Department of Global Development Studies


Global Development Studies

site header

Study in Cuba

DEVS 306 and DEVS 307:  Cuban Society and Culture (formerly DEVS 305)

These courses - part of an exchange agreement between Queen's and the University of Havana - have been offered since 2008. Each is a 3.0 unit undergraduate course.  DEVS 306 takes place on Queen's campus during the winter term (January to April).  DEVS 307 begins at Queen's after the April exam period with a four-day predeparture session, and continues for two weeks at the University of Havana in Cuba. DEVS 306 is a prerequisite for DEVS 307 (the Havana companion course), but DEVS 306 can also be taken on its own.

These courses are open to all eligible Queen's students and count towards degree requirements in the Departments of Film and Media, Sociology, Languages, Literatures and Cultures, Gender Studies and History. Fourth year students can enroll in DEVS 307 in their graduating year and have it count towards their degree requirements. 

These courses are also open to graduate student auditors and in special circumstances graduate students can take these courses for credit as a reading course.

DEVS 306 and DEVS 307 can be taken on a letter of permission by students from other universities. 

These courses have been offered annually since 2008 as DEVS 305/6.0 and were renumbered to DEVS 306/3.0 and DEVS 307/3.0 in May 2020.  This short video created by a former student in 2020 contains interviews with past students who explain their experience in Havana.  To watch the video, click the link below or copy and paste into your browser.

Queen's students in Havana enjoy a night of music and culture.

For more photos and information about the Havana portion of this course, see our facebook page at:

Session Dates 2020-2021

DEVS 306 

  • Regular Winter Term starting Thursday January 7, 2021 (6:30 PM to 9:30 PM) on campus

DEVS 307 

  • Intensive Pre-Departure Sessions:  April 26 to April 29, 2021 (9:00 AM to NOON, daily on campus)
  • Havana Session:  Sunday May 2 to Saturday May 15, 2021 (departure from Pearson Airport, Toronto, ON)

DEVS 306 Sample topics include:

  • the Cuban Revolution, its roots, critics, and legacies
  • art, film, music and the representation of "Cubanidad"
  • Who and where is Cuba? Migration issues
  • Cuba's relations with the world (The US, Canada, Soviet Union, etc.)

In Havana we work with colleagues at the University of Havana to present students with an active daily program of study, which will include lectures by Cuban scholars, films, as well as visits to art galleries, museums, organic gardens and other sites of cultural interest.  Some sample topics/visits from previous years:

  • Cuba's Foreign Policy with Professor and former Diplomat Carlos Alzugaray
  • National Art Gallery and talk with curator Danys Montes de Oca
  • Panel discussion with former Literacy teachers.
  • International School of Medicine and discussion of Cuban health care system.
  • Masculinity in Cuba with Professor Julio Cesar Gonzalez Pages
  • Instituto Superior de Arte (ISA) and talk with Professor Mario Mas Vidal

As well as University of Havana professors, we speak with artists, filmmakers and musicians.  Previous artists have included musicians Carlos Varela, X Alfonso and Telmary Diaz, filmmakers Mariyln Solaya, Gloria Rolando, and Alejandro Ramirez Anderson.