Summer Field Studies

Tropical Studies Program

Tropical Studies

Study Abroad at the Tropical Studies Program.

        If you like to be challenged and you have an interest to learn new things and from a new perspective, then Tropical Studies might be for you.  The Tropical Studies Program is designed to provide a hands-on experience to students interested in academic and cultural aspects of Tropical America.  The Program offers a unique combination of theory/practice with a homestay element in a rural area in the southern coast of Costa Rica.  Tropical Studies is especially tailored for those students who want to learn from nature and society.  Tropical Studies is a for "naturalists;" being a naturalist a person who gains knowledge by experiencing and analyzing things in their natural setting.  And, to gain this experience, he/she is willing to endure discomforts and privations.  In other words, this Program is for those students who not mind but enjoy making the extra effort.

    This Program is open to students majoring in any academic discipline.   Self-motivation, and inquisitive attitude, 4 semesters of Spanish language, and 2.75 G.P.A. are the basic requirements to apply to this Program (Summer Programs have different requirements).  An average of eight different courses in biology, environmental sciences, anthropology, Latin American culture, and Spanish language are offered every semester.  Occasionally, courses in other disciplines are offered, too.    Students are required to be enrolled in a minimum of 4 courses per semester, and two courses in the Summer.

    Most of the courses offered combine field work and theory and are planned to both introduce novice students into the different field work techniques and to allow advanced students gain additional experience in field research in the tropics.  One course in the biological sciences and one in anthropology are designed to be research classes in which all enrolled students participate in the same original research topic but are assigned different tasks, according to their level of expertise, and their particular interests.  All students, under the guidance of the professor, will write a single publishable paper/article.  Other courses do have a field work component, but students in those classes are not expected to write publishable material.  Overall, this is a Program for dedicated students highly interested in field work.

    The Program is located in Golfito, Costa Rica.    As an important component of this Program, all participant students are housed with local families.  All homes are at a walking distance from the university centre.  Students eat their meals with their families, and have a room for herself/himself. Students will be asked to fill out a housing questionnaire, to submit with the application, in order to look for the best home/student match.

 Summer Programs at Tropical Studies are biology oriented and taught in English. Students can participate in a main research project in Biology and/or Anthropology.  Students may also be able to do their own independent research under the supervision of a professor in the field.  Please e-mail us if you have questions.

One of the objetives of the Fundación ProSur is to support the development of higher education in the Zona Sur, and as part of that objective and mission, is to establish a quality-based university.   That is, an institution focused on a few disciplines and carried out by a selected group of professors committed to academia.   For further details (in Spanish) please click here.


    If you are looking for a place where to conduct field research in the tropics, please check for details about our field station.  Send us an e-mail if you have questions.
Golfito Field Station The Golfito Field Station

Three separate sites provide access to the Golfito Rain Forest.  The Golfito Field Station has laboratories, library and internet access.

More about conducting Research at the Golfito Field Station

Copyright © 1999 - 2012 — Fundacion UdG (ProSur).  Derechos Reservados, All rights reserved.
Publicado por Oficina de Divulgacion, Fundación UdG (ProSur), Golfito 60701, COSTA RICA

Last updated:  10 April, 2012