Program Overview

This program will not run in 2020. Learn about a similar experience here.

Come to Barcelona, a metropolis known for its beauty, architecture and music, and explore some of the most important questions of the human experience while experiencing Catalan culture firsthand. This program offers two psychology courses, which are taught in English and strongly emphasize Spanish culture.

In addition to the academic component of the program, you will listen to guest lectures, go on field trips, and although Spanish and English are widely spoken, you will take four, one-hour introductory Catalan classes to learn the offical language of Barcelona and Catalonia. One of the field trips included on the program is an all-day trip to Terragona, a city in northern Spain with Roman ruins.

Additional requirements

Note: Although useful, Spanish or Catalan language is not required to participate in the program. Both courses are taught in English, and most of the population in Barcelona speaks at least a little English.

Academic Details

PSY388: Psychology of a Meaningful Life (300 level Psychology Elective)
PSY388: Human Sexuality (300 level Psychology Elective)
Psychology of a Meaningful Life, will consider the theoretical and empirical bases of what constitutes a productive, satisfying and consequential life. An important angle of this class will be its comparison of different cultural ideals, namely the American emphasis on independence, autonomy and achievement and the Spanish emphasis on interconnectedness, social harmony, and familial pride. As part of the course, we will hear from visiting Spanish social scientists about the links between Spanish identify, culture, and psychology. This course will be taught by UO faculty Jeffery Measelle.

Human Sexuality will cover the topic of human sexuality from a psychological perspective with an emphasis on both US sexuality and cross-cultural sexuality. A wide range of topics will be covered including sexual responses, sexual practices, and sexual dysfunctions and their treatments. There will be a focus on understanding common misconceptions regarding sexuality and current controversies in the field. Past and present analysis on research and historical underpinnings influencing the cultural evolution of sexuality across cultures will be discussed. Sexual behaviors and identity will be discussed through personal development, culture, biological influences as well as the influence of attitudes, behaviors, knowledge, practices and myths on human sexuality. Course content will also examine sexuality throughout different developmental stages, fertility, reproduction, sexual functioning and privilege, socialization, dating, marriage, family, sexual orientation, non-traditional relationships, contraceptives and sexual responsibility. Interviews and lectures with mental health professionals will be provided as opportunities to students. This course will be taught by IAU faculty.

You will take classes at the IAU center, which houses five classrooms, study areas, an open-air terrace, as well as a meditation and reading room. There are several cafes and restaurants nearby where you can study or relax before or after class. The center is within walking distance of four metro stops and three bus lines for easy access to all of Barcelona.

Course Equivalencies

Actual credit awarded is determined by the relevant department at your university in consultation with the study abroad office. Check with your study abroad advisor for more information.

UO students, please refer to the UO Course Equivalency Process and the UO Office of the Registrar Course Equivalency Database.

Faculty and Staff

Jeff Measelle is a Professor of Psychology and faculty member within the UO Global Health Center and Program. His research specialties include early childhood, stress, and the effects of culture on development. Of relevance to the current application, he is fluent in Spanish, having lived in Spain for 10 years of his childhood, including 3 years in Barcelona. Professor Measelle is the recipient of several UO distinguished teaching awards, including a Williams Fellowship.

Jennifer Ablow is an Associate Professor of Psychology. Her research focuses on prenatal development, high-risk developmental contexts, stress, and interventions to support early development. Dr. Ablow has traveled extensively throughout Europe and speaks French.

Housing Description

You will stay in homestays with another student in the program. The host families have at least a working proficiency with English, as do most people in Barcelona. Your host family will provide you breakfast and dinner.

Dates and Deadlines

TermYearPriority DeadlineDeadlineArrival DateDeparture Date

Travel Advisories

For current health, safety, and travel advisory information, search the US Department of State country webpage.

Priority Discounts

If your program has a Priority Deadline, complete all pre-decision application materials by this date to receive a $100 credit toward your program fee. Please note, students participating in multiple summer programs are only eligible to receive the $100 credit once.

Note: this $100 discount does not apply to priority deadlines for SIT programs.