Gaborone, Botswana

Wildlife Ecology + Conservation

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Information for term Wildlife Ecology + Conservation

Application deadline, and cost information.

Application Deadline

November 1, 2021

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Tentative Dates: Jan 17 – May 26, 2022 (18 weeks)*
  • Credit: 17 semester hours / 25.5 quarter hours
  • Eligibility: 2.5 Overall GPA


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This program has been suspended for fall 2021.

Explore our other active study abroad programs for fall 2021, or check out our travel assurances and updated health and safety guidelines.

Bring your love of the outdoors and its inhabitants to Botswana and study African wildlife in the largest extant native habitat. Select from an array of coursework including upper-level biology, and environmental science in animal behavior, ecology, and conservation. You'll also get to experience and explore the intersection of conservation with society and culture through CIEE co-curricular activities and extensive field trips to nature reserves, rangelands, rural communities, and the capital city of Gaborone.

Unique Experiences

  • Learn new skills

    building an imbedded research project involving wildlife behavior, ecology, or conservation.

  • Explore Botswana wildlife

    travel to Central Kalahari Game Reserve or Okavango Delta 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 community to learn about human-wildlife conflict and its impact on sustainable wildlife conservation efforts.

  • Botswana is known for its vast wildlife and pristine wilderness.

  • Botswana has the largest population of African elephants on the planet.

  • About 40% of Botswana’s land area is protected under the wildlife conservation and national park act.


Location & Culture

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Run by 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 14-nation Southern African Development Community, which focuses on regional development, economic growth, and poverty relief. Botswana is known for its vast wildlife and pristine wilderness areas and its robust wildlife management and conservation. Forty percent of Botswana is protected area under the wildlife conservation and national park act. Seventeen percent of that land is national parks and game reserves while the remaining is wildlife management areas and forest reserves.

The Culture

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Excursions & Activities

  • Travel to Okavango Delta, Central Kalahari Game reserve and engage in face to face discussion with villagers on issues of human wildlife conflict.
  • Discover Botswana’s rich history excursions to Bahurutshe Cultural Village.
  • Practice your skills in Setswana as you explore cultural and environmental sites.
  • Enjoy the famous Chobe National Park which features four major ecosystems and the most abundant wildlife concentration in all of Africa.

Daily Life

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

    Residence Halls: Students also stay in dorms at the Okavango Research Station, as this provides infrastructure with immediate access to Okavango Delta habitats for coursework and independent research. 

  • Meals

    Homestays: Host families provide two meals a day. Students are responsible for lunch.

    Residence Halls:  Students have three meals prepared by station cooks.

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. 

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

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.

Language of Instruction

English and Setswana


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Scholarships & Grants

CIEE offers more than $8 million in 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:

  • Ping Scholarships for Academic Excellence
  • Global Access Initiative (GAIN) Grants
  • 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

Spring 2022 18 weeks Nov 1, 2021 Jan 17, 2022* May 26, 2022*

*Dates for this program are provided as tentative dates. Please consult with your study abroad advisor to confirm dates before purchasing your flights.

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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