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  • Locations: Prague, Czech Republic
  • Program Terms: Academic Year, Fall, Spring
  • Homepage: Click to visit
Program Description:
About Charles University Accommodations
Eligibility Dates and Costs
Academics Visa Information

About Charles University

UR student Lauren Jennings on the bridge in Prague

Prague is a beautiful city with over 1.5 million inhabitants, which makes it the largest city in the Czech Republic. It offers many cultural and historic attractions to students and attracts tourists from all over the world.

Charles University, the oldest university in central Europe, was founded in 1348 by the Holy Roman Emperor and Czech King Charles IV, in what is now the Old Town, the city center and the oldest part of Prague. The rest of the university occupies historical buildings all over the city center or newer buildings on the periphery.
Information for exchange students can be found on the Charles University web page 


  • Note:  Students must be in good academic and disciplinary standing with the university to study abroad. When reviewing applications for approval, disciplinary records will be taken into consideration and students must be cleared by the Dean’s office to study abroad.  Students on conduct probation will not be able to study abroad if they are on conduct probation that does not expire prior to the start date of the semester abroad program.
  • Students should generally be in their junior or senior year
  • Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0
  • Although prior knowledge of the Czech language is not required or expected, students with an academic background in Central or Eastern European studies (any discipline) will be given preference pending all other eligibility requirements are met.
  • All students intending to apply for this program must meet with an OIE study abroad adviser before submitting an application.
  • This program is open to all majors, and particularly well suited for students with majors in social sciences, such as Political Science, International Studies, Leadership, and Economics. 
  • For Robins School of Business majors, generally only economics and a few finance courses are offered at Charles, so it is not a wise choice for RSB students unless they have a major/concentration economics or finance, or unless they plan to take other non-RSB courses. 
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Faculty of Social Sciences (FSV)

Richmond students are enrolled in the Faculty of Social Sciences (FSV) at Charles University which offers the following subjects to visiting students:

Finance (very limited selection)

International Relations
Media Studies
Public Administration
Political Science

Normally students take 4-5 courses during their semester abroad, including a course at CERGE/UPCES (explained below). However, the number of courses to be taken depends on the number of credits that each is worth, and how many units the student wishes to transfer back to UR.

Students may take a maximum of two courses outside the Faculty of Social Sciences, such as in the Faculty of Humanities or the Arts as long as they take a minimum of three courses in the Social Science faculty.  To search for courses on offer in other faculties, use the same link provided below, but remember to change the default selected faculty to the one of your choosing. 

Courses offered at FSV are taught primarily in Czech and English, with a smaller number of offerings in other languages as well.
During the semester abroad, Richmond students are required to take a beginning Czech language course, offered by the Faculty of Social Sciences. 
To see a list of available courses at the Faculty of Social Sciences, including course descriptions, click here.  To use this search engine, use the following tips to refine your selections:

  • Faculty = Faculty of Social Sciences (*you may also take 1-2 courses in other faculties at Charles on a space available basis, e.g. Humanities or Arts)
  • Language = English
  • Semester = select the appropriate one for you (winter = fall, summer = spring).
Then click "search" noting the following information below:
  • Courses that have an "M" as the third letter of the course code are Master's level courses. (Example: JJM164) Courses that have a "B" as the third letter of the course code are Bachelor's level courses. (Example: JEB035) UR students are allowed to take Master's level courses as well as Bachelor's, but should do so with careful consideration of the possible difficulty of the course.  An increasing number of the courses taught in English at FSV are at the Master's level. It is likely that students will take at least one - likely more than one - Master's level class as part of a study abroad at FSV.  Students should be aware of this when accepting a placement on this program.
  • In the column entitled "Hours per week, examination," please note the following:  the first number is the number of  hours per week that the course meets for a lecture.  The second number stands for the number of hours per week that the course meets as a seminar class.  If you add the number of these two hours, this will equal the number of hours the course meets each week.  The third letter in this column indicates whether the course has an examination that is graded.  If a course has a "C" in English (or a "Z" in Czech) this means that the course is not graded.  Courses marked with an “EX” have final assessments and are graded. Students cannot earn transfer credit for courses that are marked as “C.”   For this reason, it is imperative to be sure that the course has an “EX” in this section.

See Michele Cox if you have questions about this procedure.


In addition to the orientation program and course opportunities described above, has a supplemental affiliation with CERGE/UPCES, which is part of a different faculty at Charles University. UR students participate in the UPCES orientation program, excursions and will take one (1) course in this faculty.   UPCES also assists UR students in finding apartments. 

