UPCES: Undergraduate Program in Central European Studies
Prague, Czech Republic
About the Program
The Undergraduate Program in Central European Studies (UPCES) evolved as a joint effort of CERGE-EI and Charles University striving for a common goal: a top quality undergraduate educational experience focused on integral issues of Central Europe. These two highly reputable institutions work together to ensure American, Czech, and other European students a challenging educational environment in which they learn from experienced faculty, as well as from one another.
Prague, Czech Republic
Prague is one of the best preserved medieval cities of Europe and it is often called "The City of a Hundred Spires". Prague offers a wide selection of Romanesque, Gothic, Baroque, Neo-Renaissance, Art Nouveau, Cubist and Socialist-Realist architecture. On any given evening, visitors may choose to see one of dozens of concerts, operas, or theater presentations. Museums boast world-class collections of art and host international exhibitions. The Czech countryside has hundreds of castles, chateaux, and historic ruins. Moreover, there are thousands of kilometers of marked trails for hiking through beautiful landscape to visit these historical landmarks. The dreamlike quiet of an older, slower-paced Europe lures visitors from all over the world, and studying abroad in Prague gives students the chance to develop a genuine feel for the city and its history at a leisurely pace.
To become lost in the winding streets of Prague is a wonderful experience. The city itself is a museum, filled with a rich collection of musical heritage, cultural activities, and history. There was no radical rebuilding of the city center during the industrial revolution, so the city has maintained its unique "old world "character. Whereas cities like Warsaw and Berlin offer little evidence of what they looked like in the 1750s, the urban design of Prague is not very different from what it was even in the 15th century. Prague did not suffer the damage of other European cities during World War II, leaving its medieval network of narrow cobblestone streets, gothic churches, and baroque palaces intact.
- 3.0 CGPA
- Previous coursework with Central or Eastern European content strongly recommended
Study abroad students take part in courses organized specifically for UPCES. Students of Charles University and other European Erasmus students studying abroad in Prague are able to take UPCES courses with the American students in the program. This integration guarantees that students take their courses in an international, multi-cultural environment. UPCES feels strongly that students can develop a true sense of the region through direct academic and social interaction within the local culture.
Students are normally required to take five courses. Students are required to take a mandatory elementary Czech language. To fulfill their remaining four additional course requirements, students may select from the UPCES course offerings.
Courses will meet for 45 academic hours per semester, including class time, related excursions, and exam periods; giving each course a rating of 3 credit hours. The one exception is elementary Czech language. Due to its lengthened schedule (an extra 12.5 hours of instruction during orientation), Czech is rated with 4 credit hours. Thus, a typical semester load will be 16 credit hours per semester. Class sizes are small, so courses are interactive.
Fields of Study
Anthropology, Art History, Czech Language, Cultural Studies, Economics, Environmental Studies, Film Studies, History, International Relations, Literature, Philosophy, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology.
In addition to the courses you will take through UPCES, you will get involved with the Czech community through volunteer opportunities, excursions and site visits. Each semester, UPCES organizes excursions to various museums, events, and cultural activities around Prague. UPCES students are invited to join any of these opportunities free of charge. Prague is world-renowned for its parks and outdoor spaces. The city center is surrounded by large green spaces perfect for strolling, playing sports, and relaxing with friends. UPCES will work to engage students as much as possible in local culture and daily life in order to maximize your integration in your host city.
Upon arrival in Prague, students will have 4 nights reserved for them at the Hotel Prokopka. During this time, they will be looking for a flat with other UPCES students. UPCES Program Managers will provide a list of approved flats for the students. During these first four days, UPCES Program Managers will be available to answer any questions or concerns the students may have. At the conclusion of this time, students will depart the hotel and move into their furnished flats.
UPCES Program website
UPCES Housing Information
Contact Past Participants
Click HERE to contact recent study abroad alumni in this region.