Gaborone, Botswana

Wildlife Ecology + Conservation

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Information for term Wildlife Ecology + Conservation

Application deadline, and cost information.

Application Deadline

The application deadline has passed.

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Dates: Jan 24 – May 30, 2023 (18 weeks)
  • Credit: 17 semester hours / 25.5 quarter hours
  • Eligibility: 2.5 Overall GPA


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Bring your appreciation for Mother Nature to Gaborone, Botswana, one of Africa's top-ranked destinations for diverse wilderness and incredible wildlife. Home to numerous national parks, reserves, wildlife management areas, and the world's largest concentration of African elephants, Botswana is the ideal place to earn credits in wildlife ecology, conservation, and more.

When class is in session at CIEE Gaborone, you will take courses in environmental science, animal behavior, ecology, conservation, and biology from accomplished and knowledgeable CIEE faculty. Outside the classroom, you will gain firsthand experience exploring the intersection of conservation, society, and culture through co-curricular activities and extensive field trips organized by CIEE to nature reserves, rangelands, rural communities, the capital city of Gaborone, and more.

Botswana's resident wildebeest, impala, meerkats, elephant, migratory birds, and more await you on this epic study abroad adventure!

Unique Experiences

  • Learn new skills

    Engage in hand-on fieldwork to understand conservation management in Botswana’s game reserves

  • Explore Botswana wildlife

    travel to one of the most renowned game reserves in Africa to enjoy a fully integrated STEM experience combining life sciences, conservation, and environmental sciences into a holistic wildlife management curriculum.

  • Gain firsthand experience

    interacting with local communities and government officials to understand Botswana's challenges, success and failure in natural resources management, and conservation


    71.5 %

    130 K

    490 FT

Location & Culture

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A multiparty democracy, Botswana is one of Africa’s most stable countries. Most of its people belong to a single ethnic group, the Tswana, and the country is well known for its rich biodiversity and diverse landscapes. The capital Gaborone is one of Africa’s fastest-growing cities, located in the south, close to the South African border. Gaborone hosts the headquarters of the Southern African Development Community, which focuses on regional development, economic growth, and poverty relief.  

CIEE Gaborone study center has its offices at the University of Botswana, one of the main and oldest universities in the country. The University is located in the center of the city, within walking distance of major shopping centers and government offices.

CIEE wants all our students to feel welcomed, supported, and empowered to succeed while studying abroad. Local CIEE staff have provided details about conditions and cultural attitudes that students with specific identities might encounter in Gaborone.

The Culture

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Excursions & Activities

  • Travel to Okavango Delta and engage in face-to-face discussion with villagers on issues of human wildlife conflict and conservation. 
  • Interview stakeholders engaged in wildlife conservation in Botswana  
  • Discover Botswana’s rich history during excursions to Bahurutshe Cultural Village. 
  • Practice your skills in Setswana as you explore cultural and environmental sites. 

Daily Life

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    Homestays: Maximize immersion by staying with a carefully selected host family in greater Gaborone. 

    Residence Halls: Students can also live on campus in a university residence hall, sharing double rooms with local undergraduate students. Halls have shared bathrooms. 

  • Meals

    Homestays: Host families provide breakfast and dinner during the week and all meals on weekends. 

    Residence Halls: Students are responsible for all meals. There are dining halls on campus, as well as local restaurants and cafés.

Gaborone, Botswana

Where You'll Study

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The program explores Botswana’s amazing wildlife as a compelling example for sustainable wildlife management, species protection, ecology, and behavior. At the same time, students consider how wildlife support conflicts with human neighbors.  To do so, students take a suite of coordinated, upper division biology, conservation, and environmental studies courses in English with CIEE instructors. The program is based in Gaborone, with extensive travel and field study in Botswana’s multiple ecological habitats, including world-renowned wildlife and game reserves - Kalahari and Okavango Delta. All courses are delivered by CIEE faculty, drawing on local experts and stakeholders, including many from the University of Botswana.   



Language Prerequisites

There are no specific language requirements for this program.

Additional Requirements

Pre-requisites: 2 semesters of college-level Biology, Environmental Science, Environmental Studies or equivalent 


Students are required to take all courses listed.  

Individual courses may have additional prerequisites; for CIEE courses, these are listed in the syllabi below. Students are responsible for having their own course approval conversations with their advisors.

