The Costa Rica Tropical Biology & Culture course provides students an extraordinary, multidisciplinary, foreign studies educational experience at a very low cost and without disrupting the traditional academic calendar. Students will tour numerous interior and coastal locations around the country, including the Caribbean coast, the Central Valley, the cloud forest region, and the Pacific coast, staying at numerous field stations and hotels.
Lodging, meals, transportation, and fees are all included in the regular 3 credit tuition cost with the addition of air travel cost. Costa Rican tropical wildlife will be examined within the cultural context of this beautiful and ecologically diverse Central American country. Nesting marine turtles, tropical cloud forests, rain forests, cave ecology and the cultural contexts of religion, politics, dance, music, food, and art are just some of the topics that will be examined during this extensive 18 day summer abroad experience.
Program Contact Information
This program is administered by the Center for Urban Resilience (CURes) Office in Seaver College of Science and Engineering. All Academic Majors are welcome!
For program details or questions, please contact:
Dr. Peter Auger, Research Annex 108
CR Course Checklist.pdf
LOCATION AND TRAVEL
Given its size, Costa Rica contains the greatest ecological diversity of any tropical country on our planet. Costa Rica has adopted an economy based on sustainable ecotourism, making it perhaps the safest and most welcoming country in Central America. Roundtrip airfare from California costs approximately $600 - $700 and tends to be less from other U.S. departure locations.
Suggested Packing List - CR Trip.pdf
The course is intended to be multi-disciplinary including the obvious concentration on tropical biology and ecology, but also includes many liberal arts disciplines such as political science, business, religion, media, art and music. Students contract with the instructor to produce a final course project from within their area of academic and personal interest, to be turned in on the last day of the course. Students also submit their field notebook for grading the day before the course ends. All the course work then becomes completed by the end of the three week course.
This course provides an ambitious, intensive tropical experience that includes guided tours, field presentations, day and night hikes, content-rich lectures, and a varied itinerary that often stretches from mornings until after dark. Interested students are encouraged to refer to the detailed trip itinerary.
CR Course Syllabus.docx
HOUSING AND MEALS
The program includes living arrangements in hotels and field stations located throughout Costa Rica. All meals, including snacks, will be provided during the entire trip, and both lodging and meals are included within the regular 3 unit summer tuition. Students in past years have consistently complimented both the variety and amount of cuisine provided during the course, as well as the richness of the entire summer abroad experience in Costa Rica.
July 12 - Arrival and welcome to Costa Rica
July 13 - Travel to Tortuguero; Fruit-sampling; History of Costa Rica; Night walk
July 14 - Canals by boat; Tortuguero village and scavenger hunt; Turtle conservation; Beach turtle walk
July 15 - Travel to Sarapiqui; Earth University and bananas
July 16 - Rainforest by day; Chocolate tour; Rainforest by night
July 17 - Travel to Rancho Margot; Venado Caves; La Fortuna
July 18 - Rancho Margot: an experiment in sustainability
July 19 - Travel to Monteverde; MVI; Dance class; Bat mist-netting
July 20 - Hummingbirds; Cloud forest; Cooking class
July 21 - Bellbird corridor and reforestation study; Hike to San G; Children's Eternal Rainforest
July 22 - Intro to SG forest; Independent project prep; Amphibian declines; Night walk
July 23 - Independent project day
July 24 - Hike out of San Gerardo; Canopy zippiness option; Free evening
July 25 - Travel to Nosara; Las Pumas cat sanctuary; Mangrove presentation
July 26 - Tropical Dry Forest; Mangroves
July 27 - Snorkeling and tide pools at San Juanillo; Ostional turtles and community
July 28 - Return to San Jose
July 29 - Flights home
Detailed Itinerary: Trip Itinerary - CR 2017.pdf
$4086 Tuition + Round-Trip Airfare to Costa Rica; $500 Deposit due no later than May 8, 2017, applied towards Tuition.
Student Deposit Form 2017 - Costa Rica.doc