Summer 2023 in Italy

Summer 2023 Study Abroad in Montepulciano, Italy

Geography Anthropology study abroad in Italy summer 2023

Study geography abroad in Montepulciano, Italy, a beautiful, historic Tuscan hill town, in Summer 2023 through the KSU in Tuscany program! From May 18 to June 22, 2023, I'll be teaching two geography courses (GEOG 1101 Introduction to Human Geography and GEOG 3300 Urban Geography) at KSU's facility, a refurbished fortezza, in Montepulciano during Session I of the KSU in Italy Summer 2023 education abroad program in Montepulciano, Italy. 

Program Details, Courses, and Faculty

The program is conducted in English and each class meets for 2.5 hours in the morning and afternoon for two days each week. There will also be full-day field trips with your classes to other places two days each week (including day trips to Orvieto, Pisa and Lucca, and Siena, a two-day overnight field trip to Rome, and a two-day overnight field trip to Florence). Weekends (Friday to Sunday) are free for you to explore the region around Montepulciano or to travel on your own. Other courses will also be offered by other KSU professors during Session I (May 18 to June 22, 2023) and Session II (June 29 to August 3, 2023), so it's possible to mix and match two courses in two different disciplines within the same session.

Courses offered during Session I (May 18 to June 22, 2023):
Morning Courses (Choose One):
  • GEOG 1101: Introduction to Human Geography - Viewing the World from Italy (social science gen ed)

    Instructor: Dr. Paul McDaniel. GEOG 1101 satisfies Area E social science general education requirement. We live in a dynamic world! Geography and Geospatial Sciences equip us with the perspectives, skills, and tools to apply knowledge to better understand the world and its many diverse physical and human processes, and to contribute to sound decision-making about those processes, from the local to the global scale. Geography and maps are a fundamental language for understanding the world. They provide a framework for organizing and communicating our knowledge. Increasingly geography is used in virtually every field of human endeavor, providing a universal language for understanding, communicating ideas, and providing insights. Geography asks the big questions—Where? How? Why? What if?—and gives you the perspective to answer them with advanced technology and a solid knowledge of the world in which we all live. Through this human geography course, we’ll explore global geographic patterns of resources, population, culture, economic, political, and urban systems and their local level impacts while being immersed in a foreign culture and landscape. We will explore defining concepts in geography by focusing on the stories of real people, global trends, topics that transcend borders, and how these patterns affect local places. In essence, how do global patterns shape local lives, near and far? While in Italy, we’ll observe broader concepts as they occur on the Italian landscape, allowing us to compare and contrast these patterns with our home culture. GEOG 1101 satisfies Area E social science general education requirement.

  • ENGL 2110: World Literature: Do All Roads Lead to Rome?


  • PSYC 4490: Psychology of Creativity: Understanding and Developing Your Creative Side


  • Drawing, Printmaking, and Bookmaking in Italy


Afternoon Courses (Choose One):
  • GEOG 3300: Urban Geography - Exploring Italian Urban Landscapes

    Intructor: Dr. Paul McDaniel. Cities are dynamic landscapes! Urban geography explores the origins and development of cities, uncovers the excitement and diversity of cities, and examines urban challenges and opportunities. While being immersed in the landscapes of Italy, we will examine Italian cities—such as Rome, Florence, Pisa, Siena, and Montepulciano as well as several other hill towns in Tuscany—through the lenses of physical and historical geography, urban economic geography, urban cultural and social geography, and urban political geography. Additionally, we will observe examples of global urban dynamics and local level impacts. We will witness how broader urban concepts occur on Italy’s urban landscapes, allowing us to compare and contrast with the urban structure of our own familiar cities and towns in the U.S. GEOG 3300 satisfies an upper division related studies requirement or elective for many majors.

  • WRIT 3130: Cultural Connections through Journaling


  • PSYC 2258: Psychology of Adjustment: Adapting to and Thriving in the World Around Us


  • ART 1107: Understanding Visual Art



Courses offered during Session II (June 29 to August 3, 2023):
Morning Courses (Choose One):
  • ANTH 4490: Death in the Mediterranean


  • ART 1107: Art in Society


  • ENGL 3350: Regional Literature: Imagining Italy


  • PSYC 1101: Introduction to General Psychology


Afternoon Courses (Choose One):
  • ANTH 1102: Introduction to Anthropology


  • ARH 4490: Renaissance and Baroque Art and Architecture


  • ENGL 2110: World Literature: A Global View of Homer's Odyssey


  • PSYC 3355: Cross-Cultural Psychology


How to apply for this program?

To learn more about the specific details (program details, cost, application process, health and safety, and scholarships) and to apply to this program, please visit the official KSU Education Abroad Office program webpage:

Why go?

In addition to completing courses in an amazing location, this is your opportunity to visit many famous bucket list places in Italy (field trips to each of these cities, and many prominent sights within them, are included as part of the program):

  • Rome
  • Florence
  • Siena
  • Pisa
  • Lucca
  • Orvieto

You'll also have weekends (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday) free to explore on your own! You might choose to remain in Montepulciano, explore some of the other nearby Tuscan hill towns and countryside of Tuscany, or travel further afield to places such as Milan, Venice, Genoa, Naples (and Pompeii and the Amalfi Coast), the Italian Lake District (including Lake Como and Lake Garda), the Italian Alps and Dolomites, the Italian Riviera (including Cinque Terre), or visit another country, and much, much more! 

More reasons to go?

  • Enhance your global awareness
  • Enhance your academic learning
  • Develop your leadership skills
  • Advance your career
  • Experience personal growth
  • Learn another language
  • Immerse yourself in a new culture
  • Learn through experience while earning credit hours
  • Explore the actual geographic landscapes you're learning about in class
  • Experience first-hand masterpieces of art, architecture, and great historic venues
  • Build your resume
  • Make new friends
  • The opportunity to study abroad is a life-changing experience! Check out these testimonials from KSU students who have participated in previous education abroad programs, including Montepulciano! 
  • For even more reasons, see Why Should I Participate in an Education Abroad Program from the KSU Education Abroad Office

Where is Montepulciano?

  • Montepulciano is a medieval and renaissance hill town in the Italian province of Siena, in the southern Tuscany region, about 1 hour south of Florence and about 2 hours north of Rome. The town sits high on a limestone ridge (1,985 ft.) overlooking the surrounding region. Check out this Google Map (be sure to view the accompanying photos) and Google Earth link!
  • Where is the Fortezza di Montepulciano (our classroom building)? Here it is on a Google Map (be sure to check out the Street View and accompanying photos) and Google Earth

More Information about Italy

Videos about Montepulciano, Tuscany, and Italy

The following video was produced by a KSU student participating in the Summer 2019 KSU in Italy program in Montepulciano:

The following are episodes about Montepulciano, Tuscany, and other areas of Italy from Rick Steves' Europe