Study Abroad in Barcelona, Spain - UAB

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Study Abroad in Barcelona: Courses

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Spanish Language, Liberal Arts and Business Program

Courses are subject to change at the discretion of UAB.

Students on this program can take up to 15 credits. Recommended credits are shown in parentheses.

Language levels are defined according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Language (CEFR).

Students who test into Spanish levels Beginner through Advanced have the option of taking either a 45-hour Spanish course for 3 credits or a 90-hour Spanish course for 6 credits.

Spanish language is not required although AIFS highly recommends that all students take a Spanish course in order to benefit fully from their study abroad experience.


Spanish 101 (3) (6)
Intensive Spanish Language–Beginner A1
This level is for students who have no previous knowledge of Spanish. During this course, students will be able to understand and express themselves in everyday situations and those related to personal experiences. Students will be able to exchange simple and direct information. Included topics are: present tense of regular and irregular verbs, demonstrative and possessive adjectives, pronunciation and intonation, uses of “ser”, “estar” and “hay”, frequent reflexive verbs and definite and indefinite articles.

Spanish 102 (3) (6)
Intensive Spanish Language–Beginner A2
Students who have studied Spanish only in high school or one or two semester(s) in college generally place in this level. Students will be able to understand and express themselves in everyday situations and those related to personal experiences, with basic language recourses. Students will be able to exchange simple and direct information. Included topics are: forms and uses of the gerund; forms and uses of “gustar”, “encantar”, “interesar”, the differences between “ser” and “estar”, the preterit perfect tense; positive imperative and expression of cause and excuse.

Spanish 201 (3) (6)
Intensive Spanish Language–Intermediate B1.1
Students who have studied Spanish throughout high school and continued with one or two semester(s) in college, usually place in this level. Students will be able to understand and express themselves in general situations that require the exchange of information and show personal attitudes about many themes, not exclusively related to personal experience. Content includes: contrasting uses of the indefinite and the indicative perfect, morphology and uses of the indicative imperfect, “hace”, impersonal “se”, “parecerse”, and possessive adjectives and pronouns, making hypothesis.

Spanish 202 (3) (6)
Intensive Spanish Language–Upper-Intermediate B1.2
Students who have studied Spanish throughout high school and continued with two or three semesters in college, usually place in this level. The course is similar to Spanish 102, however focus is on communication skills and grammar plus the future and conditional tenses are covered. Content also includes: morphology and uses of the present subjunctive, giving advice, morphology and uses of the imperfect subjunctive.

Spanish 301 (3) (6)
Intensive Spanish Language–Advanced B2.1
Students with at least five semesters of college Spanish, experience living in a Spanish-speaking country or Spanish study on a regular basis since elementary school usually place in this level. The course is similar to Spanish 301 but with greater emphasis on the subjective. Specific content includes: use of the subjunctive in forming opinions, values and attitudes, marginal uses of the imperfect: dreams, fiction, virtuosity, use of the compound conditional in the formulation of hypothesis and phonetic characteristics of Spanish.

Spanish 302 (3) (6)
Intensive Spanish Language–Upper-Advanced B2.2

Course description coming soon.

Spanish 401 (6)
Intensive Spanish Language–Superior C1.1
Course description coming soon.

Spanish 402 (6)
Intensive Spanish Language–Upper-Superior C1.2
Course description coming soon.

Spanish 403 (6)
Intensive Spanish Language–Proficiency C2
Bilingual students generally place into this level. The course is similar to Spanish 401 but with greater emphasis on prepositional patterns of verbs, problematic prepositions, proverbs and sayings, lexical adaptations on different sociolinguistic levels, and varied conversational recourses.

Eixample Campus


The Eixample Campus is in the heart of Barcelona. Business, Economics and Politics are the focus of the courses taught at the Eixample Campus. Students can choose from subjects taught at this or the Sant Pau campus as the connection between campuses is easy and can be made in less than 20 minutes. On both campuses, small groups are the norm and all professors are native Spaniards. All courses are taught in English unless specified within the course description.

Business 305 (3)
Cross Cultural Management

Aims to increase awareness of the impact of national cultures on business. Students will be provided with theoretical and practical tools to improve their productivity. Cultural dimensions analyzed include: individual versus collective identity; rigid versus flexible norms (price, business contract); task (“specific”) orientation versus people (“diffuse”) orientation; power distribution and vision of time and priorities.

Business 307 (3)
International Business

Focus is on the economic foundations of international business and the main forces that shape business across countries: political, economic, cultural, and legal forces. The last part of the course will analyze the internal aspects of a firm oriented towards international business.

