International Exchanges – Spain: León

Open to Pitzer students only. Program options subject to change.

spain-leonProgram Title: Pitzer Exchange with the University of León

Location: León, Spain

Host Website:

Students must be in good standing at Pitzer College and have 2.0 or higher GPA on a 4.0 scale. Preference is given to juniors and first semester seniors but sophomores are eligible if space is available. There is no language prerequisite for the language and culture program. Completion of Spanish 44 and at least one 100-level Spanish literature or analysis course or a demonstrated equivalency is required to take regular university classes taught in Spanish (available only in Spring or full year due to February exams).

At least one area studies in Spanish literature or film, European history, or political studies is strongly recommended. Additional preparation options include: Comparative Politics; Intercultural Communications; Language Culture and Society; Introduction to International/ Intercultural Studies; Introduction to Sociocultural Anthropology or The World Since 1492.

Students must first apply through Pitzer’s Office of Study Abroad and International Programs. If accepted by Pitzer, students will then be asked to complete the University of Leon application.

Program Dates

Full Year: September to early July

Fall Semester: September–December (intensive Spanish language and culture courses only)

Spring Semester: January to early July (intensive Spanish language and culture courses only)

Spring Semester: February to early July (university courses in Spanish)

Required Courses
Students are required to take a full course load at the university. Students who are enrolled in the regular university track are expected to take at least one course with content on Spanish history, politics, literature or culture. In addition, students take the Pitzer course MLLC110 Intercultural Learning: Portfolio Writing via Sakai.

Intensive Language
León offers language programs for beginning, intermediate and advanced Spanish learners. (See below under Course Options.)

Independent Study
See a Study Abroad Adviser.

Course Options

Students with less than Spanish 44 may enroll in an intensive Spanish language program in either semester. Courses are designed for Spanish language learners. More information about the intensive language program may be found at Students in this track may not take regular University courses.

The University offers broad curricular offerings taught in Spanish for students with advanced Spanish skills (the equivalent of 4 college level Spanish courses and at least one 100-level Spanish literature or analysis course).  For course offerings, from the university’s main page choose “Students”, then select “International and Mobility” from the menu to the right. Choose the link “Information for International Students”, then select “Academic Offer.” Or visit the website:

Credit Possible
Students are expected to take a course load of 30 ECTS in order to earn four course credits at Pitzer. In addition, students will earn 0.5 course credits for the writing course via Sakai. (See above under Required Courses.)

Housing and Board Options
Students live with and take meals with host families after an initial hostel stay during orientation.

Student Experience
University of León has a good “Padrino” program through which our Pitzer students have a UL mentor. Office of International Students will help with volunteer placement and recommendations in the community.

Visa Process: Students should note that the Spanish visa process is extensive and typically takes 90 days to complete. Once students receive instructions and needed documents, they should begin the visa process ASAP. To apply for the visa students must complete the application, gather needed documents, make an online appointment and appear in person at their local Spanish consulate. Some students may need to travel to get to a consulate. To get an idea of what to expect for the visa appointment, please visit: Los Angeles Consulate website.