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Copenhagen, Denmark

Program Description

In this program, we'll consider the personal, environmental, and cultural factors that promote happiness and well-being. Through readings, class discussions, and lectures from local experts, students will gain a deeper understanding of the nature and experience of happiness. They will also consider how views of "a well-lived life" differ across cultures. Class excursions will offer a first-hand understanding of why Denmark is consistently listed as one of the world's happiest countries.

Students will learn about the key predictors of happiness, and will assess how these factors are present in one of the world's happiest countries. Local experts will give guest lectures on topics such as mental health, the education system, and the cultural history of Scandinavia. Excursions will likely include a seaside hiking trip, a cycling tour that focuses on sustainable urban design, a kayaking tour, a food tour, a visit to the "Museum of Happiness," and a tour of the Southern Sweden university town of Lund.

Location Description

Copenhagen, Denmark


Jaime Kurtz | | Psychology


Accommodations will be provided for students through furnished apartments and houses with internet access. Students will have access to a full kitchen and laundry facilities.

Students will be allocated a meal stipend that will cover all meals that are not provided by the program.

Additional Items to Consider

Visas and special immunizations are not required. English is widely spoken; no special language skills are needed.

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

Enjoy twenty hours of daylight in one of Europe's most charming capital cities as you learn how to design and live a happier life.

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 2.5

Open to all students and class levels

For PSYC 261 - prerequisite of PSYC 101 OR PSYC 160

For PSYC 461 - prerequisite of one SS and one NS core class

Open to JMU students only

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 
  • List of Academic References
  • Interview with Program Director required

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: Exploring the Good Life in Scandinavia (3 credits)

PSYC 461: Exploring the Good Life in Scandinavia (3 credits)

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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