Last Updated: 01/03/2010
Faculty Signature Required: Students must submit an application. Assessment will be based primarily on writing skills and background knowledge in the sciences. Application forms are available on the program website and from John T. Longino, (360) 867-6511, email@example.com. Applications received by the Academic Fair, December 2, 2009, will be given priority. Qualified students will be accepted until the program fills.
Major areas of study include ecology and evolution of tropical ecosystems, statistics for field biology and introductory Spanish.
Class Standing: Juniors or seniors; transfer students welcome.
Prerequisites: Introduction to Environmental Studies or one year of college-level science.
The tropics are the cradle of the world’s biodiversity. This program will focus on Costa Rica, emphasizing biological richness, field ecology, the physical environment, statistical analysis of field data, conservation biology and Latin American culture. The first seven weeks of the program will be held on the Evergreen campus, followed by a mandatory three-week field trip to Costa Rica. The on-campus portion will include lectures and labs on global patterns of biological diversity, quantification and analysis of ecological diversity, an overview of major taxa of Neotropical plants, insects and vertebrates, and discussions of the physical environment of tropical regions. This material will be integrated with classes in introductory statistics and conversational Spanish.
During the Costa Rica field trip, we will visit four major field sites, including coastal habitats, tropical dry forest, cloud forest and lowland rainforest. Students will learn about common plants and animals in each area, dominant landforms and ecological processes, conservation issues and current biological research activities. Students will also learn techniques of field research by participating in quantitative field labs, both faculty and student led. In the evenings there will be a series of guest lectures by research scientists. The field trip will require rigorous hiking and backpacking in remote locations.
Upper division science credit may be awarded in ecology and evolution of tropical ecosystems and statistics for field biology.
Credits: 16 per quarter
Special Expenses: Approximately $2,500 for a three-week field trip to Costa Rica.
Program is preparatory for careers and future studies in environmental studies, ecology, conservation biology, evolutionary biology and Latin American studies.