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Program Description
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Mediterranean Diet

Florence Duomo

   Quick Facts

  • Study the Mediterranean Diet in Madrid, Barcelona, Florence, and Tuscany

  • Explore Spanish, Italian, and Metiterranean Culture

  • Earn 6 NTR credits (NTR 348 & NTR 351)

  • June 4 - June 29, 2018

During this program, students will visit Madrid, Barcelona, Florence, and parts of Tuscany to study nutrition, culture, and the cuisine of this region and how consumption of a "Mediterranean Diet" may affect health. Students will participate in cooking classes, take excursions to farms, olive oil, wine, Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, and balsamic vinegar manufacturers. Students will also have guided tours of food markets and other popular tourist destinations.

We will explore food and nutrition in Spain and Italy from production to consumption, and compare Spanish and Italian habits with those of the United States.  Through lectures, field trips, guest speakers and hands-on workshops students will study the Mediterranean Diet in depth—its components and evidence of its health consequences with the goal of developing nutrition and health communication materials for selected target audiences.

Application Requirements

To apply for this program, click the "Apply Now" button above. This will generate an online application with the requirements listed below. Please also refer to the "Academics" tab for specific eligibility information. Note: Non-ASU students should consult these instructions before applying.


La Sagrada Familia

Florence, Italy

Location Details

This program will consist of 25 days in Madrid and Barcelona, Spain and Florence and Tuscany, Italy. 

Tentative Summer 2018 Itinerary: June 4 - June 29

  • Arrive in Madrid, June 4th
  • Barcelona, June 13th - June 15th
  • Florence, June 15th - June 29th

Lectures/Workshops include:

  • Lectures by ASU Faculty and Guest lectures by experts on the cuisine, culture, and history of Spain and Italy

  • Cooking classes

  • Guided food tours of Spanish and Italian markets

  • Guided tours of museums and other tourist sites in Madrid, Barcelona, and Florence

Excursions include:

  • A 2-night stay at an Agriturismo farm in the Tuscan countryside to learn about farming techniques and the production of olive oil and wine
  • A 2-night stay in Barcelona
  • Tour and lunch at the wine cellars of Castello Banfi in Tuscany
  • Day trip to Chianti region to tour olive oil and wine producing farms
  • Parma & Modena: A day trip dedicated to three important Italian products: Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, and Balsamic vinegar of Modena

Visa Information

It is each student’s responsibility to independently determine if a visa is necessary for travel to any foreign countries visited on this program. Limited information may be provided by the ASU Study Abroad Office, your faculty director, and/or partner organizations/institutions. Where visas are required, failure to obtain a visa may result in your inability to participate and, ultimately, your withdrawal from the program, subject to the terms of the Study Abroad Payment and Withdrawal Policies

Consult this page for additional information regarding visas. If you need assistance securing a U.S. Passport, visit the ASU U.S. Passport Acceptance Office in Tempe.

PLEASE NOTE: Visa requirements for non U.S. citizens may differ from those for U.S. citizens; students who are not U.S. citizens are advised to contact their International Coordinator and begin independently researching the visa requirements for their nationality as soon as possible.


Eligibility Requirements

This program is open to undergraduate and graduate students from any ASU major, although course prerequisites require completion of either NTR 100 “Introductory Nutrition” or NTR 241 “Human Nutrition” or approved transfer equivalent.  


Students must enroll in the following two courses, for a total of 6 credits:

NTR 348: Cultural Aspects of Food
NTR 351: Nutrition and Health Communication

These courses will also provide the following ASU General Studies designations: SB, C, G, and L

Learning Outcomes:

  • Origins, development, and diversity of food preferences and dietary habits in Spain and Italy.
  • Food patterns and attitudes of Spanish and Italian citizens as compared to U.S. citizens.
  • Development of nutrition and health communication materials for selected target audiences.
  • In-depth study of the Mediterranean Diet, its components and research evidence of its health consequences.

Students participating on this program may wish to enroll in the Gateway to Italian course offered during the spring session B semester preceding the summer program.  This course is designed for non-speakers of Italian to gain basic language skills to help them during their study abroad experience. For more information, please consult this flyer.  Please note that enrollment in this course is entirely separate from the study abroad program.
Mediterranean Diet vegetables

Florence plaza from above



Faculty Director

Christina Shepard, MS,RD
Clinical Professor and Dietetic Internship Director
Nutrition Program Coordinator
School of Nutrition and Health Promotion


Additional Faculty

Sandra Mayol-Kreiser
Clinical Associate Professor
School of Nutrition and Health Promotion


Vineyard in Tuscany


Italy housing

Program Housing

Double/triple occupancy rooms in shared student apartments in a student residence will be provided for the Madrid and Florence portions of the program. Double/triple/quad occupancy in a three-star hotel will be provided in Barcelona and double/triple/quad occupancy in an Agriturismo hotel will be provided for the Tuscany portion of the program. Breakfast provided daily in the hotel.  Some meals are provided during planned excursions.


