University of Oklahoma Architecture Program in Rome Spring 2024

Discover the unlimited design lessons of Rome’s nearly three millennia of living history, when you study in Rome for a semester in the OU Architecture Program at the AIA Rome Center.

Program Description

The OU Architecture Program at AIA offers serious students the chance to live and study in the heart of Italy’s capital for 15 weeks. All courses and activities involve focused, active, hands-on learning that investigate contemporary solutions to modern, real-world problems in an inspiring, historical setting. Students will visit many of Italy’s extraordinary sites and meet experts in many design related fields. Students will experience authentic local culture guided by the personal attention of instructors and staff. Program tuition includes field trips and admission to many cultural sites across Italy.
The program is open to architecture and interior design students, who will enroll in three courses for 12 semester credits. The 15 week program includes field trips across Italy and nine days of break for independent travel. All instruction is provided by local professionals, and students will study Italian language with a native speaker. The program also features an exclusive three-day design workshop with Italian students and peers from other US universities.

Rome Program Student FAQ page

Rome: Old & New, Big & Small

Rome and Italy offer unlimited design lessons drawn from thousands of years of human creativity and the inspiration of exquisite built and natural environments. In Rome students can explore exciting design problems set in the heart of the historic city and its modern suburbs, and other unique settings around Italy will provide inspiration and context to students’ design solutions. In Rome you will live in and learn from almost 3,000 years of urban, architectural, landscape and interior design ranging from the works of the ancients and the masters of the Renaissance to the contemporary designs of Richard Meier, Renzo Piano, Massimiliano Fuksas and Zaha Hadid.


Beatrice Bruscoli Ph.D.

Beatrice recieved her BArch from the Università degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza, one of Europe’s oldest and largest universities. She earned an MArch from Ohio State University, and her Ph.D from the Università degli Studi di Genova. She has taught at and directed American architecture programs in Italy for decades and her architectural projects and research have been published and exhibited in many national and international venues. She taught at the University of Oklahoma in Norman School of Architecture and has taught with its Rome Program for several years.

Scott Schlimgen, MArch

Scott is an architect with an MArch II degree from the Harvard University Graduate School of Design and a BArch from the University of Arkansas. He  has taught architecture for various American unviersities and has been teaching and running US study abroad programs in Italy since 1990. Scott founded Academic Initiatives Abroad and the AIA Rome Center in 2009, and has hosted and taught for the OU Rome Program since it began 2013.

Claudia Cremasco, MA

Claudia is AIA’s Coordinator of Language Instruction and an award-winning language teacher with a Laurea in Literature from Rome’s La Sapienza University. Since 1988, she has taught and coordinated Italian language instruction at many universities in Italy and the USA, including Harvard University, Cal Poly State University and Northeaster University. She has been teaching Italian Language and Culture for the OU Rome Program in Architecture since it began in 2013.

Program highlights…

15 Weeks in Italy

The program runs a full semester, from mid Jan to the end of April.

Field Trips

Two major field trips and additional day-trips are included in tuition. Participants will travel on high-speed rail, stay in comfortable hotels, and sample regional cuisine as we travel.

Cultural Visits

Each week you will visit museums, archeological and other cultural sites in Rome, and many more on field trips. All entrance fees to program visits are covered by tuition.

Independent Travel

Rome is a hub for exploring Italy, Europe and the Mediterranean. Many students travel on their own after field trips, during the mid-term break and before and after the semester.

Earn OU Credit

All courses earn direct OU credit.

Creative Design Studios

Build your skills and your portfolio through creative solutions to real world problems. Serious and thorough design studios emphasize all media from hand drawing to digital modeling and graphic design.

Beautiful Urban Facilities

You will work in fully equipped facilities located in an elegant historic palace in the very heart of Rome.

Convenient Housing

The program provides comfortable housing within walking distance of the facilities.

Italian Language Class

You will learn Italian language and culture in a natural and fun way with an engaging native language professor.

Professional Contacts

You’ll meet and learn from local experts, guest critics and other professionals.

Special Activities

Extracurricular activities include multi-course group dinners, Italian films, cooking lessons, and more. Student life in Rome includes all a big city can offer, from live music and soccer games to shopping, lively streets and relaxing parks.


ARCH 3656/5546/ID 3733

Design studio for Architecture and Interior Design students. The course offers students to explore design solutions to exciting, real-world problems set in historic urban contexts. 6 credit hrs. Instructor Beatrice Bruscoli, Ph.D.

ARCH 4970

Introduction to Italian Culture and Language, 3 credit hrs. The course uses diverse cultural media to help students understand and interact with the culture around them. Instructor: Claudia Cremasco.

ARCH 4663/5863

Methods VI/VIII, 3 credit hrs. This course provides students with a historical, analytical and theoretical framework to understand their new surroundings. Instructor: Scott Schlimgen.


You will leave the classroom, and Rome, to investigate course themes in the field on at least three inspiring study trips. Trips may include:

North Trip

Discover the vibrant atmosphere of Milan, the Italian capital of contemporary design and Verona, an inspiring blend of ancient ruins, medieval castles and modern urban, architectural and interior design. A trip to Venice may be included or easily accessible as independent travel.

South Trip

Visit the dynamic city of Naples, one of Europe’s great cultural capitals, and explore the streets, houses, baths and monuments of ancient Herculaneum and or Pompeii, preserved by the eruption of mount Vesuvius in 79 AD.

Tivoli Day Trip

This day-trip will take you to the nearby town of Tivoli, to visit the city-sized ruins of Hadrian’s Villa, the grand Villa D’Este, whose gardens and fountains define Renaissance landscape design and Richard Meier’s striking contemporary Jubilee Church.

Professional Management and Student Support

AIA staff ensure the program runs smoothly and help students get settled in their new home in Italy.

  • Student Services
  • Orientation sessions and materials
  • Immigration assistance – Visa and Permesso
  • Online services
  • Housing assistance


The OU Architecture Program in Rome is open to third-year Architecture and Interior Design students.