Study Abroad in Rome, Italy

Study Abroad in Rome: Courses

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Italian language course levels are determined by placement tests to ensure the appropriate level. Since language demands are challenging, students may be placed in a level lower than requested. Students are advised to gain pre-approval for several levels of Italian from their home institution in order to ensure that they receive credit for the level they are placed into after the placement test. A minimum enrollment of 10 is required to confirm a course. Semester credits are shown in parentheses.

Please note that not all courses listed will run; in order for a course to be offered, there must be enough interest generated from the preliminary course forms.

Courses may change and new courses may be available.

From Fall 2017 onwards, courses offered at Richmond's Italian Study Centers will adopt a revised 4-digit model rather than the 3-digit conventional U.S. course numbering used in this chapter. This change has already been made on the University's London campuses. A course code comparison spreadsheet will be provided for the use of students and advisors at the Italian Study Centers - please contact the Admissions Officer.

Online Registration - Very Important

Students must register for all classes online at:

Registration week is: June 5-12, 2017 (fall semester), November 6 - 13, 2017 (spring semester)

Traditional Academic Program

With the exception of Italian (which is required), courses are taught in English, Monday through Thursday plus some Fridays. New courses may be offered.

Italian Language

CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) level is indicated in parenthesis.

Conversation is a central part of every lesson. All students start with an intensive 2-credit course taught during the first month. For the remaining of the semester they choose between the Basic Spoken Italian (1 credit) or the upper continuation of previous level (4 credits).

Italian Language

ITL 107 /ITL 3821 (2) (A1) | Elementary Italian I

A basic introduction to the Italian language for those with no previous experience, the course teaches essential vocabulary and grammar and develops students’ ability to communicate in an authentic linguistic context.

ITL 108/ITL 3822 (2) (A2) | Elementary Italian II

Designed for students who already have some knowledge of Italian, the course revises basic grammar and vocabulary in preparation for the next, Intermediate, level. Classes and student oral practice are conducted mainly in Italian. Prerequisites: One or two semesters of Italian and/or a pass at ITL 107 /ITL 3821 level, and/or min. 70/100 score on the diagnostic test.

ITL 207/ITL 4821 (2) (B1) | Intermediate Italian I

This course helps students to develop their ability to communicate effectively, using an expanded range of vocabulary. Conversation practice improves listening and interpretation skills. Reading and writing exercises improve skills in understanding and writing simple prose. Prerequisites: Two or three semesters of Italian and/or a pass at ITL 108/ITL 3822 level, and/or min. 70/100 score on the diagnostic test.

ITL 208/ITL 4822 (2) (B2) | Intermediate Italian II

This course develops students’ skills and enables them to understand and respond to quite complex lines of argument, both in oral and in written form. Students are introduced to more complex forms of grammar and more expanded vocabulary, to give them the ability to carry out and refine tasks within authentic context. Prerequisites: Three or four semesters of Italian and/or a pass at ITL 207/ITL 4821 level.

ITL 105/ITL 3810 (1) (A1) | Basic Spoken Italian

This 10-week course provides students with basic vocabulary and phrases to cope with authentic everyday situations. It is designed for those students who prefer the communicative approach with less emphasis on language structure analysis.

ITL 112/ITL 3842 (4) (A2) | Elementary Italian II

Designed for students who already have some knowledge of Italian, the course revises basic grammar and vocabulary before progressing to more complex structures and functions leading up to the next, Intermediate, level. Conversation is a central part of every lesson, with ample opportunity for student oral practice in understanding the spoken language through the use of authentic material. Classes are conducted mainly in Italian. Prerequisites: One or two semesters of Italian and/or a pass at ITL 107 /ITL 3821 level, and/or min. 70/100 score on the diagnostic test.

ITL 211/ITL 4841 (4) (B1) | Intermediate Italian I

This course helps students to develop their ability to communicate effectively and accurately, using an expanded range of vocabulary. Conversation practice improves listening and interpretation skills for better understanding and response in authentic Italian context, such as talking about cultural elements in Italian society and expressing opinions. Reading and writing exercises improve skills in understanding prose and writing letters and messages with appropriate vocabulary. Prerequisites: Two or three semesters of Italian and/or a pass at 108 level.

