Feast your eyes on the many sights of Barcelona! Admire the stunning Modernist architecture of Antoni Gaudí’s Sagrada Familia church, stroll through the whimsical Park Güell, shop the markets and street vendors of La Rambla, visit the beautiful beaches—should we continue? You can experience it all here.
There are a wide variety of courses available, primarily taught in English by our world-class faculty. When you arrive, you are grouped into language proficiency-based levels to focus your course enrollment options. This will also provide a sense of community with your fellow students and will challenge you to maximize your learning.
In addition to your Spanish language course, you will choose from a variety of English-taught IES Abroad courses, as well as Spanish- and English-taught local university courses to round out your semester. All IES Abroad courses include field study activities that help you connect coursework with your surroundings. You can also take Spanish-taught IES Abroad courses.
Barcelona will also be your classroom. You will easily find yourself at home in the second largest city in Spain, rich with influence in global commerce, education, entertainment, media, fashion, science, and the arts. This program is ideal for experiencing the excitement of life in Barcelona while improving your Spanish language skills. Welcome to study abroad!
We want you to feel at home in Barcelona, so we will do everything we can to help you integrate into life in Barcelona, from internships to cultural activities. As an IES Abroad student, you have the opportunity to live with local residents, who can serve as your local hosts and resources to help you make the most of living and learning in Barcelona.
After you are admitted, refer to the Travel Dates section of the Predeparture Information in your MyIESabroad account before booking travel.
*Students enrolled in partner university courses are required to complete university exams on the official exam date and vacate IES Abroad housing one day after their last final exam. Final exam dates will vary by partner university.
Our mission is simple: to provide you with the best study abroad program possible—which includes the highest quality academic and cultural experiences. We offer unique courses that explore Liberal Arts and Business through an in-depth and hands-on approach. Our world-class professors and course options at prestigious local universities enhance your academic experience and provide you with new perspectives each day in class.
While in Barcelona, you take 15–19 credit hours per semester. IES Abroad Barcelona offers a wide range of academic opportunities, which can be summarized into five course types:
This is a list of planned course offerings. A final list of course offerings will be made available to you in your MyIESabroad account.
To learn more about IES Abroad’s innovative theoretical and pedagogical approaches to teaching language abroad, refer to the IES Abroad MAP for Language & Intercultural Communication.
You may enroll in courses at the following local partner institutions.
Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB)University Courses in English
Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF)University Courses in English
Hispanic and European Studies in English AND SPANISH
Universitat de Barcelona (UB)Hispanic Studies in Spanish
Universitat Ramon Llull: IQS Business School URL (AACSB Accredited Institution) Fall semester onlyUniversity Courses in English
Universitat Ramon Llull: Tourism School Sant Ignasi-EsadeUniversity Courses in English
Universitat Ramon Llull: LaSalle Business SchoolUniversity Courses in English
Universitat Ramon Llull: Faculty of Communication BlanquernaUniversity Courses in English
While adding study abroad to your résumé is impressive enough, adding an internship is even more powerful, and can help distinguish your application for graduate school or a job opportunity in today’s competitive job market.
Here are just some of the ways your internship will set you apart:
An internship provides an invaluable cultural experience, and helps you develop professional and personal skills. All IES Abroad internships are supervised and offered as academic options earning 3 IES Abroad credits.
We want to make sure that your greatest challenge is deciding which landmarks to see first or discovering the best café—not finding a place to live where you feel comfortable. We do our best to locate housing that is reflective of how the local students are living. Our goal is that when you leave Barcelona, it will feel like home.
Homestays – Normally, two or three IES Abroad students live in a home with local residents and sometimes students share a double room. You are provided two meals a day (breakfast and dinner) while the IES Abroad Barcelona program is in session.
Residence Halls and Colegios Mayores – Rooms in residence halls and Colegios Mayores are double and triple occupancy.
You live with Spanish and/or other IES Abroad students. Meal plans vary among the different halls. Placements are limited
and an additional fee applies for this housing option.
Apartments – You live with three to five other IES Abroad students in double rooms. Apartments have fully-equipped kitchens and meals are not provided. Live-in Spanish Resident Assistants (RAs) will help you with cultural integration. Placements are very limited and an additional fee applies for this housing option.
Part of making you feel at home in Barcelona is doing our best to help you feel safe and cared for. Whether it is an orientation program that makes you feel prepared, housing that is well-located and comfortable, or the field trips that take you to places off the beaten path—we’re all about our student services. This is just one of the things we’re known for.
The program begins with an orientation that introduces you to the IES Abroad Barcelona staff, your fellow students, and the city of Barcelona. Topics such as academics, housing, transportation, and health and safety are covered during this time.
Additionally, CORE™, IES Abroad’s Comprehensive Orientation & Re-entry Experience, begins during orientation and continues throughout the semester with activities focusing on cultural adjustment, goal achievement, and preparing for the return home. Also, during the first week of the semester, intensive Spanish language courses meet daily in small groups to help you to develop your language skills.
A study journey several weeks into the program is included as part of orientation. Past destinations have included Costa Brava and Tarragona.
Redefine the way you live and learn in Barcelona through our cultural activities, such as:
Although your adventure begins in Barcelona, our field trips take you to other great cities in and around Spain to provide contrast and context for what you are learning in Barcelona.
You take a study journey that is included in your program fee. Additional field trips are available with a portion of the cost covered by IES Abroad. Trips are organized by language level and conducted in English or Spanish accordingly. Past destinations are listed below.
Visit Greek and Roman ruins, the medieval city of Girona, and the “dreamland” of Salvador Dalí between Barcelona and the French border.
Explore volcanic terrain and hike through the forest of this northeastern county of Catalonia.
