MORE CULTURE. LESS SHOCK. Programs, Internships and Volunteer Opportunities

Study on the Intensive Spanish Program

  • Location: Buenos Aires
  • Minimum GPA: 3.0 (4.0 scale)
  • Spanish requirement: 4 semesters of university-level Spanish
  • **Application deadlines: November 1 for semester 1 (Feb-July)
    April 1 for semester 2 (July-Dec)
  • Program advisor: Jennifer McKibben
    **Due to Argentine visa deadlines and requirements, IFSA-Butler recommends that non-U.S. citizens apply early to this program.
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Program Snapshot

The Intensive Spanish program allows students some of the flexibility of the Argentine Universities Program, but provides additional support to maximize students’ academic success. You will go through three stages during this program to promote your Spanish language level. This program aims to make the most of the surrounding Spanish-speaking environment by encouraging students to interact with native speakers and offering insight into different aspects of the Argentine cultural, social and political reality.

intensive spanish

What the Intensive Spanish program has to offer

  • A program specifically for IFSA-Butler students
  • Specially designed program courses and integrated university classes with local degree-seeking students
  • All classes taught in Spanish by Argentine university professors
  • Excursion to Colonia, Uruguay, and other cultural and social activities


  • IFSA-Butler arranges housing with carefully selected host families for each program participant
  • Two meals per day are included Sunday through Friday; one meal is provided on Saturday


  • All students take an Intensive Advanced Spanish and Argentine Culture
  • Students earn 15 U.S. semester credit hours per semester
  • Enroll in classes taught by Argentine professors alongside local students
  • Academic tutors are available
  • Grades recorded on a Butler University transcript

We look forward to working with you!


Academic Structure

What is the academic structure of the program?
The concentration is structured around the following components for a total of 15-16 U.S. semester credit hours:

  1. Intensive Advanced Spanish and Argentine Culture program class (4 U.S. semester credit hours); note that the Spanish class on this concentration is different from the Spanish class taught on other AUP concentrations.
  2. Four classes from the following options (3 U.S. semester credit hours each):
    • IFSA-Butler program classes
    • Contemporary Argentine History: State and Society
    • Argentine Foreign Policy
    • Argentine and Latin American Literature
    • Art and Politics in Contemporary Argentina
    • Integrated classes at UCA or USAL. An academic advisor in Buenos Aires will assist you in selecting appropriate courses.
  3. Specialized tutorial system

See the Program Courses tab for course descriptions. All coursework is conducted in Spanish.

Can I attend this program for the full year?
The Intensive Spanish program is available for a single semester only, but students can choose to participate in IFSA-Butler's Argentine Universities Program in Buenos Aires for a second semester if they wish.

Program Courses

The following course comprises the curriculum for the Intensive Spanish program and is required and worth 4 U.S. semester credit hours each.

Advanced Spanish and Argentine Culture The objective of this mandatory program class is to enrich the knowledge of Spanish language in the following four areas: oral comprehension, oral expression, written expression and reading comprehension while analyzing the cultural context in which the language was developed and is currently spoken.

The following courses are electives available for the Intensive Spanish program. They are worth 3 U.S. semester credit hours each.

Argentine Foreign Policy The course is aimed at acquainting with the specific issues of the foreign relations of a non-central country and their relationship with the domestic economic growth and development project. The course is designed to familiarize students with foreign policy issues through a comprehensive analysis of the matter. These issues will be addressed in the context of contemporary history during the period following World War II with a particular emphasis on Argentina's relations with Brazil and Latin America and also current items on the domestic agenda.

Argentine and Latin American Literature This course aims to broaden the student's knowledge of Argentine and Latin American culture and literature of the second half of the 20th century. Students will reflect on theoretical aspects associated with the changes occurring in the fictionalizing processes, and this course will encourage students to take an enlightened view of and establish relationships and expansions between the texts and the social and cultural processes. Students will analyze the geographical, historical and cultural contexts in which tales are produced. This course will promote the critical and creative reading of the suggested texts through the practice of writing and conversation.

Art and Politics in Contemporary Argentina: From an Intercultural Perspective The seminar on Community & Culture in Argentina proposes a collective reflection on the life experience. Its goal is to share different cultural spaces and different communities. The idea of the seminar is to develop among students and teachers a great amount of creativity to make questions about what it means to live among different. This class is worth 3 U.S. semester credit hours.

