Duke in Madrid–Intermediate Track

A Semester Language and Culture Program

Explore Spanish Culture Through Gastronomy

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Committed to a cultural studies perspective, the Duke in Madrid program aims to improve participants’ Spanish fluency and deepen their understanding of Spain and its many cultures within a global context. Founded in 1989, Duke in Madrid is one of Duke’s most established study abroad programs.

The Duke in Madrid–Intermediate Track combines advanced intermediate Spanish (SPANISH 204) and advanced level Spanish (SPANISH 300) in a two-credit signature course, making it possible for students with just three semesters of college-level Spanish to study for a semester in Madrid!


Location: Madrid, Spain

Term: Fall or Spring

Dates: August 28, 2019 - December 21, 2019 (Fall); January 14, 2019 - June 5, 2019 (Spring)

Application Deadline: March 1 (Fall), October 15 (Spring)

Academic Theme(s): Spanish language and culture

Credit Type: Hybrid Credit Structure

Eligibility: Applicants must have completed lower intermediate Spanish (SPANISH 203) or have equivalent proficiency based on an oral interview. Priority is given to students with a 3.0 GPA or above. Non-Duke students are welcome to apply.

Language of Instruction: Spanish, English

Duke Affiliation: Co-sponsored by the Duke Department of Romance Studies

Housing: Homestay with Spanish families

GEO Advisor: Abigail Hall Grubbs

  • Cooking traditional Spanish tapas

  • Visiting the Museo Gastronomico (Gastronomy Museum) of Segovia.

  • Outside of the Palacio Real while touring Madrid

  • Learning about olive cultivation at Basilippo Olive Grove near Seville

  • Students touring Toledo with their Spanish professor

  • Enjoying a Spanish meal students prepared

  • Touring San Sebastian in northern Spain


With the Duke in Madrid–Intermediate Track, you can pursue a semester of study in Madrid if you will have completed SPANISH 203 by the time the program begins. The program is designed with a hybrid credit structure. Students will enroll in one Signature Course worth 2.0 credits, and two electives at the host university. The four course credits offered on the program include:

Signature Course

Gastronomía de España
(CZ, CCI, FL), 2.0 Duke credits

Pre-requisite: SPANISH 203, or the equivalent (3rd semester of college Spanish)

This course is the equivalent of advanced intermediate (SPANISH 204) and advanced level (SPANISH 300) Spanish combined. Course teaches Spanish culture through gastronomy. Class is held at the Duke in Madrid academic center downtown.

Transfer Courses

You’ll select two transfer courses from offerings in a wide array of subject areas at Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M). Intermediate Track students take courses offered in English. All courses offered by Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M), will convey to the Duke transcript as transfer credits, provided the U.S. equivalent of a C- or higher is earned in the course. For these courses only, letter grades will not appear on the Duke transcript and will not count in the Duke GPA.

  • Courses
  • Credits
  • Course Registration


What Courses Can I Take at UC3M?

UC3M announces its course offerings at the beginning of each semester. You’ll be able to get a sense of what courses you might take based on past course offerings, but your actual course schedule won’t be finalized until you are in Madrid.

The UC3M Tentative Course List is not a definitive list of offerings, but it can give you a good idea of what courses may be offered and how those courses normally count at Duke. Actual course offerings are announced at the beginning of the semester. The list shows the Duke equivalent department(s) and number(s) for each course approved. Curricular codes are also included.

If a course is not listed, it is important that you follow these steps to get courses approved by the Duke departments for transfer credit. This information must be officially recorded by the GEO in the GEO Approved Course Database in order for proper credit to be awarded. Please make sure any course approvals by Duke departments are forwarded to the GEO.

UC3M Courses

The list of approved UC3M courses for transfer credit can also be found in the GEO Approved Course Database. If a course cannot be approved at Duke in a certain department, you will find that information in the database as well.


Hybrid Credit Structure

The Duke in Madrid program uses a hybrid credit structure, meaning you’ll earn a mix of Duke credit and transfer credit.

