Bard College Catalogue

The Bard College Catalogue contains detailed descriptions of the College's undergraduate programs and courses, curriculum, admission and financial aid procedures, student activities and services, history, campus facilities, affiliated institutions including graduate programs, and faculty and administration.

Bard College Catalogue, 2018–19

Bard College Catalogue, 2018–19

Bard Abroad
Bard offers its students a wide range of opportunities to engage in international dialogue, both on campus and abroad. The College believes that such engagement is ­critical to a liberal arts education, and is committed to supporting and expanding its network of programs and partnerships that allow students to work with and learn from—not just about—people throughout the world.
A significant percentage of Bard students participate in at least one international program during their time at the College. Some spend a year, a term, or a summer studying abroad. Others work with leading international organizations or on community projects outside the United States. Additionally, some academic programs use videoconferencing to hold joint courses with partner institutions overseas, while others offer the opportunity for off-site study and research.
Bard students who wish to study abroad are encouraged to seek out programs that allow them to attend classes within foreign universities, as opposed to those offering courses attended solely by Americans. Bard offers such integrated programs at universities in Abu Dis, Palestine; Berlin, Germany; Budapest, Hungary; Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan; and St. Petersburg, Russia. The College also participates in several exchanges, consortiums, and other special programs that can facilitate study abroad: Bard undergraduates study in nearly 50 countries each year. Many of these programs are administered by the Institute for International Liberal Education, whose mission is to advance the theory and practice of the liberal arts education internationally. Bard sponsors faculty-led intensive language trips to China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, and Russia, as well as a summer Arabic program in the West Bank. The College also sponsors a “study away” option closer to home: the Bard Globalization and International Affairs Program in New York City.
In addition to Bard-sponsored programs, students can receive credit for participating in study abroad programs offered by other American colleges and universities, and they can also matriculate directly at foreign institutions, provided that their participation in these programs is approved by Bard. All Bard students who want to study abroad for a semester must have a grade point average of 3.0 or higher. Students participating in programs not sponsored by Bard are subject to a fee for each semester of study away.

Bard Study Abroad Programs

Bard offers a variety of international study programs through the following partner institutions.

Al-Quds Bard (AQB) College for Arts and Sciences Bard students may spend a semester or year abroad at the Al-Quds Bard College in Abu Dis, Palestine. AQB’s undergraduate program is a four-year, dual-degree program with a curriculum that is similar to Bard’s; it includes the Language and Thinking Program, -First-Year Seminar, Moderation, and a Senior Project for all students. Majors include biology and premedicine, computer science, economics and finance, environmental studies, human rights, literature, media studies, political science, and urban studies. The language of instruction is English; Arabic language classes are available. Bard students attending AQB pay Bard tuition and are responsible for their own living expenses; financial aid applies. For additional information and current program status, visit

American University of Central Asia (AUCA)   Bard students may study for a semester or year abroad at the American University of Central Asia. The university is located in the Kyrgyz capital of Bishkek, in the heart of Central Asia. Majors include American studies, anthropology, economics, European studies, international and comparative politics, journalism and mass communication, psychology, sociology, and software engineering. Most classes are taught in English; some are taught in Russian. The student body is international; languages offered include Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Kyrgyz, Russian, and Spanish. Bard students pay a program fee plus housing and other expenses; financial aid applies. Bard also offers a summer practicum in Bishkek, in partnership with AUCA’s Tian Shan Policy Center. Learn more at

Bard College Berlin: A Liberal Arts University   In 2011, Bard assumed leadership of BCB, one of Europe’s earliest liberal arts education programs. At BCB, students from more than 30 countries and a select international faculty work together in small classes and tutorials that encourage thoughtful dialogue. The language of instruction is English. Under Bard, the curriculum has expanded to include the Arts and Society Program, Liberal Arts Berlin, and Begin in Berlin study abroad programs, as well as summer intensives in theater and studio arts. A German language intensive is held during January intersession. Courses in economics, art, and history take advantage of BCB’s location in one of the world’s most artistically vibrant and historically layered cities. BCB is an active participant in local and international initiatives to provide access to higher education for displaced students, including Syrian and other refugees in Berlin. Flexible programs allow for visiting students to study at BCB for a semester, a year, or more. Students may participate in internships in a variety of fields. For additional information, visit

Central European University in Budapest (CEU)  Central European University is an internationally recognized institution of postgraduate education in the social sciences and humanities that seeks to contribute to the development of open societies in Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. Faculty members from more than 40 countries teach courses in English at CEU, which attracts approximately 1,400 students each year from more than 100 nations. Administered through the College, Bard’s program allows students from Bard and other undergraduate schools to take courses for credit at CEU; Bard financial aid applies. Upon completion of their undergraduate studies, students who qualify may apply up to 8 credits of semester abroad course work toward one of CEU’s master’s degree programs in the social sciences or humanities. For more information, go to

Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences, St. Petersburg State University, St. Petersburg, Russia (Smolny) In 1996, Bard and St. Petersburg State University formed a partnership to establish Russia’s first liberal arts program. Smolny College opened in October 1999 with 78 students studying a liberal arts and sciences curriculum. It now enrolls approximately 600. In 2011, Smolny became a new division of St. Petersburg State University, called the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences. The great majority of students are Russian. Smolny offers a dual BA in liberal arts and sciences from Bard College and the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences, St. Petersburg State University.

