Italia Study Abroad Syllabus 2023

IDH 4007 (Spring) and IDH 4008 (Summer C)
Spring: Fridays 12:30 to 15:15
Summer A: In Italy

John Bailly ■ ■ 305.348.4100 ■ Office Hours by appointment                  
Guidelines for Class Communication

Yahnell Judah

Monica Perez

Rome, Pompeii, Florence, Pisa, Siena, Cinque Terre, and Venice – an Honors College seminar taught on location in the most historic and magical destinations in Italy. Grand Tour Redux is built on the premise that understanding our past enables us to understand ourselves. This interdisciplinary course examines the cultural legacy of classical antiquity and the Renaissance and the influence of these eras on the contemporary world. The seminar reconstructs the traditional 18th century Grand Tour.

Students can reflect on the contemporary and personal relevance of Italian culture in a 21st century world. Do Roman republican morals guide US civic principles? Do Renaissance notions of individual autonomy define our own? Does Venetian capitalism serve as a model for US business practices? Students walk in the steps of Julius Caesar in the Roman Forum, witness the catastrophic consequences of the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, visualize Michelangelo painting the Sistine Chapel, visit the architectural marvels of Florence, and cross the Bridge of Sighs in Venice. The course recreates history through telling the story of individuals and relating those stories to our own times. Be there to meet Julius Caesar, Augustus, Hadrian, St. Peter, Marco Polo, Dante, Lorenzo de Medici, Michelangelo, Machiavelli, Galileo, and Gentilleschi. Housed primarily in apartments, students have the experience of living in Italy. “All paths lead to Rome,” or do they?

NOTE: Course content features sexually explicit and/or violent artworks and texts. In addition, many Miami class meetings are off campus; students must provide their own transportation.

All students are required to have unlimited data for their phones when the group is in Europe. Students can either have an international plan or buy a phone or sim card in Italy. This is matter of safety and efficiency.

The following required text course materials may be purchased in either print or e-book format. Films are available at either FIU Libraries or Miami-Dade County Public Libraries.

– Dan Brown. Inferno. New York. Doubleday, 2013. ISBN: 9780385537858
– Dante, Alighieri. The Divine Comedy: The New Translation by Gerald J. Davis. 2021. ISBN 978502687287
– King, Ross. Brunelleschi’s Dome: How a Renaissance Genius Reinvented Architecture. New York, NY: Penguin, 2001. Print. ISBN: 9780142000151
– Machiavelli, Niccolo. The Prince. London: Penguin, 2003. Print. ISBN 9780140449150
– Shakespeare, William, and William Montgomery. Julius Caesar. New York: Penguin, 2000. Print. ISBN: 9780140714685

– Angels & Demons. Ron Howard. Sony Pictures Entertainment, 2009. Film.
– Artemisia. Agnès Merlet. Miramax Zoë, 1997. Film.
– Gladiator. Ridley Scott. Universal, 2000.Film.
– “Rome, Episodes 1-12, Season 1.” Rome. Heller, Bruno, John Milius, and William J. MacDonald. HBO. 2005. Television.

The Course Calendar is online. Students will be provided with a link to the calendar.

The core component of this seminar is individual reflections entitled Miami as Text (MAT). Reflections adhere to a standard format, comprised of original photos and text.

Each student accrues points over the length of the semester. The final semester point total equals a letter grade based the official FIU grade scale (Note: Please disregard the FIU Canvas percentage).

Final grade/total points equivalency
100.0 – 93.00: A
92.99 – 90.00: A-
89.99 – 87.00: B+
86.99 – 83.00: B
82.99 – 80.00: B-
79.99 – 77.00: C+
76.99 – 70.00: C
69.99 – 65.00: D
64.99 – 00.00: F
See project points equivalency on this page.

Ancient Rome as Text: 5 points
Departure as Text: 5 points
Encounter as Text: 5 points
Historic Miami as Text: 5 points
Italia America as Text: 5 points
Renaissance as Text: 5 points
Vizcaya as Text: 5 points
Brown Angels & Demons and Inferno quiz: 5 points
Brunelleschi’s Dome quiz: 5 points
Dante Inferno quiz: 5 points
Deering Estate quiz: 5 points
Historic Miami quiz: 5 points
HBO Rome 1-6 quiz: 5 points
HBO Rome 7-12 quiz: 5 points
Image Rights & Formal Elements of Photography quiz: 5 points
Italia Timeline quiz: 5 points
Julius Caesar quiz: 5 point
Prince quiz: 5 points
South Beach quiz: 5 points
Vizcaya Museum & Gardens quiz: 5 points