ITL 212/ITL 4842 (4) (B2) | Intermediate Italian II

This course builds upon the skills gained in Intermediate level and develops them to enable students to understand and respond to quite complex lines of argument, both in oral and in written form. Students review complex grammar structures and practice exercises in reading, composition, phonetics, syntax, and style. Continued practice in conversation provides students with an increased capability to communicate competently in Italian. Prerequisites: Three or four semesters of Italian and/or a pass at 207 level.

ITL 303/ITL 5830 (3) (B2-C1) | Advanced Italian

This course introduces students to advanced structures and vocabulary, which will enable them to interact with the Italian world at a sophisticated level. It enables them to understand lectures and complex lines of argument, including various attitudes and viewpoints, both in oral and in written form. They should become fluent and spontaneous in verbal interaction, and well able to present and sustain an argument, both orally and in evidencebased writing Prerequisites: Four/five semesters of Italian and/or a pass at ITL 208/ITL 4822 level.

Courses Taught in English

Please see the Richmond website for the latest descriptions and prerequisites.


ADM 308/ADM 5875 (3) | Sketchbook of Rome

Designed to give students a deeper understanding of the role of drawing as an investigative process as well as an expressive means of communication. Drawing is used as a basic exploratory tool to examine Rome as the site for both subject—in particular, the river Tevere—and as a research resource for the practice of drawing—especially in the Roman churches, galleries and museums. The course is divided between working in the studio and on location in Rome. The sketchbook is an essential aspect of the course in helping students to document the city, stimulate and develop ideas and as a reminder that drawing is a portable medium. A studio fee is levied on this course.

ADM 341/ADM 5860 (3) | Photography for the Media

Recommended for Communications and Journalism majors as well as photographers, this course develops knowledge and experience in photojournalism via the study of the work of major practitioners and the production of assignments typical of today’s photojournalists. Students will need to provide a DSLR (digital reflex) camera and a laptop (with any basic photo editing software). There is a studio fee for this course.


ARH 273/AVC 4800 (1) | Introduction to Italian Art

Examines developments in early Italian painting and sculpture leading up to the Renaissance and Baroque. Students consider early Italian art from the Etruscans and Romans up to the Renaissance, in art historical context, particularly in terms of patronage and the key social, religious and philosophical events. It is normally taught during field study visits, which include Florence, Pompeii, Naples and Capri. A field project paper is normally required.

ARH 305/AVC 5810 (3) | Renaissance and Baroque Art in Rome

Examines the development of painting, sculpture and architecture in Renaissance and Baroque Italy from the fourteenth to the mid-seventeenth centuries, four centuries marking the passage from the Middle Ages to Modernity. Students examine key works, consider the historical and cultural context in which the art was produced and consumed, and how this art has been approached and analyzed historically. The course focuses on Rome and normally includes on-site visits to view works by, for example, Michelangelo, Raphael, Caravaggio and Bernini.

ARH 308/AVC 5840 spring only (3) | Art and Culture in Rome: 800 BC - 2000 AD

Examines the history and society of Rome and its architectural and artistic expression as it developed over a period of 3,000 years. Students study key examples of architecture, monuments and art from Classical Rome through to the Renaissance and Baroque, and the modern period. Much of the course is taught on-site with visits to churches, palaces and museums.

ARH 309/AVC 5830 spring only (3) | History of Ancient Art: Greece and Rome

Examines ancient Greek and Roman art in detail. Students consider specific key examples of artworks from each tradition, how Greek and Roman art has been approached and analyzed historically, the relationship between Greek and Roman art, and the broader issue and influence of ‘the Classical’ in Western culture. The course may make extensive use of the city of Rome as a learning resource.

ARH 321/AVC 5845 (3) | Baroque Rome and Its Monuments

Covers the emergence of Baroque art in the late Cinquecento and early Seicento (16th and 17th centuries) and follows the development of the Baroque style in sculpture, painting and architecture. The style found interpreters of genius in Rome, artists who left outstanding works with a great sense of proportion, remarkable use of inventiveness and incredible imagination. During the class students study some of these key artists, including Caravaggio, Bernini and Borromini. Much of the course is taught on-site in Rome, the ‘cradle’ of the Baroque.

