Undergraduate Studying Abroad

Living in a foreign country and adapting to its culture has long been considered the most effective way to really learn a second language. However, learning a foreign language isn’t the only reason to invest time and money in a semester or year abroad. Living and learning abroad will be one of the most challenging experiences of your academic career and can enhance your life through increased cross-cultural awareness, self-confidence and the ability to view your own cultural context from a different perspective.

It is for these reasons that Bowling Green State University considers its Academic Year Abroad programs so vitally important to its students. Such programs ensure that our students can be in touch with the cultures they study on a personal basis: observing, participating and drawing their own conclusions.

Forty years in Spain. Established in 1962, the Academic Year Abroad in Spain program is now beginning its fifth decade in the greater Madrid area. Our program is not only one of the oldest programs in Spain, but because of that experience we are also one of the best organized and least expensive. The program is a member of the American Association of Programs in Spain and is regularly evaluated by its AAPS peers, consistently receiving exceptional ratings and endorsements.

Many options. Over the years, the program has grown to include a wide range of opportunities for all interested students. The program is not just for BGSU students nor just for Spanish majors! Our alumni include representatives of colleges and universities throughout North America and elsewhere in the world, as well as students in a wide variety of majors, from social work to business, communications to public health. All of these students recognized the extraordinary benefit that they could receive both personally and professionally from developing Spanish language skills and obtaining experience in another culture.

In order for our students to receive that benefit, the program maintains a strict emphasis on the exclusive use of the Spanish language by its students, both in class and in day-to-day life. All classes are taught in Spanish and students are housed with Spanish families in order to encourage and assist the student with the use of the target language at all times.

Alcalá de Henares and its University.

The program is located in the city of Alcalá de Henares, a city of nearly 300,000 people located only 31 kilometers (19 miles) east of Madrid. Alcalá is the birthplace of Miguel de Cervantes and was declared a Mankind Heritage Site (Patrimonio de la Humanidad) by UNESCO in 1998. Students will attend the Universidad de Alcalá de Henares, an artistically, historically, and educationally rich institution founded in the late fifteenth century. Undergraduate classes are held in the Escuela Universitaria de Magisterio Cardenal Cisnernos, Alcalá de Henares, Madrid, allowing smaller classes designed for the needs of foreign students while still permitting contact with their Spanish peers.

Madrid – ¡Claro qué sí!

Madrid, selected the Cultural Capital of Europe for 1992, is readily accessible from Alcalá by way of the fine system of commuter trains in the metropolitan area – just a part of the excellent public transportation network which brings into easy reach all that the capital has to offer.

Information Request Form

For additional program information, contact:


Heidi Spence

BGSU Education Abroad Office
319 Administration Building


Cynthia Ducar, Program Director
223 Shatzel Hall
cmducar@bgsu.edu or ayspain@bgsu.edu

Application Deadlines:         

  • Fall - March 1st  
  • Spring - October 1st 
  • Summer - March 1st

Updated: 06/17/2022 08:12AM