Top Subjects to Study in Greece

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What to Study in Greece?

If there's one location that’s steeped in ancient history, a melting pot of civilizations, a vibrant metropolis buzzing with culture, the heartbeat of contemporary Europe, with the ideal vantage point to observe the most relevant issues in politics, economy, business, and migration, it’s Greece: a place where you can be a part of history and make your mark as an international student.

Here’s what we think the top subjects to study in Greece are for international students:

Contemporary Studies

Contemporary studies help to increase your awareness and perception of global events, like migration, by experiencing another world view! By studying contemporary European issues in Greece, you will begin to understand the “humanistic side” of the economic and social impact of the Eurozone crisis. Your studies don’t have to be limited to the physical world, either – by mediating traditional and digital media in Greece, you can explore the political role and use of social media in contemporary issues. 

One of many signs hanging from palm trees on the island of Lesvos.

One of many signs hanging from palm trees on the island of Lesvos.

Environmental Studies, Urbanism, & Sustainability

Athens is the perfect “living laboratory” to study urbanism and sustainability issues! By walking through its millennia-old streets bordered by buildings both ancient and modern, you can explore and appreciate the importance of urban design and its long lasting effect on a city’s future. As a country rich with natural settings from the rocky slopes of Mt. Parnassus to the sparkling waters of the Aegean, Greece also has plenty of opportunities for studying environmental studies, including the complete role that climate, geology, species ecosystems, resources, and policy play in our environment. 

Students in a course on contemporary urbanism walking with their professor through the Olympic Stadium in Athens.

Students in a course on contemporary urbanism walking with their professor through the Olympic Stadium in Athens.

Archaeology & Ancient History

What better place to study archaeology and ancient history than the birthplace of Western civilization? Trace the footsteps of young Alexander the Great in Pella, the ancient Macedonian capital, meet the Minoans, the Mycenaeans, and the Athenians and understand their tremendous contributions to today’s society, and touch the very same walls that the ancient Greeks built thousands of years ago. There are countless archaeological sites in Greece where you can get up close to artifacts and acquire the skills needed to work on excavations – how cool is that! How could archaeology not be one of the best subjects to study in Greece for international students?

[Spend J-Term Excavating Ancient Greece!]

Students participate in an excavation in Voula during a J-Term.

Students participate in an excavation in Voula during a J-Term.

Philosophy & Religion

If you’re an avid philosopher, try walking in Plato’s steps (literally!) as you examine life and seek meaning while gazing over the view of Athens’ Parthenon. Studying philosophy in Greece is a no brainer! Greece is a fascinating place to study religion as well, being a predominantly Orthodox country with historical influences from Judaism, Islam, and Christianity. You can investigate the relation of ancient Greek myth and religion through Homer and Hesiod, or try visiting the temple of Mieza where Aristotle taught Alexander the Great. The possibilities to ponder life’s greatest questions are endless as an international student in a place like Greece. 

An awe-inspiring view in Delphi.

An awe-inspiring view in Delphi. (Photo by Rebecca Bloom, CYA student Spring ‘16)

Classical & Modern Languages & Literature

Greece will transform the way you look at languages! Try your hand at learning Modern Greek – order a coffee at a Greek taverna and chat with new local friends. Or, discover how it all started by studying Ancient Greek and Latin, then visit the ancient theater of Dionysus and read the ancient names carved in the seats. Language learning not your thing, but you still love classical literature? Perform an Aristophanes comedy in translation or follow the footsteps of Thucydides over a battlefield in Athens! Studying languages and literature in Greece is sure to enhance your understanding and experience of the country, wherever you go.

Students practicing their Modern Greek at a class field trip to a Greek taverna!

Students practicing their Modern Greek at a class field trip to a Greek taverna!

Art History & Architecture

You will be awed in Greece when you witness countless structures and pieces that have influenced art and architecture through the ages – and continue to this day. Whether you’re strolling to the Acropolis Museum, where your professor conducts class for the day, attending a lecture inside the Parthenon and marveling at an important symbol of Greek heritage, or visiting the medieval ruins of Mistras to explore the distinct architecture of a past center of Byzantine power, you’ll never be at a loss for famous monuments. Greece isn’t just for ancient art, though – explore the urban art scene of Athens with festivals and expos like Documenta, and you will feel the pulse of contemporary Greek society beating strong. Greece is where art history jumps off the page of your textbook!

[Study in Greece for a Full Year to Explore All of the Above]

Just one example of the vibrant street art you may find around Athens.

Just one example of the vibrant street art you may find around Athens.

There’s no place for study abroad like Greece, where can you experience the unique perspective of living amongst the subjects of your studies! Analyze economic and security issues in Europe, take part in the evolving business environment, explore urbanism and sustainability in modern Greek society, study migration and gender relations in a contemporary European capital, and walk among ancient structures that have endured for centuries. This is what the opportunity to study in Greece for international students truly is.

Get Ready to Study in Greece!

This article was sponsored by College Year in Athens (CYA), a nonprofit institution that offers a variety of educational programs in Greece. Operating for over 50 years, CYA’s ultimate goal is to inspire students to become passionate about other cultures and grow immensely through international learning.

Topic:  While Abroad