The four-year BA curriculum resembles Bard’s. Students attend First-Year Seminar, pass Moderation, and complete Senior Projects. At the same time, programs and courses reflect Russian cultural and intellectual traditions and the interests of Russian faculty and students. The languages of instruction are Russian and English. Students may take intermediate- and advanced-level courses in Russian as a second language. A summer language intensive is offered for students who wish to improve their Russian skills. Bard students with sufficient knowledge of Russian, including Russian and Eurasian Studies majors, are encouraged to spend a semester or more at Smolny. Students from Bard and other U.S. colleges and universities who attend Smolny for a semester or a year pay Bard tuition and earn Bard College credit; Bard financial aid applies. For more information, visit

Student Exchange Programs

Students participating in a Bard exchange program apply through Bard to enroll directly as a student in the partner university. Students pay their regular Bard tuition but are responsible for paying room, board, and fees to the partner university. Participation in exchange programs may be based upon availability, language proficiency, and desired field of study.

The American University in Cairo was founded in 1919 by Americans devoted to education and community service in the Middle East. Today, fully accredited in Egypt and the United States, AUC is the region’s premier English-language university. Its nearly 5,000 undergraduates, who come from Egypt and more than 100 other countries, follow an academic program rooted in liberal education. The language of instruction is English. Bard students take courses throughout the curriculum and normally also study Arabic.

Center for University Programs Abroad (CUPA) Paris  Students in the CUPA program enroll directly in the University of Paris system, allowing them to pursue studies at a number of different universities, grandes écoles, and specialized institutes. Courses are taught in French.

Humboldt University in Berlin  Humboldt has an active international program. The university’s enrollment of 36,000 includes more than 4,000 foreign students, many from Eastern Europe. To be eligible, students must have completed at least two years of German and successfully moderated. The vast majority of courses at Humboldt are taught in German, and Bard students are free to study a wide variety of subjects there. Humboldt also offers a small number of  courses in English, which students are free to take with the permission of their German adviser at Bard. Intensive German classes are available prior to the beginning of the Humboldt semester.

Kyoto Seika University in Kyoto, Japan  Kyoto Seika is a small, innovative university with faculties in the arts and humanities. Courses are offered mostly in Japanese. It is an ideal exchange opportunity for Bard students who are majoring in studio arts or film and electronic arts, and who have taken the equivalent of one year (or more) of college-level Japanese. They may spend a semester studying painting, ceramics, textile design, printmaking, papermaking, video and media arts, illustration, and other disciplines with distinctive Japanese traditions.

Kyung Hee University in Seoul, South Korea  A comprehensive private institution, Kyung Hee is one of Korea’s top universities. It has a mission of democratization and strong ties to the United Nations. Semester exchange students at Kyung Hee, from across the globe, choose from a variety of courses, all taught in English, and may study the Korean language as well.

Pitzer College International Programs in Botswana, Costa Rica, Nepal  A number of Pitzer College’s semester study abroad programs are open to Bard College students via tuition exchange. The programs feature homestays and study of local language. Pitzer in Botswana includes extended study trips in South Africa and Zimbabwe. The program in Costa Rica includes in-depth research opportunities at Pitzer’s Firestone Center for Restoration Ecology. The program in Quito, Ecuador, includes a study trip to the Galápagos Islands. The Nepal program has an integrated curriculum enabling students to interact closely with the people and cultures of this Himalayan country in a time of great transition.

Universidad San Francisco de Quito (USFQ) is a private liberal arts university located in Cumbayá, just outside of Quito, Ecuador. With more than 7,000 students and hundreds of international students each year, it is one of the three highest-ranked universities in the country and the only Ecuadorian university among the 75 best in Latin America. Furthermore, USFQ is the only university in the world with scientific stations in the Amazon rain forest and the Galápagos Islands. Spanish is the language of instruction. To be eligible, students must have completed at least two years of Spanish or the equivalent.

University College Roosevelt (UCR) in Middelburg, Netherlands  UCR is a liberal arts honors college associated with Utrecht University. Students at UCR tailor their own academic programs to fit their individual interests. This approach reflects the belief that today’s most complex problems can no longer be solved with a monodisciplinary approach. All classes are taught in English in a wide variety of subjects.

University of Milan (UniMi) in Milan, Italy is a public teaching and research university, with approximately 64,000 students, 2,000 professors, and a wide range of disciplinary fields. All courses are taught in Italian. UniMi’s departments are housed in 15th- to 18th-century palazzos and other architecturally significant structures in the center of Milan, and in modern buildings in the area known as Città Studi (the City of Studies). UniMi also boasts 47 libraries, a botanic garden, and its own choir and orchestra. 

Waseda University in Tokyo, Japan  Among the most well-regarded universities in all of Asia, Waseda consists of 13 undergraduate schools and 23 graduate schools. At least one year of Japanese language study at Bard is recommended for students wishing to study at Waseda.

Bard-Approved Programs

Bard students may petition to attend any credit-bearing study abroad program. Programs that have received prior approval and meet the academic and geographic interests of Bard students include institutions in Argentina, Brazil, Cameroon, Chile, China, Costa Rica, France, Ghana, Great Britain, Greece, Guinea, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Lebanon, Mexico, Morocco, Spain, Sri Lanka, and Tanzania.

Language Intensives

Most foreign languages taught at Bard can be studied in an intensive format that offers both an accelerated pace of learning and a one- or two-month summer or winter program in the country of the language under study. Current sites for these programs are China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, and Russia. The intensive format allows students to complete the equivalent of two years of language study in a few months. The immersion format, currently offered in German, is even more accelerated than the intensive format. For a more detailed description of intensive and immersion foreign language courses, see the Foreign Languages, Cultures, and Literatures Program description elsewhere in this catalogue or visit​​​​​​​