Business 308 (3)
International Finance

Extends the principles of finance to the international context. Topics include: exchange rate determination; foreign exchange markets; currency derivatives; currency forecasting; offshore markets; saps and interest rate derivatives; risk management and cost of capital for foreign investments.

Business 309 (3)
International Marketing Strategies

Evaluates cultural differences and aims to enhance student skills in developing and implementing marketing strategies and decision making in the international contexts. Addresses the environments faced in international markets (cultures, economic systems, financial markets, governments and legal systems) and then analyzes in depth the elements of global marketing strategy (product, price distribution) and its implementation.

Business 310 (3)
Strategic Management of the Firm

Students will learn to understand the relationship between strategic planning and business performance. They will conduct in-depth organizational, industrial and environmental analysis as well as appreciating how the differences in the economic, sociocultural, political and legal environments among countries affect the decision-making process and strategic paths.

Business 311 (3)
Managing Services

A deep analysis in terms of interrelations which exist between marketing processes, operations, logistics and human resources in the services industry. Topics covered include: fundamentals of services marketing management; buyer behavior and segmentation; service relationships and brands, and creating the service experience: price, promotion and place.

Business 315 (3)
Human Resources Management: Finding Your Place in Organizations

Develops the appropriate competencies and promotes the right attitudes and behavior. Students will also have to design a marketing plan where they are the product. We will study the latest trends in job searching as well as web 2.0 technologies to create one’s personal branding and product placement in the labor market.

Business 316 (3)
Entrepreneurship and New Venture Creation

Explores business creation and growth as a multidimensional phenomenon in both independent and corporate (“intrapreneurship”) settings. By linking theory and practice, the course aims to provide students with an entrepreneurial perspective and a hands-on experience in the development of new business ventures.

Business 317 (3)
E-Commerce and Online Business

Explores the technical underpinnings as well as the legal and fiscal environment of e-commerce, particularly in the Spanish arena. Students will understand the concepts related to marketing online and publicity on the Internet, and will develop business strategies to conduct e-commerce.

Business 330 (3)
Negocios Internacionales/International Business (spring only)

For full course description please refer to Business 307/International Business. Prerequisite: Advanced level Spanish (B2 level).

Business 331 (3)
Estrategias de Marketing Internacional/International Marketing Strategies

For full course description please refer to Business 309/International Marketing Strategies. Prerequisite: Advanced level Spanish (B2).

Business 341 (3)
Managerial Skills for International Business

Through business cases, debate, teamwork and role playing, students will learn the basics of management and leadership. Topics covered include: Human Resources management, career orientation, compensation and benefits, time management, emotional intelligence, professional selling skills and international organization structures.

Business 342 (3)
Doing Business in Emerging Markets

Center’s on the challenges and opportunities associated with the organizational management and business strategy in emerging economies. Business cases in emerging economies from diverse geographical regions such as Asia, Latin America, Middle East and Eastern Europe will be discussed.

Business 343 (3)
Business in Action: Local Companies in a Global World

The goal of this module is to gain an insight into the different strategies and operational activities of Catalan and Spanish institutions and companies working within the European framework. Students will maintain direct contact with the business and economic world in Barcelona.

Economics 304 (3)
Strategic Behavior in Business and Economics

Provides students with decision theory and game theory tools that can be useful not only in business environments but also in everyday life. Students will learn how to solve and analyze decision problems and games. Prerequisite: basic knowledge of Microeconomics and Mathematics.

Economics 306 (3)
International Economics

International economics is divided into two broad subfields: international trade and international money. Topics include labor productivity and comparative advantage: the Ricardian model; resources, comparative edge and income distribution; the standard trade model; international mobility of labor and capital, and the political economy of trade policy.

Economics 308 (3)
The Creative Economy

Studies the crucial role of creativity and innovation in the 21st century and provides students with the tools to be effective actors of change in their organizations in the future.

Economics 335 (3)
Inequality, Poverty and Globalization

Investigates the development of international and global inequality; inequality within nations; gender inequality, and long term poverty. Has inequality increased over time? Does globalization make the world less equal? What policies have been implemented to reduce inequality and how effective have they been?

Politics/Economics 312 (3)
Understanding the European Economy

Deepens students’ knowledge of the institutional functioning of the E.U. as well as its most important economic policies. Reviews policies including: agriculture with an emphasis on possible future reforms; regional in the light of increasing competitiveness brought on by each successive step in European integration, and trade including a discussion of the most important economic accords between the E.U. and other countries.