ARH 322/AVC 5805 fall only (3) | High Renaissance Art

Surveys the development of painting, sculpture and architecture in Italy from the 14th to the 16th centuries, with particular reference to the cultural context of Rome and with the contributions of Florence and Venice. Much of the course is taught on-site, allowing students to gain first-hand experience of the masterpieces of Bramante, Raphael and Michelangelo within their historical and urban context. Renaissance means the rebirth of the classical heritage and its center was ancient Rome. High Renaissance can be seen as the beginning of Modernity, when society shifted its center from God to the human being and to its seemingly endless possibilities. This course focuses on how artistic expression responded to a rapidly changing society. We explore key artists and their patrons at the beginning of the 16th century in Rome - at that time the leading cultural capital of the Western world.


COM 308/COM 5855 spring only (3) | News and the Media in Italy

In this course, students explore the most important characteristics of Italian journalism and the Italian media system. The focus is around a comparative analysis of different styles used in international journalism, particularly in print media, although other kinds of media are included. Particular attention is given to the development of writing styles for news, features, interviews and reviews where students develop their own practical skills. Students have the opportunity to publish articles in an Italian newspaper.

COM 315/FLM 5800 (3) | History of Italian Cinema and Society

Explores the history of Italian cinema and society as represented in film, with particular focus on the wide range of films to emerge after the Second World War. Students study Italian cinema within the context of world cinema to assess realism as an aesthetic convention as well as gain insight into Italian culture and ways of thinking.

COM 461/COM 5845 (3) | Fashion in Rome

Traces the multiple connections between the fashion and media industries. It emphasizes the material realities, pragmatic and creative dynamisms, fantasy components, and essential visuality of fashion. The course focus is on retail and visual merchandising. It addresses the question of relevance of the in-store consumer experience in response to the spread of e-commerce. In order to explore and evaluate possible answers to this question, students are involved in The Luxury Shopping Experience project. Following clear, prearranged guidelines, they visit, examine, and report on selected luxury stores located along Via Condotti and Via Borgognona in Rome. This allows students to experience at first hand the way people, including tourists, consume luxury in Rome.


ECN 357/ECN 5805 (3) | International Economic Relations

Introduces students to international economic relations. These relations are relations of international trade, international production and finance as well as international development. The course is taught within the context of technology, politics and culture.


HST 311/HST 5805 (3) | Rome through the Ages

Covers the history of Rome from its reputed founding by Romulus and Remus to the establishment of the Roman Republic and the creation of the Roman Empire, leading up to conversion to Christianity and the appointment of the first Christian emperor. It explores themes such as the changes in Roman politics, the causes of the misgovernment which brought down the Republic, how the hollow skeleton of the Republic was used to house the Principate of Augustus, the rise of the Roman Empire, and the success of Christianity.

HST 314/HST 5815 (3) | History of Food and Table Manners

Explores food and food habits in human history from early civilization to the Modern period, via the Classical world and the Middle Ages. Themes such as the social function of banquets, dietary rules, food models, cultural identity and table manners are considered. Students examine evidence based on written sources and on archaeological and artistic remains in order to compare the dining habits of different social groups across different historical periods (e.g. Romans vs. Barbarians; nobles vs. peasants; lay vs. religious; urban vs. rural). The social, political, economic and cultural history of food and table manners are studied within the spaces in which the people lived and ate - including the interiors of households, palaces and monasteries.

HST 326/HST 5820 (3) | History of the Italian Mafia

This course explores the history of the Italian Mafia from the national unification of Italy until the present day. Topics studied include relationships within the organization, those between the Mafia and Italian Politics, and those between the Italian and the American mafia.


INR/SCL 313/INR 5800 (3) | Globalization: A European Perspective

This interdisciplinary course addresses the important and complex phenomenon of contemporary globalization. The political, social, economic and cultural aspects are addressed from a specifically European perspective.

