the netherlands: Summer Sociology and Psychology Courses in Amsterdam

This program offers a variety of sociology or psychology courses taught by Geneseo faculty members, while living in Amsterdam.  Independent living is complemented by a series of planned cultural excursions, historical tours, and social activities.  Students must choose to enroll in only one of the three offered courses.

Fast Facts

Program Type:Faculty led
Term/Duration:Summer/3 weeks
Summer 2014 *Tentative* Dates:July 1 - July 21, 2014
Summer 2014 Course Offerings:SOCL 378, SOCL 250, and PSYC 278 (students choose 1)
Credits:3 per course
Application Fee:$20
Estimated Program Fees:$4950 (NYS Residents)/$4271 (Non-NYS Residents)
Tuition:$735 (NYS Residents)/$1914 (Non-NYS Residents_
Application Deadline:February 1

Program Details

The program facilitates independent student living while providing a series of planned cultural excursions, historical tours, and social activities such as days trips to Delft, the Hague, bike trips to the North Sea beaches, a canal boat ride, and visits to the Anne Frank House, the Van Gogh Museum, and the Rijksmuseum.  The program includes a weekend trip to Paris, Belgium, and two weekends for independent exploration and travel.  All students will have the use of a bike in the bike-friendly city of Amsterdam. 


Amsterdam is built on rings of concentric canals bordered by time-burnished, step-gabled houses.  The city offers cozy cafes, great art, stately history, old-world charm, and a spirit of live-and-let live housed in one of Europe's great 17th century cities.  The city prospered over the years, with its wealth and power peaking during the Golden Age.  The consequences of this prosperity can be seen today in the architecture, world famous museums, and rich cultural life of Amsterdam.  Today, Amsterdam is one of the most dynamic and youthful of European cities as well as one of the continent's key cultural destinations.

Course Offerings

Summer 2014:

SOCL 378: Senior Seminar, Comparative Social Policy: explores European social policy towards a variety of social problems.  Topics may include crime, poverty, housing, transportation, welfare, drug use, health care, and prostitution. 

SOCL 250: Sociology of Deviance: the course is an inquiry into the social construction of deviance.  Emphasis is placed on how behavior comes to be defined as deviant and the interests advanced by these definitions, as well as on societal responses to deviance, causes of individual involvement in deviant behavior, and deviance designations as a form of social control.

PSYC 278: Psychology of Happiness: This course will consist of a comparative study of well-being between the United States and the liberal social democracies of Western Europe, with special emphasis on the Netherlands.  Topics of interest will include how well-being is predicated by different family structures, work lives, attitudes, cultures and economic and social policies between the US and Western Europe.  These discussions will be greatly enhanced by the direct experience of living in Amsterdam.  Students will participate in and observe cultural events and practices that will demonstrate how well-being is related to various social contingencies.

Not Currently Offered:

SOCL 378: Senior Seminar, Comparative Crimonology: Explores European, particularly Dutch, social policy towards various aspects of criminal behavior.  Topics include crime rates, drug and penal policies, the Dutch tolerance (or harm reduction) model, juvenile delinquency, and abolition of the death penalty.

PSYC 236: Human Sexual Behavior: Overview and critical analysis of theory and research on human sexual behavior.  Amidst the unique social and cultural contexts of Amsterdam and the Netherlands we will examine questions regarding the normative aspects of human sexual behavior, and the influence of cultural norms and standards on behavioral variations.  For example, some questions we will be considering include, 1) How do national differences in sex education relate to variations in the sexual health and behavior of young adolescents and young adults; and 2) Why was the Netherlands the first country in the world to legalize same-sex marriages?