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Academics

Fields of Study: Humanities, Social Sciences, Science, Engineering

The University of Chile has areas of distinction in many scientific fields. Its Facultad de Ciencias (physics, chemistry, biology, and environmental science) and its Facultad de Ciencias Fisicas y Matematicas (geology, geophysics, and civil engineering) are both highly ranked.

In addition, La Chile, as the University of Chile is often called, has been a pioneer in several disciplines, including astronomy, anthropology, and robotics. While these are just a few highlights, you can pursue almost any major or coursework of your choosing.

Unique study opportunities

  • Work at an internship with an NGO, government, human rights, or indigenous organization.
  • Take general education courses that stress interdisciplinary and critical theories.

Language

Language of Instruction: Spanish

Spanish Language Study: Optional

You have the option to take one Spanish language course during the semester to continue to improve your language skills while living and learning in a Spanish-speaking country. A language level assessment will take place once you are in Santiago.

Courses and credit

To successfully complete this program:

  • Take a full-time course of study: A minimum of 18 quarter/12 semester UC units each semester (typically four courses)
  • You can take one Spanish language learning course to count towards the minimum unit requirement.
  • You can do an internship or a research project to replace one course.
  • You may take one course pass/no pass.

Current program courses

Each facultad or department provides all the courses needed by its own students.

You may find courses for your field in a variety of departments. For example, history courses may be found not only in the Facultad de Filosofia y Humanidades, or the School of Philosophy and Humanities, but also in the Facultad de Ciencias Sociales—the School of Social Sciences.

Consult study center staff for their assessment of all courses before you enroll in classes.

The University of Chile departments generally provide course syllabi, but this practice isn't always consistent.

Catalogs and resources

  • Courses for International Students: The course catalogues of approved courses for international students can be consulted online in the international relations office website, under the heading Oferta Académica. Generally, the course offerings remain the same in each semester. Remember that if you will be abroad during fall semester, look for courses under Segundo Semestre (Primavera). If you will be abroad spring semester, look for courses under Primer Semester (Otoño).
  • Once you have located courses that you are interested in from the link above, you can find syllabi here.
  • English courses in Business and Economics: Click on the link for the course catalog to see course titles and descriptions.
  • UCEAP Course Catalog: See a list of courses students have taken on this program. This is not a current representation of course offerings on this program. Reference the above links to review recent course offerings. 
  • Campus Credit Abroad: Learn the types of credit (major, minor, general education, elective) students from your campus received at this location.

Academic Culture

Most Chilean university academic programs allow students to take courses in just one facultad or department, but, as a UC student, you may take courses from any department provided you meet the course prerequisites.

Courses tend to be more lecture-style with less student participation than at UC, although this can vary by field. Classes are relatively small, with an average of 30 students. A class size of 75 students would be considered large. Many courses blend learning and problem-solving to develop skills, such as critical thinking, teamwork, and communication skills. Since the supply and use of textbooks is limited, students depend on photocopy services or the library reserve system.

The academic calendar is based on a semester system that runs from March through December, with a semester break in late July. Chilean semesters offer 16 weeks of instruction and an additional one- to two-week schedule of final exams.

Grades

You will earn direct UC credit and grades for all coursework. Grading is continuous and in most courses is based on a combination of exams, group projects, individual papers, and a final exam.

Grades for this program are typically available in late January to early February for the fall semester, and late September to early October for the spring semester. Because grades won’t be available for spring degree verification deadlines, graduating seniors should talk to their campus study abroad advisor about when to declare candidacy for graduation.