The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education of CStatue on the Charles bridge, by Iulia Poppharles University (CERGE) was founded in 1991 as an American-style Ph.D. program in Economics taught entirely in English, however CERGE also runs an excellent study abroad program, called UPCES. The Undergraduate Program in Central European Studies (UPCES) evolved as a joint effort of CERGE and Charles University striving for a common goal: a top quality undergraduate educational experience focused on integral issues of Central Europe. These two highly reputable institutions work together to ensure American, Czech, and other European students a challenging educational environment in which they learn from experienced faculty, as well as from one another.

As mentioned above, in addition to the regular course load at the Faculty of Social Sciences, UR students may choose one course from the UPCES offerings to supplement their curriculum. To see a list of courses on offer at UPCES, click here.


UPCES offers students the opportunity to be placed in unpaid, non-credit-bearing internships in a variety of fields including marketing, journalism, non-profit management, fundraising, and education.  Placement in an internship is not guaranteed.  Internship opportunities may change each semester. 

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Grade Scale and Earning Credit

Courses at the Faculty of Social Sciences are measured in ECTS (European Credit classroom at CERGETransfer System).    Course credit at Charles University is calculated on the ECTS system (European Credit Transfer System).  The minimum number of credits you should register for at Charles is 24 ECTS.  This includes the credit you earn from any UPCES courses taken. The conversion chart for UPCES classes is further down in this section.

To determine the unit value of an individual ECTS course, the following formula will be used by the UR Registrar's office: # of ECTS credits divided by 7 and rounded up to the nearest tenth of a unit. EXAMPLE: a 6 ECTS credit class would be worth .9 Richmond units.

 Below is a table with the conversion into units as it will appear on the UR transcript.

ECTS Credits

Richmond Units

3 .5
4 .6
5 .8
6 .9
7 1
8 1.2
9 1.3
10 1.5

Courses at UPCES are measured on the U.S. semester credit system, NOT on ECTS. Below is a table with the conversion into units as it will appear on the UR transcript.


Richmond Units

3 .9
4 1.2

UPCES courses are graded on the regular U.S. grading scale. 

Below is the normal grade conversion scale used for courses taken at the Faculty of Social Sciences. 

A 100-91
B 90-81
C 80-71
D 70-61 *Does not transfer
E 60-51 *Does not transfer
F 50-0   *Does not transfer

* Grades of "Z" earned in classes at the Faculty of Social Sciences do NOT transfer back to the University of Richmond.

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Prague's astronomical clock

Richmond hires the services of UPCES to help students locate apartments in Prague.  Richmond students are required to live in housing that is facilitated by UPCES.

UPCES students choose shared apartments in Prague shortly after their arrival. Pre-approved properties are offered by the program and are located throughout the central sections of Prague. 

Students arrive and are accommodated at a hotel for three nights while the UPCES staff help students locate housing. This gives students the opportunity to meet other U.S. students studying through UPCES and to see housing options before signing a lease.

Dates and Costs

Click here for Charles University Dates and Costs.

A note about the program end date for students studying abroad for fall-only: While courses taken at UPCES will be completed by mid-December, the Faculty of Social Sciences academic calendar runs into January.  UR students will need to make special arrangements with each faculty member to take early exams or complete an alternate culminating paper or project so that they can return to UR in time to begin the following spring semester here.
  Permission to do this is at the discretion of each individual faculty member, although historically, faculty have been accommodating to these requests if they are made at the beginning of the semester.  This will be discussed more during the orientation process.  Students with questions about this can talk to the program manager for Charles University.

Students studying at Charles University may be eligible to apply for the NSEP Boren Scholarship.  Click here to learn more!  Interested students should contact Michele Cox in the Office of International Education.  Deadlines are VERY EARLY, so do not delay!

Visa Information

The Faculty of Social Sciences requires students to have a student visa. You need to apply for this in time to obtain the visa before departure for the Czech Republic. For more information, please visit the Embassy of Czech Republic's website. It takes a minimum of 60 days to receive a Czech student visa once you have applied, usually longer, so you must begin the application process as soon as possible after acceptance to the Charles University exchange program. More details will be provided after your acceptance.
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For more information see Michele Cox in the Office of International Education

updated February 2016

This document represents the most accurate information available at the time of publication. Statements contained herein are not contractual obligations, and verbal or other representations that are inconsistent with or not contained within the document are not binding. The University of Richmond reserves the right to change without specific notice programs and the conditions under which they are offered.