Politics/Economics 317 (3)
The Political Economy of European Integration

Through discussion on current policy on European integration, students will be able to apply and relate conceptual and theoretical knowledge underpinning the course of the economic and political process of European integration. Prerequisite: basic knowledge of Microeconomics and Macroeconomics.

Politics/Economics 322 (3)
Politics, War and Economics in the Age of Globalization

Examines the main changes and theories in society, politics, economics and war since 1914 focusing on the different academic schools that tried to explain the major changes that affected people during the 20th century. One important element to be studied in this course is war, understanding this element as the last tool used by the State to achieve goals or stability.

Politics/Economics 324 (3)
Behavior and Incentives in Economics: The Case of Soccer

This course takes soccer as an illustration of theories and empirical evidence related to economic incentives and behavior. Soccer is widely followed and generates a great amount of information. This knowledge is used in a systematic way to explore the validity of economic theories and to empirically test predictions generated by these theories.

Politics 323 (3)
Politics of the Developing World

An introductory course to the politics of development from a comparative perspective. Students will be addressing development issues across different points in time and across different world regions. Two main topics/concepts will be analyzed throughout the semester: development and the state.

Politics 343 (3)
Geopolitics and International Relations

Geopolitics is the art and practice of using political power over a given territory. Students analyze geography, history and social scene regarding spatial politics and patterns (ranging from state to international). The past and present are explored (Cold War and aftermath, North and Middle America, South America) before turning to the future (China 2020, American Power and the crisis of 2030, the 2040 prelude of war).

Spanish 303 (3)
Español Para Negocios/Business Spanish

Students will learn to appreciate and adopt different registers and to apply the appropriate terminology according to social convention. They will also learn to take structured and meaningful notes from meetings and to write reports, letters, memos and all business-related documents. Prerequisite: Students must place into Advanced level Spanish (B2).

Sant Pau Campus


The beautiful historical pavilions of the Sant Pau campus provide the backdrop to the Art, Architecture and History electives taught at the magnificent UAB Casa Convalescència building. Students can take subjects from either campus as the connection between campuses is easy and can be made in only 18 minutes. All courses are taught in English unless specified within the course description.

Architecture 329 (3)
Barcelona City Planning and Architecture

The evolution of the city of Barcelona is explained using concepts of urbanism, politics and society. Students will compare Barcelona to other cities such as Madrid, Paris, London, Moscow, New York or Washington D.C.

Art 326 (3)
Arte Español/Spanish Art

Examines the concepts behind the work and the evolution of Spanish art in relation to similar movements in Europe and the United States. Includes visits to relevant exhibitions in Barcelona and talks by professional artists. Prerequisite: Students must place into Advanced level (B2) Spanish language or higher.

Art 327 (3)
Spanish Art and Cultural Heritage

From prehistoric times to the present, dealing in more detail with the Baroque period, Modernism and 20th-century art. Regular visits to museums to keep the class as close to real artistic practice as possible. Students are expected to contribute to class development with questions and commentaries, reading assignments and visiting exhibitions in preparation. Interest in art and architecture is a prerequisite.

Art 328 (3)
Digital Photography

Students will get in-depth knowledge of digital cameras, learn the basics of composition, retouch images and learn about, and get inspiration from, some of the historical masters of photography. Students will then apply what they have learned and use their skills to work on an individual photography project.

Art 339 (3)
The Great Art Collections in Spain

Students will be able to recognize masterpieces of Spanish art and understand the reasoning behind their unanimous positive appraisal. Analysis of artistic characteristics and their social and historical implications. Instruction includes lectures and field visits.

Art 340 (3)
The Seven Wonders of Spain

Examination of the buildings most representative of each period that have been included in UNESCO’s World Heritage List for having outstanding universal value. Instruction includes lectures and field visits.

Art 341 (3)
New Tendencies in Spanish Contemporary Art

Contemporary art is becoming ever more interdisciplinary, at times confusing and unclassifiable, where all kinds of fusions, exchanges, frictions, transactions and dialogues are occurring. This course is an introduction to some of these new tendencies and how they are explored by Spanish Contemporary artists.

Art 342 (3)
Spanish Contemporary Art
The course provides an introduction to Spanish contemporary art. It examines the concepts behind the work and the evolution of Spanish art in relation to similar movements in Europe and the United States.

Art and Architecture 337 (3)
Urban Interventions, Graffiti and Public Sculpture

Students develop an understanding of fundamental elements which assist with the observation of painting and sculpture. The course then looks at works of art as urban interventions with reference to the cityscape of Barcelona. Students will participate in scheduled visits to museums and public spaces.

