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Education Abroad Office

Institute for American Universities (IAU)

Area: Global Direct
Location: Florence
Country: Italy
Term: Spring, Fall, Academic Year, Summer
Website: IAU Florence Direct Program

IAU offers a semester-long study abroad program in the vibrant city of Florence, Italy, during which students can take classes, participate in internships and service-learning programs, and immerse themselves in this lively cultural capital. Building on IAU's history as a study abroad school in the Mediterranean Basin, IAU's Barcelona semester program uses its site-specificity and  to aid students in delving deeper into Mediterranean and European cultures. Over the years, IAU has modified and enhanced its study abroad programs and curriculum to meet the needs of the students it serves. IAU's courses are rigorous and unique, incoporating region-specific content and experiences.

Cost: IAU tuition rates + in-country costs

Requirements: minimum 3.0 GPA

Students will pay IAU directly for the program fee. This program fee will include tuition, housing, daily breakfast/dinner (homestays only), activity fee, textbook rental, orientation, health, liability and repatriation insurance, excursions, and scheduled cultural activities. Additional student costs include round-trip airfare, lunches, and personal expenses. There are many IAU scholarships that you can apply for to help offset these costs.

UofSC students will receive the following automatic discounts for IAU Florence programs:

  • SEMESTER PROGRAMS: 28% off tuition 

UofSC students who receive Federal Pell Grants will receive the following automatic discounts:

  • Pell Grant Plus Program – In an effort to encourage socioeconomic diversity in study abroad and expose more undergraduate students to international academic experiences, IAU will award a $3,000 grant to Federal Pell Grant recipients to be used for any of its on-site semester programs and a $650 grant to Federal Pell Grant recipients to be used for any of its on-site short-term programs (summer and January term).
  • Please submit the following form to the Office of Admissions in order to confirm your eligibility in the Pell Grant Plus Program. Students must have full-time student status at IAU, partake in demi-pension housing, and be currently enrolled in an undergraduate degree program to be eligible. Kindly note that students would not be eligible for other IAU scholarships or grants by receiving the Pell Grant Plus.

IAU Florence offers a broad array of options with courses in art, business, communications, dance, internatonal relations, political science, italian language, music, psychology, and wine studies. 

To see courses USC students have taken at this university, please reference the Registrar's Course Equivalency Table*.

*note that all IAU courses are listed under France as the host country, not Italy, as France is the location of IAU headquarters. This will not affect how the courses transfer back.   

All courses have a required field studies component, where faculty use the city of Florence as their classroom. These field studies include visits to museums, historical and cultural sites, and local businesses. Students also will participate in a variety of activities and study tours that enrich the academic and cultural experience of the program. The study tours are day trips for the entire student cohort to cities like San Gimignano, Siena, and Lucca, while weekend study tours may include destinations to other regions of Italy, including Rome, Milan, or areas in Sicily. IAU also offers a lecture series, where local faculty share their expertise through presentations and engaging dialogue. 

Per university policy, all USC students will be charged for  emergency medical, evacuation and repatriation insurance  for their time abroad. Students will be enrolled in this insurance by the education abroad office prior to their departure. Contact the Education Abroad Office for more details.

Students will have the option to be housed in shared homestays with Italian families, which include daily breakfast and dinner, or in shared apartments, where students will be responsible for their own meals. Students may request roommates on the housing application form.

IAU's semester dates line up with USC's academic calendar so the Fall term runs from late August to mid-December, and the Spring semester runs from mid January to early May. 

There will be a mandatory two day orientation for all students after your arrival date and before classes officially begin. Orientation dates are listed on the calendar for each semester.

Semester and academic-year students will need a Student Visa to study in Italy.  Visa applications and submission requirements may vary based on the Consulate you go through. To find the consulate within your home juristdiction, please click here. Students are typically required to appear IN PERSON to their consulate to drrop off and/or pick up any visa materials. An additional Permit to Stay may be required upon receipt of student visa. IAU will provide the necessary documentation needed to prove you will be a student abroad, but the remaining application and materials are the responsibility of the student. Please contact the Education Abroad Office if you have any questions. 


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