Polish Cultural Studies: At a Glance

University: Jagiellonian University
Fields of Study: Literature, Culture, Jewish Studies, History, Polish Language, and Polish Modernity
Dates: January 24, 2016 to June 23, 2016 - Spring
September 15, 2016 to December 20, 2016 - Fall
September 15, 2016 to June 22, 2017 - Academic Year
June 09, 2016 to July 14, 2016 - Summer
Credit: 12-16 - Spring
12-16 - Fall
24-32 - Academic Year
8 - Summer
Deadlines: November 30, 2013 - Spring
June 13, 2016 - Fall
June 16, 2016 - Academic Year
April 09, 2016 - Summer
Price: $8,500 - Spring
$8,500 - Fall
$16,450 - Academic Year
$3,800 - Summer
Housing: Residence Hall
Minimum Age: 18

Program Highlights:

This unique program takes place at the Department of International Polish Studies (IPS) at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow. For the semester/year, the offered curriculum, based upon highly original programs, is taught in English by distinguished experts from the most influential and leading academic centers in Poland (i.e. Krakow, Warsaw), important figures of artistic life, and also by professors from abroad. The curriculum is run in five modules: Literature, Culture, Jewish Studies, History, and Language. The summer program focuses on Polish modernity, as a social and cultural process in Poland. Students will become familiar with the history and culture of contemporary Poland, the way it has developed, and the problems it has encountered en route to becoming a modern society.

The University:

Study Abroad Poland invites students to study for a semester or academic year at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow. Founded in 1364, the Jagiellonian University is the oldest university in Poland and the second oldest in Central Europe. It is ranked one of the best universities in the country, and its alumni include such famous figures as Nicolas Copernicus, King John III Sobieski, Pope John Paul II, Norman Davies, and many more. The university has a long tradition of academic excellence and has about 47,000 students.

The City:

The university is located in the heart of Krakow. Undoubtedly Krakow is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. For centuries Polish kings and queens resided there before the capital was moved to Warsaw. Today the city prides itself on being the center of Polish culture. With over 6,000 historical buildings and monuments, Krakow is also a great place to learn about the country’s history. Since this was one of the few cities that was not destroyed during WW II, the Old Town still retains its medieval layout and some of the buildings date back to the 10th and 11th centuries. Due to its beauty and historical significance UNESCO named Krakow to its original list of World Heritage Sites in 1978. Krakow will enchant you with its charming Old Town, historic royal castle and cathedral on Wawel Hill, majestic churches and numerous museums, cafes and shops.

Courses & Descriptions:


Generally students take a Polish language class and 3 elective courses. The Polish language course consists of 72 teaching hours and is worth 4 semester credits. Most courses are worth 4 semester credits.

You can earn between 12 and 16 semester credits (18 and 24 quarter credits if you are on the quarter system).

In addition to your classes, each semester the IPS organizes a unique study travel program. Each destination includes aspects of education, tourism, and fun. Every study trip focuses on the literary, cultural, historical, social, and political characteristics and features that the study trip specifically targets. If the study trip destination is to a larger city that contains a university, lectures with professors of the particular university and meetings with local student groups are possible to arrange.

The costs of travel and accommodation of one study trip, to be determined by the IPS, are included in the program fee. The costs of all other study trips are borne by the student. Click here for a list of Sample Study Trips.


Summer students will enroll in the two required courses listed below, which are worth 4 credits each. Polish language classes will be available if at least 3 students with a similar level of proficiency express interest. The additional cost of 45 hours of language instructions is $400 per student.  The availability of language classes will be announced at least a week after the application deadline.

– Modern Polish Literature and Culture (Required)
– Modern Polish History (Required)
– Polish Language

The ISP also organizes an attractive study travel program including guided tours of Krakow’s most famous sites, a 4-day study tour to Vilnius, Lithuania, a day trip to Auschwitz, and a 2-day trip to the Polish Highlands – Zakopane.


Sample Course Listing

IPS Polish Language (Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced) - Credits: 4

IPS A Survey of the Polish Art History (From Romanesque Art to Art Nouveau) - Credits: 4

IPS Cultural History of Love Discourse: The Ancient Times till Romantic Crisis - Credits: 4

IPS History of Poland in the 20th Century, 1914-1990 - Credits: 4

IPS Jews in Poland and Polish-Jewish Relations during the Holocaust and After - Credits: 4

IPS Jews in Poland: Their History, Culture, and Religion to 1939 - Credits: 4

IPS Modern Polish Drama and Theatre - Credits: 4

IPS Polish Theatre at the Crossroads of Cultures - Credits: 4

IPS Modern Polish Literature, Comparative Studies, and Translation Theory - Credits: 4

Transfer Credit:

Jagiellonian University is a university fully accredited by the Polish Ministry of Education. Most colleges and universities allow you to transfer credit from courses taken abroad. Before applying it’s important to speak with the study abroad advisor at your home institution to obtain pre-approval for your courses and determine how many credits you’ll receive. Every educational institution has different policies about transferring credit, so we encourage you to follow your institution’s regulations. Usually the number of credits that you receive depends on the number of teaching hours. Following the American system, we suggest awarding 1 semester credit for every 15 hours of class time or 1 quarter credit for every 10 hours of class time.