You are responsible for ensuring all courses taken at Universidad Carlos III convey to the Duke transcript as transfer credits. Program staff are available to help you—both at Duke and in Madrid—but it's up to you to understand the process and satisfy all the requirements:

How do I get transfer credit for my UC3M courses?

Spanish Majors/Minors

The Signature course, Gastronomía de España, may be counted toward the Spanish major or minor.

Non-Duke Student Transcripts

To assist non-Duke students studying with Duke in Madrid with credit transfer, Duke will make available at semester's end a Duke transcript with Duke and transfer credits listed, a transcript from the UC3M with Spanish grades listed, and, by request, a Duke conversion of the Spanish grades listed on the UC3M transcript.

    Course Registration

    Registering for Courses

    Please keep the following policies in mind:

    • You must enroll in four full credits/courses.
    • No underloads and no overloads are permitted.
    • All courses must be taken for graded credit. Do not take courses pass/fail.

    Duke in Madrid Signature Course – GEO staff will register you for the signature course once you are officially enrolled in the program per your status in MyGlobalEd. You will not be able to register for Duke in Madrid courses on DukeHub during registration on the Duke campus prior to departure for Spain.

    UC3M Transfer Credit Courses – Actual course registration will take place in Madrid at the beginning of the semester. Duke in Madrid staff can help you register for courses and assist you with getting courses approved for transfer credit back to Duke.

    Be prepared to be flexible: Please note that Duke University has no control over the course offerings at UC3M in a given semester, so you should not arrive in Madrid absolutely determined to take a specific course. There is no guarantee that a given course will be offered by UC3M or that it will fit into your course schedule.


    Each semester, program participants enjoy a full complement of excursions, both day trips and extended trips, all included in the cost of the program. Excursions include transportation, guided tours, most meals, and lodging for overnight trips. Below are some possible group excursions with Duke in Madrid. Excursion destinations are subject to change each semester.

    • Andalucia
    • Barcelona
    • Galicia
    • Northern Spain
    • Segovia
    • Toledo


    Andalucia: Sevilla & Granada

    The group spends four days/three nights traveling across the south of Spain, including guided visits to the Cathedral and Giralda in Sevilla and the Cathedral and Alhambra in Granada. Travel will be by bus and train. Students have the option to extend their return transportation by two days in order to explore more of Andalucia at their own expense. Most students choose to stay and explore surrounding cities such as Córdoba and Cádiz.



    The field trip to Barcelona consists of 2 days/1 night and includes guided tours of various monuments and museums, such as Museo Picasso, the Gothic Neighborhood (El Barrio Gótico), the Casal Mila (Gaudí), and the interior of La Sagrada Familia (Gaudí). Students have the option of extending the program-paid return flight by one day to spend extra time in Barcelona at their own expense. Most students choose to extend their stay to explore not only Barcelona, but the surrounding area.


    Galicia: Rural Homestay and Santiago de Compostela

    (Fall only) The group spends three days/two nights in Galicia visiting rural areas and the cities of A Coruña, Pontevedra, and Santiago de Compostela. Transportation to Galicia will be by plane and local transportation by bus.

    Northern Spain

    Northern Spain/Basque Country

    (Spring Only) The field trip to Northern Spain consists of 3 days/2 nights and includes guided tours of the cities of Santander, Bilbao (Guggenheim museum), and San Sebastian and the countryside of Cantabria, visiting the Altamira Museum and the beautiful village of Santillana del Mar. The program participants stay at a rural homestay in Cantabria and a downtown hotel in San Sebastian.



    The group will spend the day on guided tours of Segovia’s highlights, including the Aqueduct and Alcazar. Transportation will be by bus from Madrid.



    The group will spend the day in the hilltop city of Toledo where it will tour sites related to the three religions that once coexisted in Spain. Transportation will be by bus from Madrid.


    Duke in Madrid-Intermediate students are able to participate in a variety of activities while in Madrid, ranging from cultural events to sports clubs, municipal cultural events, and classes held at museums. The program publishes a weekly newsletter which advertises both program-sponsored cultural events, university news, and information about potential activities in Madrid and beyond. 

