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Chile: Santiago

Santiago Quick Facts

Language of Instruction

Fields of Study
Spanish language, Latin American and Spanish literature, art, anthropology, archaeology, architecture, chemistry, economics, geology, history, journalism, law, mathematics, music, philosophy, physics, political science, psychology, sociology, theater, theology, urban studies, women’s studies.

Host Institutions
Universidad de Chile
Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile
Universidad Diego Portales
Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE)


Program Dates
Fall semester: mid-July to mid-December. Spring semester: mid-February to early July.

CIEE: Liberal Arts

Located at the foot of the Andes mountain range, Santiago, a city of four million people, possesses a Mediterranean climate similar to Los Angeles. Santiago is Chile's political, economic and culture center and this modern, bustling city with European-style public transportation, contrasts sharply with many of the towns further outside of the capitol. Chile’s relatively recent return to democracy and the legacy of Pinochet, as well as the ongoing efforts to maintain the nation’s successful economic status while neighboring countries in South America face increasing difficulties, remain significant issues for Santiagueños. 

The Liberal Arts Program in Santiago is administered by the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE). The program is designed for advanced students of Spanish and fully integrates participants into university life. Students select courses at the country’s two foremost universities, the Universidad de Chile and the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.  CIEE also assists students interested in volunteering with local organizations while living in Santiago.

Academic Program

The program begins with the required CIEE course, Contemporary Chile. Following this course, students take an exam to determine whether they will continue with formal Spanish language study throughout the semester.

During the semester students will typically take one of two programs: 1) A Spanish language course (0.75 Pomona credits) plus three university courses (3.0 Pomona credits); or 2) four university courses (3.75 Pomona credits).   CIEE also offers students the option to enroll in one of two optional elective courses taught in Spanish for students on the program: Human Rights in Chile or Language, Society, and Discourse in Chile.

Courses at Chilean universities carry varying amounts of credit. Pomona gives 1.0 Pomona course credit for 4.0 semester credits, so students should work closely with the CIEE on-site director to plan an academic program in keeping with the guidelines above. A maximum of 4.0 Pomona course credits will be granted for the semester. Normally, Pomona students may not enroll in university courses taught in English. Students enrolling in practical courses in dance, music or physical education should audit these courses.

Students are not permitted to take any courses taught by the CIEE study center on a P/NC basis, however, students may take direct enrollment university courses on a P/NC basis.

The program also includes visits to historical and cultural sites of Santiago and excursions to places of interest in Chile.

Living Arrangements

Students live and take their meals in Chilean homes.

Number of Students

CIEE enrolls between 35 – 50 students, selected from a national pool.


  • Completion of an upper-division Spanish course (100 level or higher), or the equivalent.
  • 8.25 GPA required.

Internet Links

Study Abroad