The island of Mallorca offers visitors exquisite beaches, stunning art and architecture, and views that will inspire.
Spend the day hiking the mountain of Montserrat.
Experience Tarragona, one of the best preserved ancient Roman sites in Spain. On the way there, stop at the Ebro Delta, where millions of birds stop along their yearly voyage from Northern Europe to Africa.
Valencia3 DaysVisit Spain’s third largest city, rich with delicious cuisine, excellent weather, and countless cultural outlets, such as Europe’s newest cultural and scientific complex, Ciutat de les Arts i les Ciències (the City of Arts & Sciences).
Dr. Cèsar Alegre AlsinaIES Abroad Director
Dr. Cèsar Alegre Alsina has been the Director of our Barcelona programs since 2008. He is originally from Barcelona and speaks Spanish, Catalan, and English fluently. He brings more than 20 years of experience in higher education to IES Abroad, including a noteworthy teaching career in the United States, experience in student services, and a strong research portfolio. Before coming to IES Abroad, Dr. Alegre Alsina taught Spanish language, as well as Spanish and Hispanic Culture and Literature at Amherst College for 16 years. He is the author of a book on Hispanic Americans (Scholastic), and has contributed to the Encyclopedia of Hispanic Americans (BRG Oxford) and numerous articles and reviews in American and international journals. Dr. Alegre Alsina received his Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Auburn University, his Master’s degree in Hispanic Literature at Auburn University, and his doctorate from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
IES Abroad Staff
Jane EwartHead of Registration and Advising
Francesc FontesAdministration Coordinator
Pilar GraciaAdministration Coordinator
Salvador OrtizOutside Courses and Customized Programs Coordinator
Noemí PoloStudent Affairs Coordinator - Health and Safety, Homestays
María RomeroAssistant Dean of Faculty
Olga SánchezHead of Student Affairs
Beatriz TabernerCenter Administrator
Ferran TeresStudent Affairs Coordinator - Apartments
Betsey TufanoGeneral Manager and Director of Administration
Alex WalkerDirector of Academic Affairs and Dean of Faculty
María MejíasLanguage Faculty Advisor
Ignasi PérezArea Faculty Advisor
Ataúlfo PortelaLanguage Faculty Advisor
Laura VázquezLanguage Faculty Advisor
Cèsar Alegre AlsinaSpanish Language
Ph.D. in Hispanic Linguistics, University of Massachusets Amherst
John Frederick AndersonMaster of Arts in Documentary Photography, University of Wales College Newport, UK Sandra Becerril
Nieves BorregoSpanish Language
Rosa BrionSpanish Language
Ph.D. (in progress) Linguistics, Universitat Pompeu Fabra
Ph.D. in Biology, Universitat de Barcelona
Laura CerviPhD. in Political Science, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, Spain- Università degli Studi di Pavia, Italy
Matthew ClearArt History
Ph.D. in Mediterranean History, University of Sussex
Josep María ContrerasSpanish Language
Xavier De PedroEnvironmental Studies, Sociology
Ph.D. in Biology, Universitat de Barcelona
Alexander WalkerUrban Studies
Ph.D. in Planning Studies, University College London
Ph.D. in History, Tufts University
Laura VázquezSpanish Language
Ph.D. (in progress) in Teaching of Language and Literature, Universitat de Barcelona
Ph.D. in History, Universitat Pompeu Fabra
Dawn HiscockAnthropology, Sociology
Jeannine HorowitzInternational Business
Ph.D. in Genetics/Biochemistry, University of East Anglia/John Innes Institute
Sinan HosadamPolitical Science
Ph.D. (in progress) in Political and Social Science, Graduate Center, City University of New York
Pep InglésCatalanPh.D. (in progress) in Spanish as a Second Language, Universitat de Barcelona
Christopher KennetPhD of Philosophy in Sports Management, Loughborough University, UK
Ph.D. (in progress) in Management Sciences, Universitat Ramon Llull
Ph.D. in Humanities, Universitat Pompeu Fabra
Raúl LozanoSpanish Language
Ph.D. in Hispanic Philology, Universitat de Barcelona
Marga García BolivarSpanish Language
Ph.D. in Spanish Literature and Linguistics, Temple University
Meritxell MartínReligious Studies
Ph.D. in History of Religions, University of Virginia
James McGladeHistory, Archaeology
Ph.D. in Archaeology, Cambridge University
María MejiasSpanish Language
Ph.D. (in progress) in Education Studies, Universitat de Barcelona
HistoryPh.D. in History, University of East Anglia
Mauricio MolinaPhD in Philosophy Music, City University of New York
International BusinessMBA, Emory University
Iolanda NievesSpanish Language
Nuria PlazaSpanish Language
Ph.D. (in progress) in Philology, 17th Century Spanish Literature, Universitat de Barcelona
M.A. Spanish, Miami University, Oxford Ohio
Ignasi PérezHistory, Political Science
Ph.D. in Political Science with European Honors (Doctor Europeo), Universitat de Barcelona/University of Florence
Ph.D. in Counceling Psychology, University of Southern CA
Ph.D. in Sociology, University of Manchester
Daniel RodriguezMáster Spanish Teaching as a Foreign Language, University of Granada
Ph.D. in Archaeology, University of Texas at Austin
Isabel SanchezArt History
Nuria SilvestreSpanish Language
PsychologyPh.D. in Mental Health, Trinity College, Dublin
Anna Solé del BarrioMaster Degree in Economic History, Universitat de Barcelona
Suzanne StrumUrban Studies
Ph.D. (in progress) in Architectural Theory and History
What is it really like to live in Barcelona? Check out our virtual tour of all the places you’ll come to know and love when you study abroad there—GO!