After completing the program, we’ll send your registrar or study abroad advisor an official transcript with the course titles, course hours, and grades. Your university will need this transcript to transfer credit.

Financial Aid:

It is possible to transfer your financial aid to pay for some or all of the program costs. The first step is to check with your home institution’s financial aid advisor before applying. Since every home institution has different rules, only your advisor can tell you what kind of aid can transfer. Study Abroad Poland is happy to provide you with a certificate of enrollment or any other documents that your university might require.

Scholarships are available on our scholarships page.

Application Deadline(s):

November 30, 2013 - Spring

June 13, 2016 - Fall

June 16, 2016 - Academic Year

April 09, 2016 - Summer

Late applications will be considered on an individual basis.

Applying for our programs is simple! Fill out the on-line application form and wait for more information from us.

Why Study Here

Meet a Diverse Student Body

At Jagiellonian University there are lots of Polish students as well as a large group of exchange students, so you are bound to have a truly international experience!

Enjoy the Cultural Capital

Krakow is the cultural capital of Poland. The city boasts the best theaters, festivals, and museums. Every year there are over 50 cultural events held there. Jagiellonian University’s main campus is located in the heart of the Old Town so you will be in the center of all the action.

Live, Eat, Breathe History

A little bit of history can be uncovered on every one of Krakow’s cobblestone streets – it was one of the few cities that was not destroyed during WWII. Therefore, the Old Town still maintains the same buildings and architecture from medieval times. It is listed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List and there are 6,000 historical sites registered there!

Get a Bang for Your Buck

Krakow is an affordable destination – your dollar still goes a long way!

Be in the Center of It All

Located in the heart of Europe, Krakow is the perfect home base for your travels to other European cities such as Prague, Paris, Rome, Budapest, Berlin, etc.


  • $8,500 - Spring
  • $8,500 - Fall
  • $16,450 - Academic Year
  • $3,800 - Summer

What's Included

Tuition and Fees

The program includes full tuition and fees at Jagiellonian University.

Official Transcript

Two months after completing the program, we’ll send your home university an official transcript from Jagiellonian University. This allows you to transfer credit back to your university (with prior approval from your advisor). The transcript contains the course title, grade, and credit hours for each course.


During the program you’ll live in a double room in a residence hall in Krakow. This is a great way to meet Polish students and get involved in student activities. For summer students, breakfast is included in the price of the program.

Program Director

Throughout the program, you’ll receive on-site support from the Program Director. The director will meet you at the airport, lead the orientation session, organize activities, and be available 24 hours a day.

Airport Transfers

In order to make your arrival go smoothly, your Program Director will meet you at Warsaw International Airport. He/she will take you in a taxi to your residence hall and help you move in. At the end of the program, the Director will also take you to the airport before departure.

In-Country Orientation

You’ll take part in a 2-day orientation session at the beginning of the program. The Program Director will provide you with helpful advice and tips for living in Krakow, review the schedule of activities for the program, distribute cell phones, and teach a survival Polish class.

Transportation Pass

To help you travel smoothly around Krakow, we’ll provide you with a transportation pass that can be used on all buses and trams.

Activities & Excursions

Activities and excursions will be planned throughout the program. These are designed to help you get to know the Polish culture better. Some sample activities include a tour of Krakow, museum trips, art galleries, films, concerts, and many more.

Health Insurance

You’ll be provided with a short-term accident and sickness medical plan that is especially designed for students studying abroad.

International Student Identity Card

All students are issued a complimentary International Student Identity Card (ISIC), which gives you great student discounts on airfare, rail passes, accommodation, sightseeing, food, shopping and more. Over 40,000 discounts are available around the world!

What You'll Need


Meals are not included, but you will have a kitchen available in your residence hall so that you can cook your own meals. Food is very affordable in Krakow. Many students also like to eat out. There are small cafes and quaint restaurants close to the university for you to enjoy. For summer students, breakfast is included in the price of the program.

Spending Money

Krakow is an affordable European city to live in. You will need to bring spending money for food, personal items, additional travel, and entertainment.

Round-trip Airfare to Poland

Student travel agencies provide great deals on airfare to Poland. The average round-trip ticket costs around $800.


Generally textbooks are much cheaper in Poland and professors use a lot of readers and photo copies rather than expensive books. You should plan on bringing $100 per term for books.