting lost on purpose.

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 text, phone call, email or personal visit—you will find that our passion for international education is contagious. We’re ready to launch you abroad.

Hadley Byrne
Travel Tip:

When in doubt, reach out! More often than not, locals will respect and respond matching the effort that you put into communication. Practice makes perfect, and leaving your comfort zone means expanding your comfort zone!

Linda Hallbäck
Travel Tip:

Be patient with yourself and kind to those you meet along the way. Show gratitude daily, laugh often, and give thanks for the journey you are on. There will be hard days, but remember, the magic is in the journey and each day makes that journey complete. Smile!

Dates & Prices

ADVISOR TIP: Please WAIT to book flights until you have received confirmed dates in your acceptance paperwork. Dates posted here are subject to change.

  • Application Deadline: Mar 1
  • Arrival: May 17
  • Departure: June 5
  • Price: $4,590 - $5,990
  • Application Deadline:
    EXTENDED!Apr 1
    Mar 15
  • Arrival: June 7
  • Departure: June 26
  • Price: $4,590 - $5,990
  • Application Deadline: Apr 1
  • Arrival: June 28
  • Departure: July 17
  • Price: $4,590 - $5,990
  • Application Deadline: Apr 15
  • Arrival: July 19
  • Departure: August 7
  • Price: $4,590 - $5,990
  • Application Deadline: Mar 1
  • Arrival: May 17
  • Departure: June 26
  • Price: $5,990 - $9,490
  • Application Deadline: Mar 1
  • Arrival: May 17
  • Departure: August 7
  • Price: $9,290 - $13,490
  • Application Deadline: Apr 1
  • Arrival: June 28
  • Departure: August 7
  • Price: $5,990 - $9,490
  • Application Deadline: Mar 1 (Estimated)
  • Arrival: May 17 (Estimated)
  • Departure: June 5 (Estimated)
  • Price: $4,590 - $5,990 (Estimated)
  • Application Deadline: Mar 15 (Estimated)
  • Arrival: June 7 (Estimated)
  • Departure: June 26 (Estimated)
  • Price: $4,590 - $5,990 (Estimated)
  • Application Deadline: Apr 1 (Estimated)
  • Arrival: June 28 (Estimated)
  • Departure: July 17 (Estimated)
  • Price: $4,590 - $5,990 (Estimated)
  • Application Deadline: Apr 15 (Estimated)
  • Arrival: July 19 (Estimated)
  • Departure: August 7 (Estimated)
  • Price: $4,590 - $5,990 (Estimated)
  • Application Deadline: Mar 1 (Estimated)
  • Arrival: May 17 (Estimated)
  • Departure: June 26 (Estimated)
  • Price: $5,990 - $9,490 (Estimated)
  • Application Deadline: Mar 1 (Estimated)
  • Arrival: May 17 (Estimated)
  • Departure: August 7 (Estimated)
  • Price: $9,290 - $13,490 (Estimated)
  • Application Deadline: Apr 1 (Estimated)
  • Arrival: June 28 (Estimated)
  • Departure: August 7 (Estimated)
  • Price: $5,990 - $9,490 (Estimated)
Additional Information:

Sessions 1, 2, or 3: 3 credits: $4,590, 6 credits: $5,990
Session A or B: 3 credits: $5,990, 6 credits: $7,590, 9 credits: $9,490
Sessions A & B: 6 credits: $9,290, 9 credits: $10,990, 12 credits: $11,990, 15 credits: $13,490

 

 

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

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