INR 328/INR 5810 spring only (3) | Security Studies

This course examines enduring and contemporary questions of security and insecurity in the international system. Security has traditionally been defined in terms of strategic state politics and the use of military force to counter external military threats. The end of the Cold War and the ensuing conflicts of the late 20th century raised questions about the continued relevance of traditional theories of security. The course will feature the participation of Italian Carabinieri Police/Army Force, including anti-terrorist and special security units. Specific areas will be covered with the approach of “experience education” including: National Security, Investigation, Public Order, Public Health and Environment, Labor and Food Frauds, Cultural Heritage and Anti-Counterfeiting, and International Cooperation.


LIT 329/PHL 5800 (3) | Classical Mythology

This course covers traditional stories of Greece and Rome in their cultural context. Students study readings from Greek and Latin literature and investigate their sources, their nature, and their application to literature and to art. They will examine key figures and events in mythology, including gods and major heroes, with on-site analysis of paintings, sculptures, pottery and mosaics. The course examines the myths and legends of traditional Greek religion in their historical context. We will consider how they were influenced by the civilizations of the ancient Near East and how they developed in the Greek and Roman worlds. We will read passages in translation from major Greek and Roman authors, including Homer, Hesiod, Aeschylus, Euripedes, Sophocles, Ovid, and Virgil, and discuss the use of mythology in classical literature and how it changed through the ages. Slides and visits to museums and archaeological sites will illustrate how the Greeks and Romans represented and worshipped their gods and how classical mythology was used in the art of later centuries. By the end of the course, students should be familiar with the key figures and events in mythology, including gods and major heroes, and with the use and role of mythology in classical literature and art.

LIT 330/LIT 5815 spring only (3) | Roman Life and Thought

This course illustrates the most important literary works of classical antiquity. Students read in translation Greek and Latin authors such as Homer, Virgil, Ovid, Caesar, Cicero, and Plautus, familiarize themselves with different literary genres and understand the basis of European literary culture. Major topics include aspects of ancient civilization, such as rhetoric, politics, religion, mythology and philosophy. Site visits to the Ara Pacis, Crypta Balbi and to the National Museum of Palazzo Massimo complement classroom lectures.


MGT 302/MGT 5850 (3) | Project Management for the Arts and Culture

The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the concepts of project management relevant to the cultural industry. The theoretical basis will be applied to the industry of arts and culture. The course focuses on case studies that are related to Rome’s Cultural Heritage. Students will acquire knowledge, skills and competencies to understand the fundamental tenets of project management. The Italian cultural environment will be studied; particular attention will be paid to its inherent value. Furthermore this course offers students the opportunity to identify current problems that are related to the management of the Italian cultural heritage. The skills learned may also be applied to different international contexts.

MGT 358/MGT 5810 spring only (3) | Human Resource Management

Combines elements of different disciplines, ranging from industrial relations, social psychology, personnel management, motivation, recruitment and selection, leadership, communication, manpower planning, aspects of training and development, and related processes. It is appropriate both for those seeking a career in personnel management and for those contemplating careers in other areas of functional management.


MKT 301/MKT 5800 (3) | Principles of Marketing

Introduces students to the principles and operations of marketing. Course work includes an in-depth analysis of the strategic role marketing plays in contemporary business from new product development, marketing research and target marketing to consumer behavior analysis, advertising and promotion and personal selling activities. Each variable of the marketing mix will be covered in detail and the macro and micro business environment will be assessed for their impact on marketing planning. Lectures, discussion topics, case studies, videos and practical exercises are used to cover the course material.


PLT 359/PLT 5810 spring only (3) | The European Union in the New International System

Covers the history of the European Union, from its foundation in the fifties until the present. It will look at the different institutions inside the European Union and their role in the process of enlarging the Union and moving towards greater integration. Although its initial aim was political unity, the European unification process has been strongly based on the ideal of economic integration. Thus the course will look at the positive and negative effects of economic and monetary union. Other policies of the member states will also be covered, including agricultural, regional, social, environmental, and energy policies. The inter-relationship between the different EU countries will be examined, as well as the relationship with other states, such as the US.


RLG 300/RLG 5810 (3) | Comparative World Religions

Explores the monotheistic religions of the Near East (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam), those of India and the Far East (Hinduism, Buddhism, and Taoism) and the ‘new-age’ faiths. The history and practice of each is studied. Special emphasis is laid on the philosophical and psychological basis of each religion and on common themes such as the self, suffering, free will, and ethics. Primary and secondary sources are studied, along with an examination of methodology in comparative religion.

