CIEE Prague: Global Architecture and Design

  • Location: Prague, Czech Republic
  • Language of Instruction: English
  • Minimum GPA: 3.0
  • Class Eligibility: Juniors and seniors


Prague is one of the best-preserved historical cities in Europe.  Since the 9th century, when it became the capital of Bohemia, Prague has passed through several distinct transformations which have inscribed it with its unique character.  The original Romanesque city core was expanded considerably in Gothic style, especially during the reign of Charles IV who also established the University of Prague in 1348.  The Counter Reformation of the seventeenth century and eighteenth century added a thick Baroque layer to the physiognomy of the city. Because of its innumerable characteristic steeples, Prague is called the city of a thousand spires. With a population of only 1.2 million, Prague has an unusually rich cultural life—festivals, operas, concerts, and cultural programs, many of which are accessible on a student budget. Study abroad students experience life similar to that of Czech students and make use of numerous neighborhoods in the city like native Praguers.

With Global Architecture + Design in Prague you will:

  • Study at the Architectural Institute of Prague (ARCHIP), the first international school of its kind with students representing nearly 20 nationalities
  • Attend the Global Design Studio, which will address the interdisciplinary perspective inspired by ONE Lab
  • Work with local peers and local architects to tackle design projects that encourage cross-cultural collaboration
  • Explore a range architectural styles at sites including the historical halls of Charles University, Prague Castle, Old Town, and more
  • Visa:

    Please note that the visa process can take at least 3 months!  Please plan to start early!

  • Fees: Students pay Haverford tuition and room to Haverford College. Haverford will then be responsible for submitting payment to the program.

  • Requirements

    Students must be majoring in Architecture, Environmental Design, Industrial Design, Interior Design, Landscape Architecture, Sustainability studies, Urban Design or minoring in these areas and have completed 2-3 semesters of design studio or a project-based course in their major.

    Previous Czech language study is not required.

    Academic Credit

    Students are expected to take 16-18 semester credit hours per semester to received 4 Haverford credits. Study abroad students are required to take one Czech language course (including two weeks of intensive language training during orientation) and four area studies courses. All area studies courses are taught in English. Students take a minimum of two CIEE courses, and may be able to enroll in up to six credits outside of CIEE courses at FAMU or Charles University. Students may also take the CIEE Seminar on Living and Learning in Prague for an extra two credits. The required intensive (“fast track”) Czech language course fulfills Haverford’s language requirement.

    Major, minor, and concentration transfer credit will only be granted for courses in which students received a grade of a C or above.


    The Global Architecture + Design curriculum in Prague consists of three main components: a Future Cities Design Studio; Seminar; and Science, Engineering and Technology Workshops. Students may opt to take a CIEE elective course.

    Courses will be taught in English by CIEE-contracted faculty who will also facilitate collaborative projects with local professionals and peers. Field trips to visit historical sites, new buildings, and environmental initiatives enhance students’ understanding of “cities in transition”.

    Course Highlights

    Future Cities Design Studio; Future Cities Seminar; and Science, Engineering and Technology Workshops; Electives: Art and Architecture in Prague, Collective Identity in a Totalitarian Regime, European Environmental Studies, Media Impact in Central Europe: Past and Present, Modern Czech Art: Czech Modern and Contemporary Art and Architecture, and Seminar on Living and Learning in Prague

    Note: Changes occur frequently. Students are responsible for finding the classes they need and consulting the official site of the institution.

    Review the Full Academic Requirements for Studying Abroad

  • Non-Academic Overview

    Orientation: A mandatory three-week orientation session, which includes an intensive language program, is conducted in Prague at the beginning of the program and will introduce you to the academic program, country, culture, extra-curricular options, program faculty, and provide practical information about living in the Czech Republic.

    Number of Students: About 175 students attend all of the CIEE Prague programs each semester.

    Housing/Meal Plans

    Housing is included in the study abroad program fee.  Provision of meals depends on the housing option. Students are encouraged to choose housing wisely as the costs differ for each option. Students have several housing choices and are asked to select an option prior to departure:

    • Homestay with a Czech Family—This is the best option for students looking to fully immerse themselves in the Czech culture. Dinner and breakfast, on the family’s schedule, are included as is a single room. Homestays are typically located in residential areas, so students will have up to a 45 minute commute to the CIEE Study Center.
    • Charles University Dormitory— This dormitory houses approximately 35 CIEE and local students (CIEE Dorm Buddies). Breakfast is included and students can use the two modest kitchenettes available to prepare other meals. The dormitory is a 10 minute walk from the CIEE Study Center.
    • CIEE-Administered Apartments—Each CIEE apartment houses three CIEE students as well as one Charles University student (CIEE Flat Buddy). Apartments consist of two bedrooms with shared areas including a fully-equipped kitchen and bathroom. Please note that meals and Internet fees are not included with this option. CIEE apartments are located in various neighborhoods and require a maximum 35 minute commute to CIEE. Students on the Film Studies track must choose this option and are housed with other CIEE as well as local film students.

    Haverford students may not opt for independent off-campus housing – that is, housing not arranged by the program.

    Opportunities / Cultural Events

    From a day trip to Prague’s changing city center, to an overnight in a former mining town in the process of literally building a new identity, excursions bring you face to face with the social and economic factors driving new construction and design. You’ll also travel to one of the other CIEE Global Architecture and Design cities—Berlin or Barcelona—in the middle of the semester to meet and collaborate with your peers.

    Interest Groups

    Interest groups help smaller groups of students become more integrated into Prague culture and society. These groups include: politics, economy, and society; sport; film and theater; music; and art. All of these groups include Czech students.


    The program includes a number of excursions and site visits to locations in and around the city. Within Prague you could visit:

    • Karlin – A neighborhood illustrating patterns of gentrification from the centre into the suburbs. Close to the city center, almost all its former industries were destroyed and empty brownfields are waiting for new development.
    • The Docs of Liben: A very beautiful part of the city on the river. Amazing natural corridor mixed with old port structures.
    • Little Hanoi: The largest Asian market in Prague

    Overnight Excursions

    The second largest Czech city, a socially and economically shrinking city, undergoing serious reconstruction and renovations.

    The Czech Republic’s third largest city is a former mining and industrial center looking for a new identity as it changes its working, social demography.

    Home to beautiful river corridors and an active, creative community of artists and architects.

View Scholarship Information

Apply to Study Abroad!

  • Semester/Year
  • Fulfills Language Requirement
  • Semester I: Eary September to mid-December
  • Semester II: Late January to mid-May
  • Year: Early September to mid-May
Application Deadlines
  • Semester I: March 1
  • Semester II: September 15
  • Year: March 1
Faculty Contact

Darin Hayton