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Center for Global Education
Center for Global Education

Semester in Spain

Fall 2018 Resident Director & Program Information

Director: Dr. Alex Quintanilla

Contact information:

Dr. Alex Quintanilla (Jordan Hall 392) 317-940-8557

Fall 2017 0ffice hours: MW 4:00–6:00 PM or by appointment


Dr. Quintanilla will be teaching the 400-level Spanish course (SP 445 Topics in Hispanics Linguistics). Please see "Classes and Activities" below for information on your remaining course options.

Please complete this online interest form to receive updates about info sessions and program news for the Fall 2018 program. You should also attend the Semester in Spain Info Session on Tuesday, January 23, 2018 from 6:00 - 7:00 PM in the MLC (Jordan Hall 391) - the date and time of this session was updated on 1/18/18. You can see Dr. Quintanilla's Fall 2018 Butler Semester in Spain information session slides here.


Street in Alcalá de Henares, Spain  

Alcalá de Henares

Butler University’s Semester in Spain program is offered each fall. Led by a Butler professor who serves as Resident Faculty Director, approximately 20 students spend the semester at the Universidad de Alcalá de Henares.

In 1998 Alcalá de Henares was designated by UNESCO as a “World Heritage City” due to its historical and cultural significance. It is renowned for its remarkable Renaissance architecture as well as for being the birthplace of Miguel de Cervantes, author of Don Quijote de la Mancha. Located just 17 miles from Madrid, this medium-sized city (about 170,000 inhabitants) offers students the best of both worlds. You will live and study within Alcalá's warm small-town atmosphere, yet the vibrant cultural and social venues of downtown Madrid are just a short commuter train ride away.


Street in Alcalá de Henares, Spain

Classes and Activities

The Butler program is offered in collaboration with the University of Alcalá's Instituto Franklin, which is located in a recently renovated 17th Century building in the heart of Alcalá de Henares historical district.  Instituto Franklin offers a wide array of language and culture courses, taught completely in Spanish but designed specifically for non-native speaking students. If you have particularly strong Spanish language skills already, you can petition to take some of your classes with regular University of Alcalá students. The courses you take—12 credits for the semester—can count toward your major, minor, or electives.

All students should consult with their academic advisor about the appropriate classes to take while abroad.

The Butler faculty director will offer one course, at the 400 level, during the semester; all students in the program are required to take that course. This is the only 400-level course students are allowed to earn while studying abroad. The faculty director also provides academic and student life advising and facilitates organized, guided tours to various cities and sites of interest. Although the excursions change from year to year, typical visits may include Toledo, Avila, Salamanca, Segovia, Granada, Córdoba, or Sevilla.

While on this program, your second GHS Core course will be automatically waived, as long as you successfully complete 9 credit hours abroad (you must maintain your full-time student status with a minimum of 12 registered credit hours for your semester abroad).


Food Festival in Alcalá de Henares, Spain


You will pay your regular tuition to Butler University and will be able to apply 100% of your institutional aid (i.e., tuition-related Butler scholarships) to your tuition costs. You will also be billed by Butler for mandatory health insurance (about $250), and room and board (approximately $4,500). Other expenses include international travel to Spain (between $900–$1,100) a passport if you do not already have one (about $110), a Spanish visa (about $105), books and supplies. Optional expenses depend on how you spend your free time. Alcalá’s close proximity to Madrid offers many opportunities for travel both within Spain and to other countries. Reasonably priced train and bus fares ($20–$100) are available to most towns in Spain. Bargain-priced airfares ($100–$250) are also common between Madrid and other European cities such as Paris, Rome, London, Amsterdam, Lisbon, and Prague. Entertainment and recreation costs in Alcalá and Madrid are comparable to prices in Indianapolis.


La Alhambra in Granada, Spain

Where Will I Live?

All students live with Spanish families a short walk (or a short bus ride) away from campus. Instituto Franklin arranges these Homestays, which offer a private bedroom and three meals a day. The Homestay allows you to take advantage of the cultural and linguistic interactions that such a living arrangement provides. Housing is an important part of the overall experience and past participants have enjoyed living with a Spanish family. All admitted students must complete a housing form on which they can list their preferences and special needs. Although the staff makes every effort to accommodate special requests, students are encouraged to be flexible, as such requests cannot be guaranteed.


On the road to Andalucía, Spain

Who is Eligible?

To be eligible for this program a student must have a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA and have completed at least two 300-level Spanish courses, preferably one in literature or civilization. Students can be accepted to the program if they are planning on taking these 300-level Spanish courses during the Spring and/or Summer terms prior to the program. SP 375 Spanish Pronunciation is highly recommended.


Sidewalk in Alcalá de Henares, Spain

How Do I Apply?

Paper applications can be obtained from the Center for Global Education (JH 138) or can be downloaded here. Completed applications are typically due to the Center for Global Education no later than February 1.

Useful Websites

More information about Insituto Franklin

Alcalá homepage, in Spanish

For More Information

  • Dr. Alex Quintanilla, Faculty Director (Fall '18) and Associate Professor of Spanish and Modern Languages Department Chair, Jordan Hall, room 392, 317-940-8557
  • Dr. Irune del Rio Gabiola, Faculty Director (Fall ’12 & '17) and Associate Professor of Spanish, Jordan Hall, room 386, 317-940-6952
  • Dr. Gabriela Muniz, Faculty Director (Fall ’11 & '14) and Associate Professor of Spanish, Jordan Hall, room 372B, 317-940-6469
  • Dr. Linda Willem, Faculty Director (Fall ’03, ’04, ’06, ’08, ’10, '13, & '16) and Professor of Spanish, Jordan Hall, room, 374D, 317-940-9251
  • Juan Puablo Rodríguez, Faculty Director (Fall ’15) and Assistant Professor of Spanish, Jordan Hall, room 374 F, 317-940-6953
  • Jill McKinney, Director of Study Abroad, 317-940-8473
  • Calie Florek, Study Abroad Advisor, 317-940-8312