The IES Abroad Barcelona Language & Area Studies Summer Program is designed for students who want to study abroad in Spain and experience contemporary Spanish culture from the Catalonian perspective in a challenging academic environment. Language courses develop your written and oral proficiency in Spanish and area studies courses provide an excellent opportunity to learn about modern Spain in the larger context of the European Union. Courses are available in both Spanish and English.
Over the course of the summer, you will come to know its vibrant plazas and winding streets for yourself. The Barcelona Language & Area Studies Program offers enrollment in IES Abroad courses, housing in homestays with local residents or student apartments with live-in Barcelona Cultural Companions to facilitate your cultural immersion, and DiscoverIES (course-related excursions & field trips). You will have the opportunity to meet Spanish and international students alike. Starting at the IES Abroad Center in the center of Barcelona near the Plaza Catalunya, this study abroad program will help you to gain a meaningful cultural experience and a deeper knowledge of what it means to be a citizen of the world.
Study abroad in Barcelona and experience the city's unique and lively culture!
After you are admitted, refer to the Travel Dates section of the Predeparture Information in your MyIESabroad account before booking travel.
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 Spanish language learning and area studies courses through an in-depth and hands-on approach. Our world-class professors enhance your academic experience and provide you with new perspectives each day in class.
Beginning and Intermediate Spanish students enroll in:
Advanced Spanish students enroll in:
Area studies courses are offered in the following disciplines:
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.
IES Abroad Barcelona organizes DiscoverIES (course-related excursions) that complement what you’re learning in the classroom, and contribute to your general knowledge of Spanish culture and society.
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 students share a double room. You are provided two meals a day (breakfast and dinner) while the program is in session.
Apartments – You live with three or five other IES Abroad students in double rooms. A Barcelona Cultural Companion or tutor cultural will also live in the apartment to help you with cultural integration. Apartments have fully-equipped kitchens, and meals are not provided.
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 our DiscoverIES that take you to places off the beaten path—we’re all about our student services.
The program begins with a 1 day orientation that introduces you to the IES Abroad Barcelona staff, your fellow students, and the city of Barcelona. Topics such as academics, housing, transportation, extra curricular activities, 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 program with activities focusing on cultural adjustment, goal achievement, and preparing for the return home.
Although your adventure begins in Barcelona, our DiscoverIES take you to other great cities in and around Spain. DiscoverIES brings you closer to the Barcelonan and Spanish culture through a broad array of activities that merge together the academic insight provided by field trips and the guidance of our faculty. They provide contrast and context for what you are learning in Barcelona. Here are a few possible destinations.
3 Days | Summer
Visit Greek and Roman ruins, the medieval city of Girona, and the “dreamland” of Salvador Dalí between Barcelona and the French border.
1 Day | Summer
Explore volcanic terrain and hike through the forest of this northeastern county of Catalonia.
1 Day | Summer
Spend the day hiking the mountain of Montserrat.
2 Days | Summer
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.
Note: IES Abroad DiscoverIES and lengths of stay may vary according to term and availability.
About the Center
The IES Abroad Barcelona Center is located in the center of Barcelona near the Plaza Catalunya. Features include:
Read our interview with Dr. Meritxell Martín-i-Pardo!
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
Lorena ChinniciOutside Courses and Customized Programs Coordinator
Jane EwartHead of Registration and Advising
Pilar GraciaAdministration Coordinator
Salvador OrtizHead of Administration and Human Resources
Noemí PoloStudent Affairs Coordinator - Health and Safety, Homestays
María RomeroAssistant Dean of Faculty and Faculty Advisor Coordinator
Olga SánchezHead of Student Affairs
Beatriz TabernerCenter Administrator and Orientation Coordinator
Ana TarifeInternship Coordinator and Service Learning Coordinator
Ferran TeresStudent Affairs Coordinator - Apartments
Alex WalkerDirector of Academic Affairs and Dean of Faculty
María MejíasLanguage Faculty Advisor
Ignasi PérezArea Faculty Advisor and Advanced Program Coordinator
Ataúlfo PortelaLanguage Faculty Advisor
Laura VázquezLanguage Faculty Advisor and Educational Technology
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!