Harvard Summer Program in Prague, Czech Republic
Immerse yourself in the Czech language and culture in the heart of Europe.
This program is situated in Prague, Czech Republic, one of the world’s most beautiful cities that for centuries benefitted from its position at the crossroads of cultures and languages. You will learn the Czech language in class, through immersive exploration of the city, its rich history and vibrant present, and interactions with the locals. You will broaden your global perspectives on politics, philosophy, and history, and expand your knowledge of Central Europe.
Introductory language instruction is combined with a cultural examination of the complex cultural, religious, and political forces that have shaped Czech society. A particular emphasis is placed on studying the local richly layered architecture and urbanism. You participate in walking tours of Prague, visiting churches, castles, synagogues, museums, and monasteries, as well as other towns in Bohemia and Moravia.
Please note: While this program is organized around a language course for beginners, those who have already completed a year of Czech language may also participate. Please contact the program director for information about alternative tracks of study.
CZEC S-AAB Study Abroad in Prague, Czech Republic: Czech Language and Culture (32306)
This course consists of the study of Czech language and Czech literature, history and culture, in a broader Central European context. Intensive language study (equivalent to one year of university Czech) in the mornings is combined with walking tours of Prague as well as visits to museums, archives, theaters, concerts, and cafes. Our readings and lectures trace some of the major themes of Czech history and literature, paying special attention to the interaction between politics, aesthetics, and national identity whether in the middle ages, amidst the religious turmoil of the fifteenth-century Hussite wars, during the nineteenth-century National Revival, under Nazi occupation, communist rule in the twentieth century, or post 1989 transition to democracy. Our discussions revolve around the topics of modernity, experience of totalitarianism and dissidence, transition to democracy, and the multilingual and multiethnic (Czech/German/Jewish) legacies of Central Europe. Readings (all in English) include works by Kundera, Havel, Hrabal, and Kafka.
Where You Live and Study
Prague is one of the most well-preserved historical cities in the world. It is also the setting of striking social, cultural, political, and economic transformation. While based in Prague, you will also have the opportunity to travel to various Czech and Moravian towns, as well as explore other parts of Central Europe.
You stay in centrally located apartments with kitchen, bathroom, and laundry facilities. The apartments are in a neighborhood with parks, museums, shops, and restaurants. They are a short tram ride from our classroom, which is in the recently renovated Thurn und Taxis Palace in one of Prague's oldest neighborhoods.
Early application is strongly encouraged. Each program has unique requirements included in the online application. Beginning your application early is the best way to ensure that you have sufficient time to review and complete the application requirements by the deadline. You may apply to no more than two programs; if applying to two, you will be asked to designate a first and second choice.
A complete online application includes:
- Basic personal information
- A statement of interest
- Your most recent transcript
- Program-specific requirements (if applicable; may include letters of recommendation, audio or video submissions, etc.)
Interviews may be requested at the discretion of the program.
The summer 2020 application will be available here in early December. Harvard College students applying for funding from the Office of Career Services (OCS): Please note that the OCS funding application is separate.
If you have questions about the application, please contact the Harvard Summer School Study Abroad Office by email at email@example.com, or by telephone at (617) 998-9602.
Cost & Expenses
The program fee includes:
- Scheduled program activities
- Some meals (the program will provide further details)
You will also need to budget for a number of expenses not covered by the program fee. The amounts listed below for these out-of-pocket expenses are approximate, and you may incur additional expenses not noted here. Your actual expenses will depend on a number of factors, including personal spending habits and currency exchange rates.
- International airfare ($1,300 - $1,600)
- Ground transportation ($100)
- Meals ($1,000)
- Personal expenditures, communications, course materials, and miscellaneous ($400)
If you have specific questions about personal budgeting, please contact the program directly.
See Funding and Payment for information on how to submit payments and funding options.
- Veronika Tuckerova, PhD, Preceptor in Slavic Languages and Literatures, Harvard University
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