AIRC: Rome - Interdisciplinary Semester in Italy

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  • Location(s): Rome, Italy
  • Program Type(s): Study Abroad, Research

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Why study with AIRC? "AIRC Signature Semester Program" is a dynamic and innovative semester program offering a student experience in Rome unlike any other. Students take core courses in the history and development of Rome, travel to select regions... read more

All Reviews

I gained a lot of competence reading and speaking Latin: my ability with the language has not been the same since! It was more than worth my while! - Franciscan University of Steubenville View Entire Review
I can speak Latin. Yes. - California State University - Fresno View Entire Review
I returned home with a maturity level that I've found in very few of my peers. Besides the confidence I gained from living in Rome without a word of Italian, I also completed a rigorous course and made more genuine friendships than I have had in a long time. I have thought about my time in Rome every day since I left (as I write... - University of Southern California View Entire Review
Before this program, I had never studied archaeology. This experience was the perfect introduction to the subject for me. I learned a lot about the subject itself and about my own abilities and interests. It was most certainly worthwhile. - California State University - Fresno View Entire Review
A student studying abroad with AIRC: Rome - Interdisciplinary Semester in Italy
This was my first archaeological field experience, so I learned about my chosen discipline. I also gained lifelong friends, and experiences I will never forget for the rest of my life. - University of Southern California View Entire Review
I learned how to navigate a foreign country, how to write excavation journals, how to work on an archaeological dig. It was absolutely worthwhile. It was the best way I could have spent my summer. - The University of Texas at Austin View Entire Review
This experience provided a completely new way of thinking and learning about Ancient Rome through archaeology and how we think of it in the modern day. As an art history student, I was interested, but had never learned about archaeology, so this was a great excuse to do so in a wonderful city! - University of Southern California View Entire Review
Even though archaeology was not my major, I always had a significant appreciation and interest in the discipline. The program was worthwhile because it taught me a lot about a discipline that I would have pursued if my life were different and pleased my appetite for Italian history and culture that I don't feel I would have gott... - University of California - Berkeley View Entire Review
I got to admire the beauty of Rome, learn about it's rich history and enjoy it all with a lot of great people. - California State University - Fresno View Entire Review
I learned so much about the city, its history, its legacy. The monuments are like old friends now. I can identify a lot of them on a map by their shape and position, and I can describe them and their histories in Latin. I know the lay-out of Rome passably well now, and can find my way around with a map. - California State University - Fresno View Entire Review
It was definitely worthwhile. I learned how quickly a great instructor like Nancy Llewelyn can get students with no speaking ability to talking in Latin for 10 minutes straight about the ancient world. - Stanford University View Entire Review
I really learned how to take care of myself, manage money, and trust and believe in myself to make the right decisions. I really felt like an adult and I've continued to use those lessons right now! - Trinity University View Entire Review
Asides from the in depth field school and its ability to create well balanced archaeologists, the overall experience of living in Rome and interacting with new people proved beneficial to any one planning to broaden their own horizons. Being able to eat, sleep and eat everything Roman allowed me to reach out of my comfort zone a... - University of Toronto View Entire Review
It is very cliche to say that it "broadened my horizons", but it truly did. It is absolutely worthwhile and I feel bad for people who either don't get the opportunity to go abroad or choose not to. - College of the Holy Cross View Entire Review
This program offers a perfect opportunity for any student wishing to further, or even begin, a classical studies or archeology degree. The first week of instruction provides an in-depth tour around Rome lead by serious scholars. The remaining 5 weeks offer a unique opportunity for first-time students to gain invaluable archeolog... - University of New Mexico View Entire Review
I learned so much about myself and the career that I want to pursue (archaeology). It cemented the fact that I want to be active in the subject as well as the international side of it. I met people who encouraged and inspired me and I have a new found love for Rome. It was completely and utterly worthwhile. - University of Minnesota - Twin Cities View Entire Review
I gained a lot of perspective and learned about myself as well as archaeology and the Italian culture. The trip was more than worth it! - The University of Texas at Austin View Entire Review
I improved my speaking skills and had a wonderful chance to become friends with others eager to save this language. - California State University - Fresno View Entire Review
I learned more about how archaeology works in Italy in relation to other countries. I learned what an excavation is like from the beginning which is essential to any aspiring archaeologist. It was definitely worthwhile. - New York University View Entire Review
I learned a great deal about travel, living in another city, and being part of an international academic community. Most importantly I learned why archaeology can be so fun and interesting. - Vassar College View Entire Review
I learned a lot. - University of Southern California View Entire Review
It was more than worth it! It was for me a dream come true! I got to do something I am very passionate about. I got to live history and not just stand by on the side lines! It was hard work and very hot in Rome but it gave me a great sense of accomplishment. It was so much fun and I met some extraordinary people along the way. I... - University of Ottawa View Entire Review
How to be self-reliant. How to travel internationally. How to acclimate oneself to a new culture. - California State University - Fresno View Entire Review
Definitely. - Trinity University View Entire Review


