In this study abroad program, students will explore the psychology of culture and food in Prague and the Czech Republic. The history of the region, from the impacts of the world wars to 40 years as an Eastern Bloc communist state ending with the Velvet Revolution, offer students insights into the role of geopolitical forces in well-being and culture. Prague and surrounding locations offer unique opportunities to experience the reminders and legacy of central European history, from the cultural differences of the regions of Bohemia and Moravia to the historical monuments preserved in the Jewish Quarter dating to the 13th century, and nearby historical sites relevant to Second World War and Cold War. The proximity of these landmarks and historical sites is especially advantageous for students abroad in-country for three weeks.
Students will engage with the material first on campus and explore the significance of historical events from perspectives of trauma and resilience, motivation, and health and wellness. Both TPSYCH 404 and TPSYCH 498 provide the opportunity to understand cross-cultural similarities and variances in human behavior, to contextualize psychological theories and research findings in historical and present events, and to explore and reflect on aspects of personal identity (culture, gender, age, political orientation) influencing human development and wellness.
In TIAS 485, students will engage with readings, tours, museums and events that focus on the lived experiences of historically marginalized individuals in Czechia. While still on campus, students will engage with these topics in the form of readings and discussions while reflecting on their own identities. While abroad, we will visit sites (like the national Romani Museum in Brno or the Jewish Museum in Prague) and engage in various cultural events (Prague Pride and eating in a Vietnamese restaurant) in which they’ll meet local individuals from marginalized groups. Students final project will be to prepare and lead an on-site tour of a not-yet visited location related to marginalized communities within the Czech Republic.
This study abroad program is taught by Professor Leighann Chaffee and Courtney Kroll from UW Tacoma. Check out the video above to hear directly from the program directors during our latest Instagram Live Q+A!
This program does not have any language requirements. Students must have taken Introduction to Psychology (TPSYCH 101) as a prerequisite. Biomedical Sciences students can use this program to fulfill capstone requirements. Students receive a total of twelve credits for the program as follows:
TPSYCH 404 - Psychology of Food and Culture (5 credits)
This course explores global perspectives on the social, symbolic, economic, and political roles of food and eating. The role of identity in the psychology of eating, including cultural, ethnic, gender and other dimensions, is situated in the past and present events of the region. Analysis of foodways, cuisine, and the contemporary food culture of Prague further contextualize research findings from the food studies and psychology of eating.
Learning Goals Include:
Describe the biopsychosocial mechanisms regulating eating and food choice.
Understand cross-cultural similarities and differences in cuisine and eating practices.
Critically evaluate claims from media and products related to food and counter with scientific evidence.
Contextualize psychological theories and methodologies among multidisciplinary approaches to studying culture.
Identify aspects of intersectional identity and social factors that predispose specific food practices and their impacts on health and wellness.
TIAS 485 - Study Abroad in the Social Science (5 credits)
The purpose of this course is to introduce study abroad participants to the aspects of daily Czech life that often go unseen, especially as it relates to historically marginalized groups. Students will use cultural humility to engage with concepts of identity, oppression and privilege as it pertains to Czech historical and current events. As participants learn more about Czech culture and daily life, they will also reflect on their own culture and identity while linking their study abroad experience to their future personal, academic and professional goals.
Learning Goals Include:
Describe cultural humility theory and use it to reflect on one’s own culture and the culture of others
Demonstrate an understanding of how events in another country may impact their own lives, and how their actions may be contextualized by those in their host country based on current events
Explain ways that white supremacy, xenophobia, and communism have impacted the culture and development of locals in the region.
Recognize that social identity is fluid and perceptions change based on cultural contexts
Describe how your study abroad experience has impacted your future personal, professional and academic goals.
TPSYCH 498 - Directed Readings (2 credits)
Allows students to engage in independent, in-depth study of any area of psychology or related interdisciplinary area under faculty supervision. Students develop a reading syllabus, discuss the reading with their advisor, and write and revise an APA-style paper (project) analyzing the readings.
Learning Goals Include:
Identify, describe, and understand the historical and sociopolitical events in Czechia as they inform the concepts of our study abroad program and coursework.
Appreciate aspects of identity in Czechia that are expressed in the assigned reading and materials and observed during travel.
Identify and critically analyze perspectives of social justice and inclusion from the assigned readings and materials.
Synthesize concepts from the assigned readings and incorporate them into the final project.
The program runs from June 17 - August 16, 2024. Students will spend July 23 to August 10 in the Czech Republic and will be required to participate in on-campus activities before traveling to the Czech Republic.
For most of the program, students will be staying in private apartments located in safe and central areas of Prague. While on a field trip to Brno, students will stay in a hotel. Rooms are double occupancy.