Society and State in Contemporary Argentina The course will address the study of the social, economic and political history of contemporary Argentina, analyzing the most outstanding events that took place from the beginning of the 20th century until present. The course will also present a critical discussion of the main problems affecting Argentina in each period with an emphasis on experiences that are unique to the country: Peronism, the different military coups, the military process and the “disappeared,” the return to democracy, and the challenges faced by subsequent administrations regarding economic crises and governability. Students are expected to understand the different economic, social and political stages that Argentina has experienced, and the makeup and impact of the different social players within the prevailing local and international context.

Fictions of the Present: Argentine Literature and Cinema after 2000 The aim of the course is to study Argentine literary fiction and cinema of the last two decades with a view to identifying the new formal, stylistic and thematic characteristics and their association with the changes in the ways of imagining and experiencing the contemporary world. This analysis will focus especially on the transformations that Argentine culture has undergone recently in connection with issues such as globalization, postmodernism, the emergence of new communication technologies, and the impact of these processes on literary traditions, the national language and collective imaginaries.

Peronist Argentina The course is directed at reflecting on the most important political movement in Argentina since the middle of the 20th century. Peronism has been analyzed from the viewpoints of sociology, political science, anthropology and history. Literature and film have also addressed the topic. This course will focus on the political, social and cultural dimensions of this phenomenon with particular emphasis on the main social and political aspects of the Peronist movement.

University Info

Universidad Católica Argentina
Located on the Río de la Plata, Universidad Católica Argentina (UCA) is just a few blocks from the bustling downtown area and the convenient subte. Each modern campus building is connected by underground passage ways, which make for a quick walk to class. The small campus and class size allow students to find their own personal niche in the big city. Modern amenities and the latest technology provide many of the same comforts found on any U.S. university campus. Courses are worth 3 U.S. semester credit hours.

Universidad del Salvador
The Universidad del Salvador (USAL) resembles a U.S. university in the diversity and structure of its curriculum. This private university has a small student body and a commitment to personalized education, so the atmosphere is nurturing. Despite the fact that USAL is a true urban university with faculties spread over a wide area, the university offers a sense of community. Connect with your fellow students by checking into the range of sports teams and activities available. Courses are worth 3 U.S. semester credit hours.

See the "Electives" section for more information about the range of electives available.


How many electives do I take?
Each student on the Intensive Spanish program chooses four electives from the IFSA-Butler program courses or a university in Buenos Aires. Elective courses may or may not be integrated with degree students at local universities. Credits vary by university.

Where do I take my elective course?
Students take their electives at the IFSA-Butler office, Universidad del Salvador or Universidad Católica Argentina. All are located in Buenos Aires.

Where can I find a list of available electives?
Click on the "Online Course Catalogs" section for detailed instructions on how to find courses that may be available at Universidad del Salvador or Universidad Católica Argentina.

Are there any restrictions or additional requirements for courses I can take?
Students on this program may register only for courses in the open departments listed in the "Online Course Catalogs" section.

I need to provide a course descriptions and/or syllabi to my home university advisor. Where can I find those?
If course descriptions or syllabi are not available online, contact your IFSA-Butler program advisor for assistance. Please provide the following information in your request:

  • University name
  • Department/facultad/subject
  • Course title
  • Course number (if available)

Online Course Catalogs

Students on this program take four electives at a university in Buenos Aires. Below are instructions for navigating the online course catalogs for the participating universities:

Universidad Católica Argentina

  1. Click here to access UCA's online course catalog.
  2. Select a subject of interest (i.e. Ciencias Politicas). Make sure to only select subjects from the section titled "Carerras de Grado, Buenos Aires."
  3. Next, click on "Ver el detalle del Plan de estudios" to obtain a list of courses.

The following UCA departments are open to IFSA-Butler students:

  • Facultad de Ciencias Políticas: Ciencia Política and Relaciones Internacionales
  • Facultad de Filosofía y Letras: Literatura, Historia and Filosofía
  • Facultad de Psicología y Educación: Psicología, Psicopedagogía and Educación
  • Instituto de Comunicación Social, Periodismo y Publicidad: Publicidad and Periodismo

Universidad del Salvador

  1. Click here to access USAL's online course catalog.
  2. Click on a facultad that interests you (i.e. Facultad de Ciencias Sociales).
  3. Choose a subject and click on it to see the course listings.
  4. For most subjects, only a list of courses will appear. For others, short descriptions or syllabi may be available if you click on the course title.

