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Programs : Brochure

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Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Study Abroad Contact: Sarah Greer Program type: Exchange, Non-exchange
Click here for a definition of this term Minimum GPA: 3 Eligibility: Junior, Senior
Open to Non-UNC students: No Graduate courses available: Yes
Language prerequisite: Yes Language component:
Language of instruction: Portuguese
Program Description:
Location| Courses & Credits| Housing| Program Costs| Application Process | More Information|


Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro

On this program, UNC students directly enroll at the Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio) for a semester or academic year for an opportunity to fully integrate into the academic, social, and cultural life in Rio de Janeiro. You may apply as an exchange student or as a non-exchange/studyabroad student. No matter your classification, you will take courses alongside degree-seeking PUC-Rio students and participate in all aspects of student life.


The language prerequisite is 4 semesters, completed by the start of the program.

Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio) is a private Catholic University. It was created in 1941 by the Jesuit Company in order to develop knowledge based on humanistic values. Now with 10,500 undergraduate students, 3,500 graduate students and 5,000 extension students, PUC-RIO is internationally recognized as one of the top five universities in Brazil and one of the two best in Rio de Janeiro.

In addition to the traditional academic departments, PUC-Rio has four academic centers: Theology and Human Sciences; Social Sciences; Science and Technology; and Biomedical Sciences (for graduate programs). PUC-Rio also has independent research institutes and/or projects: the Telecommunications Center, the Institute of International Relations, the Institute of Business and Administration, and the Portinari Project, among others.

Rio de Janeiro is an exciting city located inside the tropical forest and by the Atlantic Ocean. With an intense cultural life, Rio is the perfect place for those who want to immerse themselves into the South American reality: plays, shows, concerts, exhibitions, street performances, scientific conferences, cultural debates - everything happens in Rio.

Courses & Credits

The language prerequisite is 4 semesters, completed by the start of the program.

The Department of Letters at the Pontificia Universidade Catolica do Rio de Janeiro offers Portuguese for Foreigners in regular and intensive courses. The objective of these courses is to develop the student's ability to understand, speak, read and write Portuguese in both formal and informal situations. All international students at PUC-Rio must enroll in a Portuguese language (appropriate level based on a placement test upon your arrival) for the duration of the term of study. In addition, students may also enroll in regular university classes in all academic areas, including History, Anthropolgy, Literature, International Relations, Engineering, etc.

There are five proficiency levels offered in the Portuguese for Foreigners program. Level I, II and III consist of 90 hours of instruction per term (6 hours per week), corresponding to 6 academic credits. Level IV and V consist of 60 hours of instruction per term (4 hours per week) corresponding to 4 academic credits. All levels of Portuguese for Foreigners are offered each year during both academic semesters.

PUC-Rio follows the southern hemisphere academic calendar, thus, their first semester (our spring) runs early February - early July and the second semester (our fall) runs early August - mid-December. Students may opt to attend a month-long Pre-term Intensive Portuguese course in January or July to improve their language skills and prepare them for direct enrollment in the university courses.

Courses in this program are Transfer Credit.
Transfer Credit Courses (not taught by UNC Faculty): ACTION REQUIRED

  • You must submit the Credit Request Form to earn any credit for your time abroad.
  • You must earn the equivalent of a C or higher to earn any credit.
  • These courses will transfer back to UNC as “TREQ” credits.
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Students are placed in carefully selected family homes (with a private room), where they have the best chance to experience the Brazilian way of life and to practice their Portuguese language skills. Daily breakfast is provided by the family and access to kitchen, laundry facilities and telephone can to be arranged by the student together with the family. Most families live near the university, within a 15 minute bus ride.  Alternatively, some students opt to live in an apartment in nearby neighborhoods.  
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Program Costs

Review the Budget Sheet posted above for detailed information on costs and fees. Costs vary per term and are subject to change.

Tuition and fees for the exchange program is equal to UNC’s rate, based on NC residency status, and will be charged to the participant’s UNC student account. Review the Budget Sheet for additional Cashier Billed Expenses and Out-of-Pocket Costs. The Study Abroad Office strongly encourages students to budget carefully for their time abroad.

Getting Started: Funding Study Abroad
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Application Process

Follow these steps to apply for this program:
  1. Complete the required UNC application by clicking “Apply Now” at the top of the page. If you have not done so already, create a profile to start your application.
  2. The Study Abroad Office will review applications and nominate qualified students to the host institution.
  3. Nominated students are required to complete an application for the host institution. Follow instructions provided by the Study Abroad Advisor and make note of all deadlines.
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More Information

For information on requesting ARS accommodations (academic, health, and mobility concerns) for a study abroad program, contact the Advisor for Access.
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Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Calendar Year 2023 09/10/2022
10/05/2022 TBA TBA
Spring 2023 09/10/2022
10/05/2022 TBA TBA
Fall 2023 02/10/2023 03/15/2023 TBA TBA
Academic Year 2023-2024 02/10/2023 03/15/2023 TBA TBA

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