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Courses & Credits

The program curriculum includes two required courses in Portuguese language and two or three elective courses:

Except as noted above, recommended credit is 16 semester credits, or four credits for each course. There may be prerequisites for elective courses.

All elective courses are taught in Portuguese, so strong background in a Romance language (Spanish, French, or Italian), along with the intensive Portuguese course at the beginning of the semester, is essential (unless a student already has a background in Portuguese).

  More information about credit distribution


Intensive Portuguese and Cultural Orientation to Brazil

Instructor: Ulisses Belleigoli
Required course, 2 semester credits

In the two weeks before the start of the university semester, students take a required intensive Portuguese language class in Juiz de Fora. Class will meet for four hours daily during these two weeks, and instruction will be tailored to students’ language levels and needs. In addition to intensive language instruction, students will be provided with an introduction to Brazilian culture, the city of Juiz de Fora, and the UFJF campus. Classroom work throughout the course will be supplemented by excursions and site visits.


Portuguese language (required)

LEC 085 - Portugues para Estrangeiros (Portuguese for Foreigners)


Elective courses at Universidade Federal de Juiz de Fora (UFJF)

Once the university semester begins, students then enroll in three or four classes. One course is a required Portuguese language course, while the remaining courses may be electives in any area of study. Students are typically advised to take at least two courses in a single department, to foster the relationships with faculty and students that contribute to success by adapting to the university’s organizational culture.

For planning purposes, UFJF has posted the curricular structure for each undergraduate program. Through this link, you will be able to access a list of detailed course descriptions of all the undergraduate majors and degree programs at UFJF. Click on the desired program (always choose the curriculum from the most recent year) to see all the courses that a UFJF student needs to take in order to graduate in that specific program. The courses (disciplinas) are divided according to the initial program of the courses a student usually takes during each semester of the major. In order to see which courses are programmed for each semester of the major, click on the “+” sign on the right side of the screen. To see a description of each course with the summary, program, and bibliography, click on the desired course. Note: The courses listed on this page are not necessarily offered each semester.

UFJF has also posted an online listing of course offerings for recent and upcoming semesters. Through this link, you will be able to access a list of the classes that are available each semester, including the schedules and sections. This page typically lists the schedules for the current semester, the previous semester, and the upcoming semester. At UFJF, the classes are organized into departments, and the same department may offer classes to several majors, with the same class having various sections (turmas) at different times. By clicking on the section (turma), you will be able to see the major for which that particular section is to be taught. The class schedules are usually published two weeks before the previous semester is over (late June and November).

Note: Courses offered during the Brazilian "first" semester (designated by a "1" on the UFJF pages) correspond with the U.S. spring semester. Courses offered during the Brazilian "second" semester (designated by a "3" on the UFJF pages) correspond with the U.S. fall semester.

All classes are taught in Portuguese, so strong background in a Romance language (Spanish, French, or Italian), along with the intensive Portuguese course at the beginning of the semester, is essential (unless a student already has a background in Portuguese).

The International Relations Office at UFJF (known by its acronym in Portuguese as the CRI) is a key resource for exchange students, as it is the gateway for foreign students’ academic experience at the university. Not only does the office provide general guidance, advice and access for a wide range of activities at the university, in town, and even in other cities and regions to which students may travel, but perhaps most importantly it also oversees and facilitates foreign students’ enrollment in courses.

Elective courses taken by previous exchange participants

  • ART 047 - Plastic Art
  • ART 050 - Ceramica II
  • CRE 030 - Antropologia da Religiao
  • CS0 053 - Politics VII
  • CSO 045 - Brazilian Folklore
  • EST 001 - Elementos de Estatistica
  • GS 128 - Studies in Portuguese
  • HIS 063 - Brazilian Historiography
  • HIS 081 - Historia do Brasil Republica I
  • HIS 115 - Socio-Historical Development of Contemporary Brazil
  • HIS 124 - Historia do Brasil Colonial
  • LEM 049 - English Literature
  • MAT 016 - Complementos de Matematica e Estatistica
  • QUI 055 - Thermodynamic Chemistry I

View courses offered at UFJF in recent and upcoming semesters »

View curricular structure for each undergraduate program »


Credit Distribution

The course credit you receive for the Brazil Exchange program is determined according to policies at your college. Check with your advisor and college registrar in advance to find out how much credit you will receive and how it will be distributed, especially if you plan to use your courses in Brazil to fulfill college or departmental requirements.