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Exploring the Good Life in Scandinavia

Location

Copenhagen, Denmark and Malmo, Stockholm, Sweden

Program Description

In this class, students will consider “the good life” – a life full of meaning, pleasure, and engagement – from a global perspective, by exploring two of the world’s happiest nations: Sweden and Denmark.

Coursework will involve a series of readings (some of which will be assigned during the mandatory 1-credit spring preparatory course), on-site lectures by the program director and by local experts, student presentations, self-reflective journals, and other written work.

Although there will be traditional classroom meetings, this course will be highly experiential. Students will be encouraged to meet with and interview local people and visit local institutions to gain a deeper understanding of well-being and happiness in this part of the world. By examining the “world’s leading experts” on happiness, students will learn firsthand what promotes a high state of well-being, and may question their own assumptions about what makes for a good life.

Students who participate in this program will be required to register for a 1-credit study abroad prep course offered in the Spring semester. 

Location Description

Instruction will take place primarily in the vibrant capital cities of Copenhagen, Denmark and Stockholm, Sweden. Being in the heart of these cities will allow for regular outings to popular Copenhagen sites like Tivoli Gardens (a lively amusement park), the Stroget (a popular shopping street), Christiania (a free-spirited commune in the heart of the city), and the Danish National Museum. While in Stockholm, we will visit sites such as Skansen (an outdoor museum), the Archipelago (a chain of over 30,000 islands), Gamla Stan (the charming “old city”), museums, and parks. Other daytrips may include Lund and Malmo (both in Sweden). Most importantly, these locations will allow students to have first-hand experience with two cities known to show a high regard for citizens’ physical and psychological well-being.

Director

Jaime Kurtz | kurtzjl@jmu.edu | Psychology

Accommodations

Accommodations will be provided by the Danish Institute for Study Abroad, which specializes in study abroad experiences for American university students. 

Students will be allocated a weekly stipend for two meals a day, which they can use while on their own (this will usually be breakfast and lunch). Dinner will be eaten as a group. All meals are included in the program fee. Students will have access to budget eateries, supermarkets, and large kitchens while in the dormitories.

Additional Items to Consider

Travel from city to city will take place by train. We may take a boat trip around Stockholm’s island Archipelago.

Visas and special immunizations are not required.

This program is best suited to psychology majors or those with an interest in health, human development, family systems, or public policy.

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 2.5
Open to all students and class levels
Prerequisite for PSYC 200: PSYC 101 and PSYC 160
Prerequisite for PSYC 400: At least one Social Science course and one Natural Science course

Application Process

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

  • Study Abroad Online Application ($25 fee)
  • Short Essay 
  • Interview with Program Director
  • Official transcript required for non-JMU students

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

Program Closed.

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Application Deadline

Dates


All dates are tentative and subject to change

Courses

PSYC 200: Topics in Psychology: Exploring the Good Life in Scandinavia (3 credits)

PSYC 400: Advanced Topics in Psychology: Exploring the Good Life in Scandinavia (3 credits)

PSYC 202: Directed Studies in Psychology: Prep Course for Study Abroad in Sweden and Denmark, Readings on the Psychology and Culture of Scandinavia (1 credit) *spring 2018 prep 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.

Cost

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