Why study with AIRC?
"AIRC Signature Semester Program" is a dynamic and innovative semester program offering a student experience in Rome unlike any other. Students take core courses in the history and development of Rome, travel to select regions and cities of Italy, and Italian language and culture. Elective courses cover a range of student interests, including art history, journalism and social media, and religionsThe AIRC program takes students well beyond the traditional classroom-based learning model to a kinetic learning space of theory and on-site experience. AIRC students spend time engaging and interacting with Rome’s history and cultural heritage through experiential learning projects designed to teach them real-world skills that they can use throughout their lives. 

Journalism, media and communications students research and analyze contemporary issues such as politics, urban image, and multiculturalism via hands-on experience with world-recognized journalists and photographers. Communications students document past and present through new media, photography and video, also with world-recognized professionals. Additional majors, such as history, art history and archaeology, enrich their knowledge base while simultaneously working with the latest digital technologies such as social media, streaming video, and virtual reconstruction.

“AIRC Signature Semester Program” is the only program in Rome where students interact with living history in real-time situations. AIRC’s partnerships, collaborations, and contacts in Rome and Italy give its students unparalleled access to extraordinary people, places, and opportunities. AIRC collaborates with the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage, the Special Superintendency for the Archaeological Heritage of Rome, the Superintendency for the Cultural Heritage of the City of Rome, foreign academies such as the American Academy, Italian and international cultural entities and institutions such as Roma Sotterranea, the Centro Studi Americani, and International Association for Classical Archaeology, as well as the United States Embassy. 

Students regularly participate in AIRC’s archaeological digs, documentation and conservation projects, conferences, video productions, and outreach via social media and translation. AIRC also has numerous contacts among local cultural heritage professionals—archaeologists, conservators, journalists, photographers, artists, designers, etc.—who offer access to additional exciting opportunities.

All members of AIRC’s international, bilingual faculty are highly-educated experts in their fields with long experience living and working in Rome and Italy. All courses in the program are taught with a low student-to-faculty ratio (maximum 15:1) in order to maximize comprehension and foster curiosity.
The Courses In addition to the courses described below, check out the amazing summer programs offered by AIRC. 
Students receive credit through California State University, Fresno's Division of Continuing and Global Education, who acts as the school of record and transcripting body for AIRC programs.

Layers of Rome and Discovering Italy: New in town? Everyone knows the old saying, “When in Rome…,” but what exactly does that mean? Get to know the Eternal City through the major environmental, social, religious, political, architectural, and artistic influences and developments that have shaped it from its foundation in the 8th century BC to today. This course is conducted almost entirely outdoors/on-site, using the city as a living classroom. Want to try the best pizza in the world, or feast your eyes on high Renaissance art? Get to know Italy through day- or weekend-trips to a variety of important cities and sites like Ostia Antica, Pompeii and Naples, Siena and Florence, and Ravenna, exploring topics such as sustainability, urban planning, art history, antiquities, food and foodways, cultural heritage, and ancient life. 

Elementary Italian: In order to get the most out of a semester abroad, you need to communicate with the locals in their language. This interactive, situation-based course enriches your appreciation of the culture and society by teaching you how to express yourself with essential Italian grammar and vocabulary, giving you more freedom and confidence when shopping, eating, and traveling.  

Elective (choice of 2):
Mass Communications and Journalism Through Digital Media:  Learn about Italian communications through history, from ancient Rome to the modern Berlusconi-era media. Guest-lecturers include local and international journalists, writers, and bloggers from media outlets such as TIME and The Daily Telegraph. You will also produce a professional portfolio of various writing styles, from blogging to travel and food writing, tourism, news and memoir format.  

Renaissance and Baroque Art:  Follow 300 critical years of developments in art and architecture within the urban context of Rome, starting with the extensive restructuring of the urban landscape through massive projects and commissions in the Renaissance and concluding with the ostentatious layering of decoration and design in the Baroque. 

Religions of Rome: Follow the socio-political history of the city from its beginnings to its decline and transformation into a Christian center by the sixth century AD, exploring the fundamental components of the religions practiced in Rome through Roman art and its meaning in context, as well as examining the development of the Pagan “savior” cults and the rise of Judaism and Christianity in the city.  

Program Type(s):
Study Abroad
Program Length(s):
  • Fall
  • Spring
Instruction Language(s):
  • Italian
  • English
Language Requirement(s):
  • English
Relevant Study Subject(s):
  • Architecture
  • Italian Studies
  • Communication and Media Studies
  • Journalism
  • Italian Language, Literature
  • Liberal Arts, General Studies
  • Archeology
  • History
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