    In order to explore in-depth the wide variety of cultural activities available in Madrid, the program sponsors the Cultural Passport as a requirement for all participants. Students will choose among several activities organized on a weekly basis selecting those ones of their interest. Program staff will select events performed at some of Madrid’s avant-garde cultural venues to expose students to the most vibrant cultural and intellectual life.

    • Program Sponsored
    • University Sponsored

    Program Sponsored

    Program-sponsored activities 

    As part of the coursework for the required language course, Gastronomia de España, you will take part in a number of activities related to Spanish gastronomy, such as:

    • Tapas cooking class
    • Olive oil tasting
    • Bread making class

    You will also take part in Duke in Madrid sponsored activities available each semester such as:

    • City tours and walking tours to Madrid’s neighbourhoods
    • Museum visits to Museo del Prado, Thyssen-Bornemisza, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia
    • Guided tours to Institutions such as the Cámara del Senado (Senate Chambers), Congreso de los Diputados (Congress), or the Madrid stock exchange (La Bolsa)
    • Visits to avant-garde cultural spaces such as Casa Encendida, Matadero, Circulo de Bellas Artes, CaixaForum
    • Academic conferences and cultural workshops
    • Spanish films, theater outings, Flamenco show
    • Conversation exchange with university students

    University Sponsored

    University-sponsored activities 

    The Universidad Carlos III Madrid has a very active campus life and DIM students are encouraged to participate as much as possible in order to get immersed in Spanish society and to improve their Spanish skills.

    In addition to many cultural activities, volunteer opportunities, lectures, and concerts, UC3M boasts an impressive sports complex with pools, gym equipment, various sports fields, and tennis and handball courts.

    Read more about UC3M's campus life and sports activities



    Students live with Spanish families who are carefully selected by the administrative director. Living with a family fully immerses students into the Spanish lifestyle, language, and culture, providing access to the city in ways that campus life cannot provide. Students will either live in single or double rooms and will have their own bed, desk, and closet. They may share a bathroom with other family members. Duke in Madrid host family homes have wireless internet access.

    Housing Form

    Students must submit a completed housing form at the time of application. Please share as much information as possible about your preferences and needs so that you will be placed with a host family that matches your lifestyle.


    Host families provide three meals per day: breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Most meals are provided during program excursions.

    Non-program Housing

    In extraordinary circumstances, students may be allowed to arrange for their own housing. These arrangements must be confirmed and approved three months prior to departure for Spain by Duke in Madrid administrators at Duke. If approval is granted, such students are entitled to request a housing reimbursement from the Durham office.

    Note: In the spring semester only, non-program housing is an automatic option for students continuing with Duke in Madrid from fall to spring. In the past, second semester DIM students have arranged on their own to rent apartments.

    For more information about the non-program housing policy for Duke in Madrid, please contact a Global Education Office representative listed below.


    These costs are estimated based on previous years’ programs and the current exchange rate. All costs are subject to change.

    Fall 2019 or Spring 2020

      Duke Students Non-Duke Students
    Tuition $27,940 $27,940
    Program Fee $3,300 $3,300
    Transcript Fee N/A $40
    Other Costs

    Other Costs (Fall)

    Other Costs (Spring)

    Other Costs (Fall) 

    Other Costs (Spring)

    TOTAL (Estimated)

    $36,670 (Fall)

    $36,970 (Spring)

    $36,710 (Fall)

    $37,010 (Spring)

    FAQ Costs

    Financial Aid

    Duke students receiving institutional need-based grant aid are eligible for aid for this program; work-study funds are converted to grants. Students are individually responsible for making the necessary arrangements with the Karsh Office of Undergraduate Financial Support and the Duke Bursar’s Office.

    Non-Duke students are not eligible to receive financial aid at Duke and should contact their home institutions for financial aid information.


    All dates are tentative and may change with the administrative calendar of the Universidad Carlos III. Final dates will be confirmed at orientations for Duke in Madrid students in early April (for Fall Term/full year students) and in early November (for Spring Term students).

    • Fall Semester 2019
    • Spring Semester 2019

    Fall Semester 2019

    • Arrival: August 28, 2019
    • Departure: December 21, 2019*

    *See the DIM calendar in your student portal for important details regarding the program departure date. 

