ECON/EDUC 239 - Exploring Childhood in Scandinavia: Comparing Policies and Practices to the U.S.

4 credits
One week on campus, three weeks in Denmark, Sweden and Finland
Prof. Tim Diette and Prof. Haley Sigler

The course explores childhood in Scandinavia and the United States. The students begin the course with 3 weeks of travel in Denmark, Sweden, and Finland and spend the last week of the term on campus in Lexington. Students will have experiences in Scandinavia inside schools, daycares, and preschools in both economically advantaged and disadvantaged areas as well as speak with administrators and policymakers. Students will explore Copenhagen as well as take study tours in western Denmark, Sweden, and Finland. Students will participate in a 3-day mini-practicum teaching Danish schoolchildren. With additional readings that focus on education policy and broader family policy in each country, students will engage in discussions and reflections on the relative strengths and weaknesses of policies in each country.

Program Fee (paid to W&L):$4686

This fee includes:

  • Lodging at cabin in Copenhagen (Vodroffsvej 55, DK-1900 Frederiksberg) from Sunday April 26 to Friday, May 15
  • 3-day practicum site visit (transportation included)
  • Walking tour of Copenhagen
  • Field study tour to Malmö/Lund, Sweden (transportation included)
  • Field study tour in Copenhagen
  • Guest lectures in Copenhagen
  • Cultural visits in Copenhagen area
  • 3-day study tour of Finland (includes 5 meals, accommodations, flight, charter bus, and 3-4 site visits)
  • 2-day study tour of Kolding/Vejen (Western Denmark) (includes 3 meals, accommodation, charter bus, and 3-4 site visits)
  • Optional airport transfers between Lexington and Dulles on Saturday, April 25 and Friday May 15.

Estimated Additional Expenses: Airfare (estimated $1000), remaining meals($1620), Cell phone, passport, visa (if applicable), inoculations (if applicable), and spending money.

For further details please contact Prof. Diette at or Prof. Sigler at