Budapest, Hungary, Prague, Czech Republic, Vienna, Austria

Program Description

What is the meaning of life? Is it discoverable? Is the goal to gain power? Is it simply in finding pleasure? Is it through discerning your personal purpose and mission in life? Throughout time different theories have been proposed to answer this question. What if, in a matter of two weeks, you could ponder these ideas and come to your own conclusion? Would that search have the possibility to change your life?

In this travel-study course, open to ALL majors, students study principles of cross-cultural psychology. Through examining personal behavior, social institutions, and individual responsibility we will compare the American psychological approach to life with the cultures of Austria, Hungary and the Czech Republic. Yes, three countries in 2 weeks!

The program begins with an 8-week block class during the Spring Semester designed to prepare students for the travel class. During the second summer session (2nd four-weeks), students will travel to three countries while based in Vienna, Austria. Our hotel is located in the historic, cobblestone center of Vienna, Austria where horses and carriages are a common site and one block from the beautiful Danube Canal.

Location Description

Surrounded by the Danube Canal, abounding with luxurious palaces, magnificent churches, phenomenal music and some of the top museums in the world, Vienna is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. We will visit the homes of Sigmund Freud (yes, the couch is still there) and Viktor Frankl (holocaust survivor and author of one of the top 10 most influential books of all time, "Man's Search for Meaning"). In addition, we will visit the picturesque and historic cities of Prague, Czech Republic and Budapest, Hungary – two of the top tourist destinations in Eastern Europe.

In contrast to this elegance and opulence, we will consider the psychology of power through the lens of the Holocaust. We will consider how advanced, civilized countries could succumb so easily to such overt atrocities. We will explore each country’s Holocaust Memorial and in one of the most powerful experiences of your life, visit Mauthausen Concentration Camp.


Bill Evans | evanswf@jmu.edu | Psychology


Housing will be provided for 14 nights at the elegant Hotel Austria. The hotel offers complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access as well as a magnificent breakfast buffet. The hotel is in the historic center of Vienna, and is adjacent to a major public transportation station.

ALL meals, ALL lodging, ALL admissions, and ALL in country transportation are included in the program fee. The hotel provides breakfast, and lunches are covered by a weekly meal stipend INCLUDED in the program fee. Evening meals are experienced together at a wonderful local restaurant and are a part of the daily, required activities; these meals are also covered by the program fee.

Additional Items to Consider

A valid Passport is required. An active international cell phone plan with both data and text for the extent of the trip is required. Cell phone data as plans in Europe can be expensive – check with your cell phone provider about costs of international calling, data and text plans before traveling.

This program is intended for ALL MAJORS and all levels (Freshmen-Senior). Honors college students are also welcome.

Contact program director prior to the application deadline with any additional questions: Dr. Bill Evans | evanswf@jmu.edu | Professor of Psychology | 1173 Miller Hall

COVID-19 Location Information:

Each country has different requirements upon entry with regard to COVID-19. Please check this website for the most up-to-date information on what is required for the country (or countries) that are part of this program. Please note that this changes often, so we encourage you to check back frequently.

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 2.0.  During the Spring, students will take a 1-credit hour PSYC class (by override only). 

During the summer, students will take a 3-credit hour PSYC 200 or PSYC 400 (not both):

Prerequisites for PSYC 200: PSYC 101 or PSYC 160
Prerequisites for PSYC 400: PSYC Major with at least one PSYC Natural Science & one PSYC Social Science PSYC area class

Freshmen, Sophomore, Junior and Senior students are all welcome to apply

Application Process

This list serves as an application preview. To apply, students will need to complete the following:

  • Study Abroad Online Application ($40 fee)
  • Short essay 
  • Post application interview with Program Director
    (you will be contacted AFTER completed application is received)
  • Official transcript required for non-JMU students

Further details and instructions about these application requirements will be available upon log-in.

Application Deadline


All dates are tentative and subject to change


PSYC 261: Topics in Psychology: Cross-Cultural Psychology in Austria (3 credits)

PSYC 461: Advanced Topics in Psychology: Cross-Cultural Psychology in Austria (3 credits)

PSYC 202: Directed Studies in Psychology: Cross-Cultural Psychology in Austria Prep Class (1 credit) *spring 2021 course

Courses listed here are to be used as a general guideline for program curriculum. *All courses are considered pending until approved by the Academic Department, Program, and/or College.


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