City: Bologna, Italy Partner: L'Università di Bologna and the Bologna Consortial Studies Program Housing: Independent apartments Language Requirement: Two years of college-level Italian for the academic year or fall semester program OR five semesters of Italian for the spring program. Calendar: Fall or Spring Semesters, or Academic Year
Bologna, an elegant city with a population of almost half a million, is the capital of the wealthy and progressive region of Emilia-Romagna in northern Italy. Excellent transportation links make it an ideal base for travel. Venice and Milan are two hours away by train; Ravenna and Florence, just an hour.
Bologna is an ancient city settled by the Etruscans. Medieval towers and churches loom over the porticoed streets and terra-cotta buildings of the central section. Located within the old city is the University of Bologna, Europe's oldest institution of higher learning and Italy's top-ranked university. Founded at the end of the eleventh century, it developed initially as a law school but soon afterward established its ancient tradition of humanistic studies.
The BCSP office is located just a few blocks from the Piazza Maggiore in the center of the city.
Students attend a pre-session course in Bologna to improve their command of Italian and facilitate their adjustment to life in Bologna and at the university. They then enroll in one or two regular University of Bologna courses with Italian students as well as take special courses in Italian literature, language, culture, art history, film studies, and contemporary politics and history arranged by the BCSP for program students. All instruction in program courses is in Italian and the courses are taught by University of Bologna faculty.
Academic year students complete 30 hours of credit across the year while fall or spring semester students complete 15. Students from institutions using different credit systems (units or quarters) should consult their home school academic advisors for equivalencies to these semester hour requirements.
Approximately 40-50 students are selected annually to participate in the Bologna program. In addition to students from BCSP member and associate member institutions, the program accepts applications from undergraduate students attending any accredited U.S. university, regardless of major field, as long as they have:
attained a cumulative B average or better and a B average in Italian
reached at least junior standing when program participation begins
two years of college-level Italian for the academic year or fall semester program ORfive semesters of Italian for the spring program. Of course, higher proficiency in Italian is strongly encouraged for all applicants.
Students have access to BCSP courses and University of Bologna courses. Final course selection occurs in Bologna. The resident director serves as academic advisor and will orient students to the Italian academic system. Most students take courses in the arts, humanities, and social sciences. Sample courses taken by students in past years include:
Sociologia della religione
Poesia italiana del Novecento
Letteratura Italiana del Neorealismo
Storia del Fascismo in Italia
Sistemi Politici Europei
A list of courses taken by previous students is available through Indiana University.
Students from BCSP member institutions earn residence credit from their home schools; students from associate member and non-member schools receive an Indiana University transcript. Cornell students must get college approval prior to applying to this program and this is part of the application process.
Students in the program must be adaptable if they wish to succeed academically, for Italian universities differ in important ways from American universities. The Italian system places a premium on self-discipline. Assignments consist of a long list of recommended readings rather than a shorter list of required readings; students then determine their own reading priorities from within the list. Most University of Bologna courses are taught for a single semester and carry 6 semester credits. Though written assignments are becoming more common, grades are often determined by a final oral examination covering readings and lectures alike, without the frequent quizzes and midterm examinations that encourage American students to keep up with their work.
Estimate of Costs
Fall 2015 or Spring 2016: $19,430*
Full Year: $32,630*
*Includes program tuition, fees; excludes housing, meals, transportation, personal expenses.
Students pay room and board costs averaging about $6,000 per semester in Bologna.
Financial Aid is Available
During the first week or two after arrival, program students live together in a hotel. With the assistance of the program, students then locate independent apartments in Bologna and are required to live with Italian students.
** Programs may fill long before their final deadline.
* Recommendation--For SPRING: APPLY in MAY to study abroad the following spring. For FALL/YEAR: APPLY in DECEMBER. Late applications may be accepted, but colleges typically need time to process your approval.