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Architectural Studies in Italy

The KSU College of Architecture and Environmental Design (CAED) Florence Program offers an opportunity to study abroad in the fall semester to those enrolled in the junior year Bachelor of Arts in Architectural Studies program (ARCS).

A design studio class, that challenges the students to deal with issues that are especially relevant in Florence today, is at the core of the curriculum. A series of architecture-related events, featuring some of the most interesting personalities from the various fields of design in Italy and all over Europe, further enriches the students' experience. 

field studies

A significant component of the students' learning experience takes place outside of the classroom. A series of organized field studies take students outside Florence to experience the art and architecture of other famous cities. Destinations throughout Italy include Rome (from the Roman Fora to Zaha Hadid's MAXXI museum, from Baroque masterpieces by Borromini and Bernini to the MACRO museum, the latest project by French architect Odile Decq), Verona and Venice (from medieval and Palladian architectures to Carlo Scarpa's sensitive designs, Cino Zucchi's interventions on the Giudecca island and Santiago Calatrava's bridge over the Grand Canal), and Milan (from the Sforza Castle to the Galleria and the Scala, from Bramante's Church of San Satiro to the recent new Expo Center by Massimiliano Fuksas).


Students can shape their own curriculum, according to their interests and in consultation with the B.A. (ARCS) Program Coordinator. 

The Florence Program is an enhanced academic experience. It includes a core of required courses in the major, with supporting elective offerings. The planned program consists of a full academic load. The coursework and course descriptions are shown below. Minor variations in the program may take place from year to year; all course offerings, credit hours, etc. are subject to change.

REQUIRED COURSES – Architectural Studies

ARCS 20122 Architectural Studies Studio II - 4 credit hours

Studio allows students to further develop their design skills in relation to a theme or shared research topic that crosses the disciplinary boundaries of architecture and challenges conventional ideas of the role design can play in developing knowledge.

ARCH 46995 Architecture and Media - 3 credit hours

This course investigates the increasingly intertwined issues that link contemporary architectural research to the world of communication, to such an extent that the media are today very much part of the design activity itself. Class lectures will interpret architectural activity in the 20th century by exploring the relationships between the project and the press, cinema, television, and the Internet. Particular attention will be given to the investigation of the experiences related to the use of video and to the new media.

ARCH 46995 Reading Cities Field Trips - 3 credit hours

Lecture and exercises in the visual analysis of urban form. Various media are taught and encouraged: sketching, watercolor, photographs, video, etc. The course is focused on a series of field trips to cities of architectural and urban significance. These include Rome, Verona, Venice, Milan. The tours cover historical architecture and urban fabrics, as well as Modern and contemporary intervention that bear significant importance in the transformation of the existing context.


ARTH 42095  Italian Art - Giotto to Bernini  (1300-1680) - 3 credit hours

CLAS  21405  The Roman Achievement – 3 credit hours

HIST 38095  Europe in the Renaissance  – 3 credit hours

POL  40995  European Issues  – 3 credit hours

BUS   30234  International Business – 3 credit hours

FIN   36053  Financial Management – 3 credit hours

COMM 35852  Intercultural Communication  – 3 credit hours

COMM 45091  Comparative Media Systems  – 3 credit hours

COMM 45091  Practicum in European Media  – 3 credit hours

COMM 45091  The Genius of Florence  – 1 credit hour

ITAL 15204  Basic Conversational Italian  – 2 credit hours

ITAL 15201  Elementary Italian I  – 4 credit hours

ITAL 15202  Elementary Italian II  – 4 credit hours

ITAL 25201  Intermediate Italian I – 3 credit hours

ITAL 25202  Intermediate Italian II  – 3 credit hours

ITAL 35213  Italian Conversation & Composition II  – 3 credit hours

To view elective course descriptions:

The Florence Program requires "full-time" status, which means taking 11 credit hours or more. Students at KSU, including guest students, can take up to 18 credit hours with a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher. You may request credit overload over 18 credit hours if you meet the following criteria: 19 credits with GPA >2.6 | 20 credits with GPA >3.0 | 21 credits with GPA >3.5

for more information:

Ms. Lisa Pozo, CAED Global Education Administrative Secretary,, 330-672-3765