Special Considerations

Below you will find information that may help you in planning for your study abroad experience. Early discussions and planning can help to support you in having a positive experience abroad. We invite you to meet with the International Coordinator for this program to discuss any questions or concerns you may have.

Physical Considerations

Study abroad participants may find themselves walking or taking public transit abroad more frequently than they are accustomed at their home campus. The Nutrition, Health and the Mediterranean Diet in Italy and Spain program will regularly use public transportation. Due to emphasis on food and nutrition in this program, students with severe food allergies or intolerances may encounter difficulty in determining some food ingredients. 

Disability Accommodations Abroad

Individuals with disabilities can and do study abroad, but may find accessibility and accommodation in one of more of this program’s locations very different from the United States. For example, in Italy, the tourist centers, sidewalks, public transport, and public buildings generally have accommodations for the physically disabled. However, Italy is known for its old world layout and architecture, which may increase the challenge level for students with physical disabilities.

In general, the Study Abroad Office cannot guarantee access to public transportation, buildings, or public sites on this program. Any student who anticipates needing any kind of special accommodation due to a disability should contact the ASU Study Abroad Office early in the planning process to investigate the availability of accommodations (including accessible facilities) on this specific program. Contact the Disability Resource Center and your Disability Access Consultant to include them in the discussion; be sure to give your Disability Access Consultant permission to speak with the Study Abroad Office on your behalf. You can find additional information and resources on our Students with Disabilities page.

LGBTQIA Students Abroad

Students of diverse sexual orientations or gender identities will find that the social climate, laws, and norms of other cultures will often differ from the U.S. If you identify as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, or queer student - or if you are still exploring your identity - you may face unique challenges when traveling abroad.  

We encourage students who identify as members of the LGBTQIA community to visit the U.S. Department of State website for helpful information about laws and attitudes in this program’s locations, including pre-travel tips and advice on staying safe while abroad. You can find additional information and resources on our LGBTQIA Students page.

Gender Identity Abroad

When traveling abroad, you may find different gender roles and norms than you’re used to. It’s possible that you may be treated differently or be expected to treat others differently based on your (or their) gender identity.  

You can find additional information and resources on our Gender Identity Abroad page.

Racial and Ethnic Minorities Abroad

Students of different ethnic and racial backgrounds may encounter unique challenges transitioning from life here in the United States to life as a student living abroad, including but not limited to access to personal care products and services.

You can prepare yourself for the situations you may experience by researching the ethnic composition of your host country and exploring its history of racial and ethnic relations. We encourage students to start that research on our Racial and Ethnic Minority Students page.


Cost Information

The Program Fee for Summer 2018 is $7,495.

Program Fee includes: ASU tuition for 6 credits, housing, tours, cultural and academic visits, in-country transportation, transportation from Spain to Italy, and international health insurance. Not included: Round-trip airfare to Spain/Italy and the US, ASU student fees, meals, domestic airport transfers, non-program related optional excursions, passport, books, and your own personal expenses.

Faculty Directed program participants are also responsible for paying a non-refundable $50 Application Fee, in addition to the Program Fee listed above. All other costs associated with participation in the program are the responsibility of the individual student. Be sure to reference the program Cost Sheet for information on program fees and any additional estimated expenses.

The program may allow for time which can be spent in non-program activities. Participants may wish to travel, sight-see or participate in activities or events in which they have a personal interest. Please note that the participant is fully responsible for making arrangements and for all costs of transportation, lodging, food and additional expenses that may be associated with any non-Program activities.


Funding Your Study Abroad Program

Studying abroad is an investment in your future, which requires careful planning and management. However, the personal, academic, and professional rewards that you will gain from this experience will last a lifetime. You should carefully consider costs, budgets and financing when selecting and preparing for your experience abroad. If you have questions at any step of the process, we encourage you to reach out to your International Coordinator for guidance.

Steps to Financing Your Study Abroad Program

  1. View the program Cost Sheet to find a breakdown of program expenses.
  2. Attend a Financing Your Study Abroad Workshop.
  3. Consider your Financial Aid options.
  4. Search and Apply for Scholarships and Grants.
  5. Exhaust your options by exploring Additional Funding Resources including our Community-Based Funding Guide.
  6. View our  Financing Your Study Abroad Program Handbook for more information, including Payment Information.


Dates & Deadlines

There are currently no active application cycles for this program.

This program is currently not accepting applications.