Pitt in Spain - Virtual

The Instituto Franklin de la Universidad de Alcala is the only University Institute for Research on North America in Spain. Founded in 1987 the Instituto Franklin serves as a platform for communication, cooperation and union between Spain and Northern America, in order to promote a mutual understanding.
Courses for Pitt in Spain - Virtual are taught through the Instituto Franklin de la Universidad de Alcala, one of the oldest universities in Europe and a UNESCO World Hertiage Site. During your participation in the program you can select either taking one or two courses. Most importantly, you have the option of participating in a virtual synchronous and asynchronous environment to earn credits towards your Spanish major, minor, or European Studies certificate. 

What You'll Accomplish: 

As an active and involved participant you will:

  • Have real world application fo the Spanish language at an intermediate and/or advanced level
  • Understand the influence of language on culture and vice versa
  • Interact with Spanish faculty in a virtual environment by taking a course taught by faculty from la Universidad de Alcala
  • Explore spanish culture in the safety of your own environment
What You'll Study: 

You can select from a list of pre-approved courses taught in Spanish by professors from la Universidad de Alcala. The selection of specific courses will be pending passing the language placement test administered by the Instituto Franklin de la Universidad de Alcala. All courses will take place in Madrid's time zone,Central European Time Zone. Please plan accordingly if you have other commitments such as other courses or internship opportunities as it is a 6 hour difference from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 

Advanced Spanish (SPAN0004)

The course is aimed at students who wish to enhance their communication skills in Spanish. To achieve this goal, new grammatical structures will be introduced, and others that have already been acquired by the student will be strengthened. This course requires students to have passed level B (intermediate level according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) in order for them to be able to learn about the contents explained in class with no difficulty. The contents of the course will include four skills: speaking, writing, listening and reading comprehension. Students will therefore acquire greater confidence and independence, enabling them to express themselves in Spanish fluently. Cultural and social aspects will also have great presence and they will be integrated into the communication process.

Spain in Images: Spanish Culture through Films (SPAN1603)

Cinema is one of the most popular artistic representation due to its expressive power and narrative ability. Film productions allow us to gain knowledge of and come closer to the Spanish reality from two perspectives: as a historical document and as an aesthetic expression. In this course, students will learn about the Spanish by filming speech, taking as reference important directors and films in the history of Spanish cinema. Moreover, the course aims to make a journey through the history of Spain, from the Civil War until today, taking as reference film productions on this historical period. Spanish film productions are studied from a multidisciplinary perspective to analyze the most relevant historical periods of contemporary Spain. In addition to studying and undertaking critical analysis from different perspectives, students will have the opportunity to acquire the specialized language used in cinema and historiography, enabling them to improve their speaking and to be able to write down their ideas in Spanish, as well as appreciating cinema as a form of artistic and cultural expression that reflects the history of Spain.

Cervantes: Las Aventuras de Don Quijote (SPAN1601)

The course is aimed at students who wish to learn about the life and work of one of our most renowned writers, Miguel de Cervantes. Students will learn about Cervantes’ most relevant works, in addition to his literary influences and characteristics within the context of the Spanish Golden Age. The course will include a selection of readings from his different works, with particular emphasis on his famous Don Quixote.

Tradiciones de España: Comunicación Oral (SPAN0120)

This course aims to improve students’ oral and conversational skills. The course provides both linguistic and cultural knowledge. Units follow a linguistic progress for this which goes from the verb to be; ser / estar / haber; prepositions; reflexive verbs; direct and indirect pronouns; irregular verbs; past perfect / imperfect / indefinite; simple future; the conditional tense and the present subjunctive. These grammar points are studied in a context that is related to cultural aspects in Spain. Thus students will see topics such as; the parts of the house, giving directions, using public transportation, food, fashion, a doctor’s visit, cultural festivals: Fallas, bullfighting, Christmas and Easter, among others.

The Instituto Franklin has an experienced staff of professionals that will serve as your on-the-ground guides and resources.

Your Pitt Study Abroad Contacts: 

Gisselle Arce

Oí pessoal! I am Gisselle Arce, a Program Manager at the Pitt Global Experiences Office. While in undergrad, I studied abroad in Seville, Spain. This began my career path in international education without knowing. Shortly after graduating from Ramapo College of New Jersey with a degree in International Studies - Latin America and a minor in Human Rights & Genocide studies I worked in Chile as an Assistant English Teacher. After months of picking up my Chilean dialect, I came back to the US and attended graduate school at Middlebury Institute of International Studies. During my graduate studies, I found myself returning to Spain once again for my graduate internship. Now I find myself managing not only Pitt in Spain but many other programs. When I am not at work, I enjoy cooking, kickboxing, freshening up on my Portuguese, and spending time with my dog. Feel free to set up an appointment with me via Pathways. 

Schedule an appointment

Schedule an appointment with me using Pathways!

  • Click my personal Pathways link here
  • Login to Pathways with your Pitt username and password
  • Select Find Available Time
  • Select the time you want to meet
  • Review the appointment and click the schedule button
  • You will see a graphic that confirms that you have made an appointment with me & receive a confirmation in your Pitt email 

Don't see a time that works for you? Just send me an email at globalexperiences@pitt.edu!

You will be billed at the A&S rate and will be based on the amount of credits you take on the program. You can take a minimum of 3 credits or a maximum of 6 credits. 

Program Billed by Pitt

  In-State Out-of-State
3 credits $2,328 $2,528
6 credits $4,656 $4,856


When You'll Go: 

July 5, 2021 - July 29, 2021

What Else You Need to Know: 
  • You must be enrolled in or have completed at least SPAN 0004 to participate in the program as it is a language intensive program.
  • You will take a language placement test. The results of the exam will determine if you are eligible to take the course you have listed as your primary choice. 
  • If you have are interested in participating in the Spanish for Health Professionals course there are requirements for participation. Only 15 students who score a 90% or above are admitted to this course. Students should be advanced/native speakers to participate in this course. Should you have any questions please contact the program manager.