RLG 315/RLG 5800 spring only (3) | Religions and Cults of the Roman Empire

Focuses on the religious experience of Late Antiquity, which opened the way to medieval civilization and, eventually, to modern western culture. It examines the beliefs present within the Roman Empire (I – IV century A.D.), including the most significant religions, cults and mystical movements – a fascinating picture of this important historical period. Visits to museums and places of archaeological importance in Rome, will illustrate the connection between the material and the religious.


ISL 300/ISL 5800 (3) | Service Learning and Active Citizenship

The Service Learning and Active Citizenship course is a student community placement that aims to provide students from all disciplines and majors with the intellectual, professional, and personal skills that will enable them to function well in a culturally diverse community in Rome. In addition to the weeks of field work (typically 9-12 depending on the organization), the student will also produce a written journal of their experience which provides critical reflection (learning log), a ‘community action’ portfolio (analytical essay), and a final oral presentation. These assessments have been designed to help the student reflect on the skills they are learning and the benefits gained from the service learning experience, and also to help them determine if their current career goals are the correct fit for them. During the service learning course, the coordinators work closely with each student to ensure that the community placement is a successful one.


SCL 307/COM 5860 (3) | Made in Italy: Symbols of Italian Identity from Espresso to Ferrari

Italy occupies a prominent place in the world’s culture, history, and thought. This course explores the history and practices of consumption in Italy, and the consumption of goods, products, and services that have been encoded as “Italian” outside the country itself. It analyzes aspects of consumption (broadly defined) via a social, cultural, artistic and anthropological approach. The course looks at the transition to a consumer society, and investigates areas such as advertising, fashion, industrial design, food culture and sport; it also examines the impact of consumerism on Italian identity formation and the construction of gender roles. The course includes on-site visits and field trips to major Italian companies.

The Music Program

For music majors who do not want to fall behind during a semester abroad, or for those with an interest in music, an exciting Music Program is available, taught in a multicultural environment in conjunction with Saint Louis College of Music, founded in 1976 and authorized to issue Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees by the Italian Ministry of Education, Universities and Research. Students take up to 15 Richmond credits and may then take an additional music course.

As this program is taught by the Saint Louis College of Music, Richmond does not award the academic credit. Students receive a Saint Louis College of Music certificate authenticating work completed and should confirm the status of credit transfer for courses taken at Saint Louis with their home institution.

Music classes are taught in the evenings and do not conflict with the majority of the Richmond courses. Richmond students take their music classes in a truly international context, with Italian and other international students at Saint Louis College of Music, conveniently located in Monti neighborhood, just a short distance from the Richmond Center.

Instruction is in Italian, but all music instructors speak and understand the English language.

The Music Program at a Glance (up to 18 credits)

Intensive language classes during the first two weeks (2 credits)

Language classes for the continuation of the semester (1 or 4 credits)

Two to four other classes of your choice among the academic offer (6 to 12 credits)

One or two music classes with other international students (for possibly extra transferable credits) in the following:

Saxophone, Trumpet, Trombone

The study of each instrument will focus on thematic developments and applications, combos for group practicing, history of jazz or rock, improvisation sessions.

Bass Lab, 12 hrs
Rhythm Session, 9 hrs
Ensemble, 14 hrs
Jazz /Rock History, 10 hrs (optional)
Improvisation, 7/8 hrs (subject to audition)

Drums Lab, 12 hrs
Rhythmic Session, 9 hrs
Ensemble, 14 hrs
Jazz /Rock History, 10 hrs (optional)
Improvisation, 7/8 hrs (subject to audition)

Reading/Harmony, 12 hrs lab
Rhythm Session, 9 hrs lab
Ensemble, 14 hrs
Jazz /Rock History, 10 hrs (optional)
Improvisation, 7/8 hrs (subject to audition)

Percussions Lab, 15 hrs
Cuban Santeria, 14 hrs
2nd Ensemble, 14 hrs
Jazz /Rock History, 10 hrs (optional)
Improvisation, 7/8 hrs (subject to audition)

Brass Section, 15 hrs
Combo, 12 hrs
Ensemble, 14 hrs
Jazz/Rock History, 10 hrs (optional)
Improvisation, 7/8 hrs (subject to audition)

Vocal Lab, 10/12 hrs
Choir, 20/24 hrs
Ensemble, 12/16 hrs
Jazz /Rock History, 10 hrs (optional)
Improvisation, 7/8 hrs (subject to audition)

For more information on Saint Louis College of Music visit

University of St. Thomas Rome Fall Semester 2017

The following courses offered by the University of St. Thomas in Rome are taught on the Richmond Center premises and are open to AIFS – Richmond students.