Undergraduate students in psychology and related majors from any UW campus may apply. Graduate students are also eligible. Introduction to Psychology (TPSYCH 101) is a prerequisite.
The program best suits students who are self-directed and independent, and can apply principles from these courses to their study of psychology, other social sciences, education, and healthcare leadership.
Applications are due on February 29, 2024. Applicants will be notified of acceptance decisions two weeks after the deadline. Once accepted to the program, applicants will need to confirm their participation in the program two weeks after they hear about their acceptance.
Travel Documents and Insurance
All program participants must have a valid passport in order to travel to the Czech Republic.
There is no visa requirement for U.S. citizens to travel to the Czech Republic.
The cost and requirements for obtaining visas vary. It is your responsibility to determine visa requirements for all countries you plan to visit while abroad including countries that you plan to visit before or after your study abroad program. This is an especially important consideration if you are planning to do more than one study abroad program.
The University of Washington requires students engaged in educational activities abroad – including study, research, internships or community engagement – to purchase UW Student Abroad Insurance. If you are a current UW student, you are required to purchase coverage UW Student Abroad Insurance. Details are on the UW Study Abroad Insurance page.
Transportation to and from the airport in the U.S.
Personal expenses (phone calls, eating out, etc.)
Payment Due Date: July 5, 2024
Program fees will be posted to your MyUW student account and can be paid the same way that you pay tuition and other fees. Check your MyUW Account periodically for due dates.
The $470 UW Study Abroad Administrative Fees are non-refundable once a contract has been submitted. Students withdrawing from a program are responsible for paying a percentage of the program fee depending on the date of withdrawal. More details about the withdrawal policy are included in your payment contract. No part of the program fee is refundable once the program has begun (please refer to Emergency Withdrawal information below, if applicable). The date of withdrawal is considered the business day a withdrawal form is received by the Office of Global Affairs. Notice of withdrawal from the program must be made in writing by completing the following steps:
Please email email@example.com and copy your program director(s) providing notice that you will no longer be participating in the program. You will also need to respond to any further communication from the Office of Global Affairs to finalize your withdrawal.
If a program is cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, student will not be charged either the UW Study Abroad Administrative Fee or the UW Tacoma Study Abroad Program Fee.
If you cannot participate in a study abroad program, you may submit an Emergency Withdrawal Petition. If granted, the Emergency Withdrawal may allow for partial relief from your financial obligations to the program.
An Emergency Withdrawal Petition may be submitted in the following circumstances:
Unanticipated change in financial situation
Death in immediate family
Active military duty
Unusual or extenuating circumstances
To submit an Emergency Withdrawal Petition, complete this form and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Financial Aid and Scholarships
A large percentage of UW students utilize financial aid to study abroad. Most types of financial aid can be applied to study abroad fees.
For UW Tacoma students, you can submit a revision request to increase the amount of aid for the quarter you are studying abroad. These additional funds are usually awarded in the form of loans. To apply, fill out a revision request form, attach the budget sheet (available via the link at the top of this brochure) and submit these documents to the UW Tacoma Office of Financial Aid.
For UW Seattle or Bothell Students, you can apply by filling out a revision request form, attach the budget sheet (available via the link at the top of this brochure) and submit these documents to the Office of Financial Aid.
Consult the Financial Aid section on the UW Study Abroad website for more information on applying for financial aid, special considerations for summer and early fall programs, and budgeting and fundraising tips
Please also review this list of scholarships: these are opportunities that can help fund your study abroad experience. Please note that many of them have deadlines before your study abroad application is due. For help with the application process, please contact email@example.com.
We understand that figuring out your finances for study abroad can be complicated, and we are here to help. Here are some ways to find additional support:
Click on the Budget Sheets link at the top of this brochure to view the estimated budget of all expenses for this program.
UW Tacoma students can attend a How to Fund Your Study Abroad event - more information is on the Events page of our website.
Changes in Cost or Scope of Program
In the event of significant devaluations of the dollar, some adjustments to program activities may be necessary. If there are any political events that might compromise the safety of the participants, a rescheduling or cancellation of the program may be necessary. If such changes occur, students will be notified of the changes and options will be presented.
To be eligible to study abroad, all program participants must attend an online pre-departure orientation facilitated by UW Study Abroad as well as your program-specific orientations, offered by your program directors. Orientation must be completed prior to the enrollment deadline for the quarter that you are studying abroad.
If viable enrollment is not reached by April 15, 2024 the program will be cancelled. Participants will be notified and the administrative and program fees will be refunded.
The University of Washington is committed to providing access and reasonable accommodation in its services, programs, activities, and education for individuals with disabilities. To request disability accommodation for this program, contact Disability Resources for Students at least 8 weeks in advance of your departure date. Contact info at tacoma.uw.edu/drs.