Quick Info

  • Florence, Italy
  • Fall, Spring
  • : Panther Program
  • : Anthropology, Cultural Studies, Economics, English (including Literature, Writing, and Creative Writing), History, History of Art and Architecture, Italian Language and Literature, Political Science, Studio Arts, Urban Studies
  • : Fall: September 8, 2017; Spring: TBD - Fall: December 16, 2017 Spring: TBD
  • : $16,799 In-State / $22,105 Out-of-State
  • : Spring: Friday, Sept. 30, 2016 / Fall: Friday, March 3, 2017
  • : 2.75 GPA (2.5 for engineers), Pitt Students: Must have completed 24 credits on a Pitt campus, Clear Judicial Record

Academics

Pitt in Florence has courses across a variety of disciplines in both English and Italian.  Coursework may count towards UCIS European Studies certificate. 

English-Language Track
If you have studied less than four semesters of college-level Italian, you will participate in the English-language track.  Brush up on your Italian skills (or get them started) with a required Italian language class.  

Need to fulfill a general education requirement?  We've got courses for that!  Take a look below:

Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences:

Arts:  HAA 0302
Creative Expression:  SA 120, SA 130
Literature:   ITAL 1085

This programs satisfies the 3 foreign culture requirements.

Pitt Business:
BUSFIN 1380 Global Finance Systems:  Finance Major elective; CBA elective outside of the major for all other CBA students
BUSENV 1780 Corporate Governance:  CPLE core requirement. CBA elective outside of the major for all CBA students

This program satisfies both foreign culture requirements.

*You must complete required pre-requisite courses in order to count these courses towards the major.  Contact your academic adviser for more details.

As a part of Pitt in Florence, you are required to take a course in Italian.  Courses include:
ITAL 0001 - Elementary Italian Language 1 (4 credits)
ITAL 0002 - Elementary Italian Language 2 (5 credits)
ITAL 0003 - Intermediate Italian Language 1 (3 credits)
ITAL 0004 - Intermediate Italian Language 2 (3 credits)

This course presents a survey of contemporary Italy from an anthropological perspective, which is to say with a systematic and informed focus on the role of culture in contemporary Italian society. For anthropology, culture is the concept which describes the networks of shared meanings and values that underlie social practices and create distinct group identities. With this in mind, the course examines the operation of such universal cultural features as identity, social and political organization, gender, and religion in contemporary Italy, as well as considering local issues of healthcare, immigration and internal migration, and Italian and Florentine "cultural heritage." The course requires an ethnographic engagement with Florentine society, which provides an opportunity to recognize and apply anthropological concepts in a practical fashion outside of the classroom. Although this course will be conducted principally in English for reasons of comprehension, the instructor will incorporate Italian and Italian cultural resources as much as possible in order to give students maximum exposure to the Italian language.

Fulfills a finance major elective for Pitt Business students.

Fulfills a marketing major elective for Pitt Business students.

Fulfills an HR major elective for Pitt Business students.

Fulfills a supply chain major elective or the Certificate in Supply Chain Managment BUSSCM 1730 requirement.

This course examines and assesses international economy and business in a global sense, using European case studies. It starts with a wide comparison between the first and the second periods of globalization, as it developed at the end of XIX° century, and examines how in the present day it is considered as the “prevalent economic system”, even though this is debated by people of all continents. The importance of the Bretton Woods system will be clearly underlined in order to understand the events of the second part of the XX° century. The creation of the international economic institutions – International Monetary Fund, World Bank and General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade and others – constitutes a pillar on which the development of the international economy is largely based in a context in which protectionism is banned. The role of international trade in the global era has never declined; free trade and market economy are still representing the most relevant economic orientation at an international scale. During the ‘80s the international framework was changing, due to the progressive decline and consequential death of Fordism, and the uprising of new industrial processes. International finance was influenced by the development of the information technology revolution, and the global economy after “September 11th” has changed its shape, but it was never interrupted, according to the most persuasive opinions of major economists. The course will also approach the current financial global crisis.

This course is a creative writing workshop designed to explore the experience of traveling and living abroad in Florence in both verse and prose. Along with the workshop we will also read and discuss texts that focus on Italy in general and Florence specifically from both the native and foreign perspectives, noting particularly the literary techniques and strategies that various writers have used to verbally map out the territory of the city and to express their own place and experiences within its walls. The texts will provide us with a forum for discussing each author’s relationship to and the literary expression of place. The texts will also provide us with models for weekly writing exercises.  I believe that we can use our unique position as sojourners abroad to begin to chart our own internal and imaginative landscapes. Our ultimate goal will be to produce a finalized, substantial text—or series of short texts—suitable for performance and/or publication in the literary world beyond this class.

