Academic Year Abroad Siena at the Università degli Studi & the Università per Stranieri

Cloister, Facoltà d’Economia
Università degli Studi

Academic Year Abroad offers students direct-enrollment at the principal university in Siena:  the Università degli Studi, which is one of the oldest of the Italian universities.  This university was known to exist as the Studio Senese as far back as 1240, when it consisted of a Scuola Giuridica, a Scuola di Grammatica, and a Scuola Medica. Seven centuries of growth have since then produced a number of other facoltà, or schools, among which AYA students would, most likely, be interested in Economia, Lettere e Filosofia, and Scienze Politiche.  In Lettere e Filosofia, courses are offered in Lettere classiche; Lettere moderne; Lingue e letterature; Scienze dei beni storico-artistici, musicali, cinematografici, e teatrali;  Scienze dei beni archeologici;  Scienze della comunicazione; Filosofia; Discipline etno-antropologiche;  Storia, tradizione, innovazione;  Antropologia culturale e etnologia;  Archeologia;  Filologia moderna;  Linguistica; Radiofonia e linguaggi dello spettacolo e del multimediale;  Storia dell’arte;  Documentazione e ricerca storica;  Conservazione, gestione, e comunicazione dei beni archeologici;  Teoria della comunicazione e techniche dei linguaggi persuasive.

Most of the Faculties of the University of Siena adopted the semester system (from October 1st to January 31st and from March 1st  to the May 31st ). Only the academic calendar of the Faculty of Law and the one of the Faculty of Engineering are divided into three terms.

Lectures take place from Monday to Saturday, both in the morning and in the afternoon. Each course is supposed to cover 4 hours a week. Lectures are normally taken in Italian language, except for courses for foreign teachers.

Two different periods of vacation are anticipated besides summer holidays, corresponding to Christmas and Easter breaks.

The calendar for next academic year 2008-2009 is not available yet, because the Faculties usually update it at the end of August. It is worthwhile to refer to the academic calendar of this year, which suggests next year’s calendar.


First two-month period
Second two-month period
First examination period
October 4th – November 28th
November 29th – February 6th
January 24th – February 20th
Third two-month period
Fourth two-month period
Second examination period
February 21st – April 24th
April 26th – June 19th
June 6th – July 30th

Full-time students take 30 credits (according to the Italian system of credits), usually five courses that are the equivalent of 15-16 credits at most American institutions.  AYA suggests that prospective applicants consider spending either a full academic year or a spring term in Siena, given that the Fall Term extends from early October to early February, with final exams in late January and February;  while the Spring Term runs from late February to mid-June, with final exams in June and July.  The following, apart from Christmas and Easter, are holidays in Siena:  All Saints Day (November 1);  Sant’Ansano (December 1);  Virgin Birth (December 8);  Epiphany (January 6);  Liberation Day (April 25);  Labor Day (May 1);  Republic Day (June 2);  Palio di Siena (July 2);  Assumption (August 15);  Palio (August 16).

Click the following links for lists of courses in Lettere e Filosofia, Economia, Scienze Politiche.

AYA tuition, housing, and cultural activities fees are moderate. Given the recent decline of the Dollar in relation to the Euro, this is an important consideration. AYA also offers a number of scholarships. For application forms, visit our download page here.