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Study Abroad | Athens
Summer 2023: Academics

Group of students sitting on a wall in Athens.

Select Your Program Option:

  • Summer 2023

Acadmics Overview

AIFS Abroad offers a unique global educational experience for students on this program, with the following academic options available:

Program Options

Program Name Early Start Available Credits Notes
Session 1
Early Start Available: No Credits: Up to 6

Choose from two 4-week sessions or take both sessions and study in Athens for 8 weeks. Take one or two courses for up to 6 credits per session. Classes are taught Monday through Friday. Each course totals 45 hours in four weeks.

Attendance is required for full credit. Students exceeding the permitted number of excused absences may lose all or partial credit.

Computer facilities Students may apply for temporary e-mail accounts with their university identity cards. There is free Internet access in the residence buildings.

Grades No AIFS participant is permitted to take a course without receiving a grade. Pass/Fail grade options are not available.

Honors seminars Students who have a GPA of 3.5 or above are eligible to apply for a select number of 3-credit Honors seminars within the International Honors Program at the American College of Greece.

Transcripts are issued by the American College of Greece. An official transcript will be sent directly to the student’s home university on completion of the program.

Accounting

Anthropology

Art

Business

Communications

Economics

Environmental Studies

Film Studies

Finance

Foreign Language

History

International Business

International Relations

Marketing

Mathematics

Music

Philosophy

Psychology

Sociology

Visual and Performing Arts

International Honors Program

Each summer session specialized 3-credit seminars are offered to students who have a GPA of 3.5 or above as part of the International Honors Program at the American College of Greece. Please see the AIFS website for information on the courses offered to Honors students in 2023.

Honors Program Courses

Courses offered in previous years include:

The course teaches students to develop a meaningful relationship with lived experience through photography. Documentary photography frames and reproduces events and scenes of life, both public and personal. Emphasis is placed on photography as text (i.e. as a form of narrative that displays its own rules and structural characteristics) through which the individual photographer articulates their relationship with their environment. For this reason, the course encourages students to use photography as a means through which they are able to explore as well as give shape to the world around them. It introduces students to various types of documentary photography, and teaches them basic rules that govern this journalistic and artistic form. Major emphasis is placed on experiential learning of the subject, and for this reason much of the course is taught on-site. Working on specified subjects under the guidance of the instructor, students develop awareness of the language of photography and its narrative power.

An interdisciplinary treatment of food as a key element of political, social, and cultural dimensions of human experience. Combining theoretical and methodological approaches in archaeology and anthropology, and focusing on the Greek context, the course guides students through an exploration of culinary practices from the prehistoric to the present day placing emphasis on food as a sign of ethnic, gender, religious, local, trans-local and multicultural identities. Food and drinking cultures in Greece are examined as a total social phenomenon, with emphasis on the significance of food practices in the context of Greek social and political life, as well as in the context of cultural expression. Short field trips in the city center and museums unveil the long culinary history of the city of Athens, highlighting multicultural influences in the development of Greece’s distinctive culinary culture.

The course is based on the principle that the ability to think critically about the historical past is an important characteristic of an engaged citizen. Understanding one’s sources and their limitations in both reconstructing and interpreting the past is key to this ability. Through a combination of history, classics and archaeology, the course focuses on Athens of the 5th century B.C., and engages students with literary and archaeological sources to guide them through an exploration of the different possibilities of understanding the past.

This course explores the ways in which poverty is not only represented but also constructed in/through various media, ranging from ancient literary texts to social history, political theory, and contemporary film. It seeks to enquire into the preconditions and cultural assumptions that inform representations of poverty, with special emphasis on the 20th and 21st centuries. The socioeconomic context which produces poverty also produces the discourse through which constructions of poverty are generated and propagated. 

In this Honors seminar students will engage in structured walkabouts which will enable them to become active readers as well as writers of the text of the city of Athens. Emphasis upon the cityscape as a palimpsest exposes students to various discourses and urban morphologies (sociological, political, historical, aesthetic, etc.), and invites them to consider the semiotics of everyday social interactions in the city of Athens.

Academic Credit & Transcripts

Credit Transfer

As a part of the AIFS application for semester programs, you will complete a Course Approval Form, which will be signed off by your study abroad office staff and/or faculty at your university.

For J Term/Summer programs, no such approval form is needed; however, students are still responsible for ensuring credit can be brought back from their overseas program.
In any case, we recommend getting additional courses approved in case you need to change courses while abroad.

Overseas universities do not use the credit system employed by American institutions. AIFS students must make special arrangements to transfer credits, but since AIFS courses are given at recognized universities or the AIFS Centers (which are transcripted by Fairfield University), there usually is no difficulty in arranging transfer credit toward U.S. degrees provided the proper procedure is followed.

European Credit Transfer System (ECTS)

Many of the European institutions that AIFS works with award credits under the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). ECTS enables cooperating institutions to measure and compare a student’s performance and facilitates the transfer of credits from the European institution to the U.S institution.

Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR)

Language levels are defined according to the CEFR and will be listed on your transcript on completion of the program. CEFR organizes language proficiency into six levels (A1, A2, B1, B2, C1, C2) which can be regrouped into three broad levels according to the needs of the local institution: Beginner: A1, A2/U.S. Level 100; Intermediate: B1, B2/U.S. Level 200-300; Advanced: C1, C2/U.S. Level 400

Transcripts

When you complete your program, an official transcript is sent to your home institution directly from AIFS Abroad or the host university. Another official transcript may be retained by AIFS Abroad in Stamford, but this is not the case for all programs. Please contact transcripts@aifs.com to find out how to request additional transcripts. 
 
Generally, your school should receive your transcript 60 days after completion of the program. (Cannes Semester programs, Perth, Sydney, Dublin, Limerick, and Wellington Programs exception: Transcripts issued and retained by the host universities. Transcripts for the Cannes Semester programs are issued by Chapman University.)
 
Transcripts may come without an English-language translation, so participants will need to organize translations with their home university.

Academic Records

Credit assessment methods in overseas universities may not be comparable to those in U.S. universities. Grading may involve exams, papers, individual projects, class discussion or some combination of these. Although academic institutions abroad may grade on a variety of scales, admissions counselors and registrars at U.S. institutions are familiar with international grading systems and can convert grades.

Course Selection

AIFS Program Advisors are available to assist you in the process. The following procedure is recommended:

Read course descriptions for the selected program and select courses. Obtain approval from your academic or study abroad advisor for the preliminary courses selected. Final approval of credit transfer for completed courses is at the discretion of the Registrar or appropriate official at the home institution. Students must ascertain that courses taken meet their individual academic program requirements. Recommended credits in this catalog are based on 15 classroom hours per semester credit.

I would absolutely recommend this program. The trip has been such a positive experience. Wonderful program!

AIFS has a lot to offer. The more I talked to American students from other programs, the more I realized that AIFS was clearly the best choice

This program opened my eyes to a culture and society I knew very little about. I made great friends and had a fabulous time during the process. I would do it all over again in a heartbeat.

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