The following USAL departments are open to IFSA-Butler students:

  • Facultad de Historia, Filosofía y Letras: Letras, Lengua Inglesa, Interpretación de Conferencias en Inglés, Traductorado Público de Inglés, Traductorado Científico Literario de Inglés, Historia, Ciencias Ambientales, Gestión de Historia de las Artes and Filosofía
  • Facultad de Ciencias Sociales: Ciencia Política, Sociología, Relaciones Internacionales and Servicio Social
  • Facultad de Ciencias de la Administración: Administración, Comercialización, Administración de Recursos Humanos, Sistemas de Información
  • Facultad de Artes de Teatro: Escenografía and Arte Dramático
  • Facultad de Psicología: Psicología and Psicopedagogía
  • Escuela de Estudios Orientales: Estudios Orientales


How will I register for courses?
Students on this program will be automatically registered for the program course and the seminar. Registration for your chosen electives will not take place until you are in Argentina. You will receive more information about university registration during your IFSA-Butler orientation in Argentina.

What if I need to take a required course?
Because of university scheduling, it is difficult to confirm course availability before you depart. If you are flexible in your elective choices, you will probably be able to find a course that fits your needs. Keep in mind that if you need a specific elective to fulfill your home institution's requirements, we may not be able to confirm the availability of that course or enroll you in it even if it is available. Both academic flexibility and patience are requirements for studying in Latin America.

What are the registration conditions
You must take a full university course load as determined by IFSA-Butler, which is 15 U.S. semester credit hours per semester. Credit will be awarded on a Butler University transcript based on a typical U.S. full course load. The number of courses you will take depends on the individual credit value of the courses you select. Please be aware that you may be charged additional fees by your home university or host university to take or process additional credits. Taking less than a full course load may jeopardize your student status and result in personal academic repercussions and/or loss of financial aid.

All courses are graded on an A-F scale, and there is no provision for pass/fail or auditing courses unless pass/fail is the only method of assessment for the course. Students are not allowed to register for on-line, distance education or hybrid courses. See the "Academics" and "Program Fees and Financial Aid" sections in Preparing to Study Abroad for more information.


What do I need to know about exams?
Due to the difference in academic systems, your exam schedule will not be available until after you register for your elective. Be sure to confirm exam dates with your professor at the beginning of the semester. You are not permitted to reschedule exams, request alternate assessment or arrange to have your exams proctored in the United States. If this occurs, IFSA-Butler will not be able to assist you in conducting an academic record appeal on the class in which you made this arrangement. Additionally, all academic obligations, including final exams, must be complete before leaving Argentina.

Will I have final exams after the program has officially ended?
Exams for your IFSA-Butler program courses will take place before the end of the semester. However, it is possible that your elective may have an exam scheduled past the official program end date. As the final exam schedule will not be available until you register for classes (after you arrive in Buenos Aires), we cannot guarantee that you will be finished by the program end date.

It is very important that you check your elective syllabus and with your professor for your final exam schedule. All coursework must be submitted before you leave Argentina, and exams cannot be rescheduled.

Should you need to remain in Buenos Aires after the program end date to take a final exam, IFSA-Butler housing and services are guaranteed until that time. It will be your responsibility to arrange and pay for any changes in your return flight once final exams are complete.


How will my home university know what my classes were and what grades I received?
After you return to the U.S., IFSA-Butler will send a Butler University transcript to your home university. The transcript reflects the courses taken, credits attempted and grades earned during your study abroad semester. We will also send an official transcript to your permanent home address.

Academic Advisors

What if I need academic help during the semester?
A particularly strong feature of our Buenos Aires program is the availability of academic advisors. These are Argentine final-year students (the equivalent of graduate students) or university graduates who represent a variety of disciplines, including literature, politics, history, economics and sociology.

