Summer Travel Study

English: American Writers and Artists Abroad

  • Dates

    July 8, 2019 –  August 1, 2019

  • Location

    Florence, Italy

  • Program Fee

    UC Undergrads: $5,900

    UC Grad Students: $6,400

    Visiting Students: $6,400

    Fees are subject to change by action of the UC Regents.

American writers and artists loved Florence (and Italy generally), and often went there to write, paint, and sculpt.

Travel and residence abroad was an essential part of their aesthetic education and creative development. Especially in the nineteenth century, the old world (and Italy in particular) served as the site of significant artistic education, exploration, and adventure.

This summer Travel Study program offers an opportunity to read American novels and short stories that were written in Italy, or that set their stories there or featured expatriate American writers and artists as characters, or all of the above.

This program examines the experiences of some of the most important American writers and artists who spent time in Florence, the beautiful Tuscan city where the Italian Renaissance originated. The program also includes an overnight excursion to Rome, the seat of the Roman Empire and a place of significance for Western civilization.


“English in Florence: American Writers and Artists Abroad” combines and integrates two separate 5-credit courses, English 119 and English 177. Non-majors and majors (both English majors and American Literature and Culture majors) are equally welcome. Both of the courses will fulfill various requirements for majors: the Historical Breadth requirement (1850-present); the Imperial, Transnational and Postcolonial Studies requirement; and the Genre Studies, Interdisciplinary Studies, Critical Theory requirement. Students may also enroll in an optional 199 course for further individual study with the instructor’s permission.

Required Courses

10 quarter units

ENG 119: Literary Cities (5 quarter units)

ENG 119, Literary Cities (Florence): Florence is a city that was loved by many American writers and artists, who visited the city, lived there, and wrote and made art there. We will study the city through their eyes, visiting the churches, parks, piazzas and other places that appear in their works. Lectures, walking tours, museum explorations, and site visits will familiarize us with the city as they saw and felt it. In Edith Wharton’s short story, “The Fulness of Life,” for example, her protagonist experiences an aesthetic and spiritual thrill in the Church of Orsanmichele: we will visit the church and experience its atmosphere for ourselves.

ENG 177: Interdisciplinary Studies of American Culture (5 quarter units) 

ENG 177, Interdisciplinary Studies of American Culture: We will read novels and short stories by American writers, as well as the works of sculptors and painters, that were inspired by or set in Italy, and that often featured the lives and works of expatriate American writers and artists. Henry James’s novel Roderick Hudson, for example, is about a young American sculptor who moves to Italy to pursue his artistic career. We will also study the American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s famous translation of the Florentine poet Dante’s Inferno, perhaps the most profound engagement of an American writer with the rich Florentine past.

*English majors are expected to have completed English 10A, 10B, 10C and Composition 3.

Optional Course
ENG 199: Directed Research

Students also have the option of enrolling in ENG 199, allowing them to do an additional research paper on a topic related to the travel study program.  Instructor consent is required to register, so be sure to obtain your instructor’s approval on the subject and format. There is an additional fee for this optional course.


All schedules, itineraries, and group activities are subject to change at the discretion of the instructor.


You are responsible for purchasing your own textbooks. We strongly suggest you read as much of the text material as possible before you depart. More information on textbooks will be available at a later date.

Budget and Financial AId

Budget Estimate UC Undergrads UC Grad Students Visiting Student
Program Fee  $5,900  $6,400  $6,400
Textbooks (estimate) $150 $150 $150
Airfare (estimate) $2,000 $2,000 $2,000
Meals (estimate) $1,000 $1,000 $1,000
Spending Money (estimate) $500 $500 $500

Program fee includes registration and course fees, accommodations, program excursions and health insurance.

Airfare, textbooks, optional courses, meals and optional excursions are additional.

Fees are subject to change by action of the UC Regents.

Document Fee

Non-UCLA students will be charged a $50 Document Fee. This is a one-time document fee which covers fees for first-class mailing of official transcripts, diploma and much more. Please visit the Registrar’s Office Website for more information. Matriculated UCLA Students: Please visit the Registrar’s Office Website for document fee information.


All undergraduate students will be charged a $61 IEI fee per summer. The IEI (Instructional Enhancement Initiative) fee is a course materials fee that is charged in order to support the use of technology in undergraduate education at UCLA. For more information please click here.


We recommend that you budget accordingly to cover optional sightseeing, laundry, internet cafes, emergencies, etc.  How much to budget depends on your travel, entertainment, and souvenir choices. It is always best to overestimate your spending. Take the time to research the cost of living in your destination and the activities you want to participate in while abroad.

Purchasing Airfare

Please do not purchase airfare until instructed to do so by your Travel Study Program Coordinator.

Optional Course Fee
Optional 199 UC Undergrads UC Grad Students Visiting Students
Course Fee $279 per unit $349 per unit $349 per unit

Fees are subject to change by action of the UC Regents.

Financial Aid

Financial aid for Summer Sessions Travel Study programs is available to qualified UCLA students. All other students should inquire about financial aid at their home institution. For details about the financial aid application process, please visit the Financial Aid section of this web site

On Location

Program City

Walking tours of Florence and its surroundings, visits to the Uffizi Gallery, the Pitti Palace Museum, the Boboli Gardens, and the nearby hilltop town of Fiesole—all enchanted locations for these writers—will allow program participants to experience firsthand the city of Florence that Americans loved so well.

Accommodations & Study Center

Students live in centrally-located student apartments in Florence. Students will stay in double or triple occupancy rooms with shared kitchen, bathroom and laundry facilities. Please note that apartments may be co-ed, although roommates in each bedroom are of the same gender. Apartments may also house students from other academic programs. Students will study at the Accent in Florence Study Center.

UCLA Summer Sessions reserves the right to change the housing location. Should this become necessary, we will arrange comparable accommodations elsewhere.


No meals are included. Accommodations include a shared kitchen for preparing meals.

If you have strict dietary requirements, this program may not be able to accommodate your needs. Please let us know when you apply for this program if you have special dietary needs as well as any physical or medical conditions. We will advise you accordingly.

Tentative Schedule

This program includes several excursions as part of its curriculum. Possible excursions in Florence and the surrounding area include visits to Fiesole, the Uffizi Gallery, Pitti Palace, Boboli Gardens, and the Church of Orsanmichele. The program also includes an overnight excursion to Rome with visits to the Vatican, the Colosseum or the Capitoline Museums. This list is subject to change. A schedule of excursions will be available at a later date.

Limited free time is built into this program for independent sightseeing. If you plan on traveling extensively, we recommend that you budget additional spending money.

Student Stories

Mia Brumfield

Program Correspondent