Art and Architecture 338 (3)
Modernism: Art Nouveau Architecture Sketched and Explained

The history and cultural context of Modernism will be addressed in the classroom; however special emphasis is placed on practice outdoors. Students will sketch in front of buildings and in museums. No previous artistic training is necessary.

Catalan 100 (3)
Introduction to Catalan

This course is designed for students to gain a basic understanding of the Catalan language in order to be able to use it in everyday life while in Barcelona.

Communication 321 (3)
Communication and Gender

Aims to reflect on the importance of the media in the production, reproduction and perpetuation (or change) of gender roles. We will investigate how socially constructed gender categories inform our daily lives as citizens, consumers and creators of public discourse. We will also explore the dynamic relationship between gender and other identity categories (race, religion, class, sexuality, nationality, etc.)

Communication 322 (3)
Intercultural Communication

The aim of this course is to increase student understanding and awareness of the impact of our differences on the way we communicate and receive messages. The main differences the course focuses on are nationality, race, class, gender and religion. We will study and observe how different identities under those categories affect people’s perceptions of themselves as individuals, themselves within their groups, themselves within other groups, and how those perceptions affect the way they communicate and interpret messages.

History 323 (3)
Spanish Civilization and Culture

Provides an extensive view of Spanish history before examining different cultures within Spain. Focus is mainly on language, nationality and political implications. The rest of the course will travel throughout the various aspects of Spanish civilization, portrayed through artistic expression (architecture, painting, literature, music and cinema).

History 324 (3)
Civilización y Cultura Española/Spanish Civilization and Culture

For full course description please refer to History 323/Spanish Civilization and Culture. Prerequisite: Students must place into Advanced level (B2) Spanish language or higher.

History/Politics 327 (3)
Spanish History and Politics: 1936 to the Present

This course provides students with an in-depth understanding of recent Spanish history and its political system(s). Topics include: an overview of the current Spanish political situation; an introduction to the late 19th and the early 20th; the Civil War and the subsequent dictatorship of Francisco Franco, both essential to understand the political and cultural mentality of every Spaniard today; the Transition and the Democratic years until the present and how Spain has struggled to normalize its political and social life.

History 328 (3)
Mediterranean Culture and History

A broad introduction to the main evolution of the Mediterranean using not history but its cultures, religions and peoples. The main topics covered are: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Greece, Rome, Germanics, Byzantines, the Atlantic and the Mediterranean, the Renaissance, the Mediterranean family and the Modernization of the Mediterranean Societies.

Literature 301 (3)
The Image of Barcelona in Literature

After the Olympic Games of 1992, Barcelona became an international tourist destination; but a short visit cannot account for the cultural complexities of the Catalan capital. In order to know any city, to “dwell” in it, we need to become familiar with its oral history, paintings, architecture, sculpture, and literary texts. More specifically, the more we learn about the literature of Barcelona, the more we shall know about its culture, past and present.

Politics 321 (3)
Mediterranean Politics

Explores what shaped the Mediterranean political scenario from the French Revolution (1789) to the Barcelona Process or Euro-Mediterranean Policy. The focus is on: the French Revolution, the emergence of Modernity and Liberalism in the Mediterranean, Italian Unification, European Imperialism in North Africa and the Middle East, dictatorships in the Mediterranean, the two World conflicts and the Cold War in the Mediterranean.

Politics/Economics 322 (3)
An Urban Approach to Spain and Europe

Highlights the urban dimension of European society, referring to the different phenomena that European (and Spanish) cities face today. Students are introduced to the economic, political and social factors that configure urban Europe in order to understand its development in a global world. The course combines theoretical and practical sessions, presenting case studies of different European and Spanish cities. Field trips are a component of this course.

Politics 323 (3)
A Greater Middle East

Covers each region of the Middle East since WWII. Both the Carter Doctrine (1980) and George W. Bush’s Greater Middle East and North Africa Initiative (2004) provide the references through which each region is studied, together with North Africa, the Horn of Africa and the Area of Influence of the Central Command.

Politics 328 (3)
Cultures without State:

The Case of CataloniaIdeas of Nation, Nationalism and State are examined using the Catalan Case and the evolution of such ideas in the West. Characteristics of different ideas of Nationalism and the main evolution of the Catalan identity as well as tensions in the Basque country will be covered.

Download PDF with full program details on all AIFS Spain programs!

Download PDF with full program details on all AIFS Spain, Barcelona programs!