Downton Abbey at FDU: A special course on the hit television program

downton abbey 321

MADISON, N.J. (January 6, 2016) — As the BBC drama series “Downton Abbey” returns to the U.S. in 2016 for it’s sixth and final season, so to does the popular “Discovering Downton” class return to Fairleigh Dickinson University.

The special, non-credit, eight-week class examines the historical and cultural events of all six seasons of the series. Beginning on February 21 and running April 17, 2016, the class meets on Sunday afternoons from 2 – 3:30 p.m. at FDU’s Florham Campus in Madison, NJ.

The “Discovering Downton 3.0: Change and Resolution” class will take an in-depth look at the period in which the series is based and cover world-changing events like the sinking of the Titanic and outbreak of World War I. The class will also look at what day-to-day life was like for the upper and lower classes in Britain, including work and leisure activities, as well as the fascinating history of Highclere Castle — the real Downton Abbey.

Students have access to “Downton Abbey” creator Julan Fellowes through the instructor Judith Israel. In past semesters, Israel has sent Fellowes questions from the class and he is always delighted to respond.

The course will be taught by Judith Israel, an instructor in FDU’s Florham Institute for Lifelong Learning and a retired vice president for research services at Burrelle’s Information Services. Israel has also taught English at Morris County College and Chatham Junior High School. She holds an M.A. in English from New York University and an M.L.S. from Rutgers University. There will also be guest lecturers, from FDU, on various topics.

The non-credit class is open to all. Early bird registration for all eight sessions is $120. After January 31, the fee is $150. To register for the course, please contact Abagail Eckert, at 973.443.8721 or More information is available at

Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Florham Campus is located at 285 Madison Avenue, Madison, NJ 07940.


FDU Office of Public Relations

Dina Schipper,
Director of Public Relations
Fax: 201-692-7019

Scott Giglio,
Assistant Director of Public Relations

Dan Landau,
PR and Social Media Coordinator

Helen Grill,
Senior General Clerk
Fax: 201-692-7019