Countercultures in Contemporary Spain: León

For students at the 300- or 400-level of Spanish.
Next Offered
Summer 2015
Application Deadline

Program Description


In this program we will study manifestations of countercultures in Spain since the end of the Franco dictatorship to present day.  Basing our analysis on different alternative cultural objects (such as alternative music like punk or hip hop, low-budget films, street theatre, comics, and graffiti), we will also study different theories that reflect on the most popular and least privileged forms of culture.  This theoretical and practical approach to the study of alternative cultures in Spain is ideal for allowing you to discuss theories of countercultures, as well as to undertake your own research into contemporary Spanish society.  The program will include trips to Bilbao and Madrid, and will culminate in a final presentation at the Leon Center, in which you will present your research project to the local Leonese community.


June 19 - July 25, 2015


While enrolled in this program, students will complete the following courses (all courses are required, taught in Spanish, and receive a numerical grade):

  • SPAN 396/462: Countercultures in Contemporary Spain (5 credits)
  • SPAN 390/499: Research Project - Alternative Cultures in Contemporary Spain (5 credits)
  • SPAN 393/493: Advanced Spanish Language and Conversation (5 credits)

Prerequisites:  SPAN 301 or 314 must be taken prior to going abroad, to earn 300-level credit, which may be used to fulfill Spanish minor requirements.  SPAN 303 or SPAN 316, and SPAN 322 must be taken prior to going abroad, to earn 400-level SPAN credit.  All courses taken at the 400 level, may be used to fulfill Spanish major requirements.  Note that 300-level credit does not fulfill major requirements.  Questions about level of credit should be directed to

Excursions & Other Activities

Several excursions to points of interest in the city of León are included in the program fee.  There will also be a 2-day trip to the Semana Negra in Gijón and a 4-day trip to Madrid. Students will be able to participate in other excursions and activities arranged by the University of León Language Center, if desired.

Housing Information

Participants will be placed individually with local families within walking distance of the UW Leon Center. Three meals per day will be provided. This housing arrangement allows students to be immersed in the local culture and have the opportunity to speak only Spanish for the duration of the program.


Participants must provide proof of health/accident insurance coverage. Please refer to IPE's Health Insurance webpage for information regarding health insurance while studying abroad.

Eligibility & Application

Eligibility Requirements

This program is ideal for students (both undergraduate and graduate), that have a good understanding of Spanish, as we will be studying texts that are not part of the cannon, and therefore not translated.  In addition, this program will require that students be able to communicate with cultural citizens and actors in present-day Spain.  Although a solid foundation in Spanish is necessary, participants do not have to be Spanish majors or minors to participate.  This program would also be of interest to students in Sociology, Political Science, Art History, Art, Philosophy, or Education.

There are no physical requirements.  Students who would like to receive 400-level Spanish credit must meet the prerequisites for that level.

Application Procedure

Priority will be given to applications received by the application deadline of February 6, 2015. Applications received after the deadline may be considered on a space available basis.

To apply to the program, please visit IPE's webpage for the program and click on the Apply Now button.

The application includes a Personal Statement, 3 short answer questions, 2 Faculty recommendations and electronic signature documents related to University policies and expectations for study abroad. Following the on-line application process students may be contacted by the Program Director for an in-person interview. Once admissions decisions have been regarding your application, you will be notified by the study abroad system via email.

Information Sessions

Friday, November 21, 3pm.  Location: CMU 326

Financial & Enrollment Information

Program Fees

The total cost of the program (including a room, three meals a day with a Spanish family, and program overhead) will be approximately $4,900. This amount includes everything EXCEPT round-trip airfare*, local transportation (except for the group excursion), textbooks, passport, health insurance, $300 IPE fee, and pocket money.

*The average cost for round-trip airfare is $1,000-$1,500, depending on when and where you buy your ticket.

Payment Schedule

Please visit IPE's webpage for the program to see the payment schedule.

Scholarships & Financial Aid

Undergraduates who intend to study abroad are encouraged to apply for the Fritz Undergraduate Scholarship for Study Abroad and the Global Opportunities Scholarship for Study Abroad.

Students seeking further information on financial aid and scholarships for foreign study should visit the IPE Financial Aid webpage, or request the Financial Aid outline from the IPE Office. In addition, students may reference the UW Scholarship Office website for more information on general and foreign study scholarships. Students will maintain their eligibility to receive most forms of UW student financial aid while participating in this program, provided that they concurrently enroll.

Refund Schedule

The $350 program deposit and $300 IPE Fee are non-refundable. Students withdrawing from a program will be responsible for a percentage of the program fee depending on the date of withdrawal. More details about the withdrawal policy will be included in your payment contract. No part of the program fee is refundable once the program has begun. The date of withdrawal is considered the date (business day) a withdrawal form is received by the IPE Office.

Notice of withdrawal from the program must be made in writing to both:

Department of Spanish & Portuguese Studies
Box 354360
University of Washington
Seattle, WA 98195-4360
AND International Programs and Exchanges
Box 355815
University of Washington
Seattle, WA 98195-5815

Contact Information

Questions about the program can be answered by:

Ana Luengo
Padelford Hall, C-224
(206) 616-5367
AND Lani Phillips
Padelford Hall, C-106
(206) 616-9579
Program Status