These are all 4-credit courses and are taught for 60 hours. Students register with the University of St. Thomas and receive a University of St. Thomas transcript.

University of St. Thomas Courses

ARTH 310 (4) | Roman Art and Archaeology

The course examines the main motives and themes related with study, analysis and appreciation of ancient Roman art and archaeology. We will study the Idea of Classic, so largely part of the western culture, analyze Greek art and its relation with Roman art, and investigate subjects such as continuity, discontinuity, inspiration from antiquity and misunderstanding of antiquity. The city of Rome with its wealth of historical, artistic and architectural heritage provides an open air classroom and the best instruments for this art itinerary. Much of the course is taught on site. This course fulfils the Fine Arts requirement in the core curriculum.

ECON 251 (4) | Principles of Macroeconomics

This course will provide you with an introduction to macroeconomics. Topics include national income, unemployment, price stability, and growth. We will also evaluate monetary and fiscal policy and apply economic theory to current problems. We will put special emphasis on how the modern macroeconomy promotes, or alleviates, social problems such as poverty and inequality. This course seeks to provide you with a greater degree of “economic literacy” and a basis for further coursework in economics.

ENGL 203 (4) | Literature in Motion: Narrating the Lives of Immigrants, Refugees, and Migrants

According to the UNHCR, there are currently more than 65 million forcibly displaced people worldwide. Among them are over 21 million refugees. In this course, keeping in mind the context of this urgent global crisis, we will study a range of contemporary migrant narratives, paying special attention to migrants' experiences in Italy and Rome. We will focus on the multiple ways in which migrants have negotiated questions related to citizenship, segregated labor practices, historical memory, and intergenerational conflicts over the last fifteen years. We will read general historical and theoretical pieces connected to exile, displacement, and migration, as well as literary texts, such as Patrick Kingsley’s "The New Odyssey: The Story of the Twenty-First Century Refugee Crisis," Amara Lakhous’s "Clash of Civilizations Over an Elevator in Piazza Vittorio," Óscar Martínez’s "The Beast," and Igiaba Scego’s "Adua," as well as some poems and short stories. The writing load for this course is a minimum of 15 pages of formal revised writing.

HIST 111 (4) | Origins of the Modern World to 1550

This course examines significant political, social, economic, religious and cultural developments of ancient Near East, ancient India, Greco-Roman civilizations, ancient and medieval China, ancient Japan, Islamic civilization, ancient African and American societies, and Medieval and Renaissance Europe. As beliefs and social- political concepts and practices of various civilizations formulated and developed during this period still heavily influence our modern world, this course provides a foundation to our understanding of the highly interdependent and interrelated contemporary world.

PHIL 214 (4) | : Introductory Ethics

Ethics is that branch of philosophy that inquires into how we should conduct our lives. Questions asked in Ethics include: Are there any objective moral truths or facts? What, if any, is the good life for human beings? Are there such things as good and bad actions? If so, what makes an action good or bad? Are there such things as good and bad character? What’s the difference? Do I have any obligations? Do I have any rights? Why should I be moral? How do I become moral? What is the relationship between my good and the good of society?

THEO 250 (4) | Global Christianity

The history of Christianity is a history of inculturation in diverse geographical and cultural settings. This course examines both the history and implications of this inculturation in various contexts, and investigates the resources that Christian theology and tradition offer for guiding how Christians live out their faith across cultures. Specific topics may include: the worldwide growth of Pentecostal/Charismatic Christianity; implications for the ecclesiology of the Roman Catholic and other historic churches; how Christians in different cultures read the Bible; the development of non-Western Christianities until the present day; and the Christian duty of global solidarity and its potential to reshape national, ethnic and class loyalties.