You will be required to meet with your academic advisor at least once a month. They are available on a rotating schedule each evening of the week; you have access to all the academic advisors (not just the one to whom you are assigned) who can assist you if you encounter any difficulties with the content of your classes.

The availability of academic advisors on this program is an especially important feature given the difficulties of studying in a different academic system in a foreign language. Be sure to take advantage of this valuable resource.


Housing Options

What are my housing options?
Study abroad is much more than academics. Learning takes place not only during class, but 24 hours a day. One of the best out-of-class experiences is the homestay, which is a vital, required component of the IFSA-Butler program. One IFSA-Butler student is placed with a carefully selected, program approved host family for the duration of the study abroad semester or year.


The program includes two meals per day Sunday through Friday and one meal on Saturday.

Housing FAQs

Is my housing included in the program fee?
Yes. Your program fee includes accommodation with your host family while classes are in session and during short university breaks. If you are studying abroad for an entire year, you will need to find alternate housing during the semester breaks. You will be responsible for the any commuting costs you may incur.

When will I receive my housing assignment?
You will most likely receive your housing assignment one to two weeks before your departure. However, in some cases you may not receive your housing assignment until you arrive in Argentina for orientation. Your program advisor will notify you of your housing assignment via email when it is ready.

Please keep in mind that while IFSA-Butler guarantees housing, we cannot guarantee your preferences.

Do I have to pay a housing deposit?
This program does not require a housing deposit.

Can I arrange my own housing?
All students must live with a program approved host family for the duration of the program.


Living and Studying Abroad in Buenos Aires
Population: 10 million
Location: Eastern Argentina, near the border of Uruguay

City features

  • Home to countless cultural and sporting attractions
  • One of the most cosmopolitan societies in the world, with a distinctly European air
  • Known as the "Paris of the Americas" for its sophistication and culture
  • Unparalleled opportunities to enjoy theatre, music, films and museums
  • Home to nearly 40 percent of the Argentine population
  • Reliable, inexpensive bus and local trains make getting around a breeze
  • Music and tango permeate the city and add to its colorful flavor

Do more!

  • Head out of the city and visit the Delta Tigre
  • Enjoy a weekend in Colonia or Montevideo, Uruguay
  • Take a day trip to the Isla Martín García

Buenos Aires Tourism
Argentina Tourism
An Introduction to Buenos Aires
Lonely Planet Guide to Buenos Aires
Tourist Guide To Buenos Aires
Gobierno de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires

Dates & Fees

Program Dates

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Your program end date may change due to circumstances beyond IFSA-Butler's control. Upon arrival at your host university, be sure to verify your exam schedule and program end date. We also strongly recommend that you investigate fees and penalties associated with your airline tickets in case you need to make date or route changes.

Program housing is available only until the day shown on the calendar as “Program Ends.” If you have academic obligations after this date, let the IFSA-Butler staff know so they can arrange an extended stay with your host family.

Exams must be taken where and when scheduled. Under no circumstances may students request that an exam time be changed. Argentine exams are taken under formal examination conditions and changes cannot be made for individuals.

Program Fees

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What's included in our Argentina program fees
Expense calculator

Semester 1 Payments Due: December 15
Semester 2 Payments Due:
May 15

Program Fee Bills
IFSA-Butler will send a single bill for the entire program fee, which includes tuition, services, housing and some meals.

Each student lives with a carefully selected host family. The program fee includes two meals per day Sunday through Friday, and one meal on Saturday.

Personal Cost Estimates

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Expense calculator

These figures are designed to assist students with financial planning but are only estimates based on past students’ experiences at the current exchange rate. They do not include any entertainment or vacation travel costs.

The above numbers are general estimates of expenses during a program abroad. We recommend taking into account your current spending habits, the cost of living in your host country and the current exchange rate. Your IFSA-Butler program advisor can be helpful as you attempt to work on a personal budget for your experience abroad.

Meals: The IFSA-Butler program fee includes two meals per day Sunday through Friday and one meal per day on Saturday.

Personal Miscellaneous: Covers general expenses of college life, including course supplies, photocopying, toiletries, snacks, personal care, etc.

Commuting: Estimates are for transportation between housing and university. Transportation for personal or recreational purposes is not included in the above estimates.

All costs are in U.S. dollars.