This course introduces students to painting, sculpture, and architecture in Florence in the Renaissance. Beginning with the great projects of the Middle Ages that defined the religious and political centers of the city, attention focuses on major monuments of the Renaissance. Discussion will center on how works of art were made, their style, and how they communicate intellectual meaning. Sub-themes that intersect with the most recent research in the field of art history are interwoven into each class period. Topics for discussion include the cross-cultural fertilization of artistic ideas, how women, the poor, and children were depicted in Renaissance art, conflicting ideas regarding patronage, and how works of art construct religious, political, gender, and class identities. This course analyzes the interrelationship between people's creative achievements and their society. In other words, students must understand a work of art in the social, artistic, and historical context of medieval and renaissance Florence.

Through museum visits in Florence and Rome students will realize that most of the artworks actually displayed in public museums once belonged to private collectors and were not produced to be seen by a large public. During the course students will explore the history of collecting objects. They will start with the sacred collections of Classical temples, passing then to the libraries of Medieval monasteries and the ideas of the Abbot Suger. They will imagine recreating a Medieval Schatzkammer and an Early Renaissance Studiolo thanks to the remaining precious vases that belonged to Lorenzo the Magnificent and the documents of the Urbino Palace and Isa-bella d’Este Studiolo. They will ‘virtually’ visit the Paolo Giovio collection, and the real Studiolo of Francesco I as well as 16th and 17th century Baroque Galleries. They will follow the growth of European National Museums of the nineteenth century (Louvre, British, Muse-ums Island in Berlin) as symbols of national pride as well as the Florentine private collec-tions transformed in foundations like the Bardini and Horne Museums. An in depth study will be done on the Uffizi Gallery in order to understand the transformation of the gallery from the late 16th century to the present day. Finally they will face the role of museums in the contemporary world making a personal research on Florence main museums’ visitors.

This course is taught in Italian. The course presents a survey of contemporary Italy from an anthropological perspective, which is to say with a systematic and informed focus on the role of culture in contemporary Italian society. For anthropology, culture is the concept which describes the networks of shared meanings and values that underlie social practices and create distinct group identities. With this in mind, the course examines the operation of such universal cultural features as identity, social and political organization, gender, and religion in contemporary Italy, as well as considering local issues of healthcare, immigration and internal migration, and Italian and Florentine "cultural heritage." The course requires an ethnographic engagement with Florentine society, which provides an opportunity to recognize and apply anthropological concepts in a practical fashion outside of the classroom.

The objective of this course is to give students the opportunity to comprehend contemporary Italian society through the screen images that Italian filmmakers have presented of the cultural, political and working environment they live in. Using a multidisciplinary approach for history, film theory, and social contextualization, this course will explore how contemporary Italian cinema has followed, mirrored, and sometimes even anticipated cultural and social transformations in Italian society. Up to twenty Italian films released between the late '90s to the present will be examined from the point of view of 20th and 21st Century Italian social, political, and cultural history in order to understand the various social and ethical concerns exemplified by the movies.

The course will introduce students to the history of Italian Literature, focusing on great masterpieces (in English translation) from the 14th to the 16th century. A multidisciplinary approach, dealing with social, political, historical and philosophical implications will provide further understanding by placing literary works in a comprehensive cultural context. Special emphasis will be placed on the impact of Italian literature in European culture in pre-modern age, stressing the broad influence of Dante's Comedy, Boccaccio's Decameron and Ariosto's Orlando Enraged. Students will be provided with the basic operational tools to help them recognize different literary genres and understand why certain forms of artistic expression are peculiar to certain ages, at times to the exclusion of others. Literary issues such as the great divide between high and low literature, the question of language, the relation between classical, Christian and chivalric epics, the concept of originality in the Middle Ages, the circulation of books and the development of a reading public will be thoroughly investigated. Students will be able to follow the formation and the evolution of the mainstream literary tradition, and appreciate the innovative charge, both in form and content, of the works selected. They will also learn to practice a close reading of the texts, and will be encouraged to form their own critical opinion on the writings analyzed for their oral presentations. The first lessons will be devoted to a general overview of the 13th and the 14th centuries both from a historical and a more specifically literary perspective. Then the focus will shift onto the role of Dante in shaping the vernacular literature as a means to bridge the gap between academic and popular culture, to Boccaccio's ground-breaking work in restyling storytelling into an art of conversation and therefore a collective enterprise, and finally to Ariostol's humorous contemplation of human vanity and foolishness. Each lecture introducing a new author will be preceded by a brief outline of his life and literary output, and will then proceed with the description and analysis of his major work.