    All students must stay for scheduled final exams. Students may not request an early exam date and all papers must be turned into instructors and a copy left at the Duke in Madrid office before the student's departure from Spain.

    Specific dates for events in a particular semester, including holidays and excursions, will be sent to applicants as soon as they are available.


    You will make your own travel arrangements to and from the program site. You are expected to arrive on the arrival date cited above, which usually means departing the U.S. one day prior.

    Once you have a flight itinerary, log in to MyGlobalEd to update your travel registry.

    Housing Before/After

    You will need to make your own housing arrangements if you will be arriving before the program start date or leaving later than the program end date.

    Spring Semester 2019

    • Arrival: January 14, 2019
    • Departure: June 5, 2019*

    *The departure date is driven by the final exam schedule, which you will receive during orientation.

    All students must stay for scheduled final exams. Students may not request an early exam date and all papers must be turned into instructors and a copy left at the Duke in Madrid office before the student's departure from Spain.

    Specific dates for events in a particular semester, including holidays and excursions, will be sent to applicants as soon as they are available.


    You will make your own travel arrangements to and from the program site. You are expected to arrive on the arrival date cited above, which usually means departing the U.S. one day prior.

    Once you have a flight itinerary, log in to MyGlobalEd to update your travel registry.

    Housing Before/After

    You will need to make your own housing arrangements if you will be arriving before the program start date or leaving later than the program end date.


    In Madrid

    The Duke in Madrid academic center in downtown Madrid features classrooms, a library, and student workspace, a conference room, and staff offices. The resident director is available year-round for academic or personal assistance. The administrative director and assistant coordinator place participants with families in Madrid and help students resolve everyday problems. Staff contact information will be provided upon acceptance into the program.

    Marcos Canteli Vigón

    Duke in Madrid Resident Director

    Nuria García

    Duke in Madrid Admin. Director

    Eva Barroso

    Duke in Madrid Asst. Coordinator

    Katie Lorentson

    Duke in Madrid Program Assistant

    At Duke

    Joan Munné

    Senior Lecturer of Romance Language

    Soraya Campbell

    GEO Asst. Director & Regional Manager

    Joy Searles

    GEO Senior Staff Assistant for Programs


    Deadline: March 1 (Fall semester) or October 15 (Spring semester)

    This program has rolling admission. Applications will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis until the program fills; after that, qualified students are added to a waitlist and notified of openings. Applications must be received by the deadline to be considered.

    Eligibility: Applicants must have completed at least one Spanish course at the lower intermediate level (Duke SPANISH 203) or have equivalent proficiency based on an oral interview.

    Priority: Priority will be given Spanish majors/minors and students who apply early and meet the prerequisites.

    Minimum GPA: Priority will be given to students with high academic standing (normally with at least a 3.0 GPA). The minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) required for Duke students wishing to study away during the semester is 2.7 (3.0 for Pratt students) on a scale of 4.0. 

    Non-Duke students:  Non-Duke students are welcome to apply for this program. You must be a degree-seeking student in good standing at an accredited college or university. Consult your university’s registrar and/or study away advisor for assistance with transfer credit. Students who are not matriculated at a college or university are not eligible to participate in Duke’s study away programs.

    Late applicants: After published deadlines, qualified applicants will be considered on a space-available basis.


    Start your application early to ensure that it is complete by the deadline! Incomplete applications will not be forwarded to the program directors for consideration.

    Submit the following items using MyGlobalEd

    1. On-line application.
    2. Official transcript(s) from all colleges and universities attended. First-year students should wait for fall semester grades to be posted before submitting their transcript.
    3. Personal statement, written in Spanish, explaining your interest in and goals for studying in Spain with the Duke in Madrid program.
    4. Two letters of recommendation from faculty, one of which should be from a Spanish instructor.*

    *If you have not taken a Spanish course at Duke, please email Pat McPherson in the Spanish Language Department to set up an interview with a Spanish language instructor. Recommendation letters from high school teachers will not be accepted.