Meet Your IFSA-Butler Team

IFSA-Butler has a dedicated team of staff who are here to help students prepare for their program in Buenos Aires:

jenniferProgram Advisor Jennifer McKibben assists with the application process and is here to answer program, cultural and academic questions before departure. Jennifer studied abroad in Costa Rica for a year through an IFSA-Butler program. After completing her undergraduate degree in Spanish at Butler University, she moved to Costa Rica for three years to immerse herself in the culture and pursue a Master’s degree in Spanish-English Translation at Universidad Nacional. She is very passionate about helping students have impactful, enriching experiences abroad. Jennifer currently advises students planning to study abroad in Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, Mexico and Peru. She can be reached at the email link above or at 800-858-0229, ext. 4264.

altStudent Accounts Coordinator Angelita Shaffer assists with the financial side of study abroad and processes payments and invoices. Angelita can be reached at the email link above or at 317-940-4221.




Student & Parent Services Manager Donnetta Spears is available to both students and parents for travel questions and information. Donnetta has worked with IFSA-Butler for 11 years, and she has traveled through parts of Europe, Latin America, Australia and New Zealand. As the mother of 4 college students (including one who studied abroad on an IFSA-Butler program), she has a deep understanding of the ins-and-outs of study abroad from a parent perspective. Donnetta can be reached at the email link above or at 317-940-4252.


Once abroad, our students are in the capable hands of our on-site office, including our resident director. Click here to read more about Senior Resident Director Mario Cantarini.

rhondaUpon return from your study abroad program, Assistant Director for Academic Affairs Rhonda Hinkle processes your Butler University transcript and assists with any academic record appeals. Rhonda completed her undergraduate coursework at the University of Evansville and received her master's degree from Bowling Green State University. She also has taken doctoral courses at Ball State University. For Rhonda, study abroad not only increased her awareness of the world around her but also ignited her passion for travel and education. Rhonda can be reached at the email link above or at 800-858-0229 ext. 4259.

Get Connected

Connect with IFSA-Butler Students

If you really want to know what it's like to study abroad, connect with IFSA-Butler alumni and students who are currently abroad on an IFSA-Butler program. Check out the following:

Student Network

Student Blogs
Experiences Abroad Videos
For Students


Volunteering while studying abroad in Buenos Aires is an enriching experience, both personally and academically. Students report that even volunteering a few hours per week enhanced their study abroad experience by providing them with access to the local culture and a deeper understanding of problems that face Argentines on a daily basis.

If you are interested in participating in volunteer work, you can attend an informational session at the start of the semester in which the on-site volunteer coordinator will give a presentation on the different options and requirements for each organization.

IFSA-Butler has prepared a list of places where you can volunteer to do social service. While this is purely optional, a commitment on your part is needed in order to arrange a placement. Volunteering does not earn academic credit and will not appear on your Butler University transcript.

Examples of places where students may volunteer:

  • Democracia Representativa seeks to strengthen representative democracy in Argentina.
  • ADEPRA works to rescue stray animals.
  • Pilotos Solidarios: provides general and medical assistance to isolated rural communities.
  • Maguen Avot tutors school children.
  • Dando A Luz is an organization that promotes reproductive rights.
  • Cicerones promotes beauty and cultural diversity of Buenos Aires.
  • AMARTYA is dedicated to promoting social responsibility.
  • PANAACEA is a program for austistic children and their families.
  • Riesgo Cero was created to provide sexual and reproductive health and HIV/AIDS prevention information.
  • Sociedad de Integración Gay Lésbica Argentina works to promote the social integration of the GLBT community in Buenos Aires.
  • Donar Sangre da Vida provides information and support to children with cancer and their families.
  • CARE promotes equal access to communication and information technology.
  • Proyectarte seeks to promote and spread art created by young Argentine artists.
  • Campus Travel is a travel agency for student travelers.

This is just a sample of the volunteer opportunities available to our students, and these may change from semester to semester. If you have specific interests, please discuss them with your program advisor, who can research other opportunities that may be available in your area of interest. Your program advisor can help you determine opportunities that fit your interests (if they are not listed above), but you will not sign up for a volunteer placement until orientation.

Institute for Study Abroad, Alliance For Global Education and MORE CULTURE. LESS SHOCK. are registered marks of the Institute for Study Abroad, Inc.