This course offers a general survey of the History of Europe in the twentieth century, focusing on major political and economic processes and events. It also considers the correlated national and international environments. It will shed light on the way in which European development influenced the national and international contexts and, inversely, document how national and international factors conditioned European dynamics. The analysis highlights the dynamics of European history from a world-scale perspective. The beginning of the twentieth century marked the crisis of empires and colonial powers. A second significant shift occurred after the Second World War with the emergence of a bi-polar world order, and the subsequent division of power between the USA and USSR. The third was registered in 1989-91, when, with the fall of the Soviet bloc, conditions for an American hegemony were eventually created (a mono-polar order was established). Attempts are now under way to open avenues to a functional global order.

This course will explore the field of cross-cultural psychology through a focus on a specific country and its inhabitants: Italy. Aspects of cross-cultural analysis from the field of cross-cultural psychology (as well as interdisciplinary elements from sociology, anthropology, biology and ecology) will be discussed, including: cultural influence on human behavior, attitudes, values, communication and societal organization. Special topics of ethnocentrism, individual vs. collective societies, plural societies, cultural views on mental health, and intercultural communication are highlighted. Methodological issues of cross-cultural research will be reviewed, and students will have the opportunity to conduct a cross-cultural interview and be participant-observers of their own experience here in Italy. The city of Florence and its inhabitants become the classroom through various excursions and field work. Participants are encouraged to reflect on their own cultural origins in regards to behaviors, communication, attitudes and values, as well as their acculturation experiences while studying in Italy.

Investigate concepts of color, form, line, composition, volume, space, and the use of oil paint as a medium. Beginning or intermediate levels accepted. This course is structured to introduce oil painting starting from the basic techniques and introducing new approaches and ideas. Students should take advantage of open studio hours to complete their assignments. At the beginning of each new topic and project students will be asked to list the techniques acquired in the previous lessons before moving on to a new exercise. Students will be expected to complete at least 4 paintings to successfully complete the course in addition to completing the weekly assignments

A studio arts drawing course for beginning and intermediate students that explores an essential aspect of artistic self-expression and the techniques necessary to learn to draw what you see. The course will examine Florentine artists' drawing techniques that raised the level of this medium during the Renaissance period from preliminary studies to that of true works of art. Visual perception is a way of seeing that differs from our typical way of seeing. The objective is that of teaching students how to transmit what they see, an artistic perception which will permit them to explore their personal mode of expression. The course will concentrate upon the component parts of drawing, the necessary aspects self-awareness and general creativity, learning to draw what is out there and self expression.

Figurative sculpture is a basic studio course designed for beginners and intermediate students. It explores the skills and techniques necessary to approach clay modelling. Students are invited to take advantage of class activities as much as possible since it is through constant commitment and exercise that they will achieve the technical mastery of the medium. At the same time, it is necessary for students to acquire a certain theoretical awareness. Stimuli provided by projections, workshop and site visits to the most important sculptures in Florence are integral to the course. Students will visit these works during the week. Students will have a sketchbook in order to document at least one work per visit.
 


Florence is a global heritage city: millions of people every day crowd into its small streets admiring the ancient buildings and its artistic heritage, which creates revenue as well as issues. For this reason, contemporary Florence and its inhabitants are less well-known by visitors. Florence today has an ethnically diverse population with complex socio-cultural dynamics that shape the identity of this fascinating city. Although migration to the city has intensified over the last few decades, ‘multiculturalism’ is not a recent phenomenon: over the centuries the city has celebrated diversity, with different ethnic groups, different nationalities and various religious groups who have contributed to Florence’s social and cultural wealth. Even the briefest of walks can unveil this wealth to the eyes of the attentive observer – and it is precisely this ‘below the surface’ understanding that this course provides. Florence is, and always has been, a ‘global’ city.

We will analyze the complex dynamics that shape the identity of Florence by applying a critical perspective to the notion of globalization and by analyzing the socio-cultural forces at play both historically and presently. Students will learn to analyze the cultural variety present in the city, examining which ethnic communities live in Florence today, and gaining insight into their lives through scholarly sources and direct observation. Throughout the course we will discuss the relativity of cultural values; we will analyze how multicultural aspects of Florence’s identity have been discursively constructed and by which social actors; we will review which policies the local and national administration have put into effect to deal with these issues.

Advanced Italian Track - FALL ONLY
If you are majoring in Italian or have a high level of fluency in Italian (have completed at least four semesters of college-level Italian), you can participate in the Advanced Italian Track.  The blend of academic courses in Italian, advanced language courses, and an optional part-time internship, allow you to truly immerse yourself in Florentine culture.  Email Tim for more information on courses.Please note that course numbers may change to better suite the needs of the Italian Department and students.

