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Programs : Brochure

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  • Locations: Guanacaste, Costa Rica; La Fortuna, Costa Rica; Los Chiles, Costa Rica; Monteverde, Costa Rica; San Jose, Costa Rica; Tortuguero, Costa Rica
  • Program Terms: Summer
  • Homepage: Click to visit
  • Budget Sheets: Summer
Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2024 03/31/2024 ** Rolling Admission 06/03/2024 06/13/2024

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Language of Instruction: English Minimum GPA: 2.5
Housing Options: Hotels Areas of Study: Biology
Program Type: Study Abroad Click here for a definition of this term Minimum Credit Hours: 24 collegiate credit hours
Program Description:
GGC in Costa Rica: Tropical Biology and Conservation
San José, the Caribbean and Pacific Coasts, and the Central Highlands 
Costa Rica - Summer 24

About the Program

This study abroad course explores the people, history, culture and geography of Costa Rica.  Students will have an opportunity to explore the national parks and the rainforest, dive into the Pacific Ocean, fly through the air on zip-lines, and have a chance to see the monkeys, birds, reptiles, volcanoes, and huge rainforest plants.

Additional information about Costa Rica, as well as the educational tour company, EFtours, can be found at Dr. Schlueter’s EF website. Tour Website:

Watch videos from previous trips here and here.


This program will take place in San José, Tortuguero, Sarapiquí, La Fortuna, Los Chiles and Guanacaste, Costa Rica.

Itinerary may include visits to:
  • Interacting with monkeys, birds, amphibians and reptiles
  • Visits to numerous different ecosystems
    (Cloud Forest, Savannah, rainforest, Volcano, Ocean)
  • Night hikes through the tropical rainforest
  • Bird watching and participation in a class bird survey
  • Banana Plantation
  • Tortuguero National Park
  • Los Pumas Rescue Center
  • Zip-Line and canopy tour
  • Arenal volcano and Waterfall
  • Palo Verde National Park
  • Cano Negro Wildlife Refuge
  • Monteverde Cloud Forest
  • White-water rafting (optional)
Course Information
This is a month long GGC faculty-led study abroad program that allows the participating students to earn the following GGC Credits. Students may take a maximum of 2 courses in this program.

BIOL 3350K - Botany - 3 CREDITS
BIOL 3600K - Zoology - 3 CREDITS

(for all GGC students - any major) BIOL 3050 - TROPICAL BIOLOGY - 3 CREDITS

Dates & Duration

This program goes for approximately one month during the summer.
Start date: May 20, 2024 End Date: June 18, 2024


*The itinerary is tentative and subject to change!
Pre-Departure (May 20-31): Face-to-face lecture and laboratory experiences at GGC.

Day 1 (June 3): Fly to Costa Rica. Tour the capital, visit national sites, and walk the Central Market.
Day 2 & 3 (June 4-5): Visit the Sea Turtle Rescue center and learn about sea turtle conservation in Tortuguero (Caribbean Coast). Conduct avian research and hike in the tropical lowland rainforest.
Day 4 (June 6): Travel to the Costa Rica Highlands and hike through a highland forest nature trail to explore animal and plant diversity.

Day 5 & 6 (June 7-8): Travel down the Sarapiqui river by boat and observe wildlife. Visit the Arenal volcano and learn about the geology of Costa Rica. Go on an optional white water rafting trip.
Day 7 (June 9): Travel to Los Chiles Wetland area and perform avian research by boats in small streams and investigate the wildlife of the Cano Negro Wildlife Refuge.

Day 8 (June 10): Plant trees in the Santa Elena Ecological Reserve and hike in the Monteverde Cloud Forest. Zipline through the magnificent canopy of a cloud forest.

Days 9-10 (June 11-12): Travel to the western coast and visit the Los Pumas rescue center to learn about the impact of the pet trade. Snorkel in the Pacific Ocean to learn about marine fish and sea turtles.

Day 11 (June 13): Return to Atlanta.

Post-Departure (June 14-18): Review for botany and zoology final exams.


Cost & Payment

Program cost: $3,879 to EF Tours, $30 Application Fee*
What's included?
  • Airfare
  • Room and board
  • Ground transportation
  • Excursions and activities
  • International Health Insurance
  • Taxes
  • Airport fees
What's NOT included?
  • GGC tuition and fees
  • Passport
  • Personal expenses (shopping, personal trips, etc.)
  • Unexpected incidents
*GGC tuition and fees are NOT included. Those must be paid before departure and must meet GGC deadlines for tuition and fee payments.  Students must adhere to payment and withdrawal deadlines for tuition, fees and travel costs.

Toucan in the woods


The deadline to apply for this program is March 31, 2024.



For more information, please contact the program director, Dr. Schlueter, or the Office of Internationalization.
  • Program Director: Dr. Mark Schlueter - or visit Dr. Schlueter's office at A-1521
  • Program Specialist: Moriah King - (678) 407-5597 -