Cinque Terre as Text: 5 points (500 word minimum)
Grand Tour as Text: 15 points (750 word minimum)
Italia Encounter as Text: 10 points (500 word minimum)
Pompeii as Text: 5 points (500 word minimum)
Roma as Text: 5 points (500 word minimum)
Toscana as Text: 5 points (500 word minimum)
Venezia as Text: 5 points (500 word minimum)
Classical Rome 1 quiz: 5 points
Classical Rome 2 quiz: 5 points
Catholic Rome quiz: 5 points
Cinque Terre quiz: 5 points
Firenze 1 quiz: 5 points
Firenze 2 quiz: 5 points
Pisa & Siena quiz: 5 points
Pompeii quiz: 5 points
Venezia 1 quiz: 5 points
Venezia 2 quiz: 5 points

Quizzes are multiple choice and are only to be taken in class. Under no circumstances are students to share information about the quiz once the quiz has begun. Professor Bailly administers nearly fifty quizzes a semester. To economize time, all quizzes remain open the duration of the semester, but students are only to take the quizzes in the designated time. Students that take a quiz outside of the designated time will automatically be assigned a “0.”

Class Participation Criteria
Class participation is a critical component of this course. This does not mean simply speaking in class, although that is essential. Students should participate by actively following discussions and contributing to the semester-long conversation.
1. Professional behavior and active participation (questions and comments) when we have guest speakers.
2. Adherence to Guidelines for Class Communication.
3. Participation in class discussions.
4. Attendance to class and class excursions.
5. Preparation for class (have materials and complete readings).
6. Concentration in class (no texting, no sleeping, and so forth).
7. Posting of comments on this website on webpages that are visible to institutions (Maison d’Izieu, Margulies, Vizcaya, etc…).
8. Prompt submission of required information and documents to the Honors College and the Office of Study Abroad

Each student is allowed one absence per semester. Every absence in excess of this will drop the student’s final semester grade by one full letter grade. Three or more absences will result in an “F” for the semester. In-class attendance is recorded by an attendance sheet or a digital method. Excursion attendance is documented by “Selfie Attendance” in a WhatsApp group. For instructions on Selfie Attendance please review this page.

If a student misses class, it is that student’s responsibility to find out what was covered by contacting another student.

If the class met off-campus, the student must go on their own to the location the class visited. The students should look at Bailly’s lecture notes of the location.

If you have a medical emergency, please focus on your health and submit a note from a doctor at a later date.

If your family has suffered a death, please submit proof: an obituary, a certificate of death, or the announcement of a memorial service. Unfortunately, this is required due to actions of previous students.

If you are involved in a minor accident or have car trouble, please submit a time-stamped selfie in front of the vehicle.

If you intend to request a letter of recommendation, please review this page.

The Honors College Italy Study Abroad Program COVID rules below are based on Italian laws effective 01 October 2021. By enrolling in the class, program participants attest that they have read and understood these requirements, and are individually responsible for following them. Inability to complete program activities due to individual failure to comply with French regulations or program guidelines, is not a justifiable excuse and may negatively impact their final grade. 

Note that this is a summary of current Italian COVID regulations and should not be interpreted as an exhaustive or final list. Rules may evolve in response to changes in Italian law or other institutional policies. Program participants are responsible for keeping up with individual requirements regarding COVID protocols before departure. FIU Faculty and staff are not responsible for cancellations or changes that may occur abroad as a result of COVID responses or regulations. 

Participants must comply with local laws during class time. Students may be asked to leave class if they refuse to follow said laws or the rules of any particular institution. Faculty or staff are not responsible for fines that may be incurred for an individual’s failure to follow regulations during or outside of class time. FIU Faculty or Staff are not responsible for providing or purchasing masks for students.

FIU faculty and staff will not assist in the scheduling or attending of routine COVID testing. The student will need to coordinate and attend the COVID testing alone and outside of class time. In addition, the student is financially responsible for the COVID testing, neither FIU nor Faculty or staff will pay for said testing. 

“The Italian government issued other decrees on December 23 and December 29, 2021 with  more restrictive rules. The new rules define a “Super” Green Pass which will be granted only to people who are fully vaccinated or who have recovered from COVID.  Individuals will be able to continue receiving a “Basic” Green Pass by testing negative to coronavirus. Individuals will be able to continue receiving a “Basic” Green Pass by testing negative for coronavirus. From January 20, 2022 the “Basic” Green Pass will be needed to access facilities providing personal services such as hairdressers and beauticians, while from February 1, 2022 to March 31, 2022, it will be required to enter banks, post offices, non-essential shops and shopping malls. From January 10, 2022 until March 31, 2022 the Super Green Pass is required to stay in hotels and B&Bs, to use all public transportation including local buses, metros and trains, to board airplanes and high-speed trains. In addition, most social activities such as museums, indoor and outdoor dining and service at the counter, theaters and sporting/entertainment events will only be allowed for Super Green Pass holders.  For more detailed information, please see the Italian Ministry of Health’s website.  The validity of the Green Pass is decreased from 9 months to 6 months starting from February 1, 2022.” US Embassy in Spain

Program Calendar and Attendance
Students are responsible for complying with the laws of Italy as well as the rules of the Honors Italy Program. The Program Calendar will not change to accommodate a student’s compliance. If a student fails to comply with Spanish law or Honors Italy Program rules, that student will not be able to attend class and will have an absence recorded.

