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USAC Valencia Program

Fast Facts

Sessions Offered:

Fall, Spring, Summer, Academic Year


Valencia, Spain




2.5 GPA, good academic and disciplinary standing

Application Due:

Fall & Academic Year:
Feb. 24

Spring: Sept. 24

Summer: Mar. 4

Program Cost

Refer to Application tab for more details

Valencia at Night

The USAC Valencia program allows students with a wide range of Spanish language skills the opportunity to improve their Spanish and take elective STEM, business, and Spanish culture. Although no prior language study is required to participate in this program, all students are expected to take Spanish language coursework. Most elective courses are taught in English. An internship may also be available for students with advanced Spanish skills.

The program is administered by the University Studies Abroad Consortium (USAC), of which the University of Iowa is a member. University of Iowa students earn resident credit for this program.

Academic Program - Semester

Students enroll in a 12/15 sh per semester:

  • Required Spanish language track (Note: Students can choose to take only the first course (3-4 sh) in the track in order to take more STEM electives.)
  • Electives in STEM, business, and Spanish culture (in English or Spanish)
  • Optional Spanish language and literature electives

For updated course offerings and descriptions, visit USAC's program webpage.

Academic Program - Summer

USAC Valencia offers two 4-week programs each summer: Summer Session I and Summer Session II. Students may participate in one or both sessions. Students take 3-5 sh per session, and one 3-credit course is required per session. Summer course offerings include STEM and business electives taught in English and intermediate to advanced Spanish language courses. Students are not required to take a Spanish language course during the summer sessions.

For updated course offerings and descriptions, visit USAC's program webpage.

Course Equivalencies for Engineering Students

The following English-taught courses have been approved for Engineering majors:

  • Statics (ENGR, 2000-level, 3 credits)
  • Differential Equations (MATH, 2000-level, 3 credits)
  • Physics for Scientists and Engineers I (PHYS, 1000-level, 4 credits)
  • Physics for Scientists and Engineers II (PHYS, 1000-level, 4 credits)
  • Engineering Thermodynamics I (ENGR, 3000-level, 3 credits)

Students may also seek approval for additional STEM courses by contacting Anat Levtov, Director of Global Experiences in the College of Engineering at

Excursions and Field Studies


Students visit nearby museums, theaters, and cultural sites throughout the semester. One-day excursions may offered to locations such as Xàtiva, Dénia and Las Rotas, Parque Natural de la Albufera, Peñíscola, and Sagunto/Sierra Calderona. Dates and exact destinations are at the discretion of the Resident Director and vary from semester to semester.

Field Studies

USAC offers an optional tour/field study in Barcelona at the beginning of the Fall semester and Summer Session I and in Madrid at the beginning of Spring semester. This segment of the program carries an additional fee. Students may elect to participate in the four-day tour for fun or in conjunction with a 1-credit field study course, which requires some reflective assignments.

Program Dates

Due to ongoing concerns regarding COVID-19, UI students will not be able to participate in this program during Summer 2020.

Fall: Late August to mid-December

Spring: Early January to mid-May

Summer Session I: Late May to late June

Summer Session II: Early to late July

For exact program dates, visit USAC's program webpage.

For More Information

Emily Gruis, Senior Study Abroad Advisor
The University of Iowa
Office for Study Abroad
1111 University Capitol Centre
Iowa City, IA 52242

Phone: 319-335-0353
Fax: 319-335-0343


Situated on Europe’s Iberian Peninsula, Spain is a strikingly beautiful and diverse country. The country has the third largest number of UNESCO World Heritage sites. Spain’s distinct regions means there is something for everyone, from lush forests to towering mountains and stunning beaches to vibrant cities, many of which are easily accessible through the country's extensive network of high-speed trains. Widely known for excellent food and art, friendly locals, relaxed lifestyle, Flamenco culture, and lots of sunshine, Spain has been one of the cultural centers of Europe for thousands of years and remains one of the most popular destinations in the world for study and travel.


Located on Spain’s southeast coast, Valencia is a Mediterranean city in all aspects. Locals embrace outdoor living and recreation by taking advantage of the area’s temperate climate. Popular activities include strolling on one of the city’s seaside promenades (the longest of which stretches 7 km, or over 4 miles), visiting beaches, or biking. In fact, Valencia has been recognized as a bike-friendly city by the Cities by Bike Network and has over 120 km (75 miles) of bike lanes and garden causeways.

Valencia is home to a multitude of museums and cultural centers, but this port city is perhaps best known for its innovative City of Arts and Sciences. This architecturally distinct network of museums and performing arts venues includes an aquarium, science museum, and opera house.

The city hosts festivals throughout the year, but students studying abroad in the spring will have the unique opportunity to experience Las Fallas, a two-week regional festival that combines historic, religious, and comedic processions and events and culminates with pyrotechnic displays.

La Universidad Politècnica de València

USAC classes are held at the La Universidad Politècnica de València (Polytechnic University of Valencia), a prestigious public university that serves 33,000 students. UPV is one of four polytechnic universities in Spain and ranked in the world’s top 200 universities for engineering, technology, and natural sciences. The innovative campus has been designed with sustainability and the student experience at the forefront of its construction; the campus is car-free, includes more than 30 acres of green spaces, and has numerous cafés and terraces where students can enjoy a quick or leisurely meal in the Mediterranean climate.

US Department of State Country Information

The US Department of State provides safety and security information for every country of the world to help you assess for yourself the risks of travel. Each country information page contains a Travel Advisory, Alerts, and other important details specific to that country that could affect you.

