Universitat Pompeu Fabra



Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF) was founded in 1990 and has already has risen to one of the elite universities in the world. The New York Times ranked it 13th among the top 100 universities under 50 years old.  Each year, over 600 international exchange students decide to study at this modern and elite university. Located in the urban center of Barcelona and steps away from the sea, Pompeu Fabra offers students an unrivaled education in a variety of disciplines in a truly global environment. From volunteering to meeting with an advisor in your field of study, Pompeu Fabra makes it easy to take full advantage of your exchange. This exchange program is College of Business Administration (CBA) specific, meaning only undergraduate CBA students may participate. For more information about the university, visit this link 

Want to learn more? Check out the Pitt Business To the World student blog.


Fact sheet: 
Learning Objectives: 

As an active and engaged participant on this program, you will have the opportunity to develop: 

  • the ability to succeed independently in a foreign education environment. 

  • non-US based perspectives on your field of study and/or future career path. 

  • a global network of peers in similar fields of study and connections with faculty in Spain


Partner Information: 

Ciutadella Campus (Jaume I building)

Ramon Trias Fargas, 25-27.

08005 Barcelona

TEL: +34 93 542 24 11|22 03|25 04

Email: oma.incoming@upf.edu


Location Description: 

Barcelona is not only the second-largest city in Spain, but it is also a financial and business center due to its large ports, impressive culture, and world-renowned universities. Aside from the famous architecture of Gaudí, fashion, art, and cinema are vibrant throughout the city. Additionally, Barcelona boasts a deep international community that will allow you to make friends from around the world.


Housing Description: 

UPF does not offer university-affiliated housing but is a member of the Barcelona Centre Universitati, a public service that assists international students coming to the city. UPF will provide instructions on when and how to apply for housing. See UPF’s general housing website 


Academic Description: 

UPF's courses are taught in Spanish, Catalan, and English, with a large number taught in English. Specific courses will be offered in one of the two languages.  

Credits taken at UPF are evaluated on an ECTS scale and will transfer to Pitt according to a 2:1 ratio. For example, 10 ECTS credits will transfer as 5 Pitt credits. Additionally, for the purpose of full-time status at Pitt, students should be prepared to take what is equivalent to at least 12 Pitt credit hoursAll credits taken at UPF require approval by both your Pitt academic advisor(s) and Pitt global experiences program manager.  

Courses taken at UPF will be treated as transfer credits and will be marked as pass/fail (S/NC) on a Pitt student's transcript. In other words, transfer credits will not affect your Pitt GPA. However, actual grades earned will appear on the transcript from the exchange university. 



Students who have attended this program in the past have taken classes in the areas of:: 
Business Spanish
Business Accounting
Business Economics

Unlike Pitt, UPF’s grading scale assigns numerical values between 1 –10, with 10 representing the highest grade achievable.  

For more information about the grading scale at UPF, see their explanation located on the factsheet.  

For Pitt transfer credit, in order to earn a grade of “S,” (satisfactory) at Pitt, you must make an equivalent to a grade of “C” or higher. An equivalent to a “C-” or lower will result in a grade of “NC” (no credit) at Pitt.  


Pitt students may utilize the followinonline resource to understand the grading scale within this host country. 



Program Fees: 
Pitt students participating on an exchange program will pay regular Pitt tuition and fees, according to their in-state or out-of-state residency status. In addition to the Study Abroad Administrative Fee, this also includes all Mandatory Fees, such as the Student Activity Fee, Wellness Fee, Computing and Network Services Fee, and the Security, Safety, and Transportation Fee.  
Pitt Students on financial aid and/or tuition scholarships will need to consult the Office of Admissions and Financial Aid or respective entity providing the funds to confirm coverage for study abroad. 

Items Billed by Pitt

  In-State Out-of-State
Tuition* $11,036 $20,280
Mandatory Fees $660 $660
Study Abroad Fee $400 $400
Total Billed by Pitt* $12,096 $21,340
How Much To Budget: 

Estimated Additional Out-of-Pocket Costs

Travel Expenses: Airfare, Passport, Visa $2,000
Room & Board $1,200 - 2,500
Personal Expenses $1,500
The estimated costs reflect information provided by UPF and are reported to OAFA to calculate financial aid packages. The listed costs are defaulted to one semester. Multiply the costs by two for two semesters. 
Personal expenses vary with individual students. Review UPF's estimated cost of living page

Students studying abroad through Pitt are automatically provided health insurance coverage during the official program dates. However, you may need to purchase additional insurance if the exchange university you will attend requires purchase of a specific health insurance coverage per their regulations. It is your responsibility to ensure you know the cost of that insurance prior to committing to the program.