  • ITAL 1905 LTI: Florence (Internship)
  • ITAL 0060 Understanding Modern Italy - REQUIRED
  • ITAL 1060 Great Works of Italian Literature
  • ITAL 0065 CCF Language Module (Intensive Advanced Italian Language for Study Abroad)  (6 credits) - REQUIRED
  • ITAL 1070 CCF Literature and History/Politics Course

 

Internships

Participating in the Advanced Italian Track?  That means you also have the option to do a part-time, for-credit internship.  Available in businesses of every kind, internships are within commuting distance of the CAPA center and are tailored to your interests, abilities, and academic background.  Build you resumé and Italian fluency at the same time as you gain valuable real-world experience.

On-Site Faculty And Staff

CAPA, Pitt’s Florence partner, has a full-time support staff who are there to help you with whatever you might need during your stay.  Whether it’s housing, academics, or just recommendations on where to take your parents when they visit, the CAPA staff is there for you.

In addition to the CAPA staff, Pitt always has a faculty member based in Florence as well. 

Jenny McCord earned a Master of Arts in Italian literature and a Master of Teaching in foreign language education at the University of Virginia. She has been teaching Italian classes at the University of Pittsburgh since 2006 and has worked for study abroad programs in Bologna, Florence and Rome. Jenny has recently completed a Master in intercultural studies and social mediation at the University of Padova, and is interested in promoting intercultural competencies in an effort to expand social bonding and facilitate integration of vulnerable parties in our communities.

Housing

You’ll have two options for your housing on Pitt in Florence:

Apartments
Like the streets of Florence, no two apartments on the Pitt in Florence program are alike in terms of design, but all will give you a comfortable place to call home in Italy.  Most apartments are located within 20-40 commute to the CAPA Center, either on foot or by bus.  No matter which apartment you live in, you can expect a fully equipped kitchen, bathroom, shared living area, a washing machine, and a shared bedroom.  Meals aren’t included, so plan on learning to cook with local ingredients!

Homestays
Homestays are required if you participating in the Advanced Italian Track and are available if you are participating in the Standard Track.  Located in residential neighborhoods on the edge of the city, you can expect a 40-minute commute to the CAPA Center from your homestay.  CAPA carefully screens host families before you arrive to make sure that you have a safe and culturally immersive experience.  Homestays include a private bedroom, access to the home’s kitchen, laundry facilities, living areas, and two meals per day.  You should know that most host families do not speak English.

Pricing And Dates


In-State Fee Out-of-State Fee
$16,799 $22,105
Arrive in Florence Depart Florence
Fri, January 13, 2017 Saturday, April 22, 2017

In-State Fee Out-of-State Fee
$16,799* $22,105*
Arrive in Florence Depart Florence
September 8, 2017 December 16, 2017

*Fall 2017 pricing will increase slightly when AY 16-17 tuition rates are announced

Keep in mind that dates change.  You shouldn't book airfare until given confirmation from your program manager.

 

Inclusions & Exclusions

As a part of your Pitt in Florence fee, the following are included:

  • Tuition for 12-18 credits
  • On-Site Orientation
  • Housing 
  • Some meals (homestays only)
  • Health Insurance
  • One-day excursion to Siena and San Gimignano
  • Access to the British Institute's English-language library
  • MyEducation activities and events

While your program fee will cover most of your expenses, keep in mind that you are also responsible for the following:

  • Study Abroad Administrative Fee ($400)
  • Passport and visa fees (~$200)
  • Airfare (~$1,000)
  • Meals and Personal Expenses (~$3,000-$5,000)

Remember that your lifestyle and spending choices can greatly affect the amount of money you'll need while abroad.  Visit our Budgeting page for more information.

Ready to get started on your application?  

Program Staff

Tim Crawford

Hi Everyone! I’m Tim, a Program Manager here in the Study Abroad Office. I’m proud to be from a small town in Central PA but now love calling Pittsburgh home. My study abroad experience includes a semester in France during my sophomore year, Spring Break in London during Grad School and Summer in Italy as a Program Assistant. My experiences opened my eyes to the rest of the world and I’d love to help you take advantage of the numerous study abroad opportunities here at Pitt. Outside of the office, I’m always looking for the next adventure whether it’s exploring a new city or new neighborhood in PGH. I fully embrace the yinzer way of life and plan my schedule accordingly around every Pens, Bucs and Stillers game. I’d love to talk to you more about any of our study abroad programs and answer any of your questions. Please reach me at TSC29@pitt.edu or 412-648-2156.

Walk-In Advising Hours:
MWF 2-4 PM