Pay close attention to the entry and exit requirements, local laws and customs, health conditions, and other details to help decide whether traveling to any given country is right for you. Non-US citizen travelers may also wish to seek guidance from the embassy of their country of citizenship. The UI International Travel Policy for Students addresses restrictions on student travel to high-risk locations and engagement in high-risk activities abroad.

Living Arrangements

USAC students participating in this program have two housing options: a Spanish homestay or an off-campus apartment with other USAC students.


Students live in Spanish-speaking homes where three meals are provided daily. Homestays are the optimal housing arrangement because of their contribution to the program’s goals of language and cultural immersion.

Shared Apartments

Students seeking an independent environment may prefer to live in shared apartments with other USAC students. Students living in apartments are responsible for their own meals. Commuting to campus for classes is possible by walking (45 minutes), taking the bus or metro (25-30 minutes), or biking (15-20 minutes). Bikes can be rented throughout town at very affordable rates.

Payment of Housing Costs

Students pay monthly rent to their host family or apartment landlord. Housing costs are not included in the program fee. Students need to budget and have a plan to withdraw the cash needed for rent each month.


This program is open to UI students who fulfill the following requirements:

  • Minimum 2.5 cumulative GPA: Student must have at minimum a 2.5 cumulative GPA to participate in this program.
  • Good academic and disciplinary standing: Students must be in good academic and disciplinary standing at the University of Iowa. Academic and disciplinary history will also be considered when determining whether a student is prepared to represent the University of Iowa as part of this program. Students who, even after being accepted into a program, are put on either academic and/or disciplinary probation for any period of time overlapping with the study abroad program dates are ineligible to study abroad. In these cases, students must forfeit their acceptance, will not be allowed to study abroad, and are wholly responsible for any and all financial expenses incurred.


Valencian Oranges

The most recent cost sheet for the program is included below. The cost sheet outlines the total estimated costs associated with participating in this program and can be used for financial aid and planning purposes. It includes fees charged on students’ U-Bill (USAC program fee, Study Abroad Administrative Fee, and mandatory Iowa Regents CISI Travel Insurance), as well as out-of-pocket expenses. Actual out-of-pocket expenses will vary from individual to individual. Quoted estimates are conservatively high, yet realistic. Please see the respective websites for further details. Contact the designated UI Study Abroad advisor with questions regarding the cost sheet.

Semester Cost Sheets

PDFCost Sheet for USAC Valencia, Spring 2020

PDFCost Sheet for USAC Valencia, Fall 2019

Summer Cost Sheets

PDFCost Sheet for USAC Valencia, Summer 2020, Session I

PDFCost Sheet for USAC Valencia, Summer 2020, Sessions I & II

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Most financial aid (scholarships, grants, and loans) is applicable to study abroad programs. Please check the Study Abroad website for information on financial aid and how it may be applied to studying abroad. You are also encouraged to speak with someone at the Office of Student Financial Aid to explore financial aid options.

Scholarship opportunities exist for study abroad participants. Please explore Study Abroad’s websites for UI Study Abroad Scholarship Opportunities and Non-UI External Awards.


How to Apply

Interested students should make an appointment with the designated UI Study Abroad advisor to discuss the program and the application process. Appointments can be scheduled by calling 319-335-0353. During the appointment, the advisor will provide full application instructions. Note: Application materials will not be reviewed unless a student has already met with the advisor to discuss the program.

The application process consists of the following steps:

• Complete the UI Online Application for Study Abroad. Applicants will be charged a $50 non-refundable application fee. As part of the UI Online Application for Study Abroad, applicants will need to upload a copy of their passport picture page and a list of courses to take while abroad.

• Please note that for Spring 2021 and Summer 2021 study abroad programs, students will not be charged the $50 application fee until travel takes place. If a student chooses to withdraw prior to departure due to COVID-19 concerns, the application fee will not be charged.

• Complete the USAC Online Application.


Acceptance into the applicant's chosen study abroad program is made by USAC directly via an email to the applicant. Additional documents will posted to a USAC Gateway account for the participant.

Health & Safety Planning

All students preparing to study abroad should review the following:

Iowa Regents CISI Health Insurance Information

Students are also encouraged to complete the Health Preparation Guide for International Travelform with their medical practitioner. This document is intended to help you plan for your medical needs abroad. Please DO NOT turn this form in to UI Study Abroad.

Financial Aid

For more information about receiving financial aid while studying abroad, please review the following:

UI Financial Aid Information


US passport holders must obtain a student visa from Spain in order to participate in this program. US passport holders should follow the batch processing visa application instructions provided by USAC. If students do not participate in batch visa processing, they must apply for their student visa independently and present their application by appointment at the appropriate Spanish Consulate. The Consulate for all UI students is the Chicago Consulate; it is based the location of one's home university, not the state of origin. Students are ultimately responsible for obtaining the necessary visa to enter Spain.

Non-US passport holders should consult with USAC regarding their visa requirements.

Flight/Travel Arrangements

Students may either book the group flight itinerary through USAC or book flights independently. Participants are responsible for being at the orientation site on time.


In order to prepare for your time abroad, you are required by the University of Iowa to complete two orientations. These may be in addition to orientations provided by your on-site provider.

Online Education Abroad Pre-Departure Orientation

You are required to complete the International Programs online “Education Abroad Pre-Departure Orientation” course distributed through ICON prior to departure. This orientation is mandatory for all students going abroad under the auspices of the University of Iowa. It covers many practical matters about living overseas, such as health and safety, communication, money, goals and much more. You will be enrolled in this course by International Programs and an email will be sent to you once enrolled. If you have any questions you can email

Program-Specific Orientation

This orientation will be facilitated by your study abroad advisor and will cover content specific to your program and host country. It could be conducted in a group setting or one-on-one. Your study abroad advisor will send you more information about this mandatory in-person session.

Coming soon!