Italian Law

European Union Regulations

Juliana Gorina of the FIU Honors College on top of the Duomo of Firenze. (Photo by JW Bailly/CC BY 4.0)


Italia 2022 of the FIU Honors College doing the Passeggiata. (Phot by Hannah Singh/CC BY 4.0)

Registration in this course implies an acceptance of and compliance with the Honors College policies for students and the FIU Code of Academic Integrity.

Every effort will be made, where feasible and practical, to accommodate students whose religious practices coincide with class requirements or scheduling. Please make sure to notify your instructor at the beginning of the semester of which dates you will be absent or any anticipated problems with completing course work.

The Disability Resource Center collaborates with students, faculty, staff, and community members to create diverse learning environments that are usable, equitable, inclusive and sustainable. The DRC provides FIU students with disabilities the necessary support to successfully complete their education and participate in activities available to all students. If you have a diagnosed disability and plan to utilize academic accommodations, please contact the DRC at 305-348-3532 (MMC) or at 305-919-5345 (BBC) to schedule an appointment. You can also visit them in person in GC 190 at MMC or in WUC 131 at BBC campus.

Global Awareness: Students will be able to demonstrate knowledge of the interrelatedness of local, global, international, and intercultural issues, trends, and systems.

Global Perspective: Students will be able to conduct a multi-perspective analysis of local, global, international, and intercultural problems.

Global Perspective: Students will be able to conduct a multi-perspective analysis of local, global, international, and intercultural problems.


In The Honors College, the term “honor” refers both to academic accomplishment and character. Students in Honors should therefore adhere to and be held to the highest standards of personal academic accountability. Academic dishonesty in any form, including plagiarism, is antithetical to the very definition of being an Honors student at FIU. Consequently, an Honors College student found responsible for academic misconduct will be dismissed from the College.

An Honors faculty member may bring charges of academic misconduct against an Honors student if the faculty member suspects plagiarism or other forms of academic misconduct. The faculty member will decide whether to pursue informal resolution, file formal resolution charges, or take no further action, and will follow the procedures outlined in the Academic Misconduct Procedures available at . Please refer to the following documents for additional information:

FIU Student Handbook:

The Honors College will be using a portfolio method to assess students’ learning outcomes. The portfolio allows for maximum flexibility in gauging student learning. Students decide (with instructor consultation) what “artifacts” or assignments to include for consideration in their portfolios to demonstrate successful achievement of each of five key student learning outcomes over the 4-year Honors experience. Portfolios provide a rich context for students to show what they have learned and to explain their learning process. Because the Honors curriculum is meant to be thought-provoking and reflective, student self-assessment through portfolios will facilitate learning and provide in-depth assessment. Each Honors College course includes at least one assignment that could potentially fit portfolio requirements.

Requirements Honors College students are required to accumulate at least 20 engagement points each academic year (Fall and Spring) by attending Honors College activities. Students attending only one semester (Fall or Spring) are required to accumulate 10 engagement points. Each activity has a point value. Students may select which events and activities they want to attend. The new system is designed to be more flexible for students, offering events at various days and times (including some weekend events) and allowing for a variety of ways to meet the requirements. Please plan accordingly. students/citizenship/

Honors College students must also complete 20 volunteer service hours. These hours DO NOT count toward the 20 engagement points discussed above.

The HEARTS program is designed to give Honors College students opportunities to “explore and appreciate different artistic and cultural traditions and modes of artistic expression. HEARTS will also serve as a clearinghouse (and curatorial framework) for our students to experience the arts on campus and in the community by providing them with information about cultural activities and access to performances with free or discounted tickets.


If you are looking for help for yourself or a fellow classmate, Panthers Care encourages you to express any concerns you may come across as it relates to any personal behavior concerns or worries you have, for the classmate’s well-being or yours; you are encouraged to share your concerns with FIU’s Panthers Care website.

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) offers free and confidential help for anxiety, depression, stress, and other concerns that life brings. Learn more about CAPS at Professional counselors are available for same-day appointments. Don’t wait to call 305-348-2277 to set up a time to talk or visit the online self-help portal.

John William Bailly  10 January 2023

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