Program Requirements

Students are required to take all courses listed.  

Program Credit

Total credit:  U.S. 17 semester/25.5 quarter credits 

Course Credit

  • CIEE Lab courses: 4 U.S. semester/6 quarter credits; 60 contact hours 
  • Other CIEE courses:  2-3 U.S. semester credits/4-4.5 quarter credits; 30 – 45 contact hours 

Individual courses may have additional prerequisites; for CIEE courses, these are listed in the syllabi below. Students are responsible for having their own course approval conversations with their advisors.

Academic Culture

Courses are designed by CIEE and adhere to standards and expectations consistent among U.S. higher education institutions. Regular class attendance and participation is expected and required. Students will play an active role in their own education; group projects and interaction with fellow students and professors are expected. To avoid falling behind, students should not plan personal travel out of the city when classes are in session. 

Class Format

Coursework is conducted in English, except for the Setswana Language and Culture course. Courses are exclusive to CIEE students and are mostly scheduled Monday-Friday with possible weekend work and excursions. Some courses include compulsory field trips with special assignments as part of class work. Instruction is supported and augmented online by our learning management system, Canvas. 


The U.S. grading scale of A-F is used. Students’ grades are based on attendance, class participation, homework, project work, presentations, and midterm and final examinations. Learning outcomes assessment is continuous through personal reflections, evaluation feedback, self-assessment, and requirements as set out in course syllabi. 

Individual courses may have additional prerequisites; for CIEE courses, these are listed in the syllabi below. Students are responsible for having their own course approval conversations with their advisors.

Language of Instruction

English and Setswana 

Individual courses may have additional prerequisites; for CIEE courses, these are listed in the syllabi below. Students are responsible for having their own course approval conversations with their advisors.


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Scholarships & Grants

CIEE offers scholarships and grants annually to help students like you make your study abroad dream a reality.

Students who apply to this program are eligible for the following scholarships and grants:

  • Wollitzer Merit Scholarships in Area or Comparative Studies
  • Ping Scholarships for Academic Excellence
  • Ritzmann Tropical and Marine Ecology Scholarships
  • Global Access Initiative (GAIN) Grants
  • Stohl International Undergraduate Research Scholarships
  • CIEE Gilman Go Global Grant

To be considered, submit the CIEE Scholarships & Grants application within your CIEE program application. Learn more at the Scholarships & Grants section of our website.

See more scholarship info

Dates & Fees

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Dates & Fees


Application Due

Start Date

End Date

Fees & Housing

Fall 2023 18 weeks Deadline Passed Jul 25, 2023 Nov 25, 2023
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Program Fees

CIEE offers the most student support of any provider in its program fee, including an airport greeting, full-time leadership and support, orientation, cultural activities, local excursions, pre-departure advising, and CIEE iNext travel insurance with benefits.

Participation Confirmation = $300

Educational Costs = $15,903

Housing = $2,550

Insurance = $197

Total Fees = $18,950

Estimated Costs

Students are responsible and manage costs related to travel, meals, books, and personal expenses. Below are estimates for consideration.

Meals not included in program fee = $1,800

International Airfare = $1,800 ††

Local Transportation = $200 †††

Books & Supplies = $250

Personal expenses = $1,500 ††††

Total Estimated Costs = $5,550

Financial Aid

CIEE offers the most grants and scholarships of any study abroad organization, including $8 million/year in travel grants, merit-based scholarships, institutional and MSI grants, and Gilman Go Global Grants.

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This breakdown has been prepared from the program budget for the purpose of calculating eligibility for financial aid. During the course of program operations, actual figures may vary. It should not, therefore, be used as a basis for calculation of refunds. CIEE reserves the right to adjust fees at any time.

Students required by their US home institution to study abroad via CIEE's School of Record will be charged a $500 administrative fee in addition to the Program Fees listed.

for residence hall students; homestay students only need to budget for lunches and occassional dinners with friends estimated at $700 per semester

†† round-trip based on U.S. East Coast departure

††† Homestay students should budget for 350

†††† If you are planning an independent study then budget more for that depending on your plans

To help you budget, keep in mind that students are responsible for the cost of international airfare, local transportation, books and supplies, visas, and personal expenses. In addition, your college or university may charge additional fees for study abroad, or may require you to receive a transcript via CIEE's School of Record, which carries an additional fee of $500.

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