Program Dates: 

Pitt students enroll at UPF for the spring semester. UPF's spring calendar differs from Pitt's normal spring semester, so Pitt students should check the academic calendar at the exchange university. Unlike Pitt, UPF's spring calendar is from January - March and/or April - June.

Steph Spirk

Hola, hallo, hi!  I'm Steph Spirk, and I am an International Programs Manager for Pitt Business.  I am a yinzer, very proud to call Pittsburgh my home, yet my love for cultural exchange has always led me to new places, even ones I never thought I'd go to before.  I was a Pitt student myself, becoming an expert on study abroad by participating in three programs: Global Service Learning in Bolivia, the International Internship Program in Madrid, and an exchange program at Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona.  I speak fluent Spanish and German at an advanced level.  In my free time you'll find me practicing yoga in the square, hiking through the many parks, painting, and capturing the beauty of Pittsburgh and beyond through the lens of my camera.
Looking forward to chatting with yinz!

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Application Instructions: 

Pitt sends a limited number of students per semester to UPF. In addition to applying to the Pitt Global Experiences application, be sure to review UPF's fact sheet regarding their application requirements for incoming exchange students. A formal nomination from Pitt Global Experiences is required for a Pitt student to be recognized as an exchange student at UPF. Therefore, Pitt students must complete all necessary Pitt Global Experiences steps in addition to UPF's requirements. In other words, acceptance by Pitt Global Experiences does not guarantee acceptance by the exchange university.  Please see this link for detailed information about UPF's application process.

The language requirement for the program is that you must have completed at least 4 semesters of Spanish. Prior to being nominated you must meet with the Program Manager.  

The exchange university may require the following to be submitted through an online application or by paper. Requirements may include but are not limited to the following:  

  • Application Form 

  • Copy of Valid Passport 

  • Official Pitt Transcript 

  • Official Pitt Verification of Enrollment 

  • Statement of Intent or Purpose 

  • Resume or CV 

  • Official Language Evaluation 

  • Up to 2 instructor letters of recommendations 

  • Up to 2 passport photos 


Additional Information: 

Non-native English speakers may be required to show evidence of English proficiency either through the IELTS or the TOEFL.  


Agreement Meeting

All students are required to attend the mandatory Agreement Meeting.  This event will cover important topics relevant to study abroad like health, safety, security, and more.  Alumni and staff will be present to help you start thinking about your goals for the program. Your program manager will follow up with more information once you begin your application.


Scholarship Information

For scholarship opportunities, be sure to check out the Pitt Global Experiences Office funding page. 

Pitt Business students may also apply for additional scholarships through Pitt Business International Scholarships, as well as crowdfund using the Pitt Business Fund My Travel page. Please note, that the application deadline for the Pitt Business International Scholarship is the same as the program application deadline.  


Insurance Requirements: 

Students studying abroad through Pitt are automatically provided international health insurance coverage during the official program dates.


Visa Requirements: 
In order to study as a student in specific countries, a visa is required. A visa is formal endorsement by the host country to grant permission for an individual to enter, live or stay in that country for a specific purpose and period. In addition to a visa, some host countries may require a residency permit upon arrival.
For those without Spanish/EU nationality, students must obtain a student visa to study in Spain. For an overview regarding the visa process, please review UPF's website. UPF will provide general direction after formal admission for how to apply for a visa. Pitt students should also research the visa and/or permit process through the specified country/consulate website.   
In general visa application requirements include but are not limited to the following requirements:  
  • Visa application 
  • Valid Passport 
  • Verification of acceptance from sponsoring university (exchange university) 
  • Financial Documents, such as bank statements, tax documents or pay statements.   
  • Passport photos 
  • Application fee 
  • Medical/physical examination (likely to require a doctor's appointment so plan accordingly)