The Pennsylvania State University

School of Visual Arts

Study Abroad Opportunities for Art Education Majors

Because of the required courses every Fall and Spring semester,  Art Education majors find it most convenient to study abroad in the Summer.  Art Education majors may study abroad in the Fall or Spring but it requires careful planning and could delay graduation. 


During the four-week Ireland program, students take an Irish literature course for English credit and an art course.  At the end of the four weeks in Ireland, they complete a third course, in essence an independent study, arranged with either the SoVA or the English instructor.   The focus of the program is examination of the Irish landscape through art and literature.   The program uses three locations as its bases: Allehies, a small village in the extreme southwest corner of the country; Galway, a medium sized university town on the west coast; and Dublin, Ireland’s capital and largest city, so students experience the Irish landscape from rural to urban.

Strength: In a English-speaking country with rich history and beautiful, diverse landscape.

Limitation: Limited studio facilities.  The studio course, typically taught out of doors, is limited to 2D media.

For more information and to apply to this program, go to:

Rome, Italy                                                                                      

This six-week program offers a course in digital photography and a course in film.   The Digital Photography course (Photo credits) uses the city of Rome as its classroom.  “From Viewing to Making a Film on Rome” (Integrative Arts credits) combines film appreciation with an introduction to film production.  Participants must have a good quality digital camera.  Critiques are conducted from computer screen.  No language is required. 

Strength:  Concentration on photography in one of the most historic and visually interesting cities in the world.

Limitation:  Limited to digital photography.  No darkroom or chemical facilities are available.

For more information and to apply to this program, go to:

Florence, Italy                                                                                 

Penn State School of Visual Art offers a faculty-led summer program in conjunction with Studio Art Centers International (SACI) in Florence, Italy.  Each summer, a member of the School of Visual Art faculty accompanies Penn State students to Florence and teaches a course for SACI.  Penn State students may chose any two courses from the SACI summer course schedule including painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, ceramics, black and white photography, communication design, art conservation, jewelry design, and a Renaissance art history survey.

Strengths: This program combines the advantages of traveling with a Penn State instructor and SACI’s wide variety of studio art courses from which to chose.  No language courses required. 

For more information and to apply to this program, go to:

Aix-en-Provence, France  

The Marchutz School of Art of IAU College in Aix-en-Provence in the south of France, offers a six-credit summer program which combines a painting/drawing studio with art criticism and aesthetics seminar.  The program is grounded in observational easel painting and drawing, working from the still life in the studio and from the landscape during frequent excursions into the beautiful countryside around Aix. 

IAU College also offers a diverse selection of courses, including art history, history, photography, sculpture, psychology, political science, French literature and French language.  Aix-en-Provence was the hometown of Paul Cézanne and is near Arles, where Vincent Van Gogh lived the last years of his life.   The IAU College art history course, “Cézanne and Van Gogh” includes field trips to Cezanne’s studio, Mont Sainte-Victoire, Chateau Noir, Bidémus Quarry, and Arles. 

Strength: This program combines the cultural immersion of living with a local family, with the climate, food and physical beauty of the south of France.  No language is required.

For more information and to submit an application, go to:


Application Deadlines:

For Summer Semester: February 1st.

For More Information:

Randy Ploog     

Coordinator of International Programs

College of Arts and Architecture

104 Borland Building