May 19, 2024  
2016-2017 Academic Catalog 
2016-2017 Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Off-Campus Study

Off-Campus Study programs exist in most regions of the world. You will find information on a very wide range of programs at

Featured Programs

The programs featured on the Off-Campus Study website have been carefully selected and are believed to represent some of the best opportunities available today in off-campus study. From among the broad academic and geographical diversity of options, most students should be able to identify a program well suited to their academic goals.

Types of Programs

Most programs offer you the opportunity to enhance your major, concentration, or other area of academic interest while broadening your liberal arts education by learning about another area of the world. In some programs, the courses offered are linked by a common theme, such as women’s studies, environmental studies, or global development studies. In others, coursework may be closely connected to a particular major such as biology or economics. Programs may be organized and operated by American educational institutions, universities abroad, or a combination of both in a cooperative arrangement. Formats vary from traditional classroom-based instruction to fieldwork, independent study, and internship.

Program Competitiveness

It is important to note that off-campus study programs vary considerably in competitiveness. While some programs are highly competitive, accepting only students with higher G.P.A.s and specific course preparation, others may have more relaxed criteria for admission. Specific prerequisites and G.P.A. requirements are normally set out in the program information materials. Campus Program Advisers are also able to advise you regarding your eligibility for a particular program. Normally, Grinnell students apply to only one off-campus study program. Denial of admission to Grinnell students is rare because of the screening that takes place during the on-campus approval process.

Yearlong Programs

Approval to attend yearlong programs is limited and is granted by the Off-Campus Study Board on a competitive basis to students demonstrating exceptional academic achievement, strong written rationale, and support for their plans from their major department. The Off-Campus Study Board gives preference to well-focused proposals designed to deepen the student’s knowledge of a single culture within the context of a single integrated program. Successful applications for yearlong approval normally involve a request to study in one program in one country.

Assessing the Importance of Off-Campus Study

You may already have a good idea about where and what you would like to study off campus. However, if you are just beginning to explore the possibilities, you should reflect seriously on what you are planning to do. Personally, at this point in your life and education, you are likely to be at the optimal point in your capacity to learn by living and studying in a new and challenging environment. Since an optimal point occurs by definition only once in a lifetime, and off-campus study may hold valuable personal, academic, and professional benefits, the careful choice of an appropriate program may well be one of the most important decisions you make during your college career.

Core Rationale for Off-Campus Study

Grinnell requires that you select a program compatible with your academic goals, which you will clearly set out in a four-year course-plan and written rationale for off-campus study. It is up to you to define your goals in consultation with your academic adviser. Since your choice of program must be linked to your academic objectives, you should begin by thinking about why you want to study off campus, i.e., your core rationale. Most students choose to link their off-campus study to their major or concentration while others may wish to use the experience to enhance their understanding of other subjects studied on campus.

Additional Objectives for Off-Campus Study

In addition to the core rationale described above, your choice of program may be partly determined by additional academic objectives you want to achieve. For example, you may wish to broaden your liberal arts education by studying a language or taking courses not offered at Grinnell. You may also have broader educational goals connected to the experience of living in another culture. The possibility of community service, fieldwork, or an internship might be an important consideration. Additional objectives such as these are important to consider along with your core rationale and will help in selecting a program that is right for you.

Campus Program Advisers

A Program Adviser is assigned to every off-campus study program featured by Grinnell College. These advisers are very familiar with the programs they represent and can provide you with detailed program information as well as answering any questions you may have.

Peer Advisers

Every semester, large numbers of Grinnell students return from studying off campus. Talking with other students who have already studied on a program of interest to you is essential to making an intelligent decision about off-campus study.

International Students

Grinnell College is fortunate to have a diverse student body from many parts of the world. International students may be able to provide you with valuable insights and information to help you in making a decision about where to study off campus. The International Students Office will provide names of students from specified countries or regions.


Donna Vinter, English, Resident Director; Vida Praitis, Biology (2016 vistinng faculty); Tim Arner, English (2016 visiting faculty); Julianna Fuzesi, Political Science; George W. Jones, Political Science; Katy Layton-Jones, History

Grinnell-in-London offers students and faculty who teach on the program the opportunity to learn as a community about this dynamic place, its history, and its people through a careful selection of courses, opportunities for cultural integration, and co-curricular activities. Local staff offer a small set of regular program core courses that currently focuses on history, literature, politics, and theatre. The program curriculum is complemented by a rotating selection of courses offered by each year’s two guest Grinnell faculty, courses tailored to utilize London as a site and appeal to a range of students across disciplines. Students take 8 to 12 credits of program core courses, and choose one of two program tracks intended to provide a closer experience of British culture. One track is a course at Queen Mary College, University of London, an institution with one of the best campus cultures in London. Students interested in the Queen Mary track must meet a 3.0 gpa requirement. The other track is the internship track. Internship placements take into account the interests of each student. Several parliamentary internships have traditionally been available.

BIO 295 Blue Gene: How Modern Genetics Has Changed our View of Humanity 4 credits

The United Kingdom has been an epicenter of modern genetics research: Rosalind Franklin’s work on DNA structure at King’s College, John Gurdon’s cloning experiments at Oxford, John Sulston’s leadership on the International Human Genome Project at the Sanger Center in Cambridge, and Genomics England’s 100,000 Human Genomes Project at Queen Mary University. These projects have been used to shed light on topics that range from human evolution to the complex relationships between genes and the attributes that define who we are. They have also made possible new approaches to health and reproduction, including human cloning and gene therapy. The U.K. has also been the center of ethical and social issues related to the new genetics. While Darwin’s concepts of “survival of the fittest” and Francis Galton’s Eugenics have been (ab)used to justify the worst human atrocities, the Medical Research Council has been at the forefront of ethics in Genomics research. This course will use our London location to discuss human genomics research from social science, humanistic, and scientific perspectives, comparing European, British, and American views. Prerequisite: None. PRAITIS

BIO 295 Field of Genes: A look at Food in the Modern World       4 credits

By 2050, there will be 9 billion people in the world to feed, while farmland availability will likely be stagnant or diminished. Climate change will also affect where, when and how we grow food crops.  The state of agriculture today reflects its economic and political history, starting from the beginnings of human civilization to today, when food crops are transported around the world. All food crop plants have also been changed through genetic modification over the centuries, as humans selected for specific traits they found desirable, such as higher sugar content and pest resistance.  Over the last 50 years, advances in molecular biology have given us the technology to directly manipulate single genes in these important plant crops.  Does this new technology hold the promise of better agriculture, a way to feed the hungry, or is it unsafe? The British Museum houses one of the most extensive collections of artifacts from ancient to more modern   civilizations, including those related to agriculture.  London serves a center for trade.  The U.K. stands as a world leader in preserving genetic diversity in food crops and making advances in molecular research in agriculture.  They house one of the most important collections of crop plant seeds in the world.  The first farm animal cloning experiments were in Scotland.  However, the general population remains wary of this technology, especially given their experiences with food safety related to Bovine Spongiform encephalopathy or Mad Cow disease.  We will use the London location to explore the social, economic, political and biological past, present, and future of agriculture. Prerequisite: None. PRAITIS.

ENG 195 London Literature 4 credits

Also listed as GLS-195. This course will provide a survey of literature set in and around the city of London from the Middle Ages through the modern era. We will consider the city both as a physical location and an idealized space through which England promotes its national identity and determines its role on the world stage. As we read through each text, we will consider the ways in which authors construct and represent London for readers who live within or outside the city. We will visit sites around London in order to investigate how knowledge of the city space contributes to the meaning of a particular text. The course will include discussion of major moments in the life of the city, including the Peasants Revolt of 1381, the rise of the theatre in the sixteenth-century, the Great Fire of 1666, the Industrial Revolution, and the blitzkrieg of World War II. Readings will include works by medieval writers Geoffrey Chaucer and John Gower, city comedies of the Renaissance era, Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities, Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway, and Zadie Smith’s White Teeth. Prerequisite: None. ARNER.

ENG 275 The London Stage 4 credits

See THD-275.

ENG 295 The Arthurian Legend 4 credits

Also listed as HUM-295. The Arthurian legend has functioned as part of Britain’s national mythology for over 1000 years, and its popularity shows no signs of waning. This course will provide a broad survey of Arthurian literature from early Welsh texts to modern film adaptations. We will consider how the Arthurian legend contributes to ideas of English national identity, kingship and nobility, and the ideas of courtly love throughout the centuries. We will also examine how aspects of the legend have been adapted across the centuries and by non-British cultures. Readings will include French and English medieval romances, selections from Malory’s Morte D’Arthur, Tennyson’s Idylls of the King, Mark Twain’s A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, and the 1980s comic book series Camelot 3000. The class will take field trips to sites around England, including Stonehenge and Tintagel Castle. Prerequisite: None. ARNER. 

GLS 195 London Literature 4 credits

See ENG-195

HUM 295 The Arthurian Legend                         4 credits

See ENG-295

SST 195 Parliamentary Internship 4 credits

Students work for the equivalent of 16 hours a week for about 9 weeks, from mid-October until the end of term at an internship in the British Parliament. Placement in cooperation with a London-based agency. Applications for such selective parliamentary internships are made as part of the application for the Grinnell-in-London semester program prior to coming to London. Learning contracts must be approved by the instructor, the internship coordinator, and the work-site supervisor. Credit is earned and a grade assigned based on outside reading, short assignments, a longer final essay, and small group discussion focused on understanding and interpreting a parliamentary internship experience with an academic perspective. Meetings and assignments begin in September. Enrollment limited to three Parliamentary interns. Prerequisite: none. Required co-registration: POL 295: Governing Britain and its Regions. JONES.

SST 295 Internship 4 credits

Students work for the equivalent of 16 hours a week for 11 weeks at an internship. Placement in cooperation with a London-based agency.  Applications for selective GIL internships are made as part of the application for the Grinnell-in-London semester program prior to coming to London. Class discussions and assignments focus on understanding and interpreting students’ internship experiences and those of their co-workers within the U.K. work environment. Some outside reading and writing assignments required. Learning contracts must be approved by the instructor, the internship coordinator, and the work-site supervisor. Enrollment: 12. Prerequisite: None. VINTER and STAFF.

THD 275 The London Stage 4 credits

Also listed as ENG-275. This course will explore professional British theatre in all its variety, taking advantage of the unrivalled richness and diversity of the London stage. At its heart will be careful consideration of productions in the current London repertory, with plays ranging from classical to contemporary, and venues including subsidized, commercial and fringe theatres. We’ll think about theatre as a live performance art taking place in real time and space and, in those terms, all the different ways that theatre can be theatre. Course work will also include reading a selection of the plays we see, so as to cultivate students’ facility in analyzing dramatic texts of different styles and genres as they present human beings in significant action. Finally, since drama holds the mirror up to nature, we’ll have the opportunity to discuss the larger social, moral and political themes with which the plays are concerned - windows onto contemporary Britain and the wider world. Prerequisite: none. VINTER.

Grinnell-in-Washington, D.C.

Program is currently suspended.


The Grinnell-in-Washington, D.C., program is offered in the first semester of each academic year. Part of the curriculum changes from year to year, reflecting the interests and expertise of the Grinnell faculty member leading the program that fall. Other courses—policymaking, internships, and the internship seminar—are offered every year.

Students are placed in internships that match their individual interests and experience. The internship is 12 weeks in length, Monday–Thursday, approximately 32 hours each week. During the internship, classes are on Fridays and on one weekday evening.

Students are housed in apartments in D.C., attend class just off Dupont Circle, and take multiple field trips in Washington, D.C.

Prerequisite: second-year status and good academic standing.

Featured Programs

Africa: Sub-Saharan
Botswana, Ghana, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania

Botswana: University Immersion in Southern Africa (ACM) (spring)

Ghana: Arts and Sciences Program in Legon (CIEE)

Senegal: Minnesota Studies in International Development (MSID)

South Africa: University of Cape Town (IES)

South Africa: Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS)

Tanzania: Human Evolution and Ecology (ACM) (Fall)


Australia and New Zealand

North Queensland, Australia: Tropical Rainforest Management (SFS)

New Zealand: University of Otago, New Zealand (Arcadia)


East Asia
China, Japan, Korea

China: Beijing - Associated Colleges in China (Hamilton)

China: Beijing - AU Abroad Program (American University)

China: Beijing - China Studies Institute

China: Nanjing - Intensive Chinese Language and Culture (CIEE)

China: Hangzhou or Kunming - C.V. Starr-Middlebury School in China

China: Harbin or Kunming - Intensive Chinese Language (CET)

China: Shanghai - 21st Century City (Alliance for Global Education)

Republic of China: Taipei Intensive Chinese Language and Culture Program (CIEE)

Japan: Osaka - Intensive Japanese Language and Cuture (CET)

Japan: Tokyo – Sophia University Arts and Sciences (CIEE) (spring)

Japan: Tokyo – Language and Culture (IES)

Japan: Tokyo - Japan Study Program - Waseda University (ACM) (year)

Japan: Nagoya - Direct Enrollment Nanzan University (IES)

Korea: Seoul – Direct Enrollment Ewha University (ISEP)

Korea: Seoul – Ewha University (ISEP)


South Asia
India, Bhutan, Cambodia/Vietnam

India: Pune - Contemporary India (Alliance)

India: Pune - Cultures, Traditions, & Globalization (ACM) (fall)

India: Pune & Jaipur - Development Studies and Hindi (ACM) (spring)

India: Hyderabad - Arts and Sciences (CIEE)

India: Madurai - South India Term Abroad (SITA)

Bhutan: Jakar –Himalayan Environment and Society in Transition (SFS)

Cambodia/Vietnam: River Ecosystems and Environmental Ethics (SFS)


Europe and Russia
Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, France, Germany and Austria, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Spain, Sweden

Multiple Countries

Comparative Women’s Studies in Europe Program (Antioch)

European Union Program (IES)

Serbia, Bosnia, & Kosov: Peace and Conflict Studies in the Balkans (SIT)


Leuven: Program in European Culture and Society, Leuven

Czech Republic

Prague: Central European Studies, Jewish Studies, or Film Studies (CET)


Copenhagen: Danish Institute For Study Abroad (DIS)


London: Grinnell-in-London (fall)

London: London and Florence; Arts in Context (ACM) (spring)

London: London School of Economics (year only)

London: Direct Enrollment University College (spring)

London: Direct Enrollment Queen Mary (spring)


Aix-En-Provence or Marseille Programs (AUCP)

Nantes Program (IES)

Paris: Hamilton College Junior Year in France (year)

Germany and Austria

Germany: Berlin - Language and Area Studies (IES) (spring recommended)

Germany: Berlin - Metropolitan Studies (IES)

Germany: Freiburg - (IES) (spring recommended)

Germany: Freiburg - European Union Program (IES)

Munich - Wayne State University (spring recommended)

Austria: Vienna (IES)


College Year in Athens


Budapest: Semester in Mathematics (St. Olaf)

Budapest: Aquinum Institute of Technology (AIT)


Florence: Arts, Humanities and Culture (ACM) (fall)

Florence: London and Florence; Arts in Context (ACM) (spring)

Milan: Music: Tradition and Innovation (IES)

Rome: Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies in Rome (ICCS)

Rome: Trinity College in Rome


Amsterdam (IES)


Warsaw: Central European Studies (CIEE)

Wroclaw: Culture and Politics of Reconciliation (Syracuse)


Moscow or St. Petersburg - Russian Language and Area Studies Program (ACTR)

Irkutsk: C.V. Starr - Middlebury School in Russia

St. Petersburg: Bard - Smolny Study Abroad Program


Granada: IES

Madrid: Hamilton College in Spain

Madrid: IES

Salamanca: IES


Stockholm: DIS


Latin America and the Caribbean
Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Mexico, Nicaragua, British West Indies


Buenos Aires - Liberal Arts Program (CIEE)

British West Indies

Marine Resource Studies (SFS)


Santiago or Valparaiso — Liberal Arts Program (CIEE)

Santiago Program (IES)

Costa Rica and Nicaragua

Costa Rica and Nicaragua: Internship (ICADS)

San Jose: Field Program in Environment & Sustainable Development (ICADS)

San Jose: Tropical Biology on a Changing Planet (OTS)

San Jose: Tropical Diseases, Environmental Change and Human Health Program (OTS)

San Jose: Community Engagement (ACM) (fall)

San Jose: Field Research (ACM) (spring)


Ecuador: MSID

Ecuador: Quito Program or Direct Enrollment Universidad San Francisco de Quito (IES)


Merida: Universidad Autonoma de Yucatan (IFSA-Butler University)


Cusco: Biodiversity and Development in the Andes-Amazon (SFS)


Middle East and North Africa
Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Morocco and Turkey

Israel: The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (IFSA-Butler)

Jordan: Middle East and Arabic Language Studies, Amman (ACM)

Jordan: Area and Arabic Langauge Studies, Amman (AMIDEAST)

Morocco: Area and Arabic Language Studies in Rabat (AMIDEAST)

Morocco: Regional Studies in French in Rabat (AMIDEAST)

Turkey: Duke University in Istanbul

Reading View. Alt Shift A for Accessibility Help.

Turkey: Syracuse University Abroad in Istanbul 


North America
United States

Atlanta: Morehouse College and Spelman College

Chicago: Arts, Entrepreneurship and Urban Studies (ACM)

Chicago: Newberry Seminar in the Humanities (ACM) (fall)

Knoxville, TN: Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ACM) (fall)

Washington, D.C.: Grinnell-in-Washington, D.C.  suspended operation

Waterford, CT: National Theater Institute